Sharm el Sheikh Holidays

Sunbaked coast with sunken treasure

Peaking out into the Red Sea at the top of Egypt's Sinai Peninsula, Sharm El Sheik's blissful beaches are a haven for heat seekers and underwater explorers. Affectionately known as Sharm, this large resort is really a collection of smaller resorts, each with their own flavour but all sharing in the year-round warmth and rare rainfall that draw visitors from near and far. Choose a holiday to Sharm El Sheik for a vast stretch of sun-warmed coastline, incredible reefs and unique National Parks.

Sharm El Sheikh began life as a simple fishing settlement but today it's Egypt's premier beach resort. The long stretches of soft golden sands are home to a plethora of fabulous hotel complexes and schools of dive shops which bring snorkellers and divers out to explore the area's incredible underwater landscape. No less 250 different coral reefs and 1000 species of fish thrive in these waters. The resorts cater to an international crowd with global cuisine, lively bars and famous clubs but you can also find a slice of culture at local restaurants serving Egyptian specialities, authentic old markets, beautiful mosques and Coptic churches.

Three tips for a top trip

How do I explore?

Public transport comes in the form of blue-and-white microbuses but taxis are the usual way most tourists navigate between Sharm El Sheikh's resorts.

What should I eat?

You'll find international cuisine aplenty but local specialities such as lamb koftas, slow roasted meats and incredible tahini-based dips are the stars of the show.

Where's best at night?

Each resort offers something a little different but if you're after a big night, Naama Bay's big clubs are the place to be.

Best attractions to see in Sharm el Sheikh

The beaches

A true-blue beach destination, Sharm El Sheikh's stunning strands are mostly occupied by private hotels but you'll also find some public numbers in each resort.

Old Town Market

Head to the Old Souk near Hadaba and wander through its puzzle of stalls before trying your hand at haggling for an authentic Egyptian experience.

Underwater kingdoms

Discover incredible local reefs and offshore dive sites such as the Ras Mohammed National Park, the Tiran Straits and the Nabq Protected Area.

Your Sharm el Sheikh questions, answered

With the the warmest winter night temperatures in Egypt, Sharm El Sheikh is a year-round destination attracting visitors through all seasons.
Master the art of bargaining and you'll return with a bag full of oil-based perfumes, leather goods, gold jewellery and handsome rugs.
The summer holidays are a very popular time to travel so, if you visit outside of the peak months of June to August, you may be able to find some great bargains. January, February, and March are often the cheapest months to travel. Visiting Sharm El Sheikh at this time can be a great experience as there’s usually plenty of winter sun, with temperatures hovering around 20°C. Sightseers sometimes prefer to travel in the offseason because it’s much more comfortable to stroll around.
Sharm El Sheikh sits on the edge of the Sinai Desert which offers a world of unique experiences from dune quad biking to Bedouin camps.
Except for El Fanar, most of the beaches in Sharm El Sheikh are private and owned by the local seafront hotels. You can usually visit these even if you’re not staying at a particular hotel by buying a day pass. As they’re private, they’re excellently maintained. Some of the beaches are even raked overnight to remove small stones and create a more even, softer sand for the next day. Depending on the hotel, some beaches may also have activities and watersports.
It takes around eight hours to fly from the UK to Sharm El Sheikh. And the good news is that the Sharm El Sheikh International Airport is right in the heart of the region. This means there’s no need for a lengthy transfer from Cairo. The airport is in the middle of the main coastal stretch between Hadaba in the south and Nabq in the north. From the airport, it takes around 15 minutes to drive to Nabq, and around 30 minutes to reach Hadaba and the Sharm old town.
There’s a huge selection of food available in Sharm El Sheikh. You can find traditional Egyptian and Mediterranean cuisines here if you want to sample local dishes. But Sharm El Sheikh is a destination that caters to tourists from all over the world. So, alongside the local flavours, you’ll also find all sorts of international chain restaurants and fast food joints, especially in Naama Bay. If you’re travelling with children who are picky eaters, you won’t have to worry about finding something they like.
Sharm El Sheikh is very family-friendly. Unlike some other places in Egypt, which are primarily historic or cultural destinations, Sharm El Sheikh is much more modern, with more attractions that appeal to little ones. There are theme parks and zoos in the area, and clean, well-maintained beaches to play on. The hotels here are also well set up for families, with on-site restaurants, entertainments and activities.
It depends on where you go. Ultimately, Sharm El Sheikh isn’t known for its nightlife but there’s plenty of it around if you know where to look. The purpose-built beach resorts like Naama Bay and Nabq Bay have a good nightlife that’s fun but not too over-the-top. Much of the nightlife is bar-based. Think restaurants that transform from family-friendly lunch spots to cool cocktail bars come sundown.