Welcome to Marsa Alam!
Marsa Alam, located on the Red Sea coast 790 km south of Cairo, is a land of contradictions. With hot deserts on one side, and the crystal clear waters of the sea on the other, Marsa Alam is a land of fertility and beauty. No longer the nondescript little fishing village that it once used to be, this remote and pristine little place is fast gaining a reputation as a wonderful tourist destination on the Red Sea Riviera. With its many charms and good value Marsa Alam hotels it is even starting to lure tourists away from the more reputed and established destinations such as Sharm el-Sheikh and Hurghada.
The palm tree and mangrove studded coastline extends for about a 100 kilometres and it is this unending coastline with its wealth of coral reefs and marine life that has transformed the fortunes of Marsa Alam once again.
Mind you, Marsa Alam was not always a nondescript village; a long time ago it played an important role in Egypt's economy. The area had rich mineral deposits and natural resources. Emerald was mined from Marsa Alam even as far back as the time of the Pharaohs and it is believed to have had the world's first emerald mine. For the Roman Empire, Marsa Alam was the main source of emeralds as well as the highly prized black granite used extensively as a building material and to beautify Roman cities. Gold, copper and lead were also mined at Marsa Alam in ancient times.
Situated near the Tropic of Cancer, Marsa Alam is the meeting point of the Red Sea and the Arabian Sea. The main diving locales such as Abu Dabab, Shaab Samadai or Dolphin House and Elphinstone Reef teem with myriad marine life that includes turtles, lobsters and dolphins. The sea just off the coast is alive with spinner dolphins thriving in the coral reef, hammerhead sharks, and dugongs that live in the poseidonia bay. Sightings are frequent among tourists who venture out to sea. The abundance of marine life also provides ample fishing opportunities and there are Marsa Alam resorts and clubs that arrange deep sea fishing trips for tourists.
There was a time when only die-hard scuba diving enthusiasts came to Marsa Alam and the Marsa Alam accommodation available was a very basic tent or mud hut. That has all changed now. The opening of the new international airport in 2001 and the many luxury Marsa Alam resorts that have come up bears testimony to Marsa Alam's growing importance. There are daily chartered flights to many destinations across Europe and the Middle East. Several new tourism projects have been planned for the area and some are already under construction like the impressive Port Ghalib marina and resort complex near the airport.
There is of course more to see and do in Marsa Alam than the sea and its treasures; many tourists find the remoteness of the place, the blazing unspoiled desert studded with many historical sites and the ever-present sunshine equally attractive. A Marsa Alam tour to the desert is a great adventure too and the historical sites like the Temple of Seti I built around 1300 BC, Mons Claudianus, which is a quarry settlement dating back to the Roman times, and Wadi Hammamat with its ancient rock inscriptions, add to the charm of the trip besides providing a peek into the rich history of the region.
The road connecting Marsa Alam and Edfu was built during the reign of Ptolemy II and is still used today. Another Marsa Alam attraction is the Wadi el-Gemal National Park on the outskirts of Marsa Alam. This protected area stretches right down to Gebel Elba. There are guided Marsa Alam tours to the park, which also extends into the desert covering a 60-km deep dry riverbed or wadi. Eco-lodges provide accommodation in this unique preserve making the tour more memorable.
We are locally based and know all there is to know about Marsa Alam. We can help you find the ideal place to stay on your Marsa Alam holiday, as well as helping you choose the right tour in Marsa Alam to suit your travel plans and budget. You can book your hotel in Marsa Alam and Marsa Alam tours quickly and with confidence through this Marsa Alam hotels site.
Welcome to Marsa Alam!
Meet Sherif Abd Elwahab and his team at WHL Egypt, your local connection in mellow Marsa Alam, Egypt. With an extensive knowledge of Marsa Alam and an experienced local staff working on the ground, we put great emphasis on preserving our beautiful country and providing premium trips with personalised service. Speak with us for a real experience in Marsa Alam![more]
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