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Things to Do in Hurghada

With the crystalline waters of the Red Sea to the east and the sands of Egypt’s vast desert to the west, Hurghada attracts vacationers from across the globe who want to relax on its endless beaches, explore its spectacular dive sites, and take day trips to the historic cities along the Nile River. Like its fellow resort cities of Sharm El Sheikh and El Gouna (just a half hour away), Hurghada is known for its incredible water sports and diving; and visitors can take a snorkeling trip along the coastline or across the water to the beautiful Giftun Islands and Mahmaya Island to view coral reefs populated with exotic fish, sea turtles, and rays. Though now a modern vacation destination, Hurghada has a long history, which visitors can learn about on a private tour of Old Town, with stops at the Abdel Monaem Read Mosque (Big Mosque), Church of St. Mary, and the marina. You’ll also want to stroll through the colorful, bustling souks (markets) to shop for souvenirs. Outside the city to the west, take an unforgettable desert safari by 4x4 quad bike or Jeep, stopping for a Bedouin barbecue under the starry night sky. Further west, explore the Nile from Aswan in the south to Cairo and Alexandria to the north. The river is lined with ancient cities and monuments, including Luxor, Qena, the Karnak temple complex, the Giza Pyramids, and the Valley of the Kings—perfect day tours for archaeology buffs.
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Giftun Islands
97 Tours and Activities

The Giftun Islands are a popular excursion from Hurghada, offering snorkeling, diving, sunbathing and a welcome retreat from the mainland bustle.

Offshore reefs provide spectacular drop-offs for experienced divers, hiding moray eels and fish in amongst the corals. Closer to shore, the coral reef snorkeling is superb.

The islands are famous for their pristine protected beaches, and a resort on the larger island provides all the facilities you need for a day by the sea, along with tours and windsurfing.

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Hurghada Marina
482 Tours and Activities

A forest of white masts poke up from the aquamarine waters along the redeveloped waterfront in Hurghada. While Hurghada has always been a bustling marine port, it wasn’t until 2008 that the city redesigned the Hurghada Marina as a place for locals and visitors to stroll in the sun, get some fresh air or grab a bite to eat with views of the sea.

The marina itself has 200 berths for sail boats and mega yachts, while the waterfront Hurghada Marine Boulevard is home to cafes, restaurants, shop and stylish bars, many hosting live music most nights of the week. Visitors can shop in a recreated Souk, dance the night away at a beach bar or board a glass-bottom boat to explore the colorful corals just offshore. Insider’s Tip: The Hurghada Marina hosts special events and festivals throughout the year. Check their Facebook page for the latest.

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Mahmya Island
19 Tours and Activities

This small island off the coast of Hurghada offers access to some of the clearest, bluest waters of the Red Sea away from the busy nearby shores. Accessed by boat, the island has food and lounge facilities and places to get snorkel gear. Snorkeling in this area is a must, as the underwater life is bright, colorful and active and it is less crowded than in other snorkel spots.

An abundance of marine life awaits in the many reefs just below the water’s surface. Dozens of tropical fish and a variety of coral types can be seen just off the island’s beach. Dolphins are a frequent sighting and a highlight for many visitors to this area. Soak in the Egyptian sun on a white-sand beach and cool off with a dip in the calm, turquoise waters.

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Hurghada Grand Aquarium
74 Tours and Activities
Hurghada’s Marine Biology Museum reveals insights into the aquatic wonderland lying offshore. Whether you’re a keen snorkeler or want to learn more about the world’s rare coral reefs, the museum provides all the answers, focusing on the Red Sea’s ecological environment. You’ll also find out about the critters that live in the Red Sea, including sharks and turtles.
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El Dahar (Hurghada Old Town)
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19 Tours and Activities

There’s much more to Hurghada than modern resorts and tourist facilities.

North of the resorts, you’ll find Old Hurghada, or Ad-Dahar. Most locals live in Ad-Dahar, and it’s here that you’ll find the most authentic restaurants and hotels.

The highlight of the old town is the souk, or market. It’s easy to while away several hours here, browsing the local produce and spices, and shopping for take-home souvenirs like rugs, water pipes and traditional clothing.

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Careless Reef
3 Tours and Activities
The corals of Careless Reef, set in the open waters of the Red Sea about an hour from Hurghada, are flourishing again as it recovers from the crown-of-thorns seastar’s predation. With excellent visibility, shallow pinnacles, and a steep wall with caves and overhangs, it offers something for every diver, including the chance of big pelagics.
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Makadi Water World
2 Tours and Activities
This beachfront water park in Hurgada is a favorite for many families visiting the area. With 46 different water slides, a wave pool, water cannons, a wave simulator for surfing, waterfalls throughout and the turquoise ocean merely steps away, there are dozens of ways to enjoy the water. Brightly colored themed structures provide ways to stay cool while climbing and playing in the freshwater. Palm trees create shade in a lagoon area for when it’s time to relax.
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Hurghada 1,001 Nights (Alf Leila Wa Leila)
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At the Alf Leila Wa Leila hotel property, 1,001 Nights (Alf Leila Wa Leila) is a celebration of Egyptian culture, color and dance with a variety of entertainment and dinner theater shows. Serving local food and drink, the many acts tell the history and folklore of Egypt through live music, a sound and light show, belly dancing and a pharaonic horse show that includes acrobatics and horsemanship. Each show tells the life of ancient Egypt and its pharaohs, the tribal history of the Bedouins, and other customs and traditions of the many regions of Egypt.
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Abdel-Moneim Riad Mosque
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1 Tour and Activity

Once a small fishing village, Hurghada has grown into the most toured destination in Egypt. Though it sits beside the bright-blue waters that bring many visitors to the area, the Abdel Monaem Read Mosque stands tall on its own — offering visitors the chance to connect with the daily life and culture of the beach town.

The intricate design of the mosque’s classic Islamic architecture — combined with the scenic placement in the area between the main street and the ocean — makes this a unique mosque to visit. The minarets can be seen from long distances, and the call to prayer can be heard resonating from within its walls. Domes, arches and hallways are detailed with delicate carvings. Local citizens can be often seen heading to the mosque, with most visiting on Fridays for prayer.

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Mons Porphyrites
The short trip to Mons Porphyrites is a popular excursion from Hurghada. Egypt’s rare porphyry was highly valued by the ancient Romans, and these former Roman quarries were mined for their precious purple and white crystalline stone, used to decorate columns, sarcophagi and temples.
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