10 independent reviews for Swim with dolphins in Egypt

Reviews for Swim with dolphins in Egypt

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review 28 Sep 2017

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

Swimming with the dolphins, I cannot describe how incredible this was.

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

take less stuff, it is hot, so the aircon option is advisable, a hat.

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

I would like to think that it did

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

wonderful, although seven days in the heat began to take its toll

review 24 Aug 2015

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

Obviously the main wish for this holiday was to swim with dolphins and the I was so lucky to have the very special opportunities I had, and a huge part of that was thanks to the amazing guidee, Khaled. He seems to have a sixth sense to anticipate what the dolphins are going to do and which direction they'll head in to get you to the right spot at the right time. When I observed the other guides on the boat trips, none of them did what Khaled did. I called him the dolphin paparazzi! This meant that on the 3 trips I took - the 2 boat trips and the overnight boat trip, I was the only one on the boats who had a significant amount of time swimming with these amazing creatures. In total, I was lucky enough to swim with them for around 2 1/2 hours, and most of that time was either just me and Khaled or on my own. Very special and spiritual! As part of the holiday a snorkelling trip was included to a nearby beach where the dugong and turtles feed on sea grass. Again, I witnessed other guides from boat trips take an approach which didn't really benefit the customer, but Khaled knew exactly what to watch for so I was blessed with swimming with a dugong (just me and Khaled again) for 20 mins. I also saw two turtles there.

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

If you're wondering whether to book the extra overnight trip to dolphin reef, I would definitely recommend it and say that was where most of my time swimming with the dolphins was spent. In the lagoon there, you have unlimited time to swim with them and aren't restricted in specific swimming areas like you are at dolphin house. The whole overnight trip was fantastic, and Khaled took me on a night snorkel there, too. The cabins get suffocatingly hot to sleep in at night so most people sleep on deck and the starts are amazing!

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

Yes. There are protected areas where swimmers/boats aren't allowed. There are also officials on the boat making sure you only swim there between certain times. The captains and staff on the boats were all contentious in making sure regulations were adhered to. I stayed in an eco-resort and they are very aware of environmental impacts. I was staying at RSDS as part of a snorkelling holiday. I stayed in a deluxe chalet with aircon. The resort of simple in a charming, rustic way and very clean. All the staff were friendly and helpful. The house reef there is fantastic! I spoke to a lot of people who were repeat guests and they all said they kept coming because of unlimited diving there and they enjoyed the relaxed resort. There is a covered area on the beach with chairs, but it would've been nice to have some sunbeds, too, to relax on in between snorkelling/dives. The food is quite limited. There are only 8 dishes served at meals, and if you're vegetarian or vegan you will probably struggle as at least 2 dishes were meat, but usually 4 of them. Unless you want to eat salad bits, rice, potatoes all the time, you may want to take snacks with you. The bedouin cafe is lovely. The stars are fantastic from the beach, and Sky gave me an interesring talk about them with his laser light. Tip: The resort is lit up at night by lots of tiny lamps, which look beautiful but don't give off much light so take a torch.

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

Fantastic. I've recommended it to several friends who've seen my photos and videos and are so jealous!

Read the operator's response here:

Dear Sibil, We are so pleased you had such an exceptional time! Yes our guide really knows how to ensure the guests have the best possible experience with the dolphins, we sometimes think he is part dolphin / part human! He is very sensitive and the dolphins seem to know him! He has spent 20 years and thousands of hours in the water with them! You mentioned the food at the resort and I am not sure if you realised that the kitchen are happy to do some extra vegetarian dishes if asked, or cater for special diets. If your friends want to come on one of the holidays they are welcome! I hope your memories stay vivid and get you thru the winder months in the UK Kind regards Amanda

review 25 Oct 2015

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

I was lucky, I saw dolphins on all three visits to The Dolphin House and also saw a giant turtle.

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

Travel light, don't take too many clothes, its easy to wash things through and they dry quickly. The catering is lavish, you probably will gain some weight.

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

The eco village resort is very environmentally responsible. It employs local people and supports local businesses.

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

An excellent resort right on the beach with friendly and helpful staff. There is a lovely reef which can be snorkelled or dived whenever you're not doing something else.

review 4 Jan 2015

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

New Years Day when 10-15 spinner dolphins came out of the protected reef into the ocean to play with us.

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

Don't go on any of the external trips to the unprotected reefs. We did this unknowingly and the difference in the dolphins behaviour is noticeable- in a bad way! I also learnt that at the unprotected reefs the levels of tourists that visit, particularly in peak season, may have contributed to a significant decline in dolphin numbers.

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

The activities at Shagra resort and with this operator were supportive of conservation. However the external trips added to the package were not.

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

A fantastic way to spend xmas and new year. Would definitely recommend this, taking into account all previous comments.

review 20 Sep 2014

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

Being so close to dolphins and turtles. We kept telling ourselves nothing was guaranteed but the joy when we were being 'investigated' by dolphins or stared at by turtles - or a triggerfish with huge teeth - was amazing. Also great - coffee in the Bedouin cafe, the friendliness of the staff, the beautiful reefs just a few metres walk from the beach, Khaled's helpful and reassuring presence, the thrill of sleeping on deck on the overnight safari.

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

1 If you're travelling June-September consider a chalet with air-conditioning. The chalets do not cool down much at night and the fan is noisy. 2 Take a guide to the fish on Red Sea reefs - or make sure you borrow Khaled's. It really enhances your experience. 3 take an underwater camera. We didn't and so wish we had. Even if the pictures are rubbish they will remind you of what you have seen. There are so many amazing fish you can't even remember them afterwards to look them up! And sometimes you see things you just want to relive later. Next time we're taking one. 4 Don't worry about getting into the boats after snorkelling. I fell in like a stranded tuna a few times but got the hang of it eventually. The boatmen are so friendly and although they seem to weigh about 8 stone they are strong. They have a technique using crossed-over hands that pulls you up and twists you so that you sit on the edge with your feet inside. Magic! One woman in our overnight group was very overweight indeed but was hauled in with no more fuss than the rest of us.

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

All the staff cared for the reef and the wildlife and impressed the rules on us - no touching etc. It was clear that other companies were not so strict when we met their guests on trips. We were given a bottle of water and refilled it throughout the week. There were a lot of staff and I hope they benefitted. They deserved their tips!

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

We loved it so much we are going to do it again. It's a week of being somewhere completely amazing. peaceful and different - underwater - and everyone and everything helped us to concentrate on that and have a terrific time.

review 3 Jan 2014

My holiday was amazing. Our guide Khaled was a star and looked after us all superbly and we saw the dolphins on every trip. The last day Thursday 2 Jan we went out just 4 of us on a special chartered boat and we had in all over 3 hours in the water with the dolphins. I swam for about 40 mins solo it was just the best being part of a little pod for a short time. It is a very beautiful and special place and thank you so much for this opportunity. I would recommend this experience and holiday to anyone who loves dolphins and wants to swim with them and see them in the wild. If you are quiet and calm and just wait they will swim to you and with you and you can pretend just for a short time that you are part of their underwater world. Food was brilliant very fresh and lots of choice, accommodation in the domed tent was great and warm with blankets and so close to the sea.... I met some lovely people and as a solo traveller I was never short of good company. Special thanks to Khaled who goes the extra mile to make sure that you have the best all round trip possible and see the dolphins. He can call them and they swim towards him!

review 3 Feb 2013

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

Swimming with the dolphins was certainly the most memorable part of the holiday. Their eye contact and way of playing was just extraordinary, something will remain with me forever.

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

Have a chat with Dolphins Connections (Amanda) to ensure that you go swim with dolphins accompanied by her snorkeling guide contact (Mr Khalid Said) because he knows the dolphins very well and he loves and respects them.

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

All the staff at the resort were local people, so the holiday did benefit local people, although may not be a whole local community to be benefited. The resort has advanced environmental policies (in terms of water use and waste and plastic management), so although resources are used, this is done with minimum environmental impact. Swimming with the dolphins is also done in such a way that environmental impacts are reduced to the very minimum or to zero (e.g. no touching of coral reef and marine life). The income from the marine-based activities contributes to conservation efforts, so I believe that this holiday supported conservation.

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

One of the very best I have ever had.

review 11 Nov 2012

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

Swimming with the wild Dolphins in the Red Sea. It was an amazing experience. I'd encourage any Dolphin lovers to go to Egypt and experience just that. The culture and the people are great too - really friendly. Secondly it would have to be the "Royal Tent on the Beach" sleeping arrangement. Definately something i would do again. Peaceful.........very romantic.

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

Book in advance to avoid any disappointment. For flights, use Thomson airways,they were very efficient during the whole booking process.

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

I think the holiday i chose, benefitted the local people more than anything else. They provided the great entertainment and we, as holiday-makers make it possible for them to do such wonderful jobs.

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

I'd give it 4.5 stars. Absolutely amazing.

review 18 Apr 2011

We have had an excellent holiday. I can share a few thoughts with you for your readers. 1) The resort at Shagra on the Red Sea coast in Egypt is definitely environmentally sensitive making much of its determination to protect the local reef. Visitors were discouraged from swimming out over the reef and a clear cordon was put round it enabling swimmers and divers to just keep to the edge. As a result a great deal of the reef remains in good condition with a wide variety of reef life including reef sharks, rays and sometimes turtles. The resort itself prides itself on serving simple but nutritional mainly Egyptian food with a reasonable choice of menus. Visitors stay in tents on the beach or simple chalets in keeping with the local surroundings. A great deal is made of saving water and not washing towels unnecessarily but I don't know if solar panels are used. (If not they should be). 2) The marine park where we went to see the dolphins (only saw them once unfortunately - but that was great) is well policed to ensure it is not overused by tourists and we never saw more than 3 boats there. It has an exquisite variety of marine life. 3) The beach where we saw the turtles does not allow boats to go out in the bay and as a result it is a good swim out - though well worth the effort. 4) This is clearly in contrast with other resorts which have large swimming pools (Shagra does not) water green grass outside (Shagra has sustainable local plants including a cactus garden) and have left their local reefs in a parlous state.

review 22 May 2010

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

Snorkelling with dolphins in a fantastically beautiful sea. Exploring parts of Egypt and its history.

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

Great for divers: the resorts are not really set up for snorkelling but they provide a very good service to snorkellers even so. For swimming with dolphins, rely on this operator: they provide a very good package. The eco-village where we stayed (Marsa Shagra) was quite outstanding: you may have to take a mini-bus to get to some dive/snokelling locations but it's easy. Not sure about the other eco-villages.

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

Yes, definitely. Diving and snorkelling in that part of the Red Sea are well-regulated.

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

Excellent.

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