Quick Guide to Sharm el Sheikh

Sharm el Sheikh sits on Egypt's Sinai Peninsular on the Red Sea Coast. It's a popular holiday destination, with cheap Sharm el Sheikh holidays becoming ever more available in the last few years. Most of these are package holidays, but more people are starting to book their flights and hotels separately and making their own trip.

This popular resort is known for its lovely weather all year round, as well as for having some of the best dive spots in the world. Summers can be really hot, but it's ideal for a cheap winter sun destination, when temperatures are slightly lower and more comfortable. Expect crystal clear waters, plenty of space on the beaches, a huge range of watersports and ample chance to relax. As Sharm el Sheikh is a huge holiday destination you can find almost everything you could want from a trip away, including casinos, nightclubs, golf courses and some seriously fun day trips too - how do you fancy quad biking in the desert? You could also consider combining a holiday here with a Nile cruise - there are plenty of great package deals available!

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What to do in Sharm el Sheikh

As you're guaranteed sunshine on your holiday in Sharm el Sheikh, you can get excited about all the great outdoor activities on offer. There's so much to do from checking out the best dive spots, to floating about with a snorkel on, lying on the beach or visiting the bazaars in the Old Town. There are restaurants and shops galore as well - try Na'ama Bay for the best in Sharm glamour and head to the Sharm el Sheikh Mall for your souvenirs. Don't forget that the desert is also right on your doorstep - you can explore on quad bikes or camel back and take tea with the Bedouins. If you want a fantastic day trip, pick one of these:

Mount Sinai and St Catherine's Monastery is a religious site for both Muslims and Christians, and it's home to the burning bush from the Old Testament. Choose between the long, gently inclined route to the top and the 3750 "steps of penitence" to get to the top! We know which one we would pick!

Ras Muhammed National Park is a world-renowned park close to Sharm El Sheikh. It's known for its wonderfully clear waters, amazing coral reefs and great bird watching too.

Coloured Canyon You'll have to get up early to take a walk down this amazing rock formation - it gets pretty hot during the day. We promise it's worth it though, so don't forget your camera.

The Blue Hole is another paradise for divers, although this should only be attempted by pretty competent divers - you'll need a certificate to go below the surface.

When to go to Sharm el Sheikh

We see most searches for cheap deals to Sharm el Sheikh for the summer and Christmas holidays, but as you can imagine you're actually least likely to get a bargain basement deal at this time! If you do want to go in these popular periods, then get yourself signed up for our weekly travel deals email - if we find any incredible offers to Sharm for these times of year you can bet they'll be in there.

If you can be flexible about when you go there's more chance of grabbing a great deal. January, February and March see the coolest of the weather - although you will still find it hot and sunny compared to the UK! This is when hotel rates are usually the lowest, and it's also many scuba instructors' favourite time to see the underwater sights, as the water is clear and fairly free of other tourists. Why not search for a last minute holiday deal?

June to August can be seriously hot, so if you're a sun-lover then this could be paradise - just remember to take your suncream! If you want something a little milder then try autumn and spring. A holiday in Sharm el Sheikh in one of these seasons can boost your sun quota without emptying your holiday fund. You could even look out for some of the weirder festivals in Sharm to make your holiday even more exciting. We like the look of the International Camel Competition held annually in April, or October's International Diving Competition!

Getting to Sharm el Sheikh

Finding cheap package holidays to Sharm el Sheikh is simple all year round, especially with our holiday search comparison. You will find cheap Sharm deals with departures from airports all across the UK, but with competition to offer the lowest prices pretty fierce at the moment (and this looks set to continue for Sharm holidays in 2014) make sure you know what's included in the price. Extras like transfers and luggage are things to watch out for - they can really add up, especially if you have to pay on the day unexpectedly.

All flights arrive into Sharm's International Airport, which is around five hours from the UK, depending on your departure airport. If you're planning on spending all of your holiday to Sharm el Sheikh on the beach or by the pool then you don't need a tourist visa - you only need to get one of these if you're heading for day trips to Luxor or Cairo. They cost £20, so if you're not sure whether you will take a day trip it might be worth hedging your bets and splashing out.

Once you touch down, if your holiday package to Sharm doesn't come with transfers included, you will find that simply hopping in a taxi is unlikely to break the bank. Just make sure that you arrange the full fee before you get in! If you're really watching your pennies then hop on the microbus, which is a much more adventurous option.