Every once in a while, you may feel the need to connect with yourself through contemplating nature’s wonders and tuning out from the city’s hustle and bustle. If you’re the type who enjoys adventure while exploring exotic nature, then an excellent way to do this is definitely via hiking. With all the wonders that Egypt holds, the country’s hiking trails are located in some of the most stunning areas, which are indeed worth visiting. Breathe in some fresh air and discover the most beautiful hiking trails in Egypt.
One of the most popular hikes in Egypt, the Mount Catherine trail takes you through numerous mountains, natural pools and historic ruins. This hike offers adventurous souls the chance to camp in the midst of nature as it may take up to five days to complete – excluding climbing Mount Catherine, of course. Your trip should start in Egypt’s highest village, Saint Catherine, where you’ll take a six-kilometre hike to Naga Mountain, allowing you to enjoy the incredible scenery from this 1,830-metre peak. Afterwards, you’ll have 25 kilometres of hiking to do, where you will pass by blue natural pools amid mountains, the castle ruins of Abbas Basha at Mount Abbas and finally, end your hike at Saint Catherine’s Monastery, where you will be able to shop for authentic souvenirs.
Although it might not seem like your usual kind of hike, as it’s more of a trek due to its inclines and declines, Mount Moses is a less demanding hike than Mount Catherine, the tallest peak in Egypt. Still, it’s not an easy one. Mount Moses, which is also known as Jebel Al Tur or Mount Sinai, is 2,285 metres and is considered a holy site by different religions, as it is where prophet Moses, peace be upon him, received the divine commandments from Allah. Hence, for many, it’s more than just a hike, it’s following in the footsteps of Moses. Visitors who choose to hike reach the summit by either sunrise or sunset. In both cases, the scenery is breathtaking and worth the sore feet. Moreover, since it’s next to Saint Catherine’s Monastery, you can also give it a visit and call it a day.
Keeping you at a hike of about 800 metres long, the Coloured Canyon is located in the Sinai Peninsula, where the nearest town is Nuweiba. Easily reachable via a 4WD, the canyon offers different shades and hues of colours – hence, its name. The colours of the canyon are a result of the receding tides from the Red Sea back then, where the canyon’s rocky walls were formed by sandstone, limestones and granite. After enjoying the canyon’s contrasting textures, head to Basata Eco-Lodge, one of the top eco-lodges in Egypt, to enjoy a Bedouin cooked meal as you camp and relax while stargazing.
Ranked as a top diving destination for its colourful coral reefs and unique fish, Dahab also has one of the most rewarding hiking trails in Egypt. Considered a coastal hike, it will take you through the crystal blue waters and Sinai’s mountains, where you’ll be greeted by Bedouins every step of the way. Start your hike at the Blue Hole, a worldwide diving spot, stop for a while at Ras Abu Gallum Protectorate, where you can enjoy an authentic lunch and continue your path as you head towards your final stop, the Blue Lagoon, one of the best kitesurfing spots in Egypt. Learn some new kitesurfing skills while you’re there or just enjoy a swim in the lagoon and spend the night at one of the lagoon’s camps.
A hike that whisks you away from the overcrowded city of Cairo, the Wadi Degla Protectorate is a place where you can escape city life without crossing its borders. Located in the Maadi district, the Wadi Degla Protectorate extends about 30 kilometres in length. Both its length and flat surface makes it one of the easiest – yet very enjoyable – hikes in Egypt. The valley contains limestone rocks that are about 50 metres in height as well as canyons formed by the rainwater. There are also different kinds of animals such as dear, mountain rabbits, red foxes and so forth, as well as a number of insect and reptile species. Other than hiking, visitors can enjoy various kinds of activities here including bike riding, cycling, running, barbecuing, camping and mountain climbing.
A UNESCO World Heritage Site, the Valley of the Whales, known as Wadi El-Hitan in Arabic, is one of the easiest hikes due to its flat paths. According to UNESCO’s World Heritage Centre, the valley is a proved location in terms of the evolution of the whale from a land-based animal to an ocean-going mammal. The site comprises fossil remains of the now extinct suborder of whales, Archaeoceti, as well as a fossil museum, which is one of the reasons many visitors flock to the Valley of the Whales, located in the Fayoum Oasis. Aside from hiking, other activities can be enjoyed here such as camping, sand boarding, kayaking, stargazing, barbecuing, horseback riding and history exploring.