Surfing in Egypt
Egypt is known for its millenia-old history and the phenomenal monuments sitting on the fertile Nile River Valley, including the colossal Pyramids of Giza and the Great Sphinx. But what you might not know is that Egypt also has some fun waves breaking on the north coast, in the Mediterranean Sea, to be more precise. The city of Alexandria located just 5 hours up north from the capital Cairo has great conditions and is where surfing first got popular in the country. The waves are friendly and good for beginners and intermediates, but on epic days can be perfect for advanced surfers. The best part of surfing in Egypt is the low crowds and the extremely friendly community that loves to share waves with anyone that is keen for a paddle. The peak surfing season is during summer when all the beaches get busy with people coming from the big cities, but the best and most consistent time of the year is definitely in winter, from December to March. Overall Egypt is extremely safe with one of the lowest crime rates in Africa. The country should definitely be on your bucket list as a splendid option if you want to mix a cultural trip with surfing.
Climate in Egypt
The climate in Egypt can vary depending on the region. Along the north coast the climate is Mediterranean with a very mild winter (December to March) and hot and dry summer (June to September). Winter is the only time of the year when moderate to weak rainfall can happen. The average temperature at the coast during winter is 15°C (60°F) while in summer the average is way higher around 30°C but the sea breezes make the weather quite pleasant.
In inland areas the climate is desertic. This is where most of the tourist attractions are located and it never rains. The desert winds and the arid atmosphere can make temperatures change from scorching heat during the day to freezing cold at night. The best time to travel to the country to Egypt are on the shoulder seasons from April to May or October to November. Regarding the surf, winter is always the most consistent time of the year. The water temperatures in the Mediterranea Sea can be low during this time of the year, around 18°C (64°F) so make sure to pack a 3/2 wetsuit. The swimming season in the Mediterranean Sea lasts from May to December and the average water temperature is a very pleasant 21°C.
Best surf spots in Egypt
The best area to surf in Egypt is definitely on the north coast. The coastal city of Agami, near Alexandria, was the epicenter of the surf community but now the attention shifted to the coastline around Sahel. Other surf spots around the country are: Agiba Cove, Agiba Beach, Cleopatra beach, El Corniche, Mandaras, Ramadas, Roward Resort and Shatby.
Meal price range
A falafel sandwich costs around $2.50 USD. Midrange meals in restaurants start at $5 USD. High-end dining can start at just $10 USD.
There are a few surf camps that you can rent gear from, but it’s probably best if you bring your own.
Prepaid SIM cards
Vodafone is probably the best choice. Being the largest provider, with the most coverage.
Sim cards can be purchased at official shops, airports and malls. Prepaid cards start at $7 USD.
Cairo has a metro system which is easy to navigate. One-way tickets cost $0.07 USD.
Buses are how the majority of Egyptians get around the country. You can get almost anywhere on the bus.
Warning: Cairo's streets are congested and choked with traffic. Plus Cairenes are notoriously aggressive drivers. It’s recommended to take a taxi or hire a driver.
Uber is also an option.
Rental cars start at $35 USD a day.
$0.55 USD a liter.
Types of risks
Windy, frequent earthquakes, hot, dust and sandstorms
How to prepare
Citizens from the EU, US, Australia and 11 other countries will receive a visa on arrival allowing them to stay for 30 days. Visitors must hold passports that are valid for at least 6 months from the date of arrival to Egypt. There is an eVisa system in place for those needing a visa.
Although it's not mandatory, it’s recommended that you have been vaccinated for hepatitis A & B, yellow fever, typhoid, rabies, meningitis, polio, Tdap, chickenpox, shingles, pneumonia, influenza, measles, mumps and rubella. You’ll be asked to show proof of your yellow fever vaccination if you come from a country with a risk of yellow fever.
Things to know
Language & Currency
Arabic is the official language. English and French are widely understood as well.
Egyptian pound (EGP) is the currency.
Best time to go
The peak surfing season is during summer months, but the best and most consistent time of the year to surf is definitely in winter, from December to March.
Checking Surf forecast
Checking the forecast about a week before your trip is always a good idea. Understanding what the waves will be like and knowing what gear to pack is essential. You can check the forecast for the waves here.
World Nomads has great travel insurance packages that are not super expensive and they cover surfing.
Do I need pack a pharmacy kit
You should bring a basic kit. Including ear drops, eye drops, bandaids, ear plugs, gaze, alcohol, and broad spectrum antibiotic ointment.
122 for emergencies. 123 for an ambulance.
Check out pictures of the surf in Egypt at #surfingegypt