Sharm el-Sheikh is undoubtedly one of the jewels in the crown of the Egyptian coast with thousands of holidaymakers flocking there every year.
It boasts a rich heritage and stunning scenery so it is easy to see why it remains one of the most popular destinations for those wanting a summer holiday. Besides the amazing resorts and almost endless beaches there is a side to Sharm el-Sheikh that not many embrace while they are there.
The city forms the gateway to expansive deserts and has become a hotspot for tourists wanting something a little different. This vast landscape provides trips that are hugely unique and give that once in a lifetime experience that many people are looking for from their holiday.
However, it is not just about the deserts and resorts. There is so much to see and do around this glorious corner of Egypt, so let’s take a look at what you need to know when you venture to Sharm el-Sheikh.
It is a diver’s dream
One of the reasons why people keep coming back to Sharm el-Sheikh is its amazing diving spots. It is one of the main activities near the city and gives people the chance to explore the warm waters of the Red Sea. The reefs of Tiran and Ras Mohammad are renowned as being two of the best diving spots in the world and can be reached by regular boat trips.
Ras Mohammad is situated at the southernmost point of the Sinai Peninsular and is where the currents of both the Gulf of Aqaba and Gulf of Suez meet. It attracts huge schools of fish with barracudas, sharks and morays brought to the area thanks to the increase in plankton numbers.
Boats leave Sharm el-Sheikh every day and some will even take you to the wreck of the SS Thistlegorm which is regarded as one of the best places in the world to explore.
The desert is for adventure
When you think of Egypt the first things that usually spring to mind are pyramids and deserts. Sharm el-Sheikh provides easy access to the Sinai. Often regarded as one of the wonders of the world, this dusty expanse is the perfect place for an adventure.
Desert safaris give a tour of this magnificent desert which is as beautiful as it is varied. Gaze upon the famous Mount Sinai and St Catherine’s Monastery while the huge canyons are definitely worth a snap for the photo album.
However, if you want to take it to the next level and get an experience you’ll remember for the rest of your life then go quad biking. Many companies offer quad bike tours that will let you have that off-road adventure in one of the world’s most serene sights.
The food is out of this world
Sharm el-Sheikh is not only home to some amazing sights but also has the best restaurants around when it comes to Egyptian cuisine. Why not indulge is some kabab, kofta, reyash, nefa or tarab? It provides an authentic slice of the country and will keep you fuelled throughout the day or be an excellent way to cap off the evening.
One thing you must try when over in Sharm el-Sheikh is guava juice. This freshly squeezed drink provides the perfect refreshing tonic, especially when the sun beats down throughout the day.
It gets hot very quickly
Being at the tip of Africa it is not surprising that it gets very hot in Sharm el-Sheikh over the traditional holiday season months. The city only experiences two seasons throughout the year – winter and summer. The former provides hot days and cool nights while the latter is simply hot.
While some may feel that it can get too hot, peaks of 38 degrees C are typical during July, there is some respite thanks to a sea breeze. As we move through spring into summer, Sharm el-Sheikh really begins to hot up and you need to be prepared. However, this warm weather makes it ideal for cooling down in the Red Sea or lounging by the pool.
It has some amazing sights
If the desert and diving in the Red Sea are not enough to quench your lust for life then Sharm el-Sheikh has some amazing sights to explore. One that should not be missed is a trip to Mount Sinai. This holy mountain is known across the world for the ancient Monastery of St Catherine.
This wondrous UNESCO World Heritage Site is thought to be the mountain where Moses received the ten commandments from God. While many tour operators run trips during the day, it doesn’t get much better than experiencing this holiest of holy sites at either sunrise or sunset.
A bit further out of Sharm el-Sheikh is Ras Muhammad National Park which can be accessed by boat or bus. Here you can snorkel or dive and discover the natural sealife that inhabit this part of the world.
Sharm el-Sheikh is one of the places that everyone must visit at some point and with so much to see and do, as well as a great chance to chill out, it’s the perfect place to take a summer holiday.