Nestled along the enchanting coastlines of the Mediterranean Sea and the Red Sea, Egypt offers a wealth of idyllic destinations for beach lovers and sunseekers. Whether you're longing for a tranquil retreat, exhilarating water sports, or simply craving some relaxation under the warm golden rays, the beaches in Egypt promise to fulfil every beachgoer's dreams. Join us as we unveil the most breathtaking beaches this captivating country has to offer.
Egypt is home to some of the most stunning beaches in Africa. From golden arcs of sand that curl along the North Coast to the warm, turquoise waters that lap upon the shore at South Sinai, Egypt’s beaches are an absolute must-visit for travellers. These are the best beaches in Egypt.
RoughGuides Tip: make sure to check these great tours in Egypt
Sediments washed down from the mountains have created a broad sandy plain at Dahab, an Israeli-built town on a labrador-yellow sandy cove. Forget its reputation as the 'Ibiza of Egypt', this is a world-renowned wind- and kite-surfing with reliable winds providing superb flat-water conditions inside of Dahab’s sand spit. Scuba diving is also excellent thanks to the coral reefs just offshore, and there are several dive schools in town.
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If you long for a day on the beach, keep going to Sidi Abdel Rahman, about 25km (15 miles) past El Alamein. Taking in a couple of sweeping curls, this soft, demerara-coloured beach is the best west of Alexandria. Now backed by the high-class hotels and entertainment complex called Marassi Resort, it's also the ideal stop for travellers wanting to break up the journey inland to the Siwa Oasis.
North of Ras Muhammad, on a beautiful natural harbour, is the town of Sharm El Sheikh, where a series of resorts merge into one another including Ras Muhammad, Coral Bay, Shark’s Bay (good for families) and Ras Nasrani. However, the pick of the beach is Na’ama Bay, a popular arc of flour-soft sand with Hollywood-blue waters.
Some of the region's best diving and snorkelling are nearby including The Tower, Ras Umm Sid, Ras Nasrani and Nabq. Shipwrecks dot the shoreline, testifying to the difficulty of navigation between the reefs.
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The resort of El Gouna, 21km (13 miles) north of Hurghada, is Egypt’s most luxurious purpose-built holiday village to date. It all centres on the biscuit-brown, sun-bed-sprinkled sands here, each lapped by slow-moving translucent waves. Expect everything from shade umbrellas and fresh towel services here as it's also home to a number of exclusive five-star resorts.
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Nuweiba is 75km (45 miles) further north of Dahab and is a slightly superior resort (although cheap accommodation in beachside reed huts and relaxed alfresco cafés can be also found in Tarabin to the north).
With motorway-wide sand-and-shingle bays and dazzling reefs busy with darting fish, Nuweiba is popular, particularly with Jordanian tourists who arrive via ferry from Aqaba. But bookmarked by the Sinai mountains and with the Gulf of Aqaba rolled out like a bright-blue carpet, who can blame them?
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Until very recently, Marsa Alam was a small, fishing town that kept itself to itself. But then developers realised that it Abu Dabbab Beach was actually a diver’s paradise. Its climate and geographical position made it ideal for the formation of coral, which grows on reefs called shaab or erg.
Mounds of coral build up like islands, the tips of which are barely skimmed by the waves. Now overtaken by tourism, Marsa Alam is abuzz with hotels, villas, restaurants, shops and dive shops, turning it into a southerly version of El Gouna.
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One of Egypt’s top wind- and kite-surfing destinations, the wide sandy Moon Beach in Ras Sedr is a favourite with Cairenes who have holiday homes here. Unlike the Gulf of Aqaba on Sinai’s east coast, the Gulf of Suez is shallow and sandy-bottomed with abundant marine life. There are also plenty of water sports on offer.
Settled in ancient times because of its good water supply and excellent harbour, Al-Tur is the capital and largest town in South Sinai. It used to be the chief quarantine station for pilgrims returning to Egypt from Mecca. Despite scattered palm groves and a beautiful beach, few make it to modern Al-Tur, which is a shame as its wide, sandy expanse offers some amazing kitesurfing with very few tourists.
The clue is in the name of this cheerful stretch of desert-like sand near Aswan. Accessible either by boat (or camel if you're coming from Gharb Seheyl), it's one of the best and safest places to go swimming along the Nile. Essentially a sandbar, people will tend to spend a couple of hours cooling off here before moving on.
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Stare long enough at the rocks jutting out of the sea at this gorgeous stretch of coastline, some 14km northwest of Marsa Matruh, and you'll start to imagine that the karst on the right is actually the final Queen of the Ptolemaic Kingdom of Egypt. The natural pool here is supposedly where Mark Antony and Cleopatra once bathed together but you should be here for the electric blue of the sea.
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