Being in Sharm el-Sheikh for nearly a week and leaving in just a day, we decided to get out of Na’ama Bay to see the old part of the city. We did this by taking a tour with a guide named Hamdy who drove us to a few points in the city.
Our first stop was at El Fanar, where we visited a stunning memorial to the 2004 Flash Airlines plane crash that killed all 148 people on board, mostly French tourists. It overlooks the area of the Red Sea where the plan went down shortly after takeoff. The names of the victims are listed on the memorial.
Next, and perhaps the best cultural activity to do in Sharm, was the souk (old market). It’s located in the oldest part of the city. You can find all kinds of authentic Egyptian goods, including clothing, fragrances, and spices.
What we enjoyed most about the souk is that it appealed to all five senses. The brilliant colors, pungent smells, new flavors, odd textures, and the cacophony produced by the shops kept us on our toes at all times.
Many of the shop owners have a good sense of humor and are happy to give you samples and demonstrations, but beware the sales pressure! They can get nasty if you don’t buy and some will try to rip you off if you aren’t paying attention.
Don’t forget to bargain and be persistent. Tyra was able to get this belly dancer costume for nearly 60% off the asking price! She also got a free makeup demonstration.