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Dahab

Written on: Monday January 11th, 2010

A journal entry from: Sun, Sand and Wind

G'Day from the Red Sea

 

*I have added pictures to the first 3 blogs now.

As my last entry finished I had just arrived in Dahab. Today is my 5th day here, in what I would call a small paradise within Egypt. Dahab is located on the Southeast coast of the Sinai Peninsula, it was previously a Bedouin fishing village turned international windsurfing/diving/resort location. The landscape is beautiful with large mountains surrounding the entire area. You can also see Saudi Arabia across the Gulf of Aqaba. Dahab has two sections, the north town, which is mainly backpackers and cheap accommodation and the south section which only has international resorts. I feel it is safe to say that coming to Dahab is not an accurate depiction of Egypt. It is more a small bubbled paradise constructed for Europeans and not for Egyptians. Therefore, I am quite happy that I got to see the "real Egypt" prior to.

 

I am staying at The Swiss Inn in the South. It is an absolutely lovely place and much more then I was expecting. My room is large and clean with a garden view. The whole area is full of lavish tropical plants and golf course quality grass. With my stay I get breakfast and dinner everyday, and let me tell you the food has been amazing! Every night for one week it is a new menu with some nights having a theme or live entertainment. Much of the food is made fresh for you as you wait in line (eggs, spetzle, crapes, pasta etc...) Needless to say I am very pleased and comfortable with my stay to date. *I still avoid the salad as I've heard it will make you sick since they wash it with local water. So far so good!

 

When I first arrived I was a little nervous in a sense, as it seemed to be nothing but families and couples. After my first night I thought it may be real hard to meet people and that 2 weeks may be fairly long alone. Fortunately, it seems that most of the windsurfers are also here alone or even if not are very opening, and hanging out at the windsurfing station, you meet heaps of ppl. So since the first day on the beach I have met some good people *Mainly Germans. Dahab is LITTERED with Russians and Germans!! In fact, there are so many Russians, that in Sharm El-Sheik which is where you fly in, there are 2 terminals. One for people and one solely for Russians! English is like the 3rd language, lol. The Germans are all quite friendly and easy to talk to, where as the Russians come off quite cold and do not speak much english.

 

The windsurfing has not been great so far. The 4 days before I arrived had great winds, and since has been mainly dead. I got about 1h the first day, and fooled around in light winds today. I am hoping for a real change soon. Although there hasn't been much wind, things have been real good so far. I bought some snorkelling gear and walked out to the reef one afternoon. I have explored the North town of Masbat (met up with Song from South Korea one night), and did a day tour to the desert yesterday. Besides that, it is nice to relax by the beach, read a book, and take in the sun and local sights (heaps of russian babes in bikinis, and some even windsurf!!!). I guess you can say life isn't too hard at the moment. :D

 

Yesterday I did a full day tour to two canyons here in the Sinai. Picked up at 8am Egyptian time (8:30) by an extended 4x4. The ride wasn't the best and really hard on the back as you sit in the back of this extended jeep with 7 others and the driving is just insane (It reminded me of the boat rides back from fishing in Manitoulin). We passed half a dozen other vehicles on the roads, and always in the corners... After about 1h of paved roads, we got off the roads and started driving up through the mountains. The rough ride aside, it was really amazing. The landscape is truly unique and every here and there you see "1" green tree. After one more hour, we had arrived to the Color Canyon, which was carved by water some time ago. As you walk through the canyon it is really amazing to see all the different sediment layers and the way these have been twirled by tectonic movements over the years. The colors were quite pronounced, with greys to browns, to orange/red. It was probably 50 to 60m deep and quite tight at some spots and we even had to squeeze through under a rock at one spot *This was tight for me, so I don't know how fat people can get through...? It took about 2h in total.

 

Afterwards we got back into the jeep for a while and had lunch at a small Bedouin village in an Oasis. We were driving for what seemed to be ages, always headed towards nowhere, with nothing but sand and rock, and then suddenly around a corner was a small oasis with the brightest green I have ever seen. The whole thing couldn't have been much bigger then 2 football fields. There are 5 families living here, and we had a bedouin lunch there. You always see Oasis' on movies and such, but it was really cool to see first hand. After lunch our guide showed us the main aquafier hidden in a small cave.

 

From there we continued on to the "white canyon". As you can imagine here the stone was quite white. Some of the stone is very soft, if you kick it, it simply turns to sand. At the end you need to climb to the top of the Canyon with a ladder and rope system. This trip was not for those out of shape, we had to do some climbing and quite a bit of walking in the sand. All in all, it was a long day but it was a real unique experience and I was really happy I had done it. I had never before seen any type of geology which can compare.

 

So that is life in Dahab! Hoping for some wind sometime soon, but enjoying life nonetheless.

 

Hope everyone is well, Take care!

 

David W.

 

 

 

 

 

From Claude on Jan 12th, 2010

Hey Buddy, great pictures, glad to hear things are going well. Where are all the pictures of the russian babes windsurfing?!

From ronald roy on Jan 13th, 2010

So glad you are having fun...you are sending excellent info! The sunshine looks inviting. Tante Pauline & Oncle Ronoald