At the very heart of the world, the Red Sea promises intriguing cruising grounds. It has the inviting waters, sandy beaches and diving appeal of the Caribbean, along with the cultural and historical allure of the Mediterranean with the added bonus of some of the world’s most luxurious resorts.
With 360 days of sunshine a year, endless blue skies, glittering waters that explode with a kaleidoscope of multi-coloured fish swirling in the current, back-dropped by bare mountains of the Sinai and the barren Eastern Desert, these lands will captivate your imagination and create a vacation you will never forget.
Step ashore in Jordan where you can follow in the footsteps of Moses on Mount Nebo as you gaze towards Bethlehem and Jerusalem; visit Madaba, city of mosaics before speeding over the haunting landscapes of Wadi Rum, where Lawrence of Arabia based his headquarters during the First World War. Discover the world-famous Petra — the lost city carved into rock by the Nabataeans more than 2,000 years ago. It is now a Unesco World Heritage site and one of the New Seven Wonders of the World. From here drift into the Gulf of Aqaba, stopping to explore the coastal town of Nuweiba, thought to be the site where the ancient Israelites crossed the Red Sea in biblical times and now offers some of the most beautiful beaches in the Red Sea.
Aside from its wealth of ancient historical sites, Egypt boasts more than 500 miles of spectacular reef-lined coastline running around the Sinai Peninsula and down to the border with Sudan. In some areas the sea bed is well over a mile deep and constitutes one of the richest ecosystems on earth, home to more than 1,000 species of marine life including many that are endemic to the region, all visible from ashore due to the crystal clear clarity of the waters.
- Snorkel amongst the bounty of fish off the beaches of Sharm el-Sheikh.
- The small town of Dahab, formerly a Bedouin fishing village, is one of the world’s most respected diving areas — particularly thanks to its canyons and Blue Hole, where you can spot a wealth of unusual fish.
- If you fancy a trip further south, many miles offshore are the Brother Islands (considered to be one of the top three shark-diving sites in the world).
- Around nine kilometres (six miles) from the shore in the southern Red Sea you’ll discover Elphinstone: a 300 metre (1,000-foot) Mecca for divers.
- The ancient Egyptian pyramids in Giza and the outskirts of Cairo.