Fewer than one in a hundred tourists coming to the Marsa Alam area ever venture into the town itself. And for the few who do, there seems little reason, at first glance, to linger.
The wide wind swept main street is virtually empty during the day, the architecture is uninspiring and much of the town is little more than a giant building site. However it is gradually starting to feel more inviting as it grows.
Already you will find several small grocers and souvenir bazaars, a hardware shop, an electircal outlet, at least two pharmacies, a bureau de change and even a tiny bank. So it’s a great oasis for those essential purchases.
But don’t rush off once you’ve filled your shopping bag. If you look beyond the visible you will soon discover that the town does have an upside. The people here are among the most hospitable and affable in Egypt.
The Price For the Trip From your Hotel to MarsaAlam for shopping , staying in Cafe , Shisha and City Tour in MarsaAlam for 20 euros per person (minimum 2 persons) including transfer going and back and waiting for 2 or 3 hours in marsa alam
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“Hurghada was just like this fifteen years ago,” says a man who has just sunk his life savings into buying a tiny souvenir bazar. “But in ten years this place will be bigger than Hurghada or Sharm. Buy property here. You can’t loose.”
The hotel workers, who live here, sit in groups in one of the various small cafeteria or in The Father of the Crazy Ones pizzeria. They play draughts and dominoes, smoke shisha, or watch football on an outdoor television. There’s always much laughter.
If you are looking just for tourist sites you may wish to forget this town and head instead for El Quseir, Luxor , Aswan , Dolphin House , Sharm El Luli Or Cairo ( see our Excursion ). However if you need to buy a few provisions or wish to make some new friends then Marsa Alam town, despite its’ rough and ready appearance, is the perfect place.
If you want to stay overnight there’s a small clean budget priced hotel on the higher (West) end of the main street and a cheap laundry in a narrow walkway just off the souk where you can get a small bag of clothes laundered and ironed for around 20LE. There are also two internet cafes on the main street that are currently charging just 4LE per hour. A bargain compared to the 50LE or so which some of the nearby hotels charge.