WELCOME TO RED SEA AND SINAI
Egypt is a unique blend of timeless fascination and modern approaches to holiday making which give it a very special place in the world of tourism. Broadly speaking, tourist areas of Egypt can be divided into the Nile Valley, the Deserts and Oases, and the Red Sea and Sinai region. Travelling between these areas is very easy, and it’s quite simple to book a holiday which combines very different experiences in one trip. It’s no surprise that the Red Sea and Sinai is now one of the most popular and fastest growing tourism destinations in the world. As well as the peaceful sun and sand holiday, there’s a huge range of activities on hand including world-famous diving, desert trips, climbing, golf, and national parks – to name a few! It has something for everyone – and the friendly atmosphere and wide range of activities means that it has become particularly popular with families.
It’s an easy trip, only a few hours flight from Europe, and is a genuine year-round destination with guaranteed sunshine. The area has stunning scenery and is a region which is perfectly suited to exploring, relaxation, and activities on, and under, the water. Sinai Peninsula consists of an area of some 61,000 square kilometres. The natural barriers are the Gulf of Suez to the west, separating the African continent from Asia, and the Gulf of Aqaba to the east. The north east boundary, a 200 km stretch of Mediterranean coastline.
Isolated and protected by the surrounding majestic mountains, the monastery of St. Catherine is a major attraction for tourists visiting the area. Egypt’s Red Sea coast runs from the Gulf of Suez in the north to the Sudanese border in the south. It is, effectively, the east coast of mainland Egypt looking across the sea to Sinai. The crags and dry limestone valleys of the Eastern Desert remain relatively unexplored, but the Red Sea itself, dotted with coral reefs, has a rich maritime history which stretches back to the times of the Pharaohs. In the Red Sea and Sinai areas, sun seekers love the gentle refreshing breezes which are welcome in a hot summer. Take a look at the map of the Red Sea and Sinai region of Egypt and you will see how the water laps around its shores over many hundreds of miles.
Above all, the Red Sea is a dream destination which suits so many travellers, whether they are seeking relaxation, exploration, or an ideal family break.
A destination “ à la carte ” :
The great thing about the region is that the possibilities are endless – you can make your holiday exactly what you want it to be.
Among the most varied activities offered by the main destinations of the region, you can take the chance to pamper at El Gouna, or taste one of the aquatic sports at Hurghada, to explore the peaceful diving sites of Marsa Alam or to chill out in the luxury resort of Porto Ghalib, or even to enjoy the sun in Taba or relax in Nuweiba, not to forget Sharm el-Sheikh famous for its nightlife and Dahab for its tranquillity.
For some visitors, simply soaking up the sun and relaxing is a key part of the trip – and this is just the place for that!
As you’ll see in this guide, though, the beautiful crystal clear waters are waiting to tempt you. If it’s relaxation you’re looking for, it’s hard to beat sitting on a jetty with your feet in the Red Sea while you watch legions of brightly coloured fish coming to say hello. Even if you’ve never done it before, have a taste of snorkelling and enjoy a different world where you can feel part of the life of the sea. Of course, the Red Sea and Sinai is one of the most popular destinations in the world for experienced divers too. For snorkelers and scuba divers, this place is like heaven. The sheer range of things to do in this region is one of many pleasant surprises for first time visitors. For an increasing number of holidaymakers, sport and the open air is a vital part of their time away from boring routine. As well as fun on, or under, the water, you’ll find superb facilities for golf and climbing activities. For many golfers, planning a day’s golf and knowing, not hoping, that the sun will shine is one of the biggest pleasures. Egypt has taken to golf in a big way and resorts like Ain Sukhna, El Gouna, Hurghada, Sharm el- Sheikh, Taba and have fabulous courses to enjoy. For most visitors to the region, the towering mountains are there to admire – especially when you can relax with a drink and watch their changing colours at sunrise and sunset. One of the many theories on the origin of the Red Sea’s name is built around the beautiful red hues bouncing off the mountains and water as the sun rises and sets. For more adventurous people, these magnificent mountains are not just for admiring – they are for climbing too. If you’d like to try it, whether as a beginner or expert, there are many tours and teachers to show you the way. There are many chances to enjoy the wide open spaces of Sinai, whether a trip to go camping under the stars, or a day trip to enjoy camel trekking, mountain biking, or a jeep trip through sand dunes and mountains. Try to enjoy the desert for its glorious silence and you’ve never really seen the night sky properly until you’ve seen it over Sinai – completely without the bright lights of home which hide the glory of the heavens. Egypt is a land of variety & endless choices, and the distinctive attractions of the Red Sea and Sinai make you feel as if you are a completely different country to the Nile Valley and Desert regions – but they are close by, with the same friendly welcome and top value. When the sun goes down, the shops become particularly busy – and you’ll find some great souvenirs to take home, especially in cotton, leather, and local crafts. And you’ll still have time to enjoy the wide range of nightlife which has a magic all of its own.
Value for money is very much in evidence in this region. And the choice is yours – with everything from simple accommodation for the backpacker up to the very best in boutique and luxury.
Combination of products :
Another beauty of the ease of travel in Egypt is at you can combine your beach holiday with a short trip to the Pyramids or the Valley of the Kings.
Many operators offer short trips by air which mean that you can be back relaxing by the pool a very short time after a taste of historical Egypt and its treasures. There’s more later in the guide on the great monasteries of Sinai which reflect the region’s links with many great world religions. Many visitors to Red Sea and Sinai find that their short side trips give them a long shopping list of ideas for future return visits. One trip to Egypt is never enough!
Rhythm of life :
The rhythm of life in the sunshine means that you’ll soon find yourself adapting to the Egyptian way of doing things. Long before the air conditioning and iced drinks which are part of the modern holiday experience here, people chose to wait until the sun set before venturing out to shop or dine. That pattern is still the way to do things, and another great feature of the Red Sea and Sinai region is that, unlike some countries, there’s lots to do after dark – and in complete safety too. Whether it’s a modern shopping mall or a traditional souk (market), they take on a very special atmosphere as they, and the shopkeepers, seem to twinkle after dark. When you booked your holiday, you will already have noticed that Egypt is tremendous value – and prices in the shops will confirm your good luck.
EGYPTIAN CUISINE :
Talking of value, eating out in Egypt comes at superb prices – and with great variety. Whatever your taste in international food in your home country, there’s a good chance you’ll find it here too – Italian, Chinese, Thai, Indian – you name it and it’s here.
Don’t miss the chance to try Egyptian food too – often gently spicy with brilliant use of fresh fruit, vegetables, meat and fish.
Perhaps the best recommendation for a holiday in Red Sea and Sinai comes from holidaymakers themselves. Many people will tell you that, Egypt is a breath of fresh air , It has many guarantees – sunshine, a warm welcome, an infinite variety of ways to enjoy life – and supreme value. Perhaps you are about to make your first trip to Red Sea and Sinai after hearing a glowing report from a friend. Or perhaps as a returning visitor you take great pleasure in passing on the good news to friends yourself. We hope you find this guide really useful in making the very best of your time in one of the world’s great destinations. One thing’s for sure – one or two weeks won’t give you enough time to try everything you’ll find in the pages which follow. But look on the bright side – you can spend your time on the short plane trip home making a wish list for your next trip – and many more to come.
Keep smiling – Egypt’s Red Sea and Sinai region always has a warm welcome for you.
Posted By : Yasmine Aladdin