Agiba Beach in Egypt is shown with bright blue water and a strip of sand jutting out with a birds eye view of clusters of people.

10 Best Beaches in Egypt (A Local’s Guide)

From boho towns on the Red Sea to world-famous diving resorts, Egypt has tons of incredible beaches to offer.

And it’s no wonder. Egypt has some 1,800 kilometers of coastline along the Mediterranean in the north and the Red Sea in the south.

And while Egypt is most famous for ancient temples and pyramids, it’s also an incredible destination for year-round sunshine and crystal-clear (and warm!) waters. Some of Egypt’s best beaches rival those of the Maldives – at a fraction of the price.

So how do you pick the Egyptian beach that’s just right for you?

Dee stands on a sandy hill at the beach in Soma Bay looking out over the blue water. She is wearing a blue shirt with flowers on it.

I’m an expat living for over a decade in Egypt and I’ve visited lots of beaches all across the country. And this is my ultimate guide to plan your perfect Egyptian beach getaway.

Whether you’re looking for a rustic hidden gem, a diver’s paradise or a family-friendly resort, here’s my definite list of the best beaches in Egypt.

1. Agiba Beach, Marsa Matruh

An orange and yellow sunset lights up the sky above Agiba Beach in Egypt as the blue water breaks against tall brown and rocky cliffs.
(photo: @nadawinx)

Location: Mediterranean Sea, 300 km west of Alexandria
How to get there: fly to Marsa Matruh Intl. Airport, or take a 5-hour bus from Cairo

Agiba Beach is a little slice of paradise nestled between golden cliffs with crystal blue waters and white sand.

This Mediterranean treasure is a short drive from the coastal town of Marsa Matruh. It’s a beautiful cove that’s only accessible by foot down a rocky path. And it offers gorgeous views of the dramatic rock formations as they meet the blue waters.

Striking blue water flows between two sandy cliffs at Agiba Beach in Egypt. The water is vibrantly blue and it's a sunny day with a cloudless sky,

Pros: white sand beaches, clear and calm waters perfect for swimming and relaxing.
Cons: not the best option for diving or snorkeling

The area: Agiba Beach is near Marsa Matruh, a quiet coastal city with a slew of other gorgeous beaches that aren’t nearly as crowded as Sharm or Hurghada. It’s also a real-life coastal town with authentic Egyptian (and Amazigh) culture – not just a strip of tourist resorts.

2. Sharm El Luli, Marsa Alam

The beach at Sharm el Luli in Egypt has soft sand, light blue water and a few big rocks laying on the shore.

Location: Red Sea, 60 km from Marsa Alam
How to get there: fly to Marsa Alam Intl. Airport, then bus/taxi

Sharm El Luli (aka Ras Hankorab) is ranked as one of the world’s most beautiful beaches with its pristine sand and crystal-clear water.

It’s a stunning hidden gem that’s definitely one of my favorite beaches in all of Egypt!

Dive in and snorkel to spot butterfly fish, bright orange clownfish (of Finding Nemo fame) and the occasional sea turtle.

Have some tea at a makeshift tent and pick up a souvenir from the local women who sell colorful trinkets from beads and camel leather. The beach is completely remote with no bathrooms, lounge chairs or tourist crowds.

The beach at Sharm el Luli in Egypt has vibrant blue waters with some shrubs and a rock formation in the sand in the foreground.

The beach at Sharm el Luli in Egypt with several rock formations in the foreground, light sand and crystal blue water.

Pros: beautiful sand, incredible snorkeling and no crowds
Cons: little infrastructure

The area: Sharm el Luli is near Marsa Alam, a tourist town on the Red Sea that’s quickly growing as a tourist destination. It’s known for a slew of white sandy beaches that’s earned it the nickname of the “Egyptian Maldives.”

3. Blue Lagoon, Dahab

A bird's eye view of the Blue Lagoon in Dahab shows an island of sand surrounded by blue emerald water and rocky red mountains in the background.
(photo: @bluelagoondahab)

Location: Red Sea, about 80 km northeast of Sharm el-Sheikh
How to get there: fly to Sharm el-Sheikh, then bus/taxi

The Blue Lagoon is a sheltered natural pond with striking blue water enclosed by rugged Sinai mountains.

It’s known for its serene atmosphere and calm waters that are perfect for swimming. It’s also a popular spot to learn kite surfing and wind surfing thanks to the steady winds and year-round warm weather.

The shore of the Blue Lagoon in Dahab shows a rocky shore with striking blue water and red rocky mountains in the background.

Pros: incredible scenery, great for chilling on the beach, wind and kite surfing,
Cons: a little rocky and not ideal for snorkeling (though the Blue Hole, a world-famous diving spot) is nearby.

The area: Dahab is a small Egyptian town that’s a backpacker favorite for its boho vibes, campsites and world-famous diving spots. It’s gaining in popularity but hasn’t lost its rugged charm with lots of nature and coast lines to explore.

4. Soma Bay, Hurghada

A woman in a white dress sits on the edge of a yacht looking out over an expanse of blue water and red mountains off in the distance in Soma Bay, Egypt.
(photo: @kempinski_somabay)

Location: Red Sea, 45 km south of Hurghada
How to get there: fly to Hurghada Intl. Airport, then bus/taxi

Soma Bay is a luxurious resort destination known for pristine beaches, upscale hotels, scuba diving and a championship golf course.

It’s a peninsula surrounded by the sparkling sea with perfect wind conditions for kite and wind surfing. There’s also a few tiny islands to explore by katamaran for an unforgettable experience.

Soma Bay is home to just 6 resorts (including a beautiful Kempinski) so it’s great to escape the tourist crowds. It’s my favorite resort town in Egypt and I highly recommend it as a romantic destination for couples and a family-friendly getaway.

A man walks on the beach in Soma Bay, Egypt pulling two camels behind him.
(photo: @kempinski_somabay)

Pros: pristine reefs, upscale resorts, quiet beaches and lots of water activities
Cons: not much nightlife or activity outside of the resorts

The area: Soma Bay is known for upscale resorts, elegant dining by the water and perfect wind for kite and wind surfing.

5. El Qulan Mangrove Forest, Marsa Alam

A solitary tree grows in a thin strand of sand surrounded by blue water in Qulan, Egypt.

Location: Red Sea, about 100 km from Marsa Alam
How to get there: fly to Marsa Alam Intl. Airport, then taxi/bus

The El Qulan Mangrove Forest is a picturesque beach with a unique ecosystem of mangrove trees.

Tucked inside the Wadi El Gemal Natural Reserve, this protected beach is a wildlife and bird sanctuary. The twisting branches and shrubbery of the mangroves give shelter to a wide range of native birds.

Stroll through the stretch of shallow water to the solitary mangrove tree that looks suspended between water and sky. These remarkable mangroves are among the world’s most endangered habitats.

The local bedouins serve fresh and hearty lunches. And don’t miss the handicrafts market with authentic jewelry made by the indigenous Al Ababda tribe.

A solitary tree grows in a thin strand of sand surrounded by blue water in Qulan, Egypt.

Two images show Qulan mangrove forest in Marsa Alam: on the left is a sunset over the water with a solitary bird in the waves. On the right is a patch of water and mangroves with birds flying overhead.

Pros: unique ecosystem, serene and quiet, great for birdwatchers and nature lovers
Cons: limited facilities

The area: Marsa Alam really deserves its nickname as the “Egyptian Maldives.” It’s a tourist town on the Red Sea with pristine beaches that aren’t as crowded or developed as Sharm or Hurghada.

6. Fjord Bay, Taba

A solitary tree stands in the foreground at Fjord Bay in Taba, while beyond is blue water framed by red mountains.
(photo: @ahmedabdeltawab)

Location: Red Sea, about 200 km north of Sharm el Sheikh
How to get there: fly to Taba Intl. Airport

This breathtaking blue cove is enclosed by a rugged mountain range and offers hiking with panoramic views.

There’s plenty of diverse fish and marine life to explore in the crystal-clear waters. And there’s a healthy coral reef that’s far less crowded than well-known beach resorts.

Fjord Bay really feels like a secret cove to discover – whether you’re snorkeling underwater or hiking up into the desert above.

Perched near the northern tip of the Gulf of Aqaba, Taba is the northernmost resort along Egypt’s Red Sea Riviera.

Blue water surrounded by tall red mountains in Fjord Bay, Taba, Egypt.
(photo: @ahmedabdeltawab)

Pros: quiet beach off the beaten path, incredible scuba diving and hiking.
Cons: limited facilities.

The area: Taba is serene with few tourist crowds. It boasts pristine beaches and crystal-clear water with a dramatic backdrop of the Sinai mountains. It’s more rugged than busy resort towns. And it has some incredible high-end resorts.

7. Giftun Islands, Hurghada

Some lounge cushions lay on the beach at the Giftun islands in Hurghada under a palm umbrella with the blue water in the background.
(photo: @christina_derbsch_shootings)

Location: Red Sea, just off the coast of Hurghada
How to get there: fly into Hurghada Intl. Airport

This cluster of postcard-perfect islands in Hurghada is surrounded by blue waters perfect for snorkeling or kicking back with a view.

Take a 45-minute boat from Hurghada and spend the day exploring colorful marine life or unwinding at a beachy restaurant.

Mahmya is a gem of a beach with well-preserved aquatic ecosystems and rainbow-colored fish. The islands are a great day trip from Hurghada and there’s food and facilities available.

A bird's eye view of a boat in the blue water at Giftun Island, Hurghada.
(photo: @omar__refaat)

Pros: incredible snorkeling, well-preserved coral reefs and soft sand.
Cons: gets touristy and busy in the high season.

The area: Hurghada is one of Egypt’s most popular beach resorts. It has dozens of beaches and water activities like snorkeling, diving, windsurfing and kitesurfing. It’s a great option for families with water parks and kids’ clubs – and it’s a good budget option too.

8. El Gouna, Hurghada

A man kite surfs across the deep blue waters in El Gouna, near Hurghada in Egypt.
(photo: @visitelgouna)

Location: Red Sea, about 30 km from Hurghada
How to get there: fly to Hurghada Intl. Airport, then taxi/bus

El Gouna is a stylish and upscale resort town known for chic eateries, pristine beaches, a yacht-lined marina and high-end shopping.

Spend the day unwinding on a white sandy beach, playing on the famous 18-hole golf course or kite surfing. Then take the evening to browse boutiques full of Egyptian designers. Unwind at a cocktail bar in the pastel-hued marina.

El Gouna has a network of canals and lagoons dotted with sandy islands and luxury hotels. And don’t miss the white sands of Zaytouna Beach and its 400-metre-long jetty that extends into deeper water coral reefs.

The marina in El Gouna is lined with yachts with buildings and shops in the background.
(photo: @threecornersoceanview)

Pros: perfect beaches, upscale resorts and shopping, great kitesurfing
Cons: not ideal for budget travelers

The area: El Gouna is great for upscale dining, shopping and unwinding in white sandy beaches. It’s a great option for snorkeling and kitesurfing – and just a short trip from Hurghada.

9. Ras Um Sid, Sharm el Sheikh

The blue waters at Ras Um Sid in Egypt with a palm tree and a stretch of beach lined with lounge chairs in the foreground.
(photo: @tatyana_dtv_i)

Location: Red Sea, in Sharm el Sheikh
How to get there: fly to Sharm el Sheikh Intl. Airport

Ras Um Sid is arguably the prettiest beach in a resort town that’s known for pretty Red Sea gems.

It’s a snorkeler’s paradise with a reef full of colorful fish in calm waters. And it’s very beginner-friendly too: you can spot lots of marine water just swimming with a pair of goggles.

Ras Um Sid is quieter than some of Sharm el Sheikh’s more rowdy attractions. And it’s popular with families – especially if you have children who want to try out water activities.

Don’t miss the clifftop Farsha Cafe with its boho Egyptian decor and sweeping views. It’s especially magical at night when the cliff is lit up by colorful lanterns.

A stretch of blue water against a beach in Ras Um Sid, Egypt.
(photo: @rustam.nabizade)

Pros: a snorkler’s paradise with a beautiful reef and soft sands.
Cons: a bit further away from other Sharm beaches.

The area: Sharm el Sheikh has some of the best coral reefs and diving in Egypt. It also offers lots of beaches and resorts from ultra-lux to bargain price. And there’s so much to do, from water sports and desert safaris to vibrant souqs and cafes.

10. Sahl Hasheesh, Hurghada

The coast at Sahl Hasheesh in Egypt lined with resorts.
(photo: @sahlhasheesheg)

Location: Red Sea, about 20 km south of Hurghada
How to get there: fly to Hurghada Intl. Airport

Sahl Hasheesh is an upscale resort town known for pristine beaches, an ultra-long boardwalk and some of the best resorts in the country.

It’s incredible for diving with vibrant coral reefs and unspoiled beaches. Sahl Hasheesh also offers windsurfing, horse riding, yachting and snorkeling for water sports enthusiasts.

There’s also a partly submerged artificial city popular with divers that draws in colorful marine life.

A bird's eye view of a long walkway going into the sea in Sahl Hasheesh, Egypt.
(photo: @sahlhasheesheg)

Pros: upscale resorts, white sand beaches,
Cons: not ideal for budget travelers.

The area: Sahl Hasheesh is more laid-back and luxurious than nearby Hurghada, but still offers world-class diving sites and perfect beaches.

Best things to do in Marsa Alam

A beach in Marsa Alam, Egypt, with two layers of blue - lighter for shallow water and deeper blue towards the horizon. The water has beach umbrellas and palm trees in the foreground.

Marsa Alam is one of my favorite beaches in all of Egypt. It’s a quiet town on the Red Sea with pristine beaches, rugged coastlines – and some of the most incredible dive sites in the country.

Read 7 Best Things To Do In Marsa Alam (A Local’s Guide) for my ultimate guide to plan your trip.

Incredible things to do in Egypt

best things to do in egypt

From ancient temples along the Nile to architectural gems in downtown Cairo, there’s A LOT to do in Egypt. So where do you start planning your perfect itinerary?

Read 30 Incredible Things To Do In Egypt (A Local’s Guide!) for my ultimate guide.

More resources:

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16 Reasons To Visit Egypt In 2024

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