Most Egyptians fall into a loop of summer vacations monotony by limiting themselves to the same destinations every vacation; whether it’s Sahel, Gouna or somewhere else. And as much as we love these places, change is always needed to recharge our batteries and expand our horizons. So why not give up on our every year typical vacation destinations and experience some of the hidden gems of our magical country? Following are some unique adventurous escapes that will literally take your breath away.
Sunken City in Sahl Hasheesh
Aside from the long uninterrupted stretches of white sand within the swimmable bay of its local beach, the old town with its local craft stores, fine dining, vibrant nightlife and spas; Sahl Hasheesh resort possesses an underwater maze: a Sunken City! The historic underwater Pharaonic city sank thousands of years ago, leaving outstanding underwater ruins that can be watched by snorkelling. The columns and structures attract a large number of colourful underwater species which are great to watch as they make their way through the sunken alleys and rocks.
Midway between Taba and Nuweiba, lies a spot of heaven like no other. Castle Zaman – located atop a desert cliff and overlooking the breathtaking panoramic view of Gulf of Aqaba – will capture hearts from the first sight. Aside from the majestic scene, the elegant medieval architecture of the castle adds an unmistakable charm to the place. The luxurious eco-friendly destination will take you into a serene world with their slow-food kitchen, their swimming lagoon and the Zaman’s private beach with its pristine sand and crystal clear waters.
Dolphin House Reefs and Marsa Egla
Two of the most important dolphin habitats in the world are located in the Red Sea in Marsa Alam. Samadai reef and Sataya reef are homes to large families of spinner dolphins besides the occasional visits by other species such as the bottlenose. So for all dolphin lovers, get ready to meet one of the most playful, intelligent and amazing sea creatures in their natural habitat. Another astonishing creature that you will get to meet is the sea turtle while diving or snorkelling in Marsa Egla, located 10 km north of Marsa Alam. Having a very rich marine life, the site is ideal for exploring the underwater world.
Fjord Bay in Taba
Sinai is known for its picturesque sceneries and this one comes definitely on top of the list. Fifteen kilometers south of Taba, lies Fjord Bay, a golden beach with an astonishing background of mountains. The bay is one of the best swimming spots and is fantastic for diving with its astonishingly colourful and rich corals and fish. Relaxing there while taking in the natural beauty will just make everything right!
Wadi Qulaan and Ras Hankorab
Is it your dream to escape the touristic beaches and enjoy unspoiled untouched nature? You may then head south to Marsa Alam. Located inside Wadi Al Gemal Protected Area in Hamata village, the secluded beaches of Qulaan and Ras Hankorab are considered ideal spots to reconnect with nature and unwind. Qulan exposes 4 golden sandy islands where large mangrove trees grow in the salty waters, while Ras Hankorab’s pristine beach has extremely clear waters that sea creatures can be seen from the above. Besides that, visitors can enjoy hiking, bird watching and discovering Hamata Mountain where ibex and gazelles are still found.
Wishwashi Canyon and Colored Canyon
Sinai is home to hundreds of canyons, which we believe is old news for all the adventurers and desert lovers. The Wishwashi Canyon is rated as one of the top 10 canyons in Sinai, where hikers will be rewarded with swimming in a natural pool of sparkling emerald water with an amazing canyon rising above it. Another canyon considered as one of the most magnificent rock formations in the world is the Coloured Canyon near Nuweiba. Eight hundred meters long with twin palm trees, the natural colourful canyon is a result of water erosion millions of years ago.
The surreal Agiba beach is located 24 km west to Marsa Matrouh. Just as its name suggests, this miraculous site is a scenic small cove with dazzling clear turquoise water, fine white sands and in between protecting cliffs. The fifty shades of blue – Marsa Matrouh has the bluest water ever – is irresistible and taking a dip will give you a dreamy experience. It’s a piece of earthly paradise.
Natural Springs in Ras Sudr
Aside from the pleasurable beaches of Ras Sudr that present a variety of water activities such as windsurfing, swimming, water skiing, snorkelling, fishing and diving; the city possesses a number of springs famous for their therapeutic and soothing effects. From the Pharaoh’s Bath Hot Springs considered as a natural sauna with a rocky carved cave on top of them to the 12 Moses Hot Springs known for providing visitors with spiritual peace and comfort and Moses Bath Hot Spring situated in the centre of an oasis; it’s a 3 hour trip from Cairo that will take you out of time and make you feel relaxed like never before.
At the end, it’s nothing but illogical to be blessed with a country full of precious destinations, hidden gems and natural treasures and still choose to be bounded to the same vacation spots every single summer. Get out of your bubbles and start exploring your magical country!