Ras Mohammad National Park

At the very southern tip of the Sinai Peninsula in Egypt lies Ras Mohammad National Park. It was created in 1983 to protect the coral reefs and unique desert landscape from commercial fishing and expansion of nearby Sharm el-Sheikh. It’s a must-see if visiting Sharm, especially for those interested in snorkeling or diving.

We took a half day tour leaving from Sharm el-Sheikh in the morning. Our guide was Mohammad, the same person who led us on the desert safari and snorkeling trip to the Blue Hole the day before.

We were picked up and taken to the park on a short van ride lasting about a half hour. Our first stop was for a snorkeling session. It was by far the best snorkeling I had ever done, even better than the Great Barrier Reef in Australia. The fish and coral were just as advertised in the brochures for Ras Mohammad – brightly colored and plentiful. We saw stingrays, lobster, pufferfish, and even a giant grouper. In addition to snorkeling, there are several reefs and some famous shipwrecks located within the boundaries of the park that are popular for divers.

After taking a quick look at a viewpoint and seeing some dead coral, our next stop was the Gates of Allah. The gates were originally built as a checkpoint to the park. They’re now a major tourist attraction because the structure looks like it spells Allah in Arabic.

Ras Mohammad National Park in Sinai, Egypt

Ras Mohammad National Park

Dead coral at Ras Mohammad National Park in Sinai, Egypt

Dead coral

Gates of Allah at Ras Mohammad National Park in Sinai, Egypt

Gates of Allah

A small mangrove forest was the next attraction. The trees live in saltwater and filter the salt through their leaves and roots.

Mangroves at Ras Mohammad National Park in Sinai, Egypt

Mangroves

Near the mangroves are huge cracks caused by earthquakes. The cracks are filled with water and some have depths of up to 14m. The longest crack we saw was over 40m in length.

Cracks from an earthquake at Ras Mohammad National Park in Sinai, Egypt

Cracks from an earthquake

Crack from an earthquake at Ras Mohammad National Park in Sinai, Egypt

Crack from an earthquake

The Magic Lake is located near the cracks. It’s a lake at low tide and part of the sea at high tide. There were several seashells living near the shore of the lake. We enjoyed looking at the patterns in the sand while others waded out into the lake.

Magic Lake at Ras Mohammad National Park in Sinai, Egypt

Magic Lake

Magic Lake at Ras Mohammad National Park in Sinai, Egypt

Magic Lake

Magic Lake at Ras Mohammad National Park in Sinai, Egypt

Magic Lake

Magic Lake at Ras Mohammad National Park in Sinai, Egypt

Magic Lake

A rock formation near the Magic Lake looks like a sleeping lion. Mohammad stopped the van for the group to take some pictures.

Sleeping lion at Ras Mohammad National Park in Sinai, Egypt

Sleeping lion

We made one final snorkeling stop before being taken back to our hotel. This snorkeling stop was good but not nearly as nice as the first one.

The second beach where we snorkeled at Ras Mohammad National Park in Sinai, Egypt

The second beach where we snorkeled

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