The Hurghada area is still undergoing massive development. Massive building works are in progress everywhere and miles of new roads were being constructed. The latter tend to be difficult and greatly inconvenient for pedestrians, twisted ankles were a common site.

Hurghada is hot in May-June. Individual hotels tend to have their own private beaches, with no vendors and there is no need to carry money as most things can be signed for - except sail boards and pedallos. Unfortunately these little beaches all tend to be be custom made resorts with rows of "standard" umbrellas that can be found anywhere in the world. There is little or no Egyptian culture at Hurghada, to experience real Egypt you must visit the Nile area and spend some time at Aswan or Luxor. There is litte to do at Hurghhada apart from water sports and sunbathe - if you are into these then this is a great place. Quad-bike trips into the desert are available, as are camel trips. For the latter it is strongly recommneded that they are of short duration otherwise previously unknown muscles will ache for days. The submaribne trip organised with "Sinbad" is a well worthwhile experience and is a relatively cheap half-day outing, it gives you an underwater experience and a view of the reef and associated life. Trips can be arranged at most hotels.

Shopping is limited to small local shops, of which there are about 8 different types selling shoes, clothes and a miscellany of souvenirs and Egyptian nic-nacs. The shopkepers invariable suffer from excessive verbosity (more spin than Tony Blair) and can be a total pain in the butt as they continually force themselves upon you to buy things you do not want - but this applies throughout Egypt. The best approach to avoid hassle is to totally ignore the vendors, do not look at them, do not speak to them nor acknowledge them in any way (advice from an Egyptain) - and it works. Beware of greatly over-inflated prices, never buy anything you like at first site in the first shop, inspect other shops and then go back the next day and bargain further - particularly true of Luxor. Beware of shaking hands with shop-keepers, they tend not to let go for 5-10 minutes. There are no supermarkets or large department stores but there are small general retailers selling food and drink and these offer very good value compared with the local hotels.

In worldwide terms the toilet facilities throughout Hurghada are of a very high standard, and the city tends to be quite clean. Apart from the predatory vendors, the Egyptians are known for being a happy, cheerful lot and are keen to ensure you enjoy yourself.