While Cairo, the Nile and the Great Pyramid are sure to show up on a list of Egypt’s top ten attractions, it is also the home of many top-tier resorts. Dive resorts, golf resorts and eco lodges are just a few of the accommodation styles you will find there. Instead of opting for a traditional golf outing to Myrtle Beach, Scotland or Hawaii, a friend of mine recently returned from Egypt. I could not help but think that a round of eighteen in Egypt would be like hacking through an enormous sand trap. Needless to say, my friend got me thinking. My wife and I had a honeymoon coming up, and we had never been to Egypt. I booked a holiday at a dive resort on the Red Sea.
Archaeologists and Beachcombers
While tourists put on their khakis and safari hats and played the role of archaeologist at Karnak, Thebes and the Valley of Kings, my wife and I went diving and snorkelling. The Egyptian dive resort is similar to the type of all-inclusive hotel you find in the Caribbean. With the Mediterranean Sea to the north and the Red Sea to the east, there is plenty of sand to spread out a beach towel. The coral reefs and underwater life in the Red Sea is legendary, so my wife and I would rotate beach days with dive outings. Every morning we watched as the tourists lined up to take buses to Egypt’s famous landmarks and ancient sights, and every morning we smiled at each other, grabbed the suntan lotion and a beach chair and headed to the sea.
The El Gouna Itinerary
We were staying in El Gouna. Our hotel was a fusion of Arabic and Egyptian style. The resort has a luxurious spa centre, which my wife visited liberally. In the evening, we would stroll through Gouna’s market streets in search of a place to eat dinner. It was a simple itinerary. Too many of the tourists we saw looked haggard and beaten down by the sun. It was as if their trip to Egypt had become a sightseeing marathon. However, this is often the case when you visit places with so much antiquity. You spend so much time snapping photos with your camera or iPhone that you forget to come up for air and take a look around.
In the end, we did hop on an excursion bus. If we left Egypt without seeing an ancient city or archaeological marvel, we both would have been guilt ridden. We spent a night in Luxor. I snapped photos like a madman. After all that antiquity, I could not wait to dive into the Red Sea again.
Visit Bales Worldwide for more info on tours to Egypt.