Egypt opens its reef coast of 900 km along the Red Sea and 200 km along the Gulf of Aqaba. A dream for diving enthusiasts but not only! Sloth, sport or low budget, our suggestions for all tastes.
Eid at the end of the night or absolute calm? Holidays with friends or in a noisy tribe? Small budget or looking for luxury and allure? Sports or spa? Egypt opens its reef coast of 900 km along the Red Sea and 200 km along the Gulf of Aqaba. How do you choose the coastal destination that suits you? Our suggestions to guide you.
Dahab the original city (southeast of Sinai)
Dahab has an unparalleled charm. This former nomadic village became famous in the diving world because of the famous Trou Bleu (“Blue Hole”), an underwater fossil 25m wide and 120m deep. There is nothing to see, only the intoxicating sensation of going down into the deep blue and discovering an arc of about 55 meters with a tunnel opening to the sea. Nomads have always avoided the site, because according to legend, the Blue Hole is haunted by the ghost of a girl who drowned there to escape an arranged marriage.
Whose ? Alone or as a couple.
Diving? For the editor, seasoned divers and thrill seekers even if Egyptian regulations theoretically prohibit exceeding 40 metres.
also ? With 250 days of wind per year, it is the perfect place for sailing and windsurfing enthusiasts.
Crazy Nights in Sharm El Sheikh (Point Sinai)
This port city near the airport can be reached with a direct flight from Paris and offers door-to-door access. For miles, there are all-inclusive hotels overlooking the Red Sea, with their share of pools, nightclubs, bars, and kindergartens.
Whose ? Alone to meet people. With friends to celebrate. As a family of hotel complexes that take care of children from morning to night.
Diving? Ras Mohammed National Park and its outlets are among the most beautiful places in Egypt. Much wreckage in the Strait of Tiran or at the entrance to the Suez Canal.
El Gouna refined calm
North of Hurghada, Egyptian Venice spreads its canals, lakes and luxurious marina in a village created from nothing by a billionaire. The view of the hotel is perfectly organized, with the presentation of the huge villas and apartments. All water sports are possible there, but also parasailing or even golf. Possible encounter with bottlenose dolphins (Tursiops truncatus).
Whose ? With friends, by renting a villa with a cook and housemaids. As a family, to celebrate New Year’s Eve in the sun.
Diving? Access to Abu Nahas Reef with its four wrecks, including stately Carnatic and hulls filled with glass fish and soft coral. See also, The tile load in the bowels of Chrisoula K.
also ? At the UCPA Center, Kite and Diving, Beginner and Advanced courses.
Hurghada, easy access
The first coastal city to attract tourists, stretches over an area of u200bu200bmore than forty kilometers. It is a lively city and not just a tourist area. There are many bars and nightclubs. To ever see: the typical old Dahar neighborhood. Close to the El Mina Mosque which can be visited (women and men), take a stroll in the fish market and then have a drink at the marina right next door.
Whose ? for tight budgets. For families wishing to reduce transport times (4:30) from France.
Diving? The sea floor has been damaged by intensive exploitation for 50 years. However, the area is ideal for beginners or for passing diplomas.
Our good address: The French Elysee diving school, run by the friendly Sylvie Turpin.
Safaga Forum “repeaters»
45 minutes south of Hurghada, the coastal city of Safaga is typically Egyptian and relatively non-touristy. This is what attracts divers who return tirelessly, forming groups of friends over the years. It is not uncommon to see the same divers come two to three times a year. The bay provides accessible diving sites for beginners. In the sea, the reefs of Panorama Reef and Abu Kaifan, coral reefs are famous for their beauty. To the north, the elegant hotel complex in Soma Bay attracts spa, massage and hammam buffs, as well as golfers. We cannot advise you enough to take a car with a driver and spend the day on the banks of the Nile by visiting the Temple of Dendera.
Whose ? For beginners or experienced divers, for children and the elderly. For groups of friends, regardless of age.
Our good address: The sand dunes, perfect for hosting groups, humorously served up fun friendly Nathaniel and Bruno. 3 turtles, for the family atmosphere created by Tamtam and Adham. Blue Dimensions, to Natalie’s appreciation and professionalism.
also ? Winds blow often and very strongly in the Red Sea. Sailing and windsurfing are heavily practiced in Safaga Bay.
Marsa Alam between the desert and coral reefs
The peculiarity of Egyptian corals is that they are fringed, that is, the corals literally stick to the coast. So do not dream of white sand beaches: there are no beaches. Environmental law now forbids breaking of reefs to build hotels and create artificial beaches. If you see tall wooden buoys above the water, know that they simply allow swimming access with a ladder.
However, in this area there is Marsa Nadira (the Gulf in Arabic). It is clear that the first hotels settled there because the reefs are luxurious and accessible from the beach. Some (Abu Dabbab, Mubarak, Al Nabaa, Shouna) are lined with seaweed, the favorite food of green sea turtles that the smallest can go and see in the PMT (fins – mask – snorkel). Do not touch it, you risk destroying the mucus that protects it from parasites. Don’t miss camel rides in the desert, a visit to the Abda Bedouins who bake divine bread in the sand, and astronomy picnics. Remember to bring children’s toys, clothes and shoes to worship.
Whose ? For lovers of nature and tranquility. For families who love originality.
Diving? Away from shore, Elphinstone Reef is accessible for experienced divers. Chance to see hammerhead sharks, longhorn shark, tiger shark.
also ? There is a hotel offer with comfortable hotels, swimming pools and water games which some like. Our favorite? The village of Marsa Shaqra and its tents made of pristine white cloth soak in the morning sun.
Wadi El-Lahmy is a paradise of taste
The road to southern Egypt winds slowly and monotonously between the blue of the sea and the abyss of the desert mountains that pink the sunset. Why do you go away? To be at peace, savor the authentic desert, with few accommodations, no glowing lights and no discos. Jameel Valley National Park offers impressive nature excursions with an impressive variety of birds.
Whose ? For couples and lovers. For those looking for comfort.
Diving? The reefs at Fury Shoals are accessible by semi-rigid, with great sites such as Sha’ab Claudio and the maze of caves. Not to be missed, a trip to Sataya Lake, where a group of spinner dolphins reside (Stinella Longerostris) that you can swim with. Don’t run after them, they are very fast. Don’t move, they’re curious and they’ll come see what’s going on. Don’t touch them.
also ? Head south to Shalateen (135 km). At the gates of Sudan, the camel market in this desert city is impressive.