Hurghada, Egypt

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I'm going to Hurghada (actually a bit south...Makadi Bay) and was wondering if anyone has been snorkeling there before and can recommend some good places to take boat trips to?

 

And I wanna get some disposable underwater cameras...does anyone know if there are some that come with a flash? Which is the best to get?

 

Thanks.

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I was there along time ago, but I just booked thru the hotel, and let them deal with it, from my understanding, its all incredible there. :)

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Oddly something I know about as I have been to Hurghada the last 3 years - and Makadi Bay the last 2. I was diving there only about 2 weeks ago.

 

The dive centre located at Le Meridien Makadi Bay I think is very professional - almost too anal about going through the routines etc. They have a couple of house reefs so you can dive straight off the beach and then of course also organise lots of boat trips etc.

 

Plenty of nice fish of course - the full "Finding Nemo" stuff basically.

 

They speak lots of languages but the group I was with was all German - so we did everything in German with just a few words in English.

 

I bought a cheapo underwater camera with case which I still have - I think you can just change the film or something. But the pictures were a bit rubbish so I never bothered again.

 

Where are you staying?

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have been diving at Marsa Alam - fab. Why not learn to dive while you're out there? Snorkellings cool - but wow, spend 45 mins 20-30m down :))))))

 

As to photography, if you use disposable u/w camera - expect disposable results!! You are unlikely to need a flash under 2m, but if you want to record stuff below that you should really be diving using a camera with a proper u/w housing... you could always ask at the dive centre JE suggested...

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You can get disposable "waterproof" cameras with a flash. Not great really. Local dive school will have them for rent probably. Probably also offer a course. Taking a camera on a night dive is pretty good.

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@johnny english

We're staying at 1-2 Fly Fun Club Makadi Bay...incase that says anything to u.

 

And I wouldn't mind taking a diving course but aren't they kinda expensive? This trip is kinda breaking the bank already so it might be pushing it.

 

And I read that there really isn't much to do around Hurghada (which is ok cuz all I REALLY want is the sun, the beach, and a nice tan), but are there any day trips that are really worth the long bus rides?

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Personally I would steer clear of coach trips anywhere frankly. Hurghada is basically just an airport and then the resorts built on the coast - and a shitload of dust and sand.

 

Couple of years ago my wife and son did the trip to the Kings Burial Chambers or whatever but it was something like 4 hours each way on the coach in a day. Good they said but not for me!

 

Quite a few people seem to go on general boat trips (where of course you can snorkel etc) but personally I get seasick too easily, and I know another family that went this year and lots of people were sick on the choppy boat. I also don't like being kinda stuck on a boat for 10 hours with people I might not like!!! I did a boat drive trip last year but that was specifically for the diving and was OK.

 

Fortunately I don't think you need to go diving. You can see plenty of stuff with snorkel and flippers, and it is not such a pain with all the training and equipment etc. Diving is nice occasionally but its overrated in my humble opinion.

 

However they do have a new "SPA" built about 10 months ago at Makadi and it is absolutely fantastic with a huge range of massages, showers, spas etc etc. Best I have ever seen. Something like 20 different types of massage, so I would recommend finding some spare Euros for that.

 

You cannot get newspapers for love nor money so make sure you take some books.

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MY husband has just opened a 5 star hotel in Sharm El Sheik its beautiful maybe i can get you a discount?

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Maybe next time... we already booked our hotel..was a last minute deal and a pretty good one too :)

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I'm going to Hurghada

Yes, Egyptian food had that effect on me as well.

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My wife and I just returned from Hurghada last weekend. Had a fantastic time - primarily snorkeling, quad biking and golf and chillin. We stayed in El Gouna, about 30km north of Hurghada. You can book anything/everything that you want through your hotel when you arrive. There were way more fish than anywhere we've been in the Mediterranean, and the quad bike tour in the desert just west of hurghada was excellent. Have a great trip!

 

We had originally intended to go to Sharm El Sheikh but the direct flights from Munich are few and far between (tues and thurs). Besides, the terrorists seem enjoy making roman candles of themselves on the Sinai. We'd go back to Hurghada anytime - though if we were hard core divers, then Sharm is supposedly the place to go.

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MY 2 daughters are not very happy that Daddy is in Sharm, and wont go to see him, we just hope there will be no more bombs where he is.

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@pranaman...thanks! I really can't wait! Less than a week... lets just hope I get rid of my bronchitis in <_< time

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You'll have a great time. Egypt is sweet. The Giftun islands are really near the coast and offer great diving and snorkelling. I still remember swimming with the dolphins there. I forget the name of the dive shop I used while I was there. They have two offices and pickup points...one in the older North part of town and one in a resort in the south part. I would def recommend them.

 

Make sure you hit Papas Bar which is owned by cool Dutch people. Too bad you're not staying at the Aladddin?? :)

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A couple of quick tips for you about arrival and departure to save you some hassle, based on our experience:

- the airport will, in all likelihood, be very busy when you arrive as they tend to bring all of the tourist planes in at the same time. Make sure that when you arrive, and you pay for your visa, that they put the stamp in your passport. Some other passengers on our flight paid but didn't get the stamp and so had to re-line up.

- bring tp or tissues with you to use in the airport toilets. A common trick is for locals to steal the tp out of the stalls, then 'sell' it to you on your way in. It sucks to be you if you need the porcelain throne and you're out of change. Funny thing is that there are big signs on the way in that say "NO TIPPING PERMITTED" but the police don't give a ff. Scamming little f@#$ers

 

Otherwise the people are for the most part, genuinely friendly and helpful. The sun is bright, the ocean is blue, and you'll have a great time! The dry, clean air should clear out your bronchitis in no time.

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I hope you enjoy your holiday but I was there in February on a last minute deal at a "five star" hotel and it was disappointing. Ten days of the egyptian runs may have had something to do with it, but I got really annoyed at the locals always trying to rip the tourists off. You could not even browse in a shop without someone trying to sell you something at extortionate prices and then they felt you were insulting their hospitality if you did not buy something. No thank you did not seem to register. The diving and snorkelling was cool but you could not even relax on the beach without people hassling to buy something or other and not taking no for an answer. There was a lot of poverty and I am sure it is not an easy way to make a living but I for one am more inclined to buy something if I am not being continually badgered to do so. I also agree with Johnny English that the coach trips are a bind but if you have time a cruise on the Nile for a few days is expensive but for me the highlight of the trip. Have fun :)

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@canuck...I've read a bunch of good reviews about the Giftun Islands, so we'll most likely do that one day. We wanna do atleast 1 boat trip cuz we did one in Turkey and it was REALLY nice.

 

@pranaman... thanks for the tips! I see u are Canadian, so I am going to assume the entry requirements are similar for Americans, so do u remember how much the visa cost? And I read somewhere that I need to bring 2 passport pics, did you need that at all?

 

@topcat1.. well we prolly won't leave the resort to go shopping or anything, and besides we are used to the annoying shop keepers from Turkey and Tunesia. And we are bringing plenty of Imodium incase we get the 'egyptian runs' as well. And my bf says that having a swig of whisky in the morning and evening kinda protects the belly...thats what we did in Turkey and Tunesia, so we'll prolly be bringing the flask along to Egypt aswell :)

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You will probably get them in the resort as well, glad you can deal with them. The visa is about 25 yoyos. I hope the whiskey is Irish :D

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We're planning a trip to Hurghada at the end of next month. Neither of us have been to Egypt before, but I know it's really the only place to go at this time of year to get some warmth and sun without having to go all the way to the Caribbean.

 

I've already got the resort picked out and have been doing some general research about it, but on the English version of the TripAdvisor site I'm getting annoyed at all the reviews by British tourists with headings like No chips on the menu!!1!1 and Too many bloody Germans (which are the same complaints I seem to read from all British people regardless of where they're holidaying).

 

Since I'm not really interested in eating chips and I'm going to be accompanied on the holiday by a German so not much chance of escaping them, I'm looking for other info such as...

  • What sort of weather can I expect in late February/early March? Is the sea warm enough for swimming? I've read the the temps generally range from 20 to 25 degrees but would love to get some confirmation from anyone who's actually been there at that time of year.
  • Has anyone done the coach trip from Hurghada to Cairo, and if so was it worth the time spent travelling? Would it be more recommendable to fly even though it's more expensive?
  • Where is the best/cheapest place to book tours, like the snorkelling trip to Giftun Island? Online or at the hotel, or elsewhere in Hurghada?
  • Any other salient info that might be useful to a first-time visitor to Hurghada.

 

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