- Places to Explore
- Travel Tips
- Arabic Phrases
To cross the Suez Canal, you should take the Ahmed Hamdy Tunnel from the city of Suez on the southern end into the Sinai Peninsula; expect to pay tolls. Foreign travelers in vehicles who don't have a resident's permit will be expected to join a traveler's convoy. The times for these can vary, so if your hotel has a concierge, ask them to confirm times and the meeting place. If you employ a driver, he will organize your departure time to take into account convoy times, so you don't need to worry.
Roads in the Sinai are mostly single lane, though a two-lane highway is partly built along the west coast. Though the main roads are in fine condition, you might want to take a taxi instead. Getting to remote sights requires some skill, and negotiating winding roads through the mountains requires extreme caution because local drivers usually don't stay in their own lanes.
The advantage of renting a car and driving to the Red Sea Coast is flexibility, but that might not outweigh the dangers posed by other drivers, including many trucks, and the hairpin turns before Ain Sukhna. If you don't have nerves of steel, fly to Hurghada or hire a taxi to take you to the monasteries. If you plan to stay in Hurghada or El Gouna, you will not need a car. If you are going to travel south as far as al-Quseir or Marsa Alam, having a car will be helpful. The road there is well-marked and easy to drive.
Renting a car in Egypt is no different than it is in the United States. You will need to bring both your domestic license and an international driver's license. Prices for a compact car are around $60 per day, hiring a driver is about $25 extra per day (with further charges if you want to keep the driver overnight). Cars in Egypt do not usually have unlimited mileage, so there may be a per-km charge if you exceed the daily allotment.
You do not need a car if you are staying in either Bur Said or Ismailiya.
Car Rental Contacts
Avis. Morgana Mall, off Peace Rd., Na'ama Bay, Sharm El-Sheikh. 069/360-2400. www.avisegypt.com. Shara Sheraton, Hurghada. 065/344-7400.
El Gouna Limousine. Tamr Henna, El Gouna. 065/358-0061. www.elgouna-limousine.com. Taba Heights. 069/358-0234.
Europcar. Sharm El-Sheikh International Airport, Sharm El-Sheikh. 016/554-4313. www.europcar.com. Hurghada International Airport, Hurghada. 016/661-1025.
Free Fodor's Newsletter
Subscribe today for weekly travel inspiration, tips, and special offers.
Fodor's Trip Planning Ideas
- Weekend Getaways: Fodor's Recommends the Best Weekend Escapes in the US
- Great American Vacation: Find Your Next U.S. Trip with Fodor's
- 80 Degrees: Fodor's Helps You Find Your Best Beach Vacation Spots
- Go List: Fodor's Top 25 Places to Go in 2013
- Hotel Awards 2012: Fodor's 100 Top Hotels
- Best of Europe: Fodor's Picks the Best Places to Visit in Europe
- Special deal: 4-Star Sol Y Mar Club Makadi Fr $130+/Nt Save with Expedia, $9/night less
- Magma Apartments - Hurghada Dream in May: $29 & Up Save with Expedia, $19/night less
- Hurghada Savings! Book 3 Nts in May Fr $132+/Nt — $132 Save with Expedia, $33/night less
- Hurghada Savings! Book at Sol Y Mar Ivory Suites Fr $50+/Nt — $50 Expedia
- $130 & Up: Hilton Hurghada Plaza 5-Star Hotel in Hurghada — $130 Expedia