Sinai map

St. Catherine Monastery

  St Catherine Monastery  Inside the monastery  The burning bush

The town of St Catherine, at 1550 metres high, is Egypt's highest town. Just a few kilometres from the town is the famous Monastery of St Catherine, dating back to the 4th century AD and at the base of mountains of which one is believed to be the actual mountain where Moses received the ten commandments from God - Moses Mountain. The Monastery is a must see - containing various small chapels, a mosque, the second most important collection of Christian manuscripts in the world, the chamber of skulls and, so it is believed, the site of the original burning bush. St Catherine is only 115 km from Nuweiba and as the road is good the journey will take under 90 minutes. There is a small entrance fee to St Catherine national park but note that the monastery is only open from 9 a.m. to mid-day daily except Fridays, Sundays and Public Holidays.

Click here for the 2009 Holidays of the Monastery

 

The White Canyon & Ein Hudra Oasis

Going through the White Canyon  Emerging from the White Canyon towards Ein Hudra Oasis Leaving Ein Hudra

Less than 40 km to the south east of Nuweiba is the entrance to the White Canyon, so named due to the abundance of white sand and rocks. Trudge across the soft sand until you get to the canyon into which you decend and which opens up gradually until you reach the Ein Hudra Oasis. Take lunch there under the shade and then trek out across the desert in the other direction, rising up a cliff face and then across more desert until the Rock of Inscriptions where one can examine ancient Byzantine writing on the rocks. Some guides do this trek the other way round but I feel that that is such an anti-climax. Access is best by jeep.

 

The Coloured Canyon

Looking down at the Coloured Canyon starting point  In the Coloured Canyon  The famous boulder in the canyon

Off the Wadi Watir, just 30 km from Nuweiba, is the Coloured Canyon. A shorter hike than going through the White Canyon but still also very enjoyable as one sees the various pinks, orange, brown and red colours of the mountains and rocks. Before starting the decent climb the small hill to the east of the canyon entrance - great views from the top ! Accessible only by jeep.

 

Salah el Deen Castle on Pharaohs Island & The Fjord

Pharaohs Island  Pharaohs Island The Fjord

65 km north of Nuweiba is Pharaohs Island and on which lie the ruins of Salah el Deen Castle. This old castle dates back around 800 years and makes a delightful little excursion. See a bt of history, excercise by clambering around the island and marvel in the fantastic views ! A small boat takes you from the Salah el Deen Hotel jetty - there is a small fee for the boat and another fee for getting on to the island ! On the way back to Nuweiba stop and relax at the Fjord... a natural bay with spectacular views.  

 

Bier Soraya & Ras Mamleh

Ras Mamleh  Bier Soraya

Just over 20 km south of Nuweiba Port, along the very rough coastal track, is Ras Mamleh - one of the best diving and snorkelling spots in the whole of the Sinai. Completely isolated and ideal as a day trip or an overnight trip. Can be combined with the small bedouin village of Bier Soraya, located in the hils and famous for its natural drinking water.