According to CachedHealth, Hurghada is one of the first and still the most popular resort in Egypt. The tourist season here lasts all year round, and affordable prices allow you to plan even a budget vacation. You can swim in the South Sea even in winter, but for the sake of a beach holiday, it’s better to go in the summer. However, a trip to Hurghada is rarely limited to swimming. For family tourists, there are many entertainments and other activities, and for young people – nightclubs and beach parties.
A vibrant national flavor can be found in the old town of El Dahar, where there are several tourist sites. In addition, Hurghada is not so far from other Egyptian “celebrities” – the Temple of Edfu and the Valley of the Kings.
Each of the three districts of Hurghada is interesting for tourists in its own way. All of them have access to the Red Sea, which means that the coast is literally strewn with hotels and entertainment complexes.
Everywhere there is one pattern – the closer the hotel to the sea, the higher the price per room.
El Dahar is the oldest part of the city, its historical center. In addition to souvenir and jewelry stores, catering and entertainment centers, which are full in other areas, there are several unique historical sites. The most interesting are the Coptic Church, which combines elements of Christian and Islamic architecture, and the Abdulhasan Elshazi Mosque with 40-meter minarets.
In search of a quiet relaxing holiday, it is better to bypass El Dahar – it is always noisy and crowded here.
The modern center of Hurghada is the Sakkala district. There is entertainment for every taste – comfortable beaches with bars and playgrounds, discos, bowling and billiards. For outdoor enthusiasts – diving, windsurfing, banana rides and boat trips.
New Hurghada stretches for 40 meters along the coast. The most suitable part of the city for tourists is a large number of hotels and beaches, the assortment familiar to Europeans in stores, and a more democratic attitude towards open summer clothes. There is only one drawback – the prices in supermarkets are clearly overpriced.
A strip of hotels and resorts in Hurghada stretches for 50 km along the Red Sea coast. Most expensive 4 and 5 * hotels have their own comfortable beaches or access to the sea. But it is better to clarify this in advance – in fact, the building, standing on the coast, can be fenced off from the water by a fence, construction site or garbage dump. Prices for a room in hotels of this class start from 800 EGP.
If the level of service and comfort is of paramount importance, it is better to look at those that are more expensive than 1000 EGP. Then the territory will most likely have a water park, bike rental, ample opportunities for sports, and the evening program will include the performance of an Egyptian with a huge snake.
In most hotels, including 3 *, breakfast is included in the price. A room in a mid-range hotel will cost 500-650 EGP. If the warm sea and beaches are not the main purpose of the visit, you can find housing even cheaper. A modest double room in El Dahar costs no more than 310-350 EGP per night.
When choosing a hotel in Hurghada, be sure to read the reviews so that you don’t have to light up in the company of elderly respectable Germans.
Communication and Wi-Fi
Arriving in Hurghada, it is better to immediately buy a local SIM card. Our MTS in roaming connects to one of the Egyptian operators, but the cost of the call is quite high. There are three cellular companies in the country – local Mobinil, international Vodafon and Arabic Etisalat. Tariffs and communication quality are about the same, but Mobinil works better than others in some areas of the city. The price of a minute of conversation with Russia varies within 10 EGP, a SIM card will cost 30 EGP. The card together with a 1.25 GB USB modem for Internet access costs about the same.
For those who are used to Skype a lot, the bad news is that it most often does not work on Egyptian mobile operators.
Hurghada is a fairly developed city, and most hotels have a wireless network. But it may not be there, or an hour of “surfing” will cost fabulous money. Free Wi-Fi is available in many restaurants. In addition, there are plenty of Internet cafes, where for a moderate fee of 15 EGP per hour, you can easily find the information you need or work.
The coast of Hurghada is a real fairy tale for beach lovers – clean fine sand, developed infrastructure and entertainment for every taste. One minus – there are no more places left in the popular resort where you can go to the sea and swim for free, you will have to pay 25 EGP for the entrance to the beach.
The number of beaches in Hurghada is in the dozens, but there are some of the most beloved by locals and tourists. The most expensive and well-maintained are Dream Beach and Old Vic. The entrance fee exceeds 100 EGP, but for this money visitors can use umbrellas, sun loungers, toilets and playgrounds, each guest is given a towel. Cleanliness is carefully monitored, the entrance to the water is cleared of stones and corals. Although both beaches have slides and attractions for children, it is better to go to the Old Vic with the kids – the sea is shallow here, and the entrance to the water is wide and gentle.
Most beaches are open from 7:00-8:00 to 19:00, for children under 6-8 years old, admission is free.
On Dream Beach, there is a small strip of 50 m for a convenient entrance, then there is a pier and a pontoon, which attracted a diver, and behind it are coral reefs that attract divers.
Party-goers from all over Hurghada are attracted by the new Mojito beach, which is open around the clock. During the day, they swim, sunbathe, play billiards, volleyball and Playstation, go on boat trips and go in for sports. At night, this part of the coast turns into a trendy nightclub – beach parties, foam parties and performances by famous DJs. The price of a disco ticket depends on the program.
Food and drinks are not allowed on most beaches. There are bars and restaurants where you can satisfy your hunger and thirst.
One of the most democratic beaches is Paradise Beach. But it also has everything you need for a carefree holiday – umbrellas, sun loungers, catamaran rental and a children’s playground. You need to bring your own towel, and you will have to pay separately for the shower and toilet.
Diving in Hurghada
The Red Sea is one of the best diving spots. Intricate corals, colorful fish and varied terrain are unlikely to leave anyone indifferent. This sport is well developed in Hurghada – several dozens of clubs work here.
There are Russian diving centers with which it is more comfortable for our tourists to learn the basics of mastery.
The underwater world off the coast of Hurghada is interesting both for beginners, for whom a small flock of fish is still a novelty, and for experienced divers. The depths hide many interesting objects – coral gardens, caves and sunken ships. Some centers organize dive safaris to the most interesting dive sites.
The cost of services depends on the degree of training and the specific organization. The initial training program (Discover Scuba Diving) and two dives will cost 725 EGP. A day of diving for those who already have experience will cost 450 EGP. To take courses and get an OWD (Open Water Diver) certificate, you will have to pay 6500 EGP. A set of equipment and lunch on board are usually included in the price.
What to try
Modern Egyptian cuisine is replete with delicious pastries and flour dishes. The restaurant menu has a lot of fruits and vegetables, as well as fish, poultry and meat, but the latter is not common. Distinctive features of cooking are a large amount of oil and spices.
Pasta lovers should pay attention to kushari (a mixture of boiled pasta, lentils and rice, vermicelli and onions fried in oil). The classic Egyptian breakfast is “ful”, which includes beans, oil, lemon juice and spices. Another dish unusual for our people is “mahshi” (pigeons with rice). As for desserts, be sure to try “um ali” with raisins, almonds, coconut and puff pastry.
Cafes and restaurants in Hurghada
The restaurant map of Hurghada is diverse, there are restaurants to your liking for both the sophisticated gourmet and the European accustomed to traditional food. The tourist areas are full of cafes of Japanese, Mediterranean, Italian, German and other cuisines of the world. The range of prices is also quite large – from very budget eateries to respectable restaurants. Establishments with national dishes and oriental flavor are especially popular among tourists.
You need to carefully choose a cafe in Hurghada. You can easily get poisoned in cheap eateries. Even with plain water, you can’t drink it from the tap categorically.
Those who want to save money should pay attention to international chains – Pizza Hut, McDonald’s, KFS, Cinnabon and others. Moreover, an institution of this category can be found for every taste – with an Italian, Indian, Egyptian or sea menu. There are several of the latter in Hurghada, in the assortment there are skillfully cooked slaves and seafood from the Red Sea.
The average bill for two in the most expensive places in the city does not exceed 500-800 EGP. In addition to delicious dishes and stylish interiors, they are notable for their safety, high level of service and the almost complete absence of the local population in the hall.