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Sharm El Sheikh Egypt

14/06/2012 09:26

Egypt has a mystical and timeless appeal that has been attracting travellers from far and wide for many centuries. From the fascinating sights of the Pharoahs, on the banks of the Nile at Luxor to the glorious beaches of the Red Sea at Sharm El Sheikh, this is a land of great contrast, where ancient and modern life exist side by side.
Until 1967, Sharm el Sheikh was merely a tiny outpost where customs men could keep an eye open for smugglers. Then its charms and tourist potential were recognized, and today it has an airport, fully developed hotel infrastructure, and well-organized sports facilities.

Sharm El Sheikh
The old town of Sharm el Sheikh itself (known as downtown Sharm) is set on the NW side of the almost completely enclosed Sharm el Maya Bay, which is flanked by low flat-topped cliffs. Naama Bay, 5 mls NE, lies all round the edge of the semicircular bay of the same name, again with flat cliffs on both edges. Both are backed by inhospitable arid desert with rugged saw-toothed mountains in the distance.

Visitors can take full advantage of the hot, sunny weather, glorious beaches and underwater paradise without roughing it – and without the crowds.

Sharm El Sheikh Egypt
The main attraction is scuba diving in the area’s unusually warm waters, full of many unique forms of marine life and spectacular coral reefs. Increasingly becoming known as a normal winter-sun beach holiday destination, thanks to its virtually guaranteed sun and dry atmosphere.

Naama Bay Beach is 1 ml of rather coarse mid-brown desert sand. Virtually every inch is “private” and controlled by the hotels situated just across the pedestrian beach path. Some non-beachfront hotels have their own sections, while others have sharing agreements with their more fortunate competitors. The beach is covered with sunbeds, parasols, bars, restaurants, water-sports centres and even crazy golf.

Sharm El Sheikh Egypt Image
The possibility of terrorist attacks on tourists in Egypt remains, Foreign Office advisory notices offer the latest official advice and should be consulted before booking.

Sharm El Sheikh is located on the E side of the southernmost tip of the Sinai Peninsula, on the Gulf of Aqaba coast (315 mls SE of Cairo, Hurghada is a 20-min flight SW across the Gulf of Suez). Downtown Sharm is 12½ mls SW of airport; Naama Bay is 8 mls SW of airport.

Sharm El Sheikh Egypt - Savoy hotel

Daytime activities tend to revolve around the beaches and the world renowned scuba diving and snorkelling. There are myriad water sports and beach activities, camel rides, horse riding, quad bikes and bicycles for hire. There is golf at the 18-hole Movenpick course. Most large hotels have organised entertainment programmes just ask on arrival.
Nightlife offers live entertainment in most hotels, which also have discos and live music in bars and built in casinos.
There are plenty of restaurants of all international persuasions, including Chinese, Korean, Japanese, Italian, French, Egyptian and many more. These are mostly hotel based, but also in both centres, along the beaches and the main roads. No shortage of snacks and light meals, including several chain eateries and a McDonald’s at Naama Bay.

Sharm El Sheikh Egypt - Gardenia plaza resort
You can travel to several places in the Sinai Desert, including St Catherine’s Monastery (reputed site of the Bible’s burning bush) and Mt Sinai (source of the 10 Commandments). Take desert safaris and camel treks. Enjoy a “Bedouin Night” with meal. Visit the Ras Mohammed National Park, Take a cruise to Tiran Island or maybe an overnight trips to Cairo or Luxor.



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