Hurghada is a beach resort town stretching some 40km along Egypt’s Red Sea coast. It’s renowned for scuba diving, and has numerous dive shops and schools in its modern Sekalla district. There are many restaurants, bars and nightclubs, while the old town, El Dahar, is home to traditional Egyptian coffee shops and souks. Hurghada’s long stretch of sandy beach is lined with resort hotels.Windsurfing and sailing are popular, as are trips in glass-bottomed boats and submarines. Renowned local diving sites include Giftun Island, a national park with coral reefs, turtles and stingrays. Umm Qamar has a steep wall, caves and moray eels, while Gota Abu Ramada is nicknamed “the aquarium” for its colorful fish. There are shipwrecks to explore at Abu Nuhas reef. Offshore sites can be reached by day trip and liveaboard boats from the Sekalla marina.

When to visit

Hurghada has a subtropical desert climate. Apr–Oct, the peak travel period, is very hot and dry. Nov–Mar, with fewer visitors, is warm and dry. Sea temperatures are warm year-round, peaking Jun–Oct and dipping slightly Dec–Apr. Islamic religious celebrations include Eid al-Fitr (dates vary), with feasting to mark the end of Ramadan, the holy month of fasting.