Just returned home from the Sunrise Holidays Resort in Hurghada (family of four, children aged 11 & 13) after an extended holiday thanks to the infamous volcanic dust cloud!
This was our first Egyptian holiday and I can almost certainly say it WON’T be our last, we had a brilliant time. The hotel is clean and spacious, all the staff (& egyptians in general) very friendly & welcoming, weather 30-35 degrees every day, trips great and food superb.
However, it’s the constant energy and fun-loving attitudes of the Animation Team that stands out, Eddie, Maya, Sheriff, Momo & Julia(?) who give the guests (old and young alike) reasons to smile all day long!
The pool is a little small and I can imagine it can get a bit busy at peak times but the lagoon serves as a great place to swim in a safe environment and see fish, both lagoon and pool have lifeguards in attendance all day long. Keep an eye out for Lion fish in the evenings though a couple floated in on two consecutive days and it’s probably best to avoid them if pos!
Hurghada itself is fine, we felt perfectly safe walking the streets, yes there’s haggling to be done but also many fixed price shops dotted about. A huge one called called ‘Cleopatra's’ about a 15 minute walk from the hotel (if you turn right out of the lobby) and is on the opposite side of the road where the roundabout/one-way system is.
We bit the bullet and paid to fly to Cairo on the Thomas Cook excursion. Not the cheapest trip on offer but considering we saw the hugely impressive citadel & mosque (& panoramic view of an amazing city) - the famous Cairo museum (which included King Tut’s golden mask) - a papyrus factory - a perfume factory - lunch overlooking the Nile at The Hard Rock Cafe - oh, and a couple of pyramids and something called the Sphinx as well, it’s great value for money!
If you want a cab then agree a price first, but a one way trip to anywhere in Hurghada probably won’t cost more that about 20 Egyptian pounds. There’s a guy called ‘Friday’ who works as a gardener in the resort in the mornings but hangs around outside in his cab in the afternoons and is well worth seeking out if you need taking anywhere.
Haggling, don’t engage in this (or show interest in anything) if you’re not sure you want to buy something. You can often pay only a quarter of the price that’s first asked but once you get into a conversation and start trying things on, it’s very hard to walk away empty handed! That said, I found the haggling far less intense & pressured than in The Dominican Republic, Turkey or Tunisia.
Take plenty on sunscreen, snorkeling stuff and wet shoes or flippers. We also found that Egyptians are happy to take any currency you have! Euros, US Dollars or Sterling are fine if you prefer this to the Egyptian currency. However if you do want Egyptian pounds I’d personally change money in the hotel as there was a better exchange rate there than in the UK.
The trips that the people around the hotel do are fine and often slightly cheaper that the Thomas Cook ones. We booked the submarine trip from the guy based at the resort and had no problems at all. A great trip for those who want to see fish without getting wet! Not claustrophobic either.
The only thing that marred the holiday were a significant majority of the Russian guests. The Japanese, German, Scandinavian, Polish, French guests were great but the Russians, well, no manners, no ‘pleases’, no ‘thank you’s’, drinking from first thing in the morning to last thing at night, they’re muscle in and spoil on children’s games and even assault other guests - AND worst of all their fashion sense (and hairstyles) are ridiculous to say the least! (But don’t let this put you off!)
Summing up - fantastic holiday, would recommend 100% . . . just make sure you beat the Russians to the sun beds (and save a couple for our German friends when doing so!).
Oh - thanks and well done to Michael Hales the TC rep, who looked after us all AND had the ash could and cancelled flights to contend with on his first week in the job!
- Official Description (provided by the hotel):
- Welcome to SUNRISE Holidays Resort. This resort is located only 500 meters from downtown. It gives you the relaxing retreat with our private island and will guarantee you an unforgettable atmosphere and the active night life of Hurghada's downtown. The resort is located at the Corniche Road in the center of Hurghada. The distance to the Hurghada international airport is approx. 5 km. ... more less
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- Also Known As:
- Sunrise Holidays Hotel Hurghada
- Sunrise Holidays Hurghada