34 independent reviews for Learn to scuba dive in the Red Sea

Reviews for Learn to scuba dive in the Red Sea

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review 10 Aug 2015

1. What was the most memorable or exciting part of your holiday?

My final dive - I really could do it!

2. What tips would you give other travellers booking this holiday?

Go with the flow - its very laid back

3. Did you feel that your holiday benefited local people, reduced environmental impacts or supported conservation?

Yes - it's a family run business and all the staff were local. Diverge were doing their best to recycle and clean up the beaches of plastics.

4. Finally, how would you rate your holiday overall?

Excellent - if you want a friendly open hearted place to stay and learn to dive then I couldn't recommend it more highly.

review 17 Mar 2015

1. What was the most memorable or exciting part of your holiday?

Learning to dive in such a beautiful place is the obvious answer but it was the overwhelming friendliness of everybody that we met. The whole team made sure that we had the most amazing experience and we were treated as if we were part of their family.

2. What tips would you give other travellers booking this holiday?

Do not hesitate to book this holiday! The people are fantastic, the place is beautiful and the more relaxed nature of the area due to its more remote location made for a far more relaxing holiday than you would have at other resorts in the region

3. Did you feel that your holiday benefited local people, reduced environmental impacts or supported conservation?

The whole operation was centred around local people and the local economy. We were actively encouraged to reduce our environmental impact and respect the environment which we were lucky enough to see

4. Finally, how would you rate your holiday overall?

An exceptional holiday that will live in the memory for many years to come. We will be returning to the area, staying and diving with the same people before too long.

Read the operator's response here:

We are so happy that you enjoyed your holiday with us and it was pure joy to have you and Hannah join us. Thank you so much for all your positive feedback and we all look forward to welcoming you back sometime soon.

review 1 Jan 2014

1. What was the most memorable or exciting part of your holiday?

Everything was fantastic but the most memorable part was the diving. We went diving every day and saw lots of coral and fish. Staying with this operator was also very relaxing. They looked after us wonderfully, everything we wanted was provided and nothing was too much trouble.

2. What tips would you give other travellers booking this holiday?

Book it! You won't regret it.

3. Did you feel that your holiday benefited local people, reduced environmental impacts or supported conservation?

Yes, the local people were employed by Dive Urge and they actively recycle anything they can.

4. Finally, how would you rate your holiday overall?

It was fantastic. Can't wait to go again.

review 28 May 2012

1. What was the most memorable or exciting part of your holiday?

For me as a ecently widowed -70 year old. The most exciting part was trying for the first time a difficult and active adventure type holiday. Starting as a novice I went solo to Dahab in Egypt into a Dive School and enrolled into the Padi Scuba Open Water Dive course. This involved 10 dives (mainly two per day plus rest days)to pass the waterside part of the course,starting with confined water dives and moving onto - open water dives. Having confirmation of passing,on my 9 night stay I was able to enjoy two more rest / relaxation dives before I came home. Determined to do more diving anbd progress onto other skills.

2. What tips would you give other travellers booking this holiday?

Preparation - The thought on Scuba had been with me for some years . I now prepared thoroughly by reseaching the Dive School offered by Responsible Travel . More info on Scuba in general and most importantly realising there is a set of 6 comprehensive learning / exam papers , gave myself time to complete as e-learning / distance learning - before I flew into Dahab. This meant I could wholly concentrate on the actual diving process and between dives with no book work to do , was able to fully relax and enjoy the experience - Dahab and Egypt

3. Did you feel that your holiday benefited local people, reduced environmental impacts or supported conservation?

These principals are 100% fundamentalm to the Anglo/ Egyptian management at Dahab and are reflected in their staff relationships - Bedoin connections , care for the local environment - use wherever practical of local resources.The " care principles "are shown/ demonstrated to their guests, who are fully encouraged to participate and follow while in Dahab and to support when returning back to UK.

4. Finally, how would you rate your holiday overall?

Five Stars as described below . Yes for me it was a revalatory experience - Not only am I already planning a return to Dahab to further my Scuba skills, additionally I have now booked two other adventure / active solo holidays for September 2012. I hope to remain fit enough to explore yet more -different/ active holiday experiences from the Responsible Travel /Eco sites area and to widen my knowledge of the World . other peoples and their culture .

review 6 Jan 2012

1. What was the most memorable or exciting part of your holiday?

Scuba diving was awesome. Wonderfully friendly and helpful team. Nothing was too much trouble for them. Ahmed was a great instructor and we all loved the diving. I thought I would be too scared but it was very relaxed and Ahmed and Kimberley gave us lots of confidence. 2. Did you feel that your holiday benefited local people, and minimized impacts on the environment? Lots of local people and family working for the operator. 3. Finally, how would you rate your holiday overall? Excellent, A fantastic balance of activity and relaxation.

review 8 Jan 2012

1. What was the most memorable or exciting part of your holiday?

Getting my dive certificate and riding a camel into the mountains for New Year's Eve.

2. What tips would you give other travellers booking this holiday?

No specific tips, apart from relax!

3. Did you feel that your holiday benefited local people, and minimized impacts on the environment?

Yes. The recycling and the information about how to minimse impact were all good and clear. It was clear that it was more than just tokenism - that the staff are committed to environmental issues. The vast majority of the staff - who were all fabulous - were local.

4. Finally, how would you rate your holiday overall?

Excellent. The team is very relaxed and welcoming, but still efficient. They are fun to be around and care about the guests. The hotel itself is in a lovely setting, and despite my initial uselessness at diving, they didn't give up on me - were very encouraging and Ahmed was an excellent and patient instructor as well as fun to spend time with. Thanks to everyone!

review 10 Oct 2011

1. What was the most memorable or exciting part of your holiday?

Definitely the diving!!! I LOVED learning to dive in the Red Sea and the staff at the dive centre couldn't have been better. I also went on a Bedouin Mountain dinner which was amazing... lying under the stars was unforgettable!

2. What tips would you give other travellers booking this holiday?

Book a trip to Dahab and stay at the dive centre if you want to dive - or even of you just want to have a relaxing holiday in a beautiful location. The staff, accommodation and food were all fantastic and I would recommend staying there to anyone.

3. Did you feel that your holiday benefited local people, and minimized impacts on the environment?

Definitely. I chose to stay at the dive centre because of their attitude towards responsible travel and they did not disappoint! There were recycling bins around the centre, advice on how to reduce the impact of your actions and the dive instructors were clear about their expectations when we were in the water. Also, most of the staff at the centre were Egyptian which meant that you were learning about a new culture first hand, from the people who live there.

4. Finally, how would you rate your holiday overall?

I LOVED my trip to Dahab and I'll definitely be going back. I just want to thank everyone who helped make it one of the best trips of my life.

review 16 Mar 2010

1. What was the most memorable or exciting part of your holiday?

Being amongst the fish and the coral every day - unbelievable colour and variety.

2. What tips would you give other travellers booking this holiday?

Relax and enjoy it. The dive centre will sort everything out for you! The staff and management are all extremely friendly, helpful and flexible, yet not at all pushy (no-one tried to pressure us into going on excursions or to book additional dives, for example). Our instructor was very knowledgeable and patient, and tailored the dives to our particular needs and interests, also taking into account tides and local weather conditions etc. Having said that, given that we only had a week in Dahab, I was glad we'd done the theory and confined water dives in advance. Doing 2 dives a day when you are still learning was tiring enough and we felt rather sorry for some of our fellow guests having to pore over their manuals and dive tables every evening whilst we were able to relax.

3. Did you feel that your holiday benefited local people, and minimized impacts on the environment?

Plenty of locals employed as instructors, cooks, waiters, drivers etc. Guests are certainly encouraged not to waste water, electricity etc.

4. Finally, how would you rate your holiday overall?

A really excellent week. Good diving, good food, and good weather. We both (middle-aged mother and teenage daughter) had a wonderful time and the relaxing atmosphere of the dive centre enabled us to remain good 'buddies' both above and below water for the whole week (no mean feat!).

review 18 Jun 2010

1. What was the most memorable or exciting part of your holiday?

The spectacular location and amazing waters for diving, friendly and knowledgable staff.

2. What tips would you give other travellers booking this holiday?

Be aware that dehydration and Egypt belly is potentailly a big issue so come prepared.

3. Did you feel that your holiday benefited local people, and minimized impacts on the environment?

Lots of locals involved in the business and a green approach by the operator

4. Finally, how would you rate your holiday overall?

All in all a great holiday and I rate the overall experience very high. I would have liked to have been offered more cultural experiences / activties is only critism.

review 21 May 2010

1. What was the most memorable or exciting part of your holiday?

Leaning to dive with the operator.

2. What tips would you give other travellers booking this holiday?

See the reef even if it is with a snorkel.

3. Did you feel that your holiday benefited local people, and minimized impacts on the environment?

Difficult to say. The operator as a company were proactive in minimising impacts on the environment. Sadly, the same could not be said for the locals. The level of rubbish, particularly plastic was the worst I have seen on my travels for many years and does not make a good impression when you arrive. Thankfully the sea front and the reef are considerably cleaner.

4. Finally, how would you rate your holiday overall?

It was a fantastic place to stay and they were very accommodating. My diving instructor was excellent and managed to get me to advance open water level within a week.

review 31 Mar 2010

1. What was the most memorable or exciting part of your holiday?

The reef and fish were amazing and the dive instruction was perfectly tailored for our needs. As it was just the 2 of us and one instructor we saw far more than we would have done in a larger group.

2. What tips would you give other travellers booking this holiday?

If you are looking for a relaxing, small scale, friendly place with excellent dive and snorkel sites on the doorstep and excellent instriuctors and guides this is the place for you!

3. Did you feel that your holiday benefited local people, and minimized impacts on the environment?

Yes

4. Finally, how would you rate your holiday overall?

Excellent

review 5 Feb 2010

1. What was the most memorable or exciting part of your holiday?

Some of the best scuba diving in the region but what really made it for us was the people.

2. What tips would you give other travellers booking this holiday?

Learn some of the local phrases - it helps massively when bargain hunting (!) and we got the impression locals appreciated the fact that we were trying. Dahab seems to be split into two very distinct sectors, with one end being very relaxed and the other being more "commercially centered" towards tourists. An ideal mix really as you can choose whether you want the quiet chilled out area or the more vibrant area! Best of both worlds!!

3. Did you feel that your holiday benefited local people, and minimized impacts on the environment?

Yes. All of the people we came into contact with were from the local area so there was a direct benefit to them. The tour operator were also clearly taking their environmental responsibilities seriously giving us an opportunity to reduce our impact on the environment - even simple things like how often the room was cleaned or the sheets / towels changed has an impact.

4. Finally, how would you rate your holiday overall?

Relaxing, fun and good value.

review 2 Aug 2009

1. What was the most memorable or exciting part of your holiday?

The most memorable & exciting part of the holiday was most certainly learning to dive. I've definitely caught the bug & will be returning as soon as I can. I feel privileged to have been part of a whole new underwater world!!!!

2. What tips would you give other travellers booking this holiday?

Take plenty of cash whether Egyptian or English as the ATM's aren't very reliable & the bank is a taxi ride away.

3. Did you feel that your holiday benefited local people, and minimized impacts on the environment?

At the dive centre the ethos is very much about preserving the environment. Most European people seem to have this ethos too, it's just a shame that the locals don't share the same ideals.

4. Finally, how would you rate your holiday overall?

This is the best holiday I've been on for a while. I was a little apprehensive about travelling alone especially as a female but I needn't have worried, everyone was very welcoming & it was like being part of a big dive family. There were others who were there on their own & always plenty of people to talk to. I have now become a diver & am considering taking it up in the UK (I must be keen!!) I will definitely be returning very soon, thanks to all at the dive centre for a wonderful holiday, especially Lionel for putting up with me & teaching me to dive.

review 23 Oct 2009

1. What was the most memorable or exciting part of your holiday?

It was either doing my first night dive which was amazing and I would definitely do one again. Or it would be going on a camel ride into the mountains where the hotel had organised a BBQ, they made the bread on the open fire in fron of us as we all played games. a great night.

2. What tips would you give other travellers booking this holiday?

i would recommend airport pick-up and drop-offs via the hotel. it makes it so much more relaxing knowing that the hotel will be there once you land and that they know exactly where your going with no bartering and the price just gets added to the bill.

4. Finally, how would you rate your holiday overall?

the overall holiday was amazing. the only thing i would change is that i wish i had booked it for 2 weeks and not one.

review 12 Oct 2009

1. What was the most memorable or exciting part of your holiday?

Learning how to dive! Enjoying the blue hole dive site in Dahab.

2. What tips would you give other travellers booking this holiday?

Take lots of sun cream and if you can a wet suit, prescription mask for divers wearing glasses is also good.

3. Did you feel that your holiday benefited local people, and minimized impacts on the environment?

Yes, very much benefited local people- there were many local employees that were very well treated. Dahab's environmental responsibility generally has some way to go.

4. Finally, how would you rate your holiday overall?

Very good!

review 14 Aug 2009

1. What was the most memorable or exciting part of your holiday?

The amazing world opened up by learning this new skill - a staggering underwater world... and some inspiring people to introduce you to it!!

2. What tips would you give other travellers booking this holiday?

Prepare to relax and take things as they come... Try and spend at least a week to give you time to learn and then do a couple of fun dives - and cause you wonít want to leave! And take A LOT of sunscreen and be prepared to buy lots of bottles of water - this place is CRAZY hot (but rooms have air-conditioning and you're under the water so not too bad really)!

3. Did you feel that your holiday benefited local people, and minimized impacts on the environment?

Definitely. The dive centre has lovely and responsive younger guys from local areas to help with gear and drive you to dive sites as well as clean and organise the place. The chef is also a local as is the husband of the husband/ wife team that run the dive centre. The instructors are very aware of the impact that humans can have on the environment and teach their students to respect the world they're in - and even the young daughters of the owners take it upon themselves to gather rubbish from the ocean out front!

4. Finally, how would you rate your holiday overall?

Brilliant! The scuba diving was amazing - I think I was spoilt learning in Dahab. But particularly the quality of the instructors and the care that was taken with the dive centre clients was obvious when you observed the big groups and attitudes of the other diving centres in the area. Don't hesitate! If it wasn't for the crazy heat this holiday would be tempting a full 5 stars!

review 13 Apr 2009

1. What was the most memorable or exciting part of your holiday?

Learning to dive, in a well-organised and friendly environment, and being taught well.

2. What tips would you give other travellers booking this holiday?

Best to stay in the compound which is very attractive, therefore ask for the rooms inside. We had a house next door because there were 5 of us. It was clean and spacious but missed out on charm.

3. Did you feel that your holiday benefited local people, and minimized impacts on the environment?

Reasonably so.

4. Finally, how would you rate your holiday overall?

Very enjoyable and stress-free.

review 19 Jan 2009

1. What was the most memorable or exciting part of your holiday?

For sure learning to dive was what the holiday was all about and this was a fantastic experience. The instructors gave me so much confidence that I completed both the PADI Open Water and Advanced Open Water during my trip which was way beyond my expectations. The hospitality at the dive centre is perfect. Everybody is completely dedicated to making sure you have everything you need and at the same time you have all the space and privacy you want in a beautiful environment.

2. What tips would you give other travellers booking this holiday?

The dive centre is not for party animals. It is a tranquil oasis ideal for people who just want to relax and have a peaceful time. It's only a few minutes walk to the centre of Dahab so you can enjoy the bars and restaurants easily and then return to the calm friendly atmosphere and maybe have a game of pool before turning in.

3. Did you feel that your holiday benefited local people, and minimized impacts on the environment?

The staff are nearly all local so they directly receive most of the money you spend there. Throughout the diving, the instructors emphasized how to dive without impacting negatively on the environment. They certainly showed a clear concern and prioritised safety and responsibility equally.

4. Finally, how would you rate your holiday overall?

It was exactly what I was looking for. The combination of challenging activity and chilling out were ideal for me. I just got back home and my head is full of the wonderful images of Dahab both above and below water.

review 18 Apr 2009

1. What was the most memorable or exciting part of your holiday?

Snorkeling over the reef and finally seeing those fish! The Bedouin mountain dinner was fun, and the people at the dive centre were unfailingly friendly and helpful. Very good food at the restaurant, especially the special pancakes.

2. What tips would you give other travellers booking this holiday?

Maybe not commit to doing the PADI Open Water course until you've done Discover Scuba. It's a lot of money, and if you're like me and discover you have trouble with some of the skills and don't have time to master them during your holiday, you will be disappointed.

3. Did you feel that your holiday benefited local people, and minimized impacts on the environment?

Most of the people working at the centre were local so I suppose they benefited. Can't be sure about the environment, but since we did not use the airconditioning and everything was pretty simple - no huge gardens being watered all day long or big swimming pools or huge kitchens - I would imagine staying at a place like this has less environmental impact than at one of the big luxury hotels.

4. Finally, how would you rate your holiday overall?

Good - though I don't see any reason to go to Dahab if you're not diving or doing other water sports. I don't know if it's very fair or realistic to encourage people to fly for six hours and pay in advance for an Open Water course without at least mentioning the potential difficulties. You can learn all the theory you want but until you've been in the water with the equipment on you don't know how well you're going to manage. I know this course did not come with a guarantee of success, but I didn't get the feeling anyone cared that much whether I succeeded. Maybe it was up to me to be more assertive, ask for a different instructor, to ask for more help - I don't know. At least my daughter got partway through; she had to stop because of illness, which was of course nobody's fault.

Read the operator's response here:

We firstly we are primarily a Dive Centre, selling Dive Courses and guided dives. However we do fully inform everyone of the procedure involved in learning to dive from the first enquiry onwards and make sure via a medical form sent in advance that they are fit to dive. We actually had 21 e-mails between us and Christl, that we responded to in advance of her coming here and we dealt with any and every query she voiced, suggesting in one case when she asked about potential claustrophobia that she should visit her GP prior to coming. When they arrived with the ends of a cold, we advised and took them to the Hyperbaric Chamber Doctor to get checked out before they dived. They did not want to dive more than once a day and progress was virtually non existent. Despite that myself, personally and 2 of the Dive Pro team here on separate occasions offered for her and her daughter to have a private 1-1 discover scuba experience (no skills, just get wet and enjoy a dive) with the Instructor of her choice to make her feel more comfy in the water and to restore any loss of confidence and overall to at least leave her with a love of diving. We do not push people at all into doing a course, they come to us. We then take the course at a very easy pace, tailored to the abilities of the student. Even when Christl did not want to carry on with the course we offered her this DSD 1-1 experience, free of charge.

review 4 Nov 2008

1. What was the most memorable or exciting part of your holiday?

Learning to dive. Being made welcome and looked after so well.

2. What tips would you give other travellers booking this holiday?

Be prepared to work hard to complete PADI course but its great fun. If you want to learn to dive then this is a great place to learn. Max 4:1 when diving so you get lots of attention and feel really safe.

3. Did you feel that your holiday benefited local people, and minimized impacts on the environment?

Yes. Very eco friendly. All dive instructors care for the environment and want to preserve the under sea life for the future.

4. Finally, how would you rate your holiday overall?

Brilliant.

review 9 Oct 2008

1. What was the most memorable or exciting part of your holiday?

All of it! The people are some of the friendliest we have ever met. Nothing is too much trouble. Staying here is more like staying with friends.

2. What tips would you give other travellers booking this holiday?

If you want peace and relaxation with 5 star service, go with this operator! Tips... try Bakars pancakes and roast dinner. Have a mountain dinner. Take a windproof hat. Drink plenty of water. Try Bedouin tea. Look in the rock pools. Look at the stars. Enjoy!

3. Did you feel that your holiday benefited local people, and minimized impacts on the environment?

Yes, they employ local Bedouins. Your room is cleaned only when you need it to be. While out diving our instructor Oli spent time removing a fishing net from the reef. All the dive team have a clear concern about the reef and were very strict about minimising damage to coral and sea life, without losing a fun perspective on dives. Groups are kept to a max of 4 divers per instructor.

4. Finally, how would you rate your holiday overall?

It was truly wonderful. We will definitely be going back.

review 25 Oct 2008

1. What was the most memorable or exciting part of your holiday?

Seeing the fantastic life under the sea! We look at the sea totally different now.

2. What tips would you give other travellers booking this holiday?

If you want a relaxing holiday and do a bit of diving &/or snorkelling, if you want to see some fantastic sealife, if you want great friendly personal service, then have no doubts and book this holiday! October is a good time to go for sunny hot weather that is not too hot.

3. Did you feel that your holiday benefited local people, and minimized impacts on the environment?

Benefited local people yes from an employment aspect. Environment impact is no worse than a typical holiday.

4. Finally, how would you rate your holiday overall?

Fantastic, just what we wanted - relaxing, laid-back, good food, sunshine and sea.

review 27 Jun 2008

1. What was the most memorable or exciting part of your holiday?

Diving on coral for the first time. Moving from Attenborough on the TV to being there was a great thrill.

2. What tips would you give other travellers booking this holiday?

Sadly, I would say get a list of prices when you start and keep a note of what you have from the restaurant. PADI courses are considerably more expensive than elsewhere, though my instruction was excellent and the other resident instructor also appeared to be excellent. In a nutshell it seemed to me that the operator was more assiduous at trying to relieve me of my money than the restaurant touts along the front. Having said that, the accommodation was first class, the location was an oasis of peace, the staff friendly and the whole feel was that of an extended family, though perhaps the sort of extended family who might contest the will.

3. Did you feel that your holiday benefited local people, and minimized impacts on the environment?

This is difficult to tell. The operator says that they benefit the area by a rolling "education" program involving the local children. The Instructor told me that a lot of the drivers that they employ are really curious to find out what people dive for, perhaps this is the way forward to protect the reefs. Certainly the tour operator has a lesser impact on the environment that the mega-hotels that are now appearing. Personally speaking I see increased development and increased tourist numbers only leading to the detriment of the reef environment. Mea culpa.

4. Finally, how would you rate your holiday overall?

Very good, despite some disappointments. I'd give this holiday four stars but these are tempered with a few caveats, so three and a half.

Read the operator's response here:

We thank Nicholas for all of his lovely comments and look forward to welcoming him back. I am sorry that he felt the prices were not clear enough for him. We do make sure that the initial enquiry is responded to with a full list of all our prices, relevant to their enquiry and try and include any extras that we feel they may want to know about. Having confirmed a holiday booking we then write with a confirmation and summary of costs prior to the customerís arrival. Once the customer is here they can double check any costs with us at any point and we offer an interim invoice service, if needed, so that the customer can keep track of their costs as they go along. Restaurant menus with prices are placed in each room as well as being readily available in the restaurant. Pricing is a hard issue as we have to remember people have come to us for a relaxing holiday and may find that being reminded of prices all the time detrimental to their enjoyment of the holiday.

review 3 Jan 2008

I am not sure I could pick one thing that was the most memorable. I went there to learn to dive and enjoyed every minute of it, which no doubt is largely due to the very friendly, encouraging and professional instructors/guides and the efficient way the diving was organised. The dive centre itself has a relaxed and friendly atmosphere, which made it very easy for the solo traveller. I simply had a wonderful holiday and there is no doubt that I will be going back.

review 1 Jan 2008

1. What was the most memorable or exciting part of your holiday?

Successfully completing my PADI open water course.

2. What tips would you give other travellers booking this holiday?

Ensure you are learning in a group that is limited to 4 people and that your instructor is aware of any issues or concerns you may have.

3. Did you feel that your holiday benefited local people, and minimized impacts on the environment?

A little.

4. Finally, how would you rate your holiday overall?

Superb - I had great accommodation and facilities and as much or as little as I needed on a day to day basis.

review 8 Oct 2007

1. What was the most memorable or exciting part of your holiday?

The Diving - Fish and corals. The People - Everyone is friendly and makes you welcome. The Sea - It is clear and warm. The Weather - It is hot, hot, hot!

2. What tips would you give other travellers booking this holiday?

Take some Mosquito repellant as they are about at dusk. Pack light; I brought back lots of unused clothes. If you run out of clothes, there are laundrettes or you could buy out there (quite cheaply). Take some good walking shoes as it is the best way to explore. Keep small notes for the toilet at Sharm Airport on the way back.

3. Did you feel that your holiday benefited local people, and minimized impacts on the environment?

Yes, the majority of staff are local people and they care about their environment. There doesn't seem to be any scrap from cars as they just keep then running and running. Plastic seems to be the biggest rubbish problem so leave all your plastic at home if you can.

4. Finally, how would you rate your holiday overall?

Fantastic! Great diving, friendly people, nice weather, excellent food. Too much to list!

review 19 Jul 2007

1. What was the most memorable or exciting part of your holiday?

The care which the dive centre took to ensure that we had a really good experience. The Advanced Open Water instructor, Sam, was amazing - really calm and engendering confidence all the time - yet rigorous with us about our 'homework'. The diving was excellent and we loved the corals and the fish - as well as the turtles. The equipment was all very good and the facilities for washing etc were efficient as well as picturesque. The accommodation was great and the restaurant is wonderful - everything is freshly cooked, reasonably priced and delicious and they are so flexible about wants and needs - great team. I think the centre should market the restaurant more as it was so good - those breakfast pancakes - yum! - and the fish - though I did have moments of doubt about eating fish! It was lovely of the team to make vegetarian food too. Lindsay is just the most efficient, considerate and delightful person you could ever meet - she organised our disparate group of 4 with ever changing wants and needs with not even a hint of irritation at our changes of mind. Everything worked like a dream. For Alan's birthday the dinner in the mountains complete with cake made a really special evening for him - and the rest of us. And lastly the day on the boat was amazing - our last day of diving - and the best day.

2. What tips would you give other travellers booking this holiday?

Take fewer clothes than you think you need - Dahab is very relaxed and not a place to dress for dinner! Just book! Lindsay will give all the help you need and the instructors and divemasters are so helpful and flexible - nothing is too much trouble. Buy a water cooler - so necessary. Don't take lots of medicines with you as they have a good range available. As you have to pay for the holiday in cash, take sterling with you and put it in the safe at the start of the holiday - then top up from local ATMs. Do the boat diving day

3. Did you feel that your holiday benefited local people, and minimized impacts on the environment?

I hope so - local people work at the dive centre and seem really involved and happy there. The centre brings good business to cafes/restaurants based at other dive sites. The divemasters showed concern for reefs and fish - and were lovely with the Bedouin girls. Reef fish aren't served in the restaurant unlike elsewhere in Dahab. We spent a small fortune fostering the entrepreneurial skills of the Bedouin girls who had bracelets etc to sell. They were really keen not just to sell but to talk with us too and most of them were an absolute delight.

4. Finally, how would you rate your holiday overall?

We had a great time. I can't stress enough how flexible and customer-oriented everyone at the dive centre was. The logistics team were astonishing - helping us older divers to carry our gear to and from dives when needed. Paul was a fount of wisdom on all aspects of diving as were Birgit, Toine and Sam. Our only regret was not to be able to dive with Roxy - so we'll have to go back again for that pleasure! The restaurant team and Mahmoud were so helpful as well as producing great meals. The diving was really relaxing and enjoyable - with knowledgeable and interesting/interested staff. I would recommend this operator to any diver of any level - and to non-divers.

review 16 Jul 2007

1. What was the most memorable or exciting part of your holiday?

Passing my Open Water Diving course! 2. Did you feel that your holiday benefited local people, and minimized impacts on the environment? Yes, this operator is locally owned, and many local people work there. 3. Finally, how would you rate your holiday overall? I had a great time. I went on my own to learn to dive. It was an ideal place to go on your own - small, friendly and safe - and to learn to dive - small groups. I was very lucky to have one-to-one sessions with my instructor, who was lovely, very friendly and I had complete trust in her.


review 18 Jun 2007

1. What was the most memorable or exciting part of your holiday?

Realising that diving was becoming second nature, so I could concentrate on and appreciate all the incredible marine life on the reef.

2. What tips would you give other travellers booking this holiday?

1) Be prepared for hard work and early nights! Learning to dive challenges all your senses, and takes you right out of your comfort zone. It's exhausting, but the rewards far outweigh the effort you put in. I'd fall asleep listening to my breathing with the sensation that I was rising and falling under water! It's definitely worth buying and reading some of the PADI manual before the holiday, as advised by the Dive Centre. 2) Always carry water with you, and the Dive Centre sell a fantastic portable water bottle carrier which really keeps the water cool. 3) Make sure you ask your instructor to take some photos of you underwater. I know that it would have been too much for me to carry a camera myself, as there's so much to think about. 4) If you complete your PADI open water course, and want to do some Adventure Dives, I would recommend 'Peak Performance Buoyancy' as this helps you control your movement underwater to minimise the risk of damaging the marine life.

3. Did you feel that your holiday benefited local people, and minimized impacts on the environment?

Definitely. The staff were predominantly Egyptian (and many Bedouin), and the Dive Centre worked with other Bedouin activity providers (camel safaris etc.). The Dive Centre had its water supply (well) and all water to rinse dive equipment was recycled over the garden. Dahab has a significant rubbish problem and the Dive Centre is working closely with the Community to address this, and recycles organic waste, plastic bottles etc. and organises beach clean ups. They strictly adhered to environmental diving guidelines.

4. Finally, how would you rate your holiday overall?

A fantastic week - fabulous staff, superb instruction, excellent safety & equipment - I'm looking for my next diving break!

review 5 Jan 2007

1. What was the most memorable or exciting part of your holiday?

Diving (it was my first time and it was memorable); "the islands" dive site (majestic!); the breakfast (Khaled and Bakar are genius); spending the night on the mountains with the full moon (ask Mahmoud)

2. What tips would you give other travellers booking this holiday?

Book your holiday in a period with a full (or almost) moon: no jpeg of gif picture can reproduce the see, the clouds and the mountains under the white light of the moon. If you're beginner (as I was), don't be afraid of diving (as I was): Bonnie is an excellent instructor and any fear will disappear after the first dive with him. Even if your friends don't want join you, book your holiday alone, you'll make new friends at the operator and/or in Dahab for sure.

3. Did you feel that your holiday benefited local people, and minimized impacts on the environment?

Yes: besides the instructors and dive masters, food and logistics are provided by friendly local people.

review 30 Oct 2006

1. What was the most memorable or exciting part of your holiday?

The amazing colour of the sea & barren spiky mountains; see photos. Superb weather. Wild jeep rides across the desert scrub to the dive sites. Really pleasant, friendly and professional dive organisers & instructors. The stark contrast between the "poshed up" sea front and the rubble and litter strewn hinterland.

2. What tips would you give other travellers booking this holiday?

DON'T drink the water or even brush your teeth in it - and check that fish you're being offered is fresh (and the restaurant kitchen is clean). Take rehydration salts. :¨(

3. Did you feel that your holiday benefited local people, and minimized impacts on the environment?

A medium haul flight for five followed by diving in a delicate ecosystem is hardly minimizing environmental impact... but if you're going to do it, this operator does it better than any other operator in Dahab. Small dive groups, careful guiding. No aircon or flood lighting. The great majority of the money stays in the local economy and most of the employees are Egyptian; those that aren't, spend most of their income locally. So ... as far as practicable... yes. (Especially after the 30 yr old jeep got new spark plugs and stopped passing unburnt fuel out its exhaust!)

4. Any other comments?

Thanks for running a really good travel agency - we'll be back. *** to **** (great place, lovely people - but can the coral take the number of divers?) If this operator were the only operator there, it would be a certain ***** +.

review 16 Apr 2006

1. What was the most memorable or exciting part of your holiday?

Parachuting down the Canyon dive site to a depth of 30m was the most exciting and thrilling part of the holiday. The most memorable part was the individual care and attention given to us by both the hotel staff and the dive instructors. They couldn't have made us feel more welcome.

2. What tips would you give other travellers booking this holiday?

We went on the holiday at the end of March. The BBC website told us to expect temperatures of 35 degrees. It was no where near this warm and other travellers were caught out by the same information. It can be cold at night and cold in the wind when you get out of the sea. Brrrrrrrr....

3. Did you feel that your holiday benefited local people, and minimized impacts on the environment?

The dive centre was hyper-aware of the potential damage to the coral reef that diving poses. As a rule they only take very small groups and whilst on our PADI course we weren't allowed anywhere near the coral until we were confident enough with our buoyancy not to crash into it. Other companies weren't so careful. We learnt a great deal about the wildlife of the Red Sea and returned home with a real passion for more underwater exploration. On the negative side we felt that the hotel did not live up to its eco-credentials in other areas. For example they watered the garden, paths and walls twice daily with fresh water. Was so much watering necessary? Why weren't the paths swept instead of being hosed down? Water is scarce in the Sinai Desert and the local supply is transported from a desalination plant up in the mountains. Surely the watering could be cut down and the attempt at growing grass abandoned? We also saw no evidence of use of alternative energy sources. Dahab is a very sunny and windy place. We were surprised that a hotel that advertises itself as responsible/eco does not even make a gesture towards renewables.

4. Any other comments?

Four stars - this really was a wonderful holiday. Two weeks felt like a month. We were completely relaxed and happy when we got home. It was probably the best holiday we've been on. We would love to go back next year.

Read the operator's response here:

The main misunderstanding seems to be re the watering. Obviously plants need water or they die and the plants here provide shelter for many types of birds too and things need to be kept clean in the dive club too. We do however use our well water which is a renewable source as it comes from the water table and goes back there too. The local supply is NOT transported from the mountains and there would be no need for a desalination plant there anyway as the water drawn from wells there would be sweet water anyway. It is obvious to me that this lady (Emma Luton) had got her information from a bad source. The small patch of grass that we have growing (about 1 meter square) is there for our Tortoises, which as you know are rare and need protection. We have 6 of them in our sanctuary and the grass is a part of their essential diet. Alternative energy sources are not yet available in Dahab yet, I agree that it would be a great place for it, but bear in mind that Dahab has only been in existence for the 15 years and these things take time, even in a civilised country like England.

review 1 Oct 2005

1. What was the most memorable or exciting part of your holiday?

All of it - each dive was a new experience with memories that I will treasure for a long time. The camel safari was quite special, as were the night dives.

2. What tips would you give other travellers booking this holiday?

Take an underwater camera!

3. Did you feel that your holiday benefited local people, and minimized impacts on the environment?

Yes. It was nice to see that the Dive Masters and Instructors help with clean-up operations of the reef to minimise pollution and damage by tourism.

review 22 Sep 2005

1. What was the most memorable or exciting part of your holiday?

Some of the fish I saw when underwater.

2. What tips would you give other travellers booking this holiday?

No particular suggestions, it was all very easy.

3. Did you feel that your holiday benefited local people, and minimized impacts on the environment?

Plenty of local people employed at this operator, and all very good.

4. Any other comments?

No particular tales, but I would certainly recommend this operator to anyone wanting this sort of holiday.

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