Why Should You Visit the Red Sea Area on Your Solo Trip to Egypt?

I remember learning about the Red Sea back when I was in school. The earliest known explorations were conducted by ancient Egyptians via the Red Sea. It was also an important route for trades between Europe and the Middle Eastern countries. However, I didn’t know that it is one of Egypt’s most popular tourist attractions today.

Exploring the Red Sea Region isn’t the simplest thing to do. It is unlike any other place in the country. You need to be well prepared so that you don’t face any issues and have a smooth experience. I will tell you everything that you need to know about it in this blog. Read on.

What is the Red Sea Area in Egypt?

The Red Sea is a seawater inlet (long and narrow shoreline) lying between Africa and Asia. It has a surface area of around 438 thousand square kilometres, a length of about 2250 kilometres, a maximum width of 355 kilometres, an average depth of 490 metres, and a maximum depth of around ten thousand feet. Basically, leaving the numbers aside, the Red Sea is a massive water body! As a result, the safety of visitors is often in question.

Is it Safe to Visit the Egyptian Red Sea Coral Region?

The Red Sea is a tourist hotspot for diving and water sports, often considered one of the best in the world. One can spot a lot of beautiful marine animals here. Also, there are various underwater coral gardens and shipwrecks, the most famous of which are Sharm El-Sheikh, Ras Mohammed, and Marsa Alam. But is it really safe to visit the Red Sea Region?

If you are simply visiting the Red Sea and not indulging in any water sports, it is absolutely SAFE to visit the region. However, if you plan to participate in water sports, follow the guidelines. Go diving with a responsible and certified tour operator to ensure that you have a safe and fun time diving or snorkelling at the Red Sea.

Safety Precautions to Take During Your Visit to the Egyptian Red Sea Region

In general, it is totally safe to visit the Red Sea Region. But if you are planning to indulge in water sports, there are some safety precautions that you need to take.

Book water sport tours with certified experts only

There are various certified guides in the region, and you can book a tour from any of these. They are all experts and have been approved by CDWS and will take care of all the equipment, regulations, and your safety.

Along with certified ones, there are also various uncertified people posing to be experts. Ensure that you do NOT book one from these as they have been blacklisted for illegal operations.

Swimming safety

People are allowed to swim only in front of hotels and resorts. And not too far away from these. Also, the resorts have clearly marked the safe swimming area with buoys and ropes. Don’t be surprised if you see these marks as these are common and for your safety. Do note that it is totally safe to swim in the Red Sea all by yourself until you stay within the specified area.

Snorkelling regulations

what to do in Red Sea

Another regulation that has been put into place is restrictions on snorkelling. It wasn’t regulated earlier, but following the lethal shark attack near the famous resort of Sharm El-Sheikh, snorkelling is now allowed in certain areas only. Also, all snorkelers must be accompanied by a CWDS registered guide. This is one thing that you must keep in mind. Even if you have snorkelled multiple times in the past, make sure that you hire a guide.

Beware of sharks

Sharks call Red Sea home. And even though shark attacks happen here, they aren’t that common. Generally, most aquatic animals hunt around dusk or dawn, so you should indulge in water sports around the afternoon. Also, refrain from getting into the water if there are bait fishes or birds dive-bombing into the water for food. You might become the shark’s lunch for the day, so beware! I am sure that you would know this if you were a professional.

All of this might sound scary. However, if you are a visitor who is here to just sit by the shore, enjoy the breeze, or take a walk and unwind, you are totally SAFE. You can have a fun time here and explore many popular tourist attractions nearby too. 

List of Places to Visit in the Egyptian Red Sea Region

Exploring the Red Sea is excellent. But you can’t spend all your time in the sea, can you? Well, you don’t need to. The good news is that there are many places around the Red Sea Region that you can visit. It has recently become a popular holiday destination for travellers from all across the globe.

what to do in Red Sea

It gives you an opportunity to get away from the waters and learn something about Egypt’s rich history and culture, or simply relax and unwind. Here are some top-rated places that you must visit around the Red Sea Region.

St. Anthony’s Monastery

St. Anthony’s Monastery is claimed to be the oldest monastery in the world. It is located amid barren cliffs just below the cave where St. Anthony retreated to follow the monastic life of prayer and solitude. It was established more than 1700 years ago as a small home but is now surrounded by walls erected in the 10th century.

There is a massive garden with palm trees inside where the monks live and practice. What attracts tourists here other than the monastery’s history are the wall paintings from the 6th century and the frescoes of Coptic saints.

St. Paul’s Monastery

Established in the 4th century, St.Paul’s Monastery is also known as the Monastery of the Tigers. It became popular in the 6th century when people started visiting in flocks to honour St. Paul of Thebes, who is regarded as the first Christian to follow the hermetic lifestyle. It is claimed that he lived alone in Egypt’s desert from the age of sixteen to one hundred and thirteen.

I must say, the monastery gives a sense of calmness when you enter it—maybe because it is built where St. Paul led his hermit life of solitude. You can combine your trip to St. Paul’s Monastery with St. Anthony’s and visit both on the same day.

Day out at El Qoseir

El Qoseir is a non-touristy place with a population of only fifty thousand or so. It is located around a hundred and fifty kilometres from Hurghada, away from the posh towns near the Red Sea region. So, getting here will take you about three hours from Hurghada.

It was an important city in the Middle Ages and has still preserved its unique architecture and colourful buildings. The best part about visiting El Qoseir is that you can get away from the hustle-bustle of city life and enjoy some time alone. You can walk through the alleyways, check out the famous architecture, and appreciate this hidden gem of a place.

Hurghada Marina

Hurghada is one of the most popular tourist destinations in Egypt. Many tourists on a tight budget from Europe come here to escape the cold weather and soak up the sun for a week or two. Due to this, Hurghada Marina has become the number one place to dine-in and relax as there are plenty of restaurants and cafes to choose from.

The yacht harbour is surrounded by a walkway and is lined with shops, chic cafes, and beautiful neighbourhoods. If you have some extra cash to spend, make sure that you visit Hurghada Marina for a luxurious experience.

Hurghada Souk

After a great time at Hurghada Marina, you can visit the Ad Dahar Souk in the evening for some souvenir shopping. The lanes are crammed with shops, and you can find literally everything you can think of. Clothes, home décor, papyrus, shisha pipes, silver, copper, and leather products are some of the many things you can find here.

As I mentioned earlier, the best time to visit here is in the evenings. The sunny afternoons can get really uncomfortable, and shopping around the crowds of people is simply too tricky. If you find anything to be overpriced, do not hesitate to use your haggling skills!

Relax at El Gouna

El Gouna is a tourist resort located twenty kilometres from Hurghada. It is an entirely planned, modern resort town built around luxury living and holiday villa complexes. There are 18 hotels with 2895 rooms rated from three to five stars, and also a six-star hotel named La Maison Bleue. In a nutshell, El Gouna is a whole town based on modern luxury resorts.

If you are wondering what El Gouna has to offer, let me tell you. There are two marinas, a golf course, more than a dozen high and mid-ranged restaurants, hotels that offer water sports and massage and spa centres for complete relaxation. If all of this sounds interesting to you, make sure that you check out El Gouna on your solo trip to Egypt.

Desert Safari to Wadi El Gamal

Wadi El Gamal is located in the southern region of the Red Sea’s the Eastern Desert. It is a beautiful place that hides the remains of ancient emerald mines. The archaeological site named Sikait is the most popular, and the miners used it as a settlement. Also, there exists a temple dedicated to Goddess Isis surrounded by remains of stone houses.

If you are someone who doesn’t like history, don’t worry. You can visit here for the picturesque views. Even though the land is mostly a barren desert, the views from a safari of the archaeological remains are totally worth visiting the place.

Marsa Alam

Marsa Alam needs no introduction as it is one of the most famous towns in the Red Sea Governorate. It is mainly known to be an isolated resort destination in the southern part of Egypt. There are luxurious as well as budget-oriented resorts that you can choose from.

If you are looking to enjoy a vacation, there is no better place than Marsa Alam. You can experience peace and serenity here. And needless to say, indulge in diving too. There are various diving sites in the town, and it is considered to be one of the best diving locations in the world. You can also visit Marsa Alam for great cafes, restaurants, and beaches.

Mons Claudianus

Mons Claudianus was a Roman quarry in the Eastern Desert of Egypt. Along with this, Mons Porphyrites is another significant mine located nearby. These two were of great importance and denoted the Eastern Desert’s significance in the Roman Empire.

While there isn’t much left of the great mining town, you can surely see the remains of the settlements, workshops, and temples they built. One interesting fact that I learnt here was that all the workers here were actually prisoners, and they lived under very harsh conditions. I know that it can get quite boring if you aren’t interested in the history of things. But I suggest that you check it out, as you can learn so much here.

Wadi Hammamat

The rock inscriptions in the Eastern Desert are the highlights of Egypt’s ancient history. This area was once an important trade route, remains of which can be found even to this date. If you want to learn about this place’s trade history and importance, you can book a 4WD tour and explore the site in great detail.

However, if you don’t wish to bore yourself with the history of this place, you can go hiking here. On your way, you will find many rocks with inscriptions on them signifying something important and sometimes something peculiar!

So, should you visit the Red Sea Area?

If I had to answer this question in short, I would say YES, you should definitely visit the Red Sea on your solo trip to Egypt. If you are a regular traveller who doesn’t want to indulge in water sports, there are no threats whatsoever. On the other hand, if you wish to participate in water sports, make sure that you follow all the guidelines.

There is a lot more to explore in the Red Sea Governorate than just the sea. Most importantly, do not forget to have fun while you are here as you won’t be spending a lifetime in Egypt! But before booking your flights, make sure that you pack the rights things for your solo trip. Also, let me know about your experiences here, as I would love to hear about them. Bon voyage, ladies!


An introverted blogger who is looking to make unforgettable solo travel memories with one short life.

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