Liveaboard Diving in Daedalus

What to Expect on a Daedalus Reef Liveaboard

Due to its remote nature, choosing a liveaboard to Daedalus Reef is necessary to appreciate this amazing dive area fully. East of Marsa Alam, about 80 km/50 miles offshore, Daedalus Reef, also known as Abu Kizan, lies within a marine protected zone. At the center of the reef, the Egyptian Navy built a lighthouse on a small man-made island originating in the 1860s, which was then rebuilt in the 1930s. A long fixed pier stretches from the lighthouse out to the edge of the shallows. This is where most liveaboards moor to keep stable in the open sea. Daedalus is included in numerous Egypt liveaboard itineraries that visit this area.

Daedalus has a large shallow reef with drop-offs at the sides. It varies from a few meters of beautifully clear water to the deepest point for recreational divers at 40 meters/ 130 ft. This means Daedalus has the best of both worlds. On the largely unspoiled reef, there are stunning corals, tropical fish, and Napoleon wrasse for divers to enjoy. In the deeper sections, out in the blue, the pelagics: sharks, mantas, and tuna shoals, can be seen passing through.

For technical divers, other areas are only accessible to those with experience and equipment for going deep. The wreck and debris of the Zealot steamer are very popular for rebreather and side mount diving.

Daily Schedule (example)

Morning - The first dive will normally be a dawn dive. After a quick snack and coffee, you will have a briefing before heading to the dive deck. The deeper dives will be first, and divers will enter directly or by tender boat from the liveaboard. After breakfast, a second briefing will be followed by the second dive. The dive times will vary depending on the depth of the dives and air consumption.

Afternoon - After lunch and a break on board, there will be another two or three dives in the afternoon. These will likely be shallower reef dives where you can look at the coral and anemone city. Sadly, there is no night diving within this marine protected area. This is for conservation and safety; the currents and general conditions can be difficult even during the day.

Daedalus Reef Underwater

The reef is less than a kilometer long and 100 meters wide, with drop-offs all around. The deepest areas of the site are around 40 meters/ft. and currents can be very strong. Visibility is very good despite often rough conditions. Divers can expect between 20 to 30 meters and 65 to 100 ft. The water temperature varies from 24 to 30 degrees 75 to 85 Fahrenheit.

Fortunately, Daedalus is in pristine condition, with soft and hard corals and many tropical reef fish. 'Anemone City,' an entire section of the reef covered with anemone, is a macro photographer's dream.

In deeper waters, the position of Daedalus reef so far offshore makes it ideal for encounters with passing pelagics. Hammerheads and oceanic whitetips are just some of the big sharks you can hope to encounter around Daedalus. In the south of the reef, there is also a chance to see solitary thresher sharks, easily distinguished by their long pointed tails. In the summer, there is also a chance to see whale sharks passing by in the blue.

There is also a wreck at Daedalus Reef, the Zealot, between 80 and 120 meters of water. Not only is there the wreck, but the cargo of iron is scattered down the reef, lost as the ship sank. This steamship sank due to poor navigation in the 1980s and is perfect for technical divers to explore.

Top Tips for Daedalus Reef

  • Currents can be strong at Daedalus, but the directions are fairly predictable. Take a compass to stay orientated.
  • Remember to check the marine park's rules; many things, such as wearing gloves while diving, are prohibited.
  • Be sure to take adequate thermal protection, as currents can make the water feel colder than it is.
  • Be aware that there will be a charge to enter marine parks such as Daedalus. The price will depend on how many you will be visiting. It should be paid on the liveaboard.

Getting to Daedalus Reef

Most Egypt liveaboards depart from Port Ghalib near Marsa Alam, the closest mainland harbor. These liveaboards are easily accessible from Marsa Alam airport, which receives frequent flights from several major European airports. Alternatively, Hurghada Airport is a four-hour transfer away from Marsa Alam.

The reef is a 9-hour sail, normally done overnight from the port of departure. Daedalus is part of several itineraries, including the Brothers, Elphinstone, and St. Johns. The number of dives at Daedalus will vary depending on your chosen itinerary.

The distance from shore makes this site exclusively for liveaboard dive boats. This means the reef is in very good condition, and you won't be surrounded by hundreds of other divers daily. Dives can be done directly from the liveaboard, which moors close to the reef's edge, or from a tender.


Daedalus Diving Reviews

  • 8.9 Fabulous
  • 465 Verified Reviews
  • 8.8 Fabulous
  • Sharon E
  • United States United States

OK, but overly crowded with many ships, many divers everywhere!

Diving Daedalus in September on the JP Marine

  • 8.4 Very good
  • James B
  • United States United States

Not much to see on this trip for our group. Too many other boats in the area

Diving Daedalus in April on the Blue Melody

  • 8.8 Fabulous
  • Richard C
  • United States United States

Beautiful. A coral landscape that looked like a “fantasy land”, can’t even describe in words.

Diving Daedalus in May on the Emperor Elite

  • 9.2 Superb
  • Jennifer P
  • United States United States

Really enjoyed the diving here and the chance to go on land to the lighthouse

Diving Daedalus in May on the Emperor Elite

  • 9.6 Exceptional
  • Colin G
  • United States United States

My favorite dive site out of all of them great reef and the conditions were perfect

Diving Daedalus in May on the Blue Horizon

  • 9.2 Superb
  • Eric T
  • United States United States

Absolutely amazing, 1st and 3rd dive we saw hammer heads and all black manta ray

Diving Daedalus in June on the Tillis

  • 8.4 Very good
  • Karen N
  • United States United States

Mostly stayed in the blue looking for hammerheads. Had a few passes, and the other group got a great experience surrounded by about 20 beautiful hammerheads.

Diving Daedalus in July on the Discovery I

  • 10.0 Exceptional
  • Jennifer M
  • United States United States

I liked the walls of coral here best, manta, hammerheads

Diving Daedalus in August on the Golden Dolphin III

  • 9.6 Exceptional
  • Erica H
  • United States United States

This by far was the best place on the trip. Best coral walls, 6 dives 6 hammer heads. Everything was incredible here.

Diving Daedalus in September on the Tillis

  • 10.0 Exceptional
  • Greg K
  • United States United States

Excellent, lots of hammerheads.

Diving Daedalus in October on the Blue Storm

  • 9.2 Superb
  • william G
  • United States United States

And epic and unique shark encounter that made the trip memorable

Diving Daedalus in October on the Blue Melody

  • 6.8 Review score
  • Jim B
  • United States United States

2/10. Go deep and maybe see something. Boring!

Diving Daedalus in October on the JP Marine

  • 9.6 Exceptional
  • Lara L
  • United States United States

Got to see a hammerhead and manta!

Diving Daedalus in October on the Alia

  • 10.0 Exceptional
  • Ryan L
  • United States United States

Amazing! Saw school of Hammerheads! 🤙🏼

Diving Daedalus in October on the Discovery II

  • 10.0 Exceptional
  • Robert S
  • United States United States

The corals and fish were so colorful. Great diving site

Diving Daedalus in November on the Emperor Elite

  • 10.0 Exceptional
  • Kris H
  • United States United States

Clear Warm waters, beautiful corals, great dives

Diving Daedalus in November on the Ghazala Explorer

  • 10.0 Exceptional
  • Mary F
  • United States United States

Daedalus had a beautiful reef as well as Hammerheads. I could have stayed at Daedalus for a whole week, but was so glad that we got to stay for 2 days!

Diving Daedalus in November on the Tillis

  • 8.0 Very good
  • Andrew D
  • United States United States

The diving here was excellent, the current was much more fun to drive in

Diving Daedalus in March on the SS Glorious Miss Nouran

  • 9.6 Exceptional
  • PETER G
  • United States United States

Too many Liveaboards at one location, but the diving was great.

Diving Daedalus in April on the JP Marine

  • 8.8 Fabulous
  • Andrew P
  • United States United States

Daedalus was underwhelming for the corals but we did see a few hammerheads and a manta.

Diving Daedalus in May on the Emperor Elite

  • 10.0 Exceptional
  • Deborah G
  • United States United States

Loved it. Nice to climb the lighthouse.

Diving Daedalus in May on the Ghazala Explorer

  • 8.0 Very good
  • Richard E
  • United States United States

good. Saw hammerheads and lots of pipefish which are my personal small stuff favorite.

Diving Daedalus in June on the Blue Storm

  • 7.6 Good
  • Brandon E
  • United States United States

Great, plentiful sharks and nice pinnacle/wall dives

Diving Daedalus in October on the JP Marine

  • 8.8 Fabulous
  • Juha V
  • Finland Finland

We did not see the hammer heads this time but maybe next time they will be there!

Diving Daedalus in December on the Blue Seas

  • 8.8 Fabulous
  • Bjorn E
  • Sweden Sweden

Excellent! Hammerhead and Manta!

Diving Daedalus in April on the Blue Horizon

  • 8.8 Fabulous
  • Konrad M
  • Switzerland Switzerland

Hammerheads are always nice

Diving Daedalus in April on the Blue

  • 9.2 Superb
  • Sven K
  • Netherlands Netherlands

Good, Hamerhead and Manta rays

Diving Daedalus in April on the Sea Serpent Grand

  • 9.6 Exceptional
  • Jean-Francois L
  • Switzerland Switzerland

Very nice, we saw a manta doing loops in the water anf many hammerheads

Diving Daedalus in May on the Blue Storm

  • 9.6 Exceptional
  • Andrew O
  • South Africa South Africa

Unfortunately we only saw one shark but it was incredible

Diving Daedalus in May on the Blue

  • 10.0 Exceptional
  • Emily P
  • Mauritania Mauritania

An incredible experience diving with hammerheads.

Diving Daedalus in June on the Blue

  • 10.0 Exceptional
  • Billy L
  • United Kingdom United Kingdom

Another great dive site, we see hammerhead sharks, a manta up close and a thresher shark in the distance.

Diving Daedalus in June on the Tillis

  • 10.0 Exceptional
  • Tanner M
  • Canada Canada

Amazing! Mantas and schooling hammerheads!

Diving Daedalus in July on the Discovery II

  • 8.4 Very good
  • Florian M
  • Germany Germany

Great wall dives, pretty crowded at times

Diving Daedalus in July on the Blue Melody

  • 6.0 Review score
  • kristoffer G
  • Denmark Denmark

great dive site, 8-10 hammerheads + mantas + grey reef shark. awesome dive site

Diving Daedalus in July on the JP Marine

  • 8.0 Very good
  • Marc B
  • Switzerland Switzerland

excellent, big fish action

Diving Daedalus in July on the JP Marine

  • 8.0 Very good
  • Nichola D
  • United Kingdom United Kingdom

This was the best of the diving in my opinion as it was a level everyone enjoyed, the groups got smaller as some were able to dive unguided

Diving Daedalus in August on the Discovery I

  • 7.2 Good
  • Nathan A
  • France France

Ok, we were unlucky with hammerheads though.

Diving Daedalus in August on the Discovery I

  • 8.8 Fabulous
  • Jacqueline S
  • Australia Australia

Unfortunately didn’t see hammerheads

Diving Daedalus in August on the Blue Horizon

  • 9.2 Superb
  • Timo N
  • Germany Germany

Had the Chance to 3-5m Manta 😃

Diving Daedalus in August on the Golden Dolphin IV

  • 7.2 Good
  • Dirk S
  • Germany Germany

Excellent: hammerheads and mantas - nothing more to wish for

Diving Daedalus in September on the Sea Serpent Grand

  • 8.8 Fabulous
  • Matthias G
  • Switzerland Switzerland

a little disappointing in contrast to previous trips. Maybe too many Boots in Daedalus

Diving Daedalus in September on the SS Glorious Miss Nouran

  • 9.6 Exceptional
  • Maximilian L
  • Germany Germany

Beautiful offshore Reef with a lot of pelagics to bei spotted.

Diving Daedalus in September on the Emperor Asmaa

  • 8.8 Fabulous
  • Florian S
  • Germany Germany

Ausgezeichnet, Weißspitzen-Hochseehaie!

Diving Daedalus in September on the Blue Horizon

  • 9.6 Exceptional
  • Marc B
  • Switzerland Switzerland

6 hammerheads on one dive early in the morning.

Diving Daedalus in October on the Discovery II

  • 8.4 Very good
  • Chun L
  • Hong Kong Hong Kong

Saw a group of Hammer Shark in close distance.

Diving Daedalus in October on the Tala

  • 9.2 Superb
  • Tim P
  • United Kingdom United Kingdom

Awesome, OWT's, multiple Scalloped Hammerheads and mantas made this the pick of the itinerary

Diving Daedalus in October on the Blue Melody

  • 9.6 Exceptional
  • Nobin C
  • India India

Great diving with many hammerhead sharks

Diving Daedalus in October on the Ghazala Explorer

  • 10.0 Exceptional
  • Nenad B
  • Serbia Serbia

Saw Longimanus, huge Napoleon fishes, gigantic mantaray, barracudas…

Diving Daedalus in October on the Blue Seas

  • 9.6 Exceptional
  • Katie S
  • United Kingdom United Kingdom

Amazing. Great spot to see sharks

Diving Daedalus in October on the Ghazala Explorer

  • 10.0 Exceptional
  • Gabriel C
  • Spain Spain

The best in the whole trip. Plenty of sharks!

Diving Daedalus in October on the Tillis

  • 9.2 Superb
  • Christa K
  • Finland Finland

Amazing! A lot of hammerheads, oceanic white tips, manta rays and amazing reef!

Diving Daedalus in November on the Tillis

  • 9.6 Exceptional
  • John G
  • Ireland Ireland

6 dives on Daedalus with Hammerheads on most of them.

Diving Daedalus in November on the Ghazala Explorer

  • 9.2 Superb
  • Paul G
  • United Kingdom United Kingdom

Lots of into the blue with varying success. Three dives were quite boring because we didn't see anything, but one had a Manta Ray and a White Tipped Shark in quick succession!

Diving Daedalus in November on the JP Marine

  • 8.4 Very good
  • Tommy B
  • Norway Norway

Amazing dive with hammerheads

Diving Daedalus in November on the Discovery II

  • 7.2 Good
  • Jerome R
  • France France

18 hammerheads and some thresher sharks.

Diving Daedalus in November on the Sea Serpent Contessa

  • 10.0 Exceptional
  • Marzena W
  • Poland Poland

Excellent - sharks, sharks

Diving Daedalus in December on the JP Marine

  • 9.6 Exceptional
  • Roman K
  • Russia Russia

Hier waren wir zwei Tage und recht lange nach Haien Ausschau gehalten. Das Tauchen in 25 bis 35m Tiefe führte zum recht schnellen Luftverbrauch bei vielen Mittauchern (mich nicht ausgeschlossen), so dass diese etwas kurz ausfielen. Auch meistens im Blue-Water. Schliesslich wurden wir belohnt. Ein Schwarm aus 8 Hammerhaien kam an uns vorbei und hat sich auch kurz interessiert gezeigt. Ansonsten gab's auch hier mal kleinere oder etwas größere Rief-Haie und einen mittelgroßen Longimanus. Später abends, als das Boot stand (am Daedalus waren wir 2 Tage) konnten wir mehrere Haie um uns vom Deck aus im Wasser beobachten. Auch ein tolles Erlebnis. (Danach wusste ich ganz genau, warum man abends aus der Sauna nicht direkt ins Meerwasser zum Abkühlen springen sollte ;-))

Diving Daedalus in March on the Sea Story

  • 9.6 Exceptional
  • Mikkel C
  • Denmark Denmark

We saw a pack of 12 hammerheads and a small silky in the surface

Diving Daedalus in March on the Discovery II

  • 9.2 Superb
  • Hesham M
  • Egypt Egypt

Other groups saw hammerheads but not ours, unfortunately. Daedalus shark-hunting was a bit exhausting, but I just skipped the 3rd dive on these two days.

Diving Daedalus in March on the Sea Story

  • 10.0 Exceptional
  • Milda P
  • Lithuania Lithuania

I could only make one dive in this spot but it's beautiful for big fish, sharks, deep dives

Diving Daedalus in March on the JP Marine

  • 8.8 Fabulous
  • Alex F
  • Netherlands Netherlands

Sadly big nemo didn’t get the memo to turn up but the corals were stunning

Diving Daedalus in April on the Sea Story

  • 10.0 Exceptional
  • Maruán K
  • Spain Spain

Bad weather conditions but nice dive with little current

Diving Daedalus in April on the Alia

  • 8.0 Very good
  • Katie D
  • United Kingdom United Kingdom

Great. no current. No sharks though.

Diving Daedalus in April on the Discovery II

  • 8.0 Very good
  • Rob V
  • Netherlands Netherlands

For me Deadalus was the best. We also had a shark swimming around the boat in the evening.

Diving Daedalus in April on the Tillis

  • 8.0 Very good
  • Christian S
  • Switzerland Switzerland

Great, we had 6 dives there on our tour and saw hammerheads on 3 of the dives 🤩

Diving Daedalus in April on the MY Odyssey Liveaboard

  • 8.4 Very good
  • Anja S
  • Germany Germany

Schöne Tauchgänge und wenig auf andere Taucher gestoßen

Diving Daedalus in April on the Discovery II

  • 8.4 Very good
  • Gennaro S
  • Sweden Sweden

Nice Napoleon and 1 (only) hummerhead shark

Diving Daedalus in May on the Ghazala Explorer

  • 8.4 Very good
  • Kasper M
  • Belgium Belgium

Close-up hammerhead, grey reef shark, lionfish, napoleon, baracuda.

Diving Daedalus in May on the Discovery I

  • 10.0 Exceptional
  • Shiou ping C
  • Taiwan Taiwan

Gorgeous, shark,shark and shark amazing coral reef and all the marine life you can immagine

Diving Daedalus in May on the Tillis

  • 8.4 Very good
  • wybe K
  • Netherlands Netherlands

Same as The Brothers and Elphinstone, crowded lots of boats at the dive site 12 while we were there (250+ divers) 24 zodiacs running over the dive site. Nice corals though. Thankfully we did spot some hammerheads at this divesite.

Diving Daedalus in May on the Discovery II

  • 9.2 Superb
  • Eleanor S
  • United Kingdom United Kingdom

Great walls and nice to visit the lighthouse on the reef

Diving Daedalus in June on the Sunshine

  • 8.4 Very good
  • Britta B
  • Germany Germany

Lucky us: 7 Hammerhead Sharks on the 1st dive :-)

Diving Daedalus in June on the Golden Dolphin III

  • 8.0 Very good
  • Janine R
  • Germany Germany

Very good, and nice to go to visit the Lighthouse

Diving Daedalus in June on the Sea Serpent

  • 9.6 Exceptional
  • Mahbod T
  • Canada Canada

My favorite spot. Saw Hammerheads and Manta Ray. Deep dives.

Diving Daedalus in June on the Discovery II

  • 9.2 Superb
  • Robin S
  • Switzerland Switzerland

Saw many hammerheads, the highlight

Diving Daedalus in June on the Discovery I

  • 10.0 Exceptional
  • Sébastien S
  • Switzerland Switzerland

Fantastic reef. Hammerhead nearly all dives, Napoleon, Tuna, Baracuda, really a even for pelagic.

Diving Daedalus in June on the SS Glorious Miss Nouran

  • 10.0 Exceptional
  • Pavitr S
  • India India

Not that great.. troublesome currents and not the best visibility.

Diving Daedalus in July on the Red Sea Aggressor IV

  • 10.0 Exceptional
  • Joanne M
  • United Kingdom United Kingdom

This was the site where we saw the most in terms of large pelagics. The diving conditions were fairly calm

Diving Daedalus in July on the Blue

  • 9.2 Superb
  • VANESSA S
  • Switzerland Switzerland

Wall dive with hammerheads and mild current

Diving Daedalus in July on the Sea Serpent Contessa

  • 8.8 Fabulous
  • Stefani E
  • United Kingdom United Kingdom

Lots of pelagics, the reef was populated at shallower depths and anemone gardens. Milder currents than the other reefs but still strong in places

Diving Daedalus in July on the Sea Serpent Contessa

  • 8.8 Fabulous
  • Andrea O
  • Italy Italy

Best sites! Hammerheads and oceanic white tips

Diving Daedalus in July on the Tillis

  • 10.0 Exceptional
  • Marc F
  • France France

What a pity, a kind of shame to have done these 3 dives with a poor visibility. It remains from my part, one of the famous diving sites into the Red Sea to meet some pelagic species !

Diving Daedalus in July on the Hammerhead II

  • 8.0 Very good
  • Pascal D
  • Belgium Belgium

Spijtig dat we niet veel hamerhaaien gezien hebben. Was dan liever een dag naar een andere locatie gaan duiken

Diving Daedalus in August on the JP Marine

  • 9.6 Exceptional
  • Antonio Gines B
  • Spain Spain

El mejor lugar para encontrar al tiburón martillo.

Diving Daedalus in August on the Blue Seas

  • 9.6 Exceptional
  • Tim G
  • Germany Germany

Insane we had many hammerheads and the reef was amazing

Diving Daedalus in August on the Discovery II

  • 8.8 Fabulous
  • Mark H
  • United Kingdom United Kingdom

very good. best of the three for me! Great variety of marine life & the place we saw the Hammerheads!

Diving Daedalus in September on the JP Marine

  • 8.8 Fabulous
  • Peter H
  • Switzerland Switzerland

Very impressive to dive such close with up to 8 hammerhead sharks

Diving Daedalus in September on the Ocean Lovers

  • 10.0 Exceptional
  • Vladimir P
  • Slovakia Slovakia

We really enjoyed Deadulus and were ecstatic, when we bumped into a group of 7 hammerhead sharks at 30 meters! We also saw a sea turtle here at about 4-5m and watched it nibble on the reef for good 10 minutes.

Diving Daedalus in September on the Ocean Lovers

  • 10.0 Exceptional
  • Lucie Iris Pauline K
  • Switzerland Switzerland

The best !! Amazing dives. Mantas, hammerheads. Best memories

Diving Daedalus in September on the Tillis

  • 9.6 Exceptional
  • Anna B
  • Canada Canada

Beautiful site, saw mantas & longimanus!!!

Diving Daedalus in September on the Blue Seas

  • 10.0 Exceptional
  • C James B T
  • Canada Canada

Great site. Lots of other boats but that can't be helped

Diving Daedalus in October on the Golden Dolphin

  • 9.6 Exceptional
  • Jennifer L
  • United Kingdom United Kingdom

Fab swimming with sharks ! Good experience

Diving Daedalus in October on the Blue Storm

  • 9.2 Superb
  • Danae M
  • Switzerland Switzerland

Amazing, lots of longimanus, napoleons etc

Diving Daedalus in October on the Sea Serpent

  • 10.0 Exceptional
  • Lasse J
  • Germany Germany

A real thrill with deep blue water dives to encounter pelagic fish.

Diving Daedalus in October on the Serenity

  • 4.4 Review score
  • Sven B
  • Germany Germany

no hammerhead schools and appr. 20 safari boats. last dive with longimanus during safety stop huge napoleon on south plateau

Diving Daedalus in October on the Sunshine

  • 8.0 Very good
  • Sune Levy T
  • Denmark Denmark

Nice relaxed diving in the blue, again not much luck in encoutering sharks

Diving Daedalus in November on the Discovery I

  • 9.2 Superb
  • Audrius P
  • Lithuania Lithuania

Place to try, some strange current happend, going sometimes up.

Diving Daedalus in November on the Red Sea Aggressor IV

  • 9.2 Superb
  • Erwin F
  • Belgium Belgium

No big fish but what a walldive.. Corals are still healthy here..

Diving Daedalus in December on the Red Sea Aggressor IV

  • 8.8 Fabulous
  • Christian N
  • Germany Germany

Challenging and enjoyable.

Diving Daedalus in December on the Ocean Lovers

  • 8.4 Very good
  • Moritz-Gabriel H
  • Switzerland Switzerland

Longimanus, Manta, no Current

Diving Daedalus in January on the Tillis