9 Mar 2015

In Search Of Winter Sun In Egypt

winter sun holiday sharm el sheikh egypt

British winters are cold, dark and last for half of the year. Yorkshire winters are colder, darker and longer - well, at least that's how it has seemed to us. This time last year we were travelling through Argentina without a snowflake in sight! Our last snowfall was in early 2013 and we’ve naively forgotten how cold and depressing winter in the UK can be. By January our pasty white faces were desperate for warm sunshine, blue skies and happiness injecting vitamin D. The question was where should we go for some winter sun?

Sharm el-Sheikh on Egypt’s Red Sea coast quickly became our best option for a winter sun holiday in February. Sunshine could almost be guaranteed and it was only a five hour flight away. However, the choice of hotels was overwhelming and it took us a long time to sift through and find what we were looking for. There are hundreds of hotels in Sharm, as its affectionally known, to satisfy the demand from the hundreds of flights carrying sunshine-thirsty Brits every week. 

It’s hard to believe that this tourist resort is only 10 years old. Back in the 1970’s adventurous Egyptians would pitch a tent on the unspoilt and undeveloped Red Sea coastline to enjoy a weekend of world-class scuba diving.  

winter sun holiday le royale sonesta sharm el sheikh

Our home for the week was Le Royale Sonesta and we enjoyed a thoroughly lazy stay in this luxurious boutique property. The hours of research really paid off as we’d found ourselves an all-inclusive gem with beautiful bedrooms, relaxing pool areas and delicious food. 

We had everything we needed in our marble tiled and impeccably manicured resort. Each day was gloriously sunny and we whiled away the hours on mattress lined sun-beds reading. And that’s pretty much it so it was pure bliss!

winter sun holiday sharm el sheikh
Busy doing nothing...

The poolside bar kept Steve watered with beer and 2 o'clock soon became know as gin o'clock. Balearic style beats played from the speakers to keep our ears happy and toes tapping. There was a refreshingly laid-back vibe to this hotel and when the shadows grew longer over the pool we headed to our private beach for sunset and G&T's.

winter sun holiday sharm el sheikh
It's gin o'clock!

Before our arrival we were very skeptical of the food, staying all-inclusive is the norm in Sharm-el-Sheikh and food poisoning is common. We had no reason to worry though as we were spoilt for choice with freshly prepared local and European dishes at every meal time. It wasn’t award winning but there was lots of choice and meals were tasty. The salad bar and dessert table supplied the highlights of most meals. The Egyptians baklava style treats were amazing.  

In the evenings we sidestepped the entertainment at the adjoining Sonesta Beach hotel and retreated back to our room for a little more gin and a film. We rarely made it to the final credits, chilled out days are surprisingly exhausting and we had to get up early to play ‘my towel, my sun-bed' with our fellow British tourists. 

winter sun holiday sharm el sheikh

The neon lights of Naama Bay were only a five minute drive away but they held very little appeal for us. Would we find better food down in Naama Bay? We certainly couldn’t go shopping for souvenirs given our suitcase was overweight and we’d been those people at Manchester airport frantically putting shoes and books in our hand luggage to reduce the weight. SO embarrassing! 

winter sun holiday sharm el sheikh

If you’ve ever read any of our travel blogs before you will know that this is not the way Sticky travel, we love adventure and culture. It’s extremely rare for us to opt for a ‘package holiday’ but the purpose of this trip was to relax and enjoy some sunshine. Which is exactly what we did and we’re finally understanding why people opt for these kind of holidays.

winter sun holiday sharm el sheikh

We booked our holiday via lowcostholidays and paid £520pp for a seven night all inclusive stay at Le Royal Sonesta including return flights from Manchester. If you’re looking for ideas for winter sun or summer holidays especially last minute their site is well worth a look.

holiday packing tips sliders
Don't forget your sliders.

Which are your favourite destinations for a winter sun holiday?

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