If Alexandria is the pearl of the Mediterranean Sea, Hurghada is surly the pearl of the Red Sea. With shores stretching for over than 40 kilometers over the Red Sea, Hurghada with its many beaches, resorts, entertainment places, diving centers, hotels, and cafes, has become the most favorite destination for many travelers who visit Egypt these days.
Many divers and snorkelers from Europe, and different other regions in the world, prefer to enjoy their vacation in Egypt and in Hurghada in particular. With the many resorts from all classes that opened recently in the city of Hurghada, travelers from all social classes spend their vacation in the pearl of the Red Sea.
Geographical Location of Hurghada
Hurghada is located in a wonderful spot over the Red Sea in Southern Egypt. The city of Ras Ghareb is located about 120 kilometers to the North of Hurghada, the city of Safaga is located about 100 kilometers to the South, the Red Sea with its wonderful undersea life, different types of fish, and amazing coral reefs to the East, and the Eastern Desert of Egypt to the West.
Hurghada is located 530 kilometers to the South East of Cairo, the Egyptian capital, 226 kilometers to the North of Marsa Allam, 300 kilometers to the East North of Luxor, and 513 kilometers to the North East of Aswan. This is why many travelers spending their tours in Egypt would visit Luxor, Aswan, and Hurghada all in the same trip.
The Names of Hurghada
The name Hurghada is actually derived from the Arabic name of the city; El Ghradaqa, which is in turn derived from the Ghardaq tree that is spread all over this section of shores of the Red Sea.
Fishermen coming from the Arabian peninsula used to fish around the location of Hurghada today and they used to meet near the trees of Ghardaq and this was where the name of the city came from.
TheHistory and establishment of Hurghada
In comparison to other cities like Luxor, Cairo, and Alexandria, Hurghada has a short history. The city has no temples or historical sites. However, the place where the city is located was mentioned in the ancient Egyptian history as fishermen used to meet near its current location, the same they used to do in its contemporary history in the beginning of the 20th century.
The history of the city really began in 1913 when Petrol was discovered near the city in 1913 and the production and the exportation of petrol started in the city of Hurghada in 1921.
However, with the decrease in the size of the production of Petrol after more than 41 million barrel was produced, many of the workers in the production of petrol were relocated to other locations like Ras Ghareb and Sinai.
Tourism was individually carried out in Hurghada at this period. Afterwards, King Farouk, the last king of Egypt established himself a resthouse on the shores of Hurghada. In 1963, Hilton Hurghada was officially opened as the largest hotel and resort in the city at the time.
Afterwards, the Egyptian government issued a decree to consider the region of the Red Sea as a seprate governorate with Hurghada being the capital of it. The government has also decided to benefit from the marvelous location of Hurghada in the tourism field.
However, the real flourishing period of the city of Hurghada started in the 1980s with the establishment of many hotels and resorts all over the city. With each year passing by new hotels, diving centers, beaches, restaurants, shops, night clubs, and cafes were opened all over the city
The Climate and the Surface area of Hurghada
Hurghada is considered to be the forth largest city in Egypt with a surface area of more than 50 square kilometers with 23 kilometers situated on the shores of the Red Sea and only 4 kilometers away from the beaches.
The old city of Hurghada stretches between two plateaus, from the East to the West. This is why the city is located in a plain thatvaries in its wideness between 8 to 35 kilometers.
The best season to visit Hurghada is in the winter or spring time as the weather is pleasant. While in the summer, the temperature increases sometimes to reach more than 40 degrees. Therefore, summer is not really a good time to spend a vacation in Hurghada, although the hotels have wonderful offers and prices at the time of the year.
Today there are numerous resorts all over the city of Hurghada and even outside the city to the North in the direction of Safaga and to the South in the direction of Ras Ghareb.
Among the most interesting activities to do in Hurghada is to go diving or snorkeling in one of the many diving centers spread all over the city or just chill out on the beach enjoy swimming and playing in the crystal waters of the Red Sea.
Away from the sea activities, tourists spending their vacations in Egypt can go for a dolphin show in Hurghada. The show is very interesting especially for the children to watch wonderful sea creatures in a magnificent performance. Another excursion would be to go for a submarine ride to watch the rich underwater environment full of colorful fishes and marvelous coral reefs.
Hurghada has many different sections like the old city with its many shops, restaurants, and cafes. There is also the new touristic city of El Gouna that was established only about 15 years ago with many new resorts and hotels.
Many travelers visiting Egypt would love to spend two or three days enjoying their time in Hurghada which is delightful for kids and grownups all the same.