Newsflash: there is more to Egypt than the pyramids! Yes, much of the country is taken up by sand (and souvenir-sellers), but there is also Hurghada – a pleasure resort occupying 36km (22 miles) of Red Seashoreline and a favourite holiday spot for Europeans and Egyptians alike.
Hurghada has it all, from camel trekking and quad biking in the nearby desert to water sports and sunbaking on the coast. Coral reefs and underwater life can be viewed diving,snorkelling or in a submarine, so remember to look beneath the surface as Hurghada’s beauty is more than skin-deep. Away from the water, overly enthusiastic storekeepers make shopping a loud and lively experience, and it’s always a good idea to shop around for a bargain, with the largest bazaar situated at Dahar. With so much to see and do, Hurghada is one of those places you’ll keep coming back to.
Hurghada’s Top 10
10. Aquarium View the exotic underwater life of the Red Sea without getting wet!
5. Snorkelling or Diving Explore the coral reefs by a boat or join a snorkelling excursion.
9. Sinbad Submarine under the Red Sea A two-hour submarine ride is something to write home about (or post on Facebook, as it’s quicker).
4. Bedouin BBQ in the Egyptian Desert Experience the wilderness on a unique tour. It takes eight hours and includes a meal with a Bedouin tribe.
8. Giftun Island Snorkelling Cruise Get up close and personal with the local sea life.
3. Hurghada City Sightseeing A great way to get your bearings and see what the city has to offer. The tour takes about three hours.
7. Quad Biking in the Desert Surf the dunes on a quad bike, with the Sinai mountains as your spectacular backdrop.
2. Luxor Tour Leave from Hurghada to stay overnight in Luxor, and visit the Valley of the Kings.
6. Egyptian Cultural Dinner and Show Be immersed in the local traditions, delicious food and sensual belly-dancers, all in a gorgeous fairy tale building.
1. Calypso Nightlife, Russian-style, in a huge pleasure-dome overlooking Sigala.
- Luxor – This city is nearby and contains many remains from the ancient city of Thebes.
- Qena – A magnificent temple complex with much of the ancient buildings still intact.
- Roman Mons Porphyrites – An ancient roman quarry in Hurghada where white and purple stones were mined.
- Monastery of St Anthony – The spot where St Anthony is buried and contains a large cave and impressive library.
- Thistlegorm – A British cargo vessel that was sunk in 1941 and can only be viewed by snorkelling or scuba diving.
Hurghada Art & Culture
- Hurghada Aquarium – Has a large selection of fish found in local waters.
- El Dahar – This is considered the old part of the city and contains parts of the original old fishing village.
- National Museum – Contains four exhibition halls that display antiquities from the Eastern desert.
- Marine Biology museum – Provides in-depth information about the creatures that live in the Red Sea.
- Café del Mar – A café and art gallery in Hurghada that displays works by local artists.
- 1000 and 1 Night Palace – Contains many shops within the palace as well as an evening belly dancing show.
- Cleopatra Centre – A shopping centre in Hurghada with two supermarkets.
- Esplanade Mall – A new mall that has many clothing, toys and souvenir shops.
- Hurghada Star – A large souvenir shop that is the one stop for all of your gift and souvenir needs.
- La Perla – A jewellery store that offers fancy and simple gold and silver pieces.
Gay & Lesbian Hurghada
- Papas Bar – This popular bar offers karaoke, live music, sports and much more.
- Hed Kandi Beach Bar – One of the most popular disco's located right on the beach.
- Bonanza Bar – Contains a garden terrace, pool terrace and has happy hour every evening from 5 to 9 pm.
- Havana Club – Specializes in Latin-type music and has Cubra Libra every Sunday.
- Ministry of Sound – A popular club in Hurghada that has a different theme every evening.
- Big and Little Gifton Islands – Take a boat ride out to these unpopulated islands to explore nature and enjoy the beautiful beaches.
- Jungle Aqua Park – Cool off when the temperature gets hot at the largest water park in Hurghada.
- Deep-Sea Fishing – Hop on a charter to try your hand at catching the large fish found in the deep sea.
- Underwater Gardens – A garden in the Red Sea where some of the rarest corals and fish can be viewed.
- Red Sea Mountains – A high mountain range that runs along the coast of the Red Sea made of volcanic rock.
- Ride a quad bike to take tea with a Bedouin tribe in the Sahara Desert.
- Spend the day snorkelling or scuba diving in the Red Sea and exploring the offshore reefs.
- Enjoy a round of golf at the stunning courses found at Soma Bay.
- Learn how to windsurf with the surfing professionals and enjoy spending time on the beautiful beaches.
- Ride a horse down the coastline in Hurghada for the complete feeling of freedom.
In September, the Splash Cup is a windsurfing regatta for both amateurs and pros. Parties, product launches and watersport seminars round up the action.
Theannual Seven Tribes Endurance Race in November isa four-day, 110km (69 miles) gruelling marathon race around the Sinai desert to raise money for water projects.
November’s Tango on Sharm is an opportunity to get your tango on and dance the night away.
When To Go
- July to August is summer, when temperatures can top 37.5ºC (100ºF).
- October to May brings milder weather, and because it usually doesn’t rain, this is the perfect time for snorkelling.
- September to October is Ramadan, a month-long Islamic religious fast. Hours of trading for many businesses can be reduced at this time.
- Taxis are the best option for getting around town.
- Superjets Bus Station in Ad-Dahar sees buses going to Cairo, Alexandria, Luxor and Al-Quseir at reasonable rates.
A new star tourist destination in Egypt, at least over the past two decades, Hurghada is Red Sea resort town entirely distinct from the dense hustle and bustle of mad Cairo. Of course, with no less than 36 km of Red Sea coastline to explore, Hurghada and the vast capital city serve very different needs. With pristine sand, azure waters and much less hype than resort towns in the south of Spain and Portugal for example, Hurghada has become a desirable package holiday destination in recent years.
Though development has not been nearly as rampant as in comparable locations, that is part of the appeal in Hurghada. Certainly, there are more than enough resort hotels to satisfy the scores of Europeans who travel to the Red Sea coast every winter. With temperatures that remain close to 30°C for most of the year, the enviable climate alone is impossible to resist.
Attractions & Activities
- Sharm El Naga
- El Gouna
- Al Mahmya
- Makadi Bay
- Soma Bay
- Water Sports
- Abu Simbel Festival
- Art Festival
- Grand Feast
Restaurant & Nightlife
- El Mina
- Heaven Bistro
- Bamboo Bar
- Buddha Bar
Hurghada has a desirable, desert climate, with warm weather throughout the year.
- Winter (December to February) 8-23°C
- Spring (March to May) 12-35°C
- Summer (June to September) 23-40°C
- Fall (October to November) 13-33°C
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