Family holidays to sunny beaches will never go out of fashion, and Egypt’s Red Sea resorts offer a fantastic family beach break, with plenty of sights and activities to tire the kids out too. Egypt’s beach resorts are more child-friendly than her cities, with Sharm El Sheikh being a great destination for activities, and the Cleo waterpark in particular is great for kids.
When planning your trip to Egypt, the time of year should always be a consideration, year-round warm weather makes it a great off-season holiday, visiting between June and September can be far from ideal for younger children. Naturally, the majority of resorts are equipped with air conditioning as temperatures climb past the comfortable 20s and hit highs of almost 40° C, and there isn’t a hotel out there without a pool (most having a few).
If you’re travelling with a few kids, your best bet might be to scale back any grand itinerary ideas, as getting to and from historic sites across the desert isn’t the most child-friendly of adventures. Allow some time for more hands-on adventures in between, kids will love the chance to hop onto a camel or donkey, or if you’re in the southern resorts of Hurghada or Marsa Alam, why not visit historic Luxor and experience it from on high by taking an early morning balloon ride.
There are even kids’ attractions which offer up the country’s historical heritage in an educational way. North of Hurghada is the “small but interesting” Marine museum, where you can identify all of the things that you’ve seen on your boat trip! There’s even a walk-through underwater tunnel to get even closer to the real life versions of the specimens. Stretching the definition of educational, the designers of the Cleo Park Waterpark have replicated many of the country’s most famous landmarks– and then added slides.
Now we’re talking! Though the waterparks are a great place to set the kids loose without having to keep too close an eye on them, be sure to take a dip in the big blue Red Sea too. Snorkelling or diving in Egypt opens up an unexpected world, brightly coloured wildlife teems under the water, both you and the kids will be amazed to discover it.
Not only are holidays to the Red Sea resorts a fabulous chance to relax, shop and explore Egypt’s past and present, the sea is abundant with the sort of life many people can only dream of seeing – and it’s all in one place. If you don’t feel like the idea of getting wet, or the kids are just that bit too young, there are many companies which offer the chance to see the marine life up close.
Hop aboard a glass-bottomed boat and make your way to one of the areas many reefs. Ras Mohammed in Sharm El Sheikh is a great place to see the wide variety of wildlife that makes its home in the Red Sea, turtles, dolphins and even the rarely sighted Dugong or Seacow have been spotted in this conservation area.
A family-friendly holiday
Egyptians are known to have strong family values, family ties being immensely important, children are often at the heart of a family’s activities. Egypt’s cities tend to be too noisy and overcrowded to make an extended stay with the kids feasible, so why not take a day trip from Sharm El Sheikh, or one of the other Red Sea resorts?
You’ll have enough time to see the Pyramids, and the museums in Cairo without confining the kids to a hotel for the duration of your stay. A holiday to Luxor or the Red Sea resorts in the south, offer a slightly more ancient-Egyptian experience, with Abu Simbel a few hours away and the temple of Karnak within easy reach of most of these resorts for some mind-expanding culture.
The Ghibli Go-Karting track in Sharm El Sheikh and Soho Park amusement park, for both little kids and great big ones offers some great activities. Over at the race track you can pit the kids against each other, or even compete with them yourselves on the Egyptian themed race track. Soho Park is the largest leisure centre in the Red Sea, and includes everything from a nightclub to a cinema and an ice rink! You can also drop the kids off at the creche, there they’ll be supervised whilst you have the opportunity for some bonding with the older ones, or just some ‘you and me’ time with your other half.