Tips to go on a Hiking Trail in Egypt as a Solo Female Traveller
Egypt is one of those places which has a lot to offer. While we all know about the pyramids and famous places, there is much more to do here than just that. For example, not many people go for a hike in Egypt. So, these places aren’t jam-packed with people, which is always a great thing. And also, the hiking trails in Egypt are simply magnificent!
I have gone on hikes in almost every country I have travelled to. And I must say, hiking in Egypt is a beautiful experience, one like none other. So, in this blog, I will tell you about some of the best hiking trails in Egypt for solo female travellers and some essential tips that will enhance your hiking experience multiple folds. Read on.
List of Hiking Trails in Egypt
There are a bunch of trails in Egypt where you can hike and have fun. Some of them are popular, while others aren’t. I have hiked some of these trails and heard about others from my fellow travellers.
1. White Desert
A day out at the White Desert, aka Farafra, is easily one of the best things to do in Egypt. Hiking here is so much fun as it looks like snow amongst the sand. And that’s where its name comes from. The best part is that, unlike many other deserts, the temperatures here remain moderate. You can experience a high of 30 degrees Celsius or so in the summers. But, on the flip side, it can get cold in the winters as the temperatures drop to single digits.
Hiking here was one of the first things I did in Egypt, and I truly enjoyed it. After a few hours of hike, I went around to explore the area. I visited the neighbouring archaeological towns, which were very interesting. There was also some exotic wildlife around the desert. I suggest that you try it out, too, if you are looking for a relaxed hiking experience.
2. Jebel Serbal
If you are an intermediate or an expert, this one is for you. Many travellers consider Mount Serbal to be one of the best mountain regions in the country. However, this also makes it a pretty challenging one to hike on. I recommend that you find a group of people to hike with.
There aren’t any guides or tour packages here. Only the Qararsha tribe of Wadi Feiran is allowed to lead the hikers to this mountain. From the top, the views of the valleys, greenery, and wildlife are mind-blowing! But the hike can take anywhere from a day to three days to reach the top. This might be a downside. But if you are willing to spend the time for the stunning views, it’s totally worth it!
3. Mount Catherine
Locally known as Gabal Katrîne, it is the highest mountain in Egypt. It is located in Southern Sinai Governorate near the city of Saint Catherine. Most travellers usually ignore this hiking trail and instead prefer Mount Sinai due to its popularity. Also, hiking along Mount Catherine is much more challenging and usually requires five to six hours. The views here are totally worth it, and you should try it out if you are an adrenaline junkie!
I decided to take on this challenge. I booked a tour with a bunch of other people. We started in the evening but didn’t hike till the top. The hike was pretty challenging, and most of us were only beginners. Even then, I can say that the views were just so stunning!
Nuweiba is a beautiful coastal town in the eastern part of Sinai. It is one of the non-touristy places in Egypt and is known for its picturesque views. You can come here to explore the town or go on one of the best hikes of your life. The Coloured Canyon is a rock formation and has a trail of a few kilometres, which means that it won’t take long to complete the hike. The simplest way to get here is through Nuweiba on a 4WD or a sport utility vehicle.
As the name suggests, the best part about this hike is that you can see the unique shades and hues of the canyon. The vivid colours are due to oxidising and rusting of iron upon exposure to other elements. The vibrant colours sure are a treat to the eyes! After the hike, you can also visit some resorts nearby to relax. These are reasonably priced, so that’s great news for solo travellers with a tight budget.
5. Giza Trail
The city of Giza needs no introduction as it is famous for having one of the seven ancient wonders of the world. Whenever we think of Giza, the first thing that comes to mind is a desert with pyramids and camels all around. You might think that one can hike only in the countryside or mountainous regions. Well, think again. You can go on a hiking tour around the pyramids and even book camel rides. Yes, that is actually a thing!
I found this very interesting, so I booked one for myself. It was a guided tour at the crack of dawn. And I must say, the views from here were simply stunning! Later, I explored the desert on a camel, and the experience was truly one of a kind!
6. Sinai Trail
Sinai is one of the most popular hiking trails in Egypt for all levels of hikers. This is Egypt’s first-ever long-distance hiking trail, which is one of the reasons for its popularity. The 550-km Sinai Trail is a Bedouin-run community project and takes around 54 days to complete. Don’t worry, you don’t have to spend two months hiking here. You can book a tour for two to five days, or even a single day, as per your preference.
During your hike, you will come across beautiful views, nature, and some local villages too. You can also hire camels to carry your supplies or even book a camel ride. The best part is you can refill your bottle with potable water from the natural springs! I highly recommend that you click here to learn more about the Sinai Trail and the various hiking options they offer.
Tips for Hiking as a Solo Female Traveller
Those were some really cool hiking trails, weren’t they? Sometimes, the excitement of planning your hike can take your focus off the essential things and ruin the whole experience. To avoid all of this, here are some tips for hiking as a solo female traveller.
1. Pack the right things
Packing for a short hike doesn’t require much planning. But for a longer hike, you must pack light as you will be carrying everything with you. Here are a few essential items you need for your hike.
It is easily the most important item of all. Sometimes, you might not be able to find water nearby. So, you should carry an adequate amount with you, regardless of the weather outside. Make sure that you sip water throughout the hike.
If you book a hiking tour, they will most probably arrange for food. But if you feel hungry in the middle of the hike, you can munch on nutritious snacks like nuts or a protein bar.
It is always a good idea to carry an extra pair of clothes if you are hiking around water bodies. But even otherwise, it is wise to take a spare pair as you never know when you would need it.
It is essential to protect your skin from the harmful rays of the sun. Make sure that you carry your favourite sunglasses and sunscreen too. Anything above SPF 15 should be enough. Also, reapply sunscreen if it washes away due to sweat.
The trails where you will be hiking are beautiful! Make sure that you maintain the beauty and cleanliness of the place. So, pack a trash bag and dump all the waste in that. Try being a green traveller when you’re travelling solo!
Even if you have a phone that lasts all day, you can run out of juice as you would be using it more than usual. It is always safe to carry a power bank and charge your phone whenever you need it.
The lighter you pack, the easier it will be for you to hike, as you will have to carry it all on your backpack throughout the journey.
2. Wear proper clothes
Wearing the wrong clothes can impact your performance and ruin the hiking experience. When it comes to clothing, shoes are one of the most important items. So, make sure that you pick the right ones depending on the terrain. You should pack either light hiking shoes or running shoes.
Talking about pants, anything breathable, comfortable, and one that can keep you warm or cool, depending on the weather, should be good enough. Even though shorts might seem to be a nice option, refrain from wearing them. They do not provide protection from various plants and insects, and you might end up hurting yourself unnecessarily. When it comes to shirts, go for anything breathable coupled with a waterproof jacket.
3. Eat something before hiking
Just as you don’t drive a car without fuel, you shouldn’t go on a hike without fuelling your body with food. Make sure that you eat at least an hour before the scheduled hiking time. Anything less than one hour before the hike can pose problems during your hike. Also, make sure that you eat more than you usually would as you need a lot of energy. Yoghurt, pasta, brown rice, fruits, vegetables, and toast are some healthy options you can consider.
4. Evaluate your journey beforehand
Let’s face it, not all of us have perfect fitness levels or are professional hikers. Therefore, it is important that you learn about the hiking trail before actually going on a hike. If you have never been on a hike before, start with something easy and build from there. If you are into hiking for a while now, evaluate your past performances and pick a trail accordingly.
5. Consider hiking in a group
I know that hiking solo can be fun. But if you are a beginner, it is best to either find a group of travellers to hike with or book a tour. This way, you will not need to plan everything yourself. Also, it is much safer to hike in a group than hiking solo. If you ever get tired mid-way or require anything, your guide will come to your rescue.
6. Stretch your body
Taking multiple breaks during a hike is a common thing. But make sure that you do not sit for an extended time. Instead, stretch your body! Stretching will ensure that your muscle fibres are relaxed and you do not get injured. Also, stretch your body at least five minutes before the hike so you can prepare your body for it.
7. Maintain a steady pace
It is common for excited beginners to try and finish their hikes as soon as possible. Remember, it is not a sprint. You need to take your time and pick a pace that you can maintain throughout. Consider taking it easy on plains so you can use the extra energy while going uphill. Your body will thank you at the end of the day for little things like these.
8. Stick to the trail
If you plan to hike solo, it is important that you stick to the trail. To ensure this, bring a map along and put it in a ziplock. Do not rely on any image on your phone as it might run out of charge anytime. For some reason, if you lose track, take a deep breath, relax and think about the place the last time you knew where you were and take it from there. Patience is the key!
Those were all the tips and recommendations of places from me and other fellow travellers. Make sure that you go through the list again and save it for future reference. Also, remember that hiking in Egypt is only a part of the beautiful trip. There is so much more to do and see here. Happy travelling, ladies!
An introverted blogger who is looking to make unforgettable solo travel memories with one short life.