Holidays In Sharm
When you fly to Egypt to start your holiday, after travelling across miles and miles of sand dunes, your plane starts to approach the coast of the Red Sea and suddenly an unusual sight approaches. As if from nowhere you are faced with a highly modern development of luxury hotels sitting on the shores of golden sand. Sharm really is a unique location. It’s almost as if a section of a big city somewhere else has just been picked up and placed here. It is difficult to compare the Sharm skyline with that of other cities though, due to its unique nature. It could be San Francisco but the buildings are much newer. It could be New York but there are no skyscrapers. It could be parts of a modern Spanish city, but Sharm is made up almost entirely of hotels and there are very few office buildings. The new and emerging city of Dubai is perhaps the closest comparison, but again there are differences, because Sharm is a resort developed purely for holidays. So let’s start with the sun or the amazing weather that Sharm benefits from. Sunshine is what most people come here for and they are rarely disappointed. Even during the middle of winter Sharm has an average of seven hours of sun each day and because that is about the length of daylight during the winter months, that means sunshine all day long. The same holds for summer too. At this time of year the days and nights are equally long and that usually means plenty of warmth too. During June and July the daytime temperature can reach the high thirties, sometimes even reaching forty degrees Celsius, which means these months may not be the best for family visits. Evening temperatures do reduce slightly but in the summer this drop is limited by the low humidity in this part of the world. The temperature at night can still be in the high twenties, which would make sleeping uncomfortable for those not used to this weather. But thankfully this is a location designed for tourists; conceived and built for people who don’t have this type of weather normally, so air conditioning in the hotels is the norm. You may have heard about desert temperatures dropping considerably at night, but in Sharm this is not the case. The warmth absorbed by the Red Sea has a significant impact, acting like a storage heater and preventing cold temperatures at night. Moving onto the sea or, more accurately, the Red Sea. This is a 1400 mile inlet stretching from the Indian Ocean in the South up to Egypt in the North, with Asia, namely Saudi Arabia and Yemen on the Eastern side and Egypt, Sudan and Eritrea bordering the Western side. The prime attraction of this sea, apart from the weather mentioned above, is its suitability for diving. Since it was discovered in the fifties and made famous by the TV programmes of the Frenchman Jacques Cousteau, divers from all over the world have travelled there to dive in the warm waters to observe the plant and animal life and to test their skills on several of the shipwrecks that lie in the waters. Sharm is particularly well suited for divers, with most of the larger hotels running their own diving schools, with on-site instructors providing tuition for everyone from beginners to those training to be instructors themselves. The dive schools also organise day trips to the many dive locations on the peninsula, including wrecks such as the HMS Thistlegorm, the Dunraven and the Carina. The Dunraven is the closest of these wrecks to Sharm, while the others are around 60 Kilometers away. Dive trips to wrecks in this area are normally part of a two day programme from Sharm and some include a night dive at the end of the first day. The ship was sunk by one of two German Heinkel bombers that were on a long-range mission from Crete. The wreck site was discovered again by Jacques Cousteau and many regard it as one of the best wreck dives in the world. Finally there is the sand in Sharm and there is certainly no shortage of that on the inland side of the resort. The Egyptian desert starts almost immediately behind the hotels and continues uninterrupted for up to six miles before the rocky landscape arrives and the ground starts to climb up towards to Mount Sinai, fifty miles to the north. The hotels along the coast in Sharm tend to have their own private beaches which are meticulously maintained. For tourists looking for a relaxing holiday, these are perfect places. You can just lie on the best in the uninterrupted sunshine and enjoy the five-stat service by some of the world’s most luxurious hotels. This really is a resort that can provide the ideal beach holiday for most people.
Sharm el Sheikh is the perfect place for a sunshine break. Travel writer Mark Bartley describes the resort and offers advice on finding low cost flights to Sharm whatever the time of year.