After a week of exploring the Pyramids of Giza and the overwhelming temples of Egypt, we booked ourselves a fabulous hotel in Sharm-El-Sheikh, Egypt so we could do “nothing” for a while. But after a few languorous days at the beach, we were compelled to scratch the travel itch once again 🙂
We hopped over to the local market and booked ourselves on an excursion of The Coloured Canyon in Egypt. We hadn’t heard of this natural wonder before booking our holiday to Sharm-El-Sheikh, but a cursory mention by our hotel’s reception got us curious. Early next morning, a rugged jeep picked us up for the drive to The Coloured Canyon. I vividly remember the drive – the 4X4 drove through endless stretches of arid desert. There was nothing and no one around. Every twenty kilometres, we would see a lone bedouin raise his hand to wish us a good day. We got accustomed to this rather quickly, almost entranced by the monotony of the parched landscape.
Over 150 kilometres later, we reached our first stop – St. Catherine’s Monastery, where Moses received the 10 Commandments . The imposing structure is located at the foot of Mt. Sinai and is impressive in every sense of the word. Take a look
We spent a long time examining religious artefacts at the Monastery but soon it was time to take to the road again. We picked up a Bedouin guide on the way and found ourselves at The Coloured Canyon in no time.
Here steep valleys of limestone, sandstone, and granite have acquired surreal colours due to unique geological changes. As we went deeper and deeper into The Coloured Canyon, we saw intricate swirls of flaming red intertwined with stark yellows, glistening golds, and deep purples. The stunning rock formations are a reminder of the fact that sometimes nature is really the greatest artist out there. With the help of our Bedouin guide, we climbed over walls and crawled into crevices. We spent over two hours at The Coloured Canyon with the sun beating down on us, but it was worth it. The sights were spectacular but it was the sounds (or the lack of them!) that made the place truly spellbinding.
- It’s possible to book the excursion online but for the best price, wait to get to Sharm-El-Sheikh. Book the excursion at one of the kiosks in the local market. Make sure you bargain like there’s no tomorrow. The day-long excursion costs around £40 (as of May 2014)
- This is a really long day trip – you will be away from your hotel for over 12 hours. Make sure you wear comfortable clothes and shoes
- It’s best to visit The Coloured Canyon on an organised excursion. We’re road-trip enthusiasts but even we wouldn’t risk driving to The Coloured Canyon. It requires a lot of off-roading
- Make sure you have a Bedouin to guide you at The Coloured Canyon – it is labyrinthine and it’s very easy to get lost there
Looking for more day trips from Sharm-El-Sheikh. Make sure you go Quad Biking in the Desert
Looking for travel fashion inspiration? Our Guide On Packing For Conservative Countries might come in handy 🙂