Hurghada (/hərˈɡædə, -ˈɡɑː-/; Arabic: الغردقةal-Ġurdaqa Egyptian Arabic pronunciation: [el ɣæɾˈdæʔæ]) is a city in the Red Sea Governorate of Egypt. It is one of the country's main tourist centres located on the Red Sea coast.


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Hurghada is located in Egypt
Location in Egypt
Coordinates: 27°15′28″N 33°48′42″E / 27.25778°N 33.81167°E / 27.25778; 33.81167Coordinates: 27°15′28″N 33°48′42″E / 27.25778°N 33.81167°E / 27.25778; 33.81167
Country Egypt
GovernorateRed Sea
14 m (46 ft)
 • Total261,714
Time zoneUTC+2 (EET)
Area code(s)(+20) 65


A Hurghada beach in 2013

Hurghada was founded in the early 20th century. For many decades it was a small fishing village, but it has grown into a major Red Sea resort as a result of Egyptian and foreign investment that began in the 1980s. Holiday resorts and hotels provide facilities for windsurfing, kitesurfing, yachting, scuba diving and snorkeling. The city is known for its watersports, nightlife and warm weather. Daytime temperatures are around 30 °C (86 °F) most of the year, and during July and August temperatures can reach over 40 °C (104 °F). Hurghada is a popular holiday destination for Europeans, especially during the winter, and some spend Christmas and New Year there. Tourist numbers from Russia dropped significantly after the Metrojet Flight 9268 plane crash in November 2015.

Hurghada extends for about 36 kilometres (22 mi) along the coast, but does not reach far into the surrounding desert. The resort is a destination for Egyptian tourists from Cairo, the Delta and Upper Egypt, as well as package holiday tourists from Europe. Hurghada has a population of 248,000 and is divided into:

  • El Ahia and El Helal – the northern part
  • El Dahar (Downtown) – the old town
  • Sakala – the city center
  • El Kawsar – the modern part
  • El Mamsha (Village Road) – a pedestrianised street with a length of over 4 km

Many of Hurghada's newer hotels, restaurants, and shops are located along El Mamsha. Most of the newest and largest hotel resorts are located in the area between Mamsha and Sahl Hasheesh on El Mamsha. Beyond Sahl Hasheesh there are the hotels of Makadi Bay. Dahar is the oldest part of the town where the town's traditional bazaar, the post office and the long-distance bus stations (Go Bus and Upper Egypt Bus) are situated. The busiest area is the "city center" Sakala on Sheraton Road where there are hotels, shops and restaurants.[1]

The city is served by the Hurghada International Airport with scheduled passenger traffic connecting to Cairo and directly to several cities in Europe. A new terminal was opened in 2015 to accommodate increasing traffic.


The village, which later evolved into what is now the city of Hurghada, was settled in 1905. It acquired its name from a plant which has grown naturally since ancient times. By then it was only a fishing village. Oil was discovered in the area in 1913, but actual production and export only began in 1921 under British oil magnates. During the reign of King Farouk a recreational center was built in the city, but after President Nasser's nationalization of Egypt's industries it was turned over to the armed forces.

During the War of Attrition between Israel and Egypt, Shadwan island east of the city in the Red Sea, was fortified and held by Egyptian troops and used as a radar post. On 22 January 1970, it was the site of Operation Rhodes, a heliborne assault by Israeli troops which occupied the island for 36 hours.

During the October War of 1973, Hurghada harbor was target for four Israeli operations [he]. Israeli forces also[when?]occupied Shadwan Island with over 32 casualties to the Egyptian army, and only 7 to the Israeli army .[citation needed]

On September 27, 1994 drive-by shooters killed two Egyptians and a German tourist; another German man was wounded in the attack and died of his injuries after returning to Germany.[2] The 2016 Hurghada attack was caused by two terrorists inspired by IS. Three tourists were wounded.[3] On 14 July 2017, in the 2017 Hurghada attack a man proclaiming, that he wanted to kill only non-Egyptians, attacked and stabbed five German, one Czech and one Armenian tourists, all women, killing two German women. The Czech tourist later died on July 27 in the hospital. The attack occurred at two separate resort hotels.[4][5]


A fake Lidl store in Hurghada

Although a town in its own right, Hurghada's current major industry is foreign and domestic tourism, owing to its dramatic landscape, year-round dry and temperate[dubious ] climate and long stretches of natural beaches. Its waters are clear and calm for most of the year and have become popular for various water-sports, particularly recreational scuba diving and snorkelling.

Dive sites around Abu Ramada Island, Fanadir, Giftun Kebir, and Giftun Soraya are popular. Tourists also visit shipwrecks such as the El Mina or the Rosalie Moller. The beach at Hurghada is not secluded; out to Sigala the beach is then followed by coastal holiday villages and then desert.[6][7][8][9]

In a 2016 attack and again in a 2017 attack foreign tourists at Hurghada's beach resorts were targeted by terrorist attacks.[4]


Russian residents

Hurghada has 4 schools for Russian children, which are: Galaxy (Созвездие), Our Traditions (Наши Традиции), Dina (Дина) and The World of Knowledge (Мир знаний) (the Russian School Hurghada); as well as the newsletter MK in Egypt. Much of the signage in the city, as of 2015, is in Russian. In June 2015 MK in Egypt publisher Yulia Shevel stated that there were about 20,000 Russians in Hurghada, giving it Egypt's largest Russian population, though only about 3,000 were officially documented.[10] Russian women staying in Hurghada often marry Egyptian men through an 'urfi (non-shariah) process.[11]

In 2017 the Russian Consulate was open in Hurghada.[12]


Hurghada has a subtropical-desert climate (Köppen climate classification: BWh), with mild-warm winters and hot to very hot summers. Temperatures in the period December–January–February are warm, but in the evenings temperature may drop from an average 20 Celsius degrees to 10. November, March and April are comfortably warm. May and October are hot and the period from June to September is very hot. The average annual temperature of the sea is 24 °C (75 °F), ranging from 21 °C (70 °F) in February and March to 28 °C (82 °F) in August.

The highest temperature recorded occurred on June 12, 2013 and was 46 °C (115 °F), while the lowest record temperature was recorded on February 2, 1993 and was 0 °C (32 °F).[13]

Climate data for Hurghada
Month Jan Feb Mar Apr May Jun Jul Aug Sep Oct Nov Dec Year
Record high °C (°F) 28.0
Average high °C (°F) 21.5
Daily mean °C (°F) 15.7
Average low °C (°F) 11.0
Record low °C (°F) 5.6
Average precipitation mm (inches) 0.4
Average rainy days (≥ 0.01 mm) 0.3 0.2 0.3 0.3 0.2 0.0 0.0 0.0 0.0 0.2 0.2 0.3 2
Average relative humidity (%) 48 46 46 43 42 41 45 46 48 53 51 51 46.7
Mean monthly sunshine hours 265.7 277.6 274.3 285.6 317.4 348.0 352.3 322.4 301.6 275.2 263.9 246.7 3,530.7
Source 1: World Meteorological Organization (1971-2000)[14]
Source 2: NOAA (mean temperature, record high and lows, humidity and sun 1961–1990)[15]

Climate Charts[16] shows different averages and cooler day temperatures in summer.

Hurghada mean sea temperature[17]
Jan Feb Mar Apr May Jun Jul Aug Sep Oct Nov Dec
22 °C (72 °F) 21 °C (70 °F) 21 °C (70 °F) 22 °C (72 °F) 24 °C (75 °F) 26 °C (79 °F) 27 °C (81 °F) 28 °C (82 °F) 27 °C (81 °F) 26 °C (79 °F) 25 °C (77 °F) 23 °C (73 °F)

Resorts near HurghadaEdit

Sahl HasheeshEdit

Sahl Hasheesh is a newly developed resort located 18 kilometres (11 mi) south of Hurghada on the Red Sea.[18]

El QoseirEdit

Russian dumplings (Pelmeni) in central Hurghada.

El Qoseir is one of the Egyptian gateways, and one of the oldest cities on the western coast of the Red Sea. In the past it was known by various names, such as Thagho in the pharonic period, Leucos Limen (white port in Greek) in the Hellenistic and Ptolemaic period, and Portus Albus in the Roman period. In the Islamic period it was given the name El Qoseir, which means "a small palace or fortress".

Located between Hurghada and Marsa Alam, El Quseir used to be an important port. Many people traveled from there to the land of Punt to buy ivory, leather and incense. During the Ottoman and the Islamic periods, Egyptians and Muslims from North Africa traveled from El Quseir as pilgrims to Mecca. It was also the only port importing coffee from Yemen. During the French occupation of Egypt, El Qoseir was the arrival point for Arabs and Muslims from Hegaz coming to fight beside the Mamalic against the French army. The most important sites in El Qoseir are the fort and the water reservoir. The water reservoir was El Qoseir's only source of drinking water 100 years ago.

El Qoseir El Adima, the city's historic area, was once a Roman port and hundreds of amphora and old pottery artefacts have been found there. There are several 300-year-old buildings in the area, including an Ottoman fort and a number of historic mosques: El Farran, El Qenawi and El Senousi. The police station is also located at a historic site. The area contains bazaars, cafes, coffee shops and restaurants selling sea food.

Makadi BayEdit

A tourist resort located 30 km south of Hurghada dedicated only to hotels, shops, and clubs. There are no settlements with locals. The place features good sandy beach.

Anemone and clownfish at Sharm El Naga beach

Sharm El NagaEdit

A village, around 40 km (25 mi) south of Hurghada. Its beach contains a beautiful reef cliff.

Soma BayEdit

Soma Bay.

Soma Bay A tourist resort situated 45 km (28 mi) south of Hurghada, with various hotels including Palm Royale Soma Bay, La Residence des Cascades, Robinson Club, Sheraton (Kempinski – opening August 2008) & Caribbean World Resort Soma Bay ( opened December 7).

El GounaEdit

Walkway in Hurghada by night.

A privately owned luxury hotel town, about 25 km north of Hurghada. Quiet and clean, the town consists of several islands separated by channels and connected by bridges. Besides 14 hotels and 3 marinas, there are also 2200 private villas and apartments, while many more are under construction. It is promoted by some as Egypt's Venice. It is built on 10 km of beachfront and has unique and diverse architecture.

El Gouna provides diving and watersports centers, horse stables, go-karting, shopping arcades, bazaars, a wide selection of restaurants and bars, night clubs, an internet cafe, four bank branches, many automated teller machines (ATMs), two pharmacies, the El Gouna international school, El Gouna national school, a nursery, a private hospital, three marinas, a library, an airport, one of several casinos on the Red Sea coast, a private radio station, a post office, a museum, real estate offices and an 18-hole golf course designed by Gene Bates with a unique aqua driving range.

El MahmyaEdit

A tourist beachfront camp on the protected Giftun island, 45 minutes by boat from Hurghada.[19]


International schools include:

See alsoEdit


  1. ^ "Everything about Hurghada. And Much More". Lifebeyondex.
  2. ^ Elkoussy, Bahaa (28 September 1994). "German, Egyptians killed by militants". UPI.
  3. ^ Sims, Alexandra (8 January 2016). "Egypt hotel attack: Three tourists wounded by assailants in Hurghada resort". The Independent. Retrieved 6 Feb 2017.
  4. ^ a b Sanchez, Raf; Samaan, Magdy (16 July 2017). "Two tourists killed and four wounded in Egypt beach resort stabbing". The Telegraph. Retrieved 16 July 2017.
  5. ^ Two tourists stabbed to death in beach attack at Egyptian resort, The Guardian, 14 July 2017
  6. ^ Dive sites Hurghada
  7. ^ The Rough Guide to Egypt Daniel Jacobs, Dan Richardson, Shafik Meghji - 2010 - Page 576 1848365012 "From Ed-Dahar, two main roads run 2–4km south to Sigala, which contains the modern port of Hurghada and a mass of restaurants and hotels, squeezed in wherever the terrain allows. Beyond Sigala is nothing but desert and an endless array of coastal holiday villages..."
  8. ^ Lonely Planet Middle East - Anthony Ham - 2009 Page 185 1742203590 "Activities There's little to do in Hurghada itself other than sit on a beach and dream of more secluded places. The public beach in Sigala is less than appealing, though many resorts offer preferable sun-and-sand options"
  9. ^ Scuba diving in Hurghada
  10. ^ Abdallah, Buruddeen M. "Hurghada: ‘Russian’ capital of Egypt" (Archive). Daily Trust. June 6, 2015. Retrieved on November 18, 2015.
  11. ^ Walby, Joanne (2010). "Extended Holiday in Hurghada: Russian Migrant Women and 'Urfi Marriage" (PDF). Surfacing. 3 (1): 39–70.
  12. ^ "Russia to open consulate in Hurghada to boost tourism". The Cairo Post. 2015-02-14. Archived from the original on 2015-07-09. Retrieved 2017-01-26.CS1 maint: bot: original URL status unknown (link)
  13. ^ "Hurghada, Egypt". Voodoo Skies. Archived from the original on 21 February 2014. Retrieved 13 August 2013.
  14. ^ "Weather Information for Hurghada". World Meteorological Organization. Retrieved 17 August 2013.
  15. ^ "Hurguada (Hurghada) Climate Normals 1961–1990". National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration. Retrieved October 25, 2015.
  16. ^ a b "Hurguada, Egypt: Climate, Global Warming, and Daylight Charts and Data". Climate Charts. Retrieved 18 August 2013.
  17. ^ "Hurghada Climate and Weather Averages, Egypt". Weather2Travel. Retrieved 13 August 2013.
  18. ^ "Famous Cities: Sahl Hasheesh". State Information Service. Government of Egypt. Archived from the original on 5 November 2016. Retrieved 30 April 2020.
  19. ^ "Giftun island Hurghada, Egypt". Retrieved 13 August 2015.[dead link]

External linksEdit