Blue Hole

Dahab Blue Hole - Red Sea Blue Hole

Useful Information

Location: North of Dahab on the east coast of the Sinai peninsula.
(28.572222, 34.537083)
Open: No restrictions.
Fee: free.
Classification: KarstDoline
Light: bring torch
Dimension: VR=130 m, D=91 m.
Guided tours: self guide (diving actually)
Photography: allowed
Accessibility: no
As far as we know this information was accurate when it was published (see years in brackets), but may have changed since then.
Please check rates and details directly with the companies in question if you need more recent info.



There are numerous blue holes on earth, mostly a term used by divers. This Blue Hole at the eastern coast of the Sinai peninsula, north of Dahab, is no exception. A deep hole surrounded by rather shallow ground always looks deep blue, which easily explains the origin of the name. The question is, how does it form? There is actually no force concerning the erosion of the sea, which would create such a hole. Some holes might be a result of the growth of corals, especially if there is something underwater like a spring, which would disturb the growth of corals.

However, the most simple and common explanation is karstification. Caves which were formed while the sea was much lower, during the ice ages, or which were down lifted by tectonic forces. There are numerous cave openings in the caribbean sea, especially around Yucatan peninsula. And this one is such a pothole too. Actually of impressive size, as the hole is 130 m deep. We decided to call it a doline, although it actually simply is a pothole or shaft, and we do not know much about its genesis.

Obviously this is a diving site, not a caving site. Unfortunately we must say, as this blue hole is not a romantic spot, but a deadly one. At least 40 divers died here, which is the official number given by the Egypt government. There are numerous reasons for this, probably the good touristic development in the area concentrating on water sports especially diving. Also, the mystery of the deep pit. And of course the cave at a depth of 52 m called the Arch. It connects the pothole with the open sea, and is generally the cause of the death of the divers. It is too deep, below the limit of 40 m where the danger zone of nitrogen narcosis starts. And it is difficult to cross as it is easily underestimated.

From the geologic or caving point of view, this is an interesting place. It shows the karstification of the area in an impressive way. However, we recommend doing some swimming and probably snorkeling and then leave it.