Sharm el-Sheikh: Dune Buggy Safari, Camel Ride & BBQ Dinner
- Transportation included
- Duration: 5 hours
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In my group there was 15 people. I would say all of them Russians, two Polish and only me speaking English. The guide did his best to speak in both languages. Most of the people who take the tour are Russians. I was picked up on time, around 8:20pm and then we drove for 3 hours stopping at one place at Dahab city for a break. Once we got to Saint Catherine City we were taken to the Icons gallery where guide talked about the technique of making those icons. Also you could buy them. They accapted credit cards (Visa, Mastercard, Maestro). After that we went to the Monastery, security check but nobody checked out passports. We were given lamps but didn't really need it since the moonlight. The hike wasn't THAT hard except those 750 steps at the end. Many stops along the way (take cash), beduins selling hot drinks. On top we waited for sunrise around 1:30h. The sunrise was amazing but very windy with more then 1000 people on top. People were freezing. We spent 30 min in the monastery.
We had a wonderful experience with this company from the start. They communicated promptly with us and kept us informed. Unfortunately we couldn't visit St Catherine because they closed it last minute. They offered to cancel and refund but we still decided to go. Our guide Mohammed was amazing throughout the walk and especially very helpful during the difficult climb up the 750 steps. He kept us on track for getting back down in time for the early ride back to catch the flight back to Cairo after Nile Air unfortunately changed it. I'm in awe of how he goes up and down all day and night - a wonderful person to meet and know. I want to thank him and wish him and his family a blessed life. I'm so happy to have made it to the top of such an iconic place for all the 3 major religions. I prayed for peace and compassion in the world for all the innocent people suffering due to injustices caused by religion differences, political power, and unnecessary conflicts.
The booking was prompt and easy, and I even got a discount on the site. I received confirmation from the website as well as the local tour operator immediately, inquiring about the pickup schedule The local tour operator, OceanAir, was very accommodating and was willing to pick me up at the airport (as I was flying in from Cairo and arrived at 8:45 pm) instead of a local hotel, at a nominal amount of fees. I got lucky to be the only person in the tour, and the 6(7)-seater sedan was brand new (like a thousand km only). The rest of the tour was just top notch. Mahmoud was very informative, attentive, educational and knowledgeable. Just a very very professional and experienced tour guide. My local guide to hike the mountain was great, too. Acting part-time like my personal photographer along the way. :-)
The monastery is stunning!! I give 5 stars for that! Sinai is amazing, felt safe although I know most people and governments advise against non essential travel in the Sinai but I did not see anything dangerous, there were a lot of tourists , all went smoothly, My only suggestion is that a) our driver was very good but sometimes drove quite fast ! and i think it should not be that way, b) communication with local partner is a bit tricky, they confirmed my pick up time at 10 pm the previous night, should be 1 or 2 days in advance , I had no access to internet at the Cairo airport and then at the hotel I only had access to wi fi at reception , so I had to keep coming down to check if I got e-mail from them...
The whole experience was perfect. Really. The transportation was very good. The guide was amazing. I want to go there again and with the same guide. He took care of us and he was very informed. He made our experience brilliant. Also, the guys in charge of transportation were really nice. They bought us breakfast and water. Unbelievable. I really recommend this company and their people.