By Joanna Neve
Are you a thrill seeker? Or just plain adventurous? If so then you might want to try out these top 5 Egyptian sports to do before you die. From sand dunes, to the deep blue sea and great heights; these activities will provide a whirl-wind experience of all that Egypt has to offer for dare-devils and adrenaline lovers!
This is the sport which comes to mind when people think of the Middle East. Where else will you find a desert full of dunes? While the name suggests a surf-style approach, sand boarding is a lot harder than it looks (trust me!). A first timer is more likely to sit on the board like a snow sledge, although you’ll probably end up feeling a lot hotter and sweatier!
The giant sand dunes of the Great Sand Sea near Siwa is well known for this extreme sport, with dunes reaching 140 metres in height! Go with a company and they’ll provide everything you need including lunch and additional activities such as horse riding.
If you fall in love with sand boarding, hop on a flight to Nicaragua and try out its volcanic sister – volcano boarding! This is a much more dangerous sport and is only possible on one volcano, Cerro Negro.
Desert Quad Biking
If sand dunes take your fancy, but you don’t want to keep climbing up the dunes (a major downside to sand boarding), then quad biking may be the sport for you. Although it may not seem ‘extreme’ at first, when the Quad hits a sand dune, the experience is totally different… prepare to ride up almost vertical slopes and make sure to keep a firm hold!
Hurghada is a popular location for this, although tours are available from Cairo too with options to add on camel rides, a Bedouin village experience and pyramid scenery rides.
If quad biking turns out to be your thing, then why not sign up for the ultimate thrill-seekers competition – the Cross Egypt Challenge. This 10-day rally will take part in October, with a number of quad bikes racing 2,650km from Alexandria to Luxor, a mighty challenge which will only leave your friends asking, ‘Are you crazy?’. Applications open now. http://www.crossegyptchallenge.com/
Some may be unaware, but Egypt is well known for its world-class dive sites. If you thought snorkeling was fun, then diving will take you to a whole new level of excitement!
The Red Sea is a popular destination for water lovers who want to try out shipwreck diving. Beneath the waters is home to Thistlegorm, a shipwreck diving site listed as 4th best in the world by Scuba Travel in 2019.
A globally recognized PADI Open Water Dive Qualification is easy to achieve, with some pools in Cairo offering the course alongside day trips for open water exams. To dive around shipwrecks (a more dangerous version of the sport) you have to complete further diving exams, but doing so will enable the world (and its oceans) to become your oyster!
If you don’t like the sound of sinking into the deep blue sea, then flying along the surface and holding on for dear life might be a better sport to try! With good weather and consistent winds for most of the year, Egypt is an amazing destination for kite surfing.
There are lots of sites for this epic water sport so it can be hard to choose a location, but with strong winds and waist-deep water at high tide, Ras Sudr is a good spot! It hosts a large variety of kite surfing schools for absolute beginners and has a relaxed ‘Caribbean feel’. If that’s not enough, the presence of dolphin schools makes it an attractive destination regardless.
The sport is easily paired with snorkeling and beach relaxation so you can take your friends and family along if they are feeling a bit too chicken to give it a try. Other interesting water-based activities include wake boarding and parasailing, both of which are offered alongside kite surfing at the popular tourist destination Dahab.
Falafel Hill Racing
Okay, this one shouldn’t really be on the list but I wanted to put it forward anyway. You could create an equivalent race to the somewhat frantic cheese rolling races that take part in the UK in summer! Unique to Gloucester, locals throw a 7-9 pound rounded lump of cheese down a large hill and competitors have to run as fast as they can to catch it, with the winner of the race being the first to grab the cheese.
With a one second head start, catching the cheese is very hard as it can reach speeds of 70 miles per hour! This is why some rank it as a globally recognized extreme sporting festival! If you have a hill nearby and a large enough piece of falafel, why not recreate an Egyptian version of the sport?
Warning: Downhill falafel racing has the potential to cause injury.
Have you tried any of these thrill-seeking sports? Write a message in the comment section to encourage others to give them a go!