Dahab 7 Waves Festival 2015

Another month and another fantastic event in Dahab – last week Dahab 7 Waves Festival was the talk of the town.  Seven days of events, each day showcasing elements of Dahab falling into seven categories; Water, Wellness, Sports, Kids, Sound, Environment and Sand.  The Dahab 7 Waves Festival team put on amazing show with a huge variety of events aimed at uniting the community during a period of low tourism.  These events have been sponsored by local businesses, and as always many individuals have donated their time and resources to the event.

Day 1 – Waves 1; Water, Sound and Sand

On day 1 of the festival there was the opportunity for tourists and locals to participate in free activities such as wake boarding or banana boating.  A highlight for my mother and friend, who have been in Dahab enjoying some winter sunshine, was without a doubt the glass bottom boat ride.  You can find more information about Dahab’s Glass Bottom boat excursions on the watersports section of our website – A family friendly activity that enables even those that wish to stay dry, a chance to experience the wonders of the Red Sea Coral Reef.

The fun on day one didn’t end there, in the afternoon at the Lagoona, local Bedouin participated in a camel race.  A few years ago, at a previous Dahab Festival, we were lucky enough to watch a similar race.  It is only when you are a few metres away from the camels that you realise just how large they are, and in comparison how small the young men who are riding them appear.  Experienced spectators disappear off into the distance to get a good viewing position, whilst novices like ourselves, stand near the start and watch these amazing animals disappear in a cloud of dust.  Racing camels can reach speeds of 65km/hour in short sprints and maintain 40km/hour for an hour.

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The first evening of the festival and the first of the live music events.  The crowd was not left disappointed as Ahmed Moktar, the incredibly talented Egyptian violinist took to the stage and wowed the audience.  Ahmed was in Dahab to film scenes for his latest music video.  Second on the bill was Alam el Maraganat Shabee band, described as a funky mixture of modern ‘Shabee’ music from a group of cool Cairiennes.

Below is a video of Ahmed Moktar performing in Dahab filmed by Stephen De Bond, a talented British photographer currently living and working in Dahab.

Day 2 – Waves 2; Wellness, Kids and Sound

The second day of the festival was dominated by a fabulous selection of wellness activities and workshops.  A wellness market in the centre of town showcased local handmade produce including toys, recycled arts and crafts and crystal healing jewellery from the wonderful Iris at Radient Rainbow.

The day continued with a large selection of taster treatments and classes for everyone to have a go and try something new.  The diversity of the massage professionals in Dahab was demonstrated in full force with Ayurvedic facial massage, hand massage, shiatsu and foot reflexology all on offer to try.  Those that are a little more spiritually inclined could also experience taster Reiki and Kinesiology sessions.

If being pampered wasn’t quite up your street then there were numerous classes to get you moving; such a salsa dancing, oriental dancing, meditative yoga or laughter yoga. Finishing of the classes and giving everyone a chance to relax and wind down at the end of the afternoon were classes in meditation and drumming meditation.

Only two days in and five more fantastic days to report on….. watch this space!

New world record – Ahmed Gabr deepest scuba diver in the world!

For anyone that has missed my numerous updates and posts via Facebook in recent days; we have a new world record for the deepest open circuit scuba dive.

On Friday 19 September 2014 Ahmed Gabr broke the previous record  of 318.25 metres set by Nunu Gomes in Dahab in 2005.  Ahmed Gabr has brought the record home diving to an amazing 332.35 metres, the dive took 13 hours and 50 minutes and Ahmed breathed 92 tanks of various mixed gasses during this epic achievement.  Starting at 10.30am on Thursday and completing his dive at 12.30am on Friday 19 September.  Ahmed and his support divers were joined in the shallow waters by a baby reef shark who stayed with the divers for six hours during the gruelling decompression schedule.

Ahmed thanked his amazing team of medics and support divers who helped him in realising his dream and becoming the new Guinness world record holder.  Ahmed has also expressed gratitude to all his fans for their continued support and thanked his critics for giving him the determination to succeed.  Ahmed and his support team were greeted at the jetty in the early hours of the morning by fireworks and well wishers who had gathered to welcome the returning hero.  Ahmed surprised everyone by walking unaided immediately after surfacing, despite the gruelling dive he was able to celebrate with his young son who he embraced as soon as stepping foot on dry land.

There are some excellent articles appearing in local and international press and no doubt in coming days we will get to see and hear more from the whole #worldrecord350 team.


ahmed gabr completed dive

#worldrecord350 A big day for Dahab

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September 18th 2014 is a big day for Dahab and the competitive world of scuba diving. Ahmed Gabr, an Egyptian ex-army officer will attempt to not only break the current Guinness World Record for open circuit scuba diving – he intends to smash it.

Ahmed has been training hard at H2O divers in Dahab and along with an excellent support team of many friends and long term Dahabians, Ahmed intends to safely reach and ascent from a depth of 350 metres. We wish Ahmed and all the guys at Team #worldrecord350 the very best of luck in this amazing record attempt.

Nunu Gomes from South Africa holds the current world record for the deepest dive in the world, this dive of 318.25m was also made in Dahab in June 2005. Dahab and in particular the Blue Hole provides some of the world’s best deep diving conditions, crystal clear warm water with depths easily reached only a few metres from shore. Pascale Bernabéa a French scuba diver claims to have dived to 330m off the coast of Corsica on 5 July 2005. This deep dive would have broken the current record held by Nunu Gomes however it was not verified by the Guinness world record team due to insufficient evidence.

Scuba diving to such depths requires not only strength, determination and courage it requires a precision of scientific planning that must be second to none. On deep dives every metre of depth and every second of time is vital in the planning and execution of the dive. Using different blends of trimix, which is a mixture of oxygen, helium and nitrogen the deep diver is able to breathe the optimum gas mix at each depth. The novice scuba diver will have learned that at around 30m underwater the nitrogen in the air we breathe in a normal tank of compressed air can cause nitrogen narcosis.  Nitrogen narcosis impairs your judgement in the same way that alcohol and other drugs can. Divers suffering from nitrogen narcosis can act foolishly in the water and are  unable to concentrate on simple tasks. Oxygen under pressure also has hugely negative effects on the human body. Oxygen toxicity, if it occurs is fatal; it causes the diver to convulse uncontrollably and drowning will follow. Breathing normal compressed air with 21% oxygen, the risk of oxygen toxicity can occur at 66 metres which is outside of the realms of recreational scuba diving; however as dive instructors it is one of the most important things we teach even our most inexperienced students. So the effect of gases under pressure play the most important role in dive planning, it is why you simply can’t jump in the water and descend to any depth you wish and it is why planning a dive to 350m has taken months and months of meticulous planning and practice dives. Ahmed will be underwater for an estimated 14.5 hours, he and his team will breathe more than 90 cylinders of various gas mixes with the helium alone costing thousands of Euro.

I for one will be waiting anxiously above water on Thursday 18 September waiting for news of Ahmeds safe return from the depths. Sadly this time I will not be in Dahab like I was on 10 June 2005 when Nunu Gomes set the benchmark.

For further information on this amazing endeavour please take a look at the official #worldrecord350 webpage for photos, fundraising and up to date information.



Dahab is HAPPY!

Everyone loves a catchy tune and Pharrell Williams ‘Happy’ is no exception.  This fabulous tune featuring the worlds first 24 hour music video has had us dancing around the kitchen for months and in recent weeks there has been a plethora of Happy videos being uploaded on the internet.

However the best always come to those that wait…. Happy – We are from Dahab, has in four days since being launched been watched over 61,000 times.  With the Egyptian media catching on, ‘Happy’ Dahab style is looking to become a new internet sensation.  For anyone that has been to Dahab this video will literally get the memories flooding back!


Alhamdulilah! About a village called Dahab

Often people ask about the spirit of Dahab, its not something that is easy to explain.  Dahab is not a big tourist resort, it is not full of multinational companies or multi-story hotels.  It is small and peaceful.

Many people have passed through Dahab, intending to leave and ending up making it home.  I was one of those people.  I first visited Dahab to complete my PADI Divemaster qualification, the first professional level in Scuba Diving.  I returned a year later to work my first season.  I met a boy.  

Ten years, marriage and two children later Residence Arabesque was born.

This is a wonderful short video by Michael Zomer which captures the spirit of Dahab so well.


14th International Ceramics Symposium – On now!

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Le Meridien Dahab hosts the 14th International Ceramics Symposium from 10 – 21 February 2014.
Featuring some wonderful visiting artists from all over the world.  Visit the hotel and view some of their work.


Ossama Emam 

Hisham Abed – Egypt ( Associate Curator ) 

Mosbeh Kamel – Egypt ( Associate Curator )

Mohsen Gouda – Egypt ( Filmmaker )

Satoru Hashino – Japan 
Raul Pereda – Spain 
Haitham Hedayah – Egypt
Sofia Beca – Portugal 
Lynda AbdelLatif – Tunisia 
Silke Decker – Germany 
Elina Titiana – Latvia 
Pilar Nadales – Spain 
Veysel Ozel – Turkey
Rabab Wahba – Egypt
Bettina Ammann – Switzerland 
Mohamed Farouk – Egypt 
Anna Kristjana – Denmark 
Mohamed Samir – Egypt 
Gamal Ibrahim – Egypt