About Marsa Matrouh
Although not many tourists who spend their vacation in Egypt visit the wonderful coastal city of Marsa Matrouh, the city and the area around it are featured for having the most magnificent beaches of Egypt.
Although there are no snorkeling or diving chances for the travelers touring Egypt like these in Hurghada or Sharm El Sheikh, the marvelous sandy beaches and the crystal clear water of the seas of Marsa Matrouh are truly awesome.
The city of Marsa Matrouh is one of the most favorite summer resorts for Egyptians because of its wonderful beaches, many hotels from different levels, and relatively the cheaper prices of the city.
Geographical Location of Marsa Matrouh
Marsa Matrouh is one of the largest governorates of Egypt according to its surface area that exceeds 16,0000 square kilometers. Situated in the West section of the North Coast of Egypt overlooking the shores of the Mediterranean Sea with the length of more than 450 kilometers. The population of the governorate is more three million people.
Marsa Matrouh is located about 570 kilometers to the North West of Cairo, 300 kilometers to the East of Alexandria, about 1100 kilometers to the North West of Hurghada, around 1000 kilometers to the North West of Sharm El Sheikh, 1200 kilometers to the North of Luxor, 1400 kilometers to the North of Aswan, about 170 kilometers to the West of the city of El Alamien, and around 270 kilometers to the North of the Siwa Oasis.
Although there are many towns and villages that are considered to be part of the governorate of Marsa Matrouh, the largest and most important hub of the governorate is the city that holds the same name, Marsa Matrouh.
Travelers who visit Egypt can reach Marsa Matrouh using a private car from Alexandria. Moreover, there are many public buses that reach Marsa Matrouh from Cairo and Alexandria. In the summer, there is also the sleeper train from Cairo that takes the distance in around 7 hours. There is the Marsa Matrouh airport as well with a number of flights everyday coming from around Egypt.
The History and establishment of Marsa Matrouh
Since Pharaonic times, the Western Desert of Egypt with the North Coast has attracted the attention of many kings and Pharaohs of Egypt.
When Alexander the Great went on his famous journey to the Temple of Oracle of Amun in the Siwa Oasis, he stopped at Marsa Matrouh and ordered his men to establish a city in that special location.
This city was called Paratonuim in the Ptolemaic period and then later on was called Amunia in reference to the god Amun. When the Arabs entered Egypt in the 7th century AD, they named it Marsa Matrouh.
During the Greco-Roman period, the region of the North Coast of Egypt was considered to hoisting some of the largest farms in Egypt. The Roman established many water dams and trenches to be used in irrigation. Marsa Matrouh has also become an important port in the Mediterranean Sea importing and exporting goods from Rome and many other regions in the Old World.
Maybe, it is because of the marvelous ambience and the wonderful beaches of the city of Marsa Matrouh, the name of the city was always associated with romantic love stories. The first was that of Cleopatra and Antonio as the famous queen built herself a large palace in Matrouh.
Afterwards, Marsa Matrouh was famous for El Gharam Beach or the beach of love as this was where Layla Murad, a famous former singer, sang a quite popular song among Egyptians on the rock of love in Marsa Matrouh. This beach still holds the same name until today.
About Marsa Matrouh Today
Today Marsa Matrouh welcomes thousands of vacationers during the summer time coming from all over Egypt to spend their vacation in the city featured for having the only thematic beaches in Egypt. Moreover, a few tourists spending their vacation in Egypt would spend a couple of nights in Marsa Matrouh or stop for one night on their journey to Siwa.
Marsa Matrouh is in fact featured for hosting more than 22 different beaches and the governorate hosts the largest coast overlooking the Mediterranean Sea in Egypt. The most famous beaches in Marsa Matrouh are Ageeba, El Gharam, Rommel, Cleopatra, and El Obayed. The sea in Marsa Matrouh has the most magnificent colors, with no high waves, and some wonderfully looking rocks and stones.
The Cleopatra Beach
The Cleopatra Beach is situated around 5 kilometers to the West of the center of the city of Marsa Matrouh. This was where the love story between Cleopatra and Antonio took place according to some historical records.
The most remarkable feature in the Cleopatra beach is the Hamam, or the bath. It consists of a huge rock inside the water that can be reached walking. There are some Pharaonic inscriptions at the entrance of the bath. There are some openings in the rock that allows the water of the sea to enter and move around the rock from inside. There are also some halls at the ceiling of the rock to allow the sun to enter inside the bath and makes the water warmer.
The Ageeba Beach
Considered to be the most famous and notable beaches in Marsa Matrouh and a landmark of the city as well, Ageeba beach is featured for the horseshoe shaped rocks that surround the beach from the three directions and the marvelous color of the sea at that place. Ageeba in Arabic is called the wonderful place that is precisely true!
The Rommel Beach
This beach is named after the famous German army leader, Rommel who was the leader of the German forces during World War II. This is because he used to reside in a cave located just next to the beach featured with its shallow and calm water that is suitable for children and old aged people as well.
This cave of Rommel is now transformed into a museum that hosts the belongings of Rommel including weapons, outfits, devices, tools, and many other items.
Marsa Matrouh also hosts many other beaches like El Amirat Beach, or the beach of the princesses that used to host the princesses of the royal family of Egypt. There is still a royal palace near the beach today. Hosni Mubarak, the former Egyptian president used to stay at that beach when he visits Marsa Matrouh.
There is also the Obayed beach that is famous for its high and strong waves. This was where the Shah of Iran used to stay when he visits the city of Marsa Matrouh. El Obayed used to be a favorite place for the camps of the Italian and British tourists who visit Egypt.