El Quseir literally means “the short,” due to the unique ability of the port permitting the inland pilgrims to conduct the shortest voyage to Mecca conceivable via the Nile valley. The historic city of El-Quseir is a mix of colorful and rigid coral-block architecture right from the Ottoman era, that is unfortunately avoided by most tourists. We, therefore, provide a fantastical glimpse in the region of El Quseir and bring you the best things you can do in El Quseir!
1. This mosque is easily the icon of El Quseir
The Shaykh Al-Farran Mosque is the oldest mosque in El Quseir. When visiting El Quseir, you must certainly see this place. This mosque is in the old part of the town, surrounded by old buildings, and has an old-world charm to it, which instantly transports you to a bygone era. When you enter the mosque, you are instantly greeted with carpeted floors and traditional carved wooden balconies that will catch your attention.
The mosque is open for all, regardless of religion and gender, except for the time of prayer. Furthermore, it is of paramount importance to enter the mosque premises in modest attire fully covered, with shoes placed outside while entering. This is applicable to both genders and women need to cover their head when entering the premises.
The Mosque of Shaykh al-Farran
Address: Al Shahid Nemr Abd Al Monem, Qesm Al Qoseir, Red Sea Governorate, Egypt
2. Discover the amazing underwater world
Take a shot at going underwater and discover the aquatic world. If you are new to underwater diving and snorkeling, you can enroll in their beginner courses and learn the diving instructions that Aquatic Divers offer, following international standards for safety such as SSI and PADI. It is highly recommended to book the diving safari on their M/Y Gloria boat and enjoy the diving adventures of Egypt
Address: Plot 24S El Zoreeb, Qesm Al Qoseir, Red Sea Governorate, Egypt
Hours: 8:30 a.m. to 6:00 p.m. (all days)
Phone: +20 121 115 9536
Website: Aquatic Divers
3. Get the inside scoop from the marine life
Diving in the waters of El Quseir is extremely diverse with abundant virgin coral gardens, stimulating wall dives, offshore ergs, seagrass meadows, wide-ranging cavern arrangements and a resident pod of dolphins to get acquainted with. Pharaoh Dive Club brought to you by Roots Red Sea offers shore diving, Zodiac (rigid inflatable boats) diving and hard boat diving that provides some of the unsurpassed diving experiences in the region. If you will be diving for the first time, the Pharaoh Dive Club is your diving guide of choice to make that first diving experience all the more special.
Pharaoh Dive Club
Address: Kilo 14, Safaga Al Qusair Road, Abu Sauatir, Hamawein, Red Sea, Egypt
Phone: +20 100 682 2000
Website: Roots Red Sea
4. Check out what the Sultan would see from his castle
The Ottoman Castle, also known as the fort of El Quseir, was originally built by Sultan Selim I in 1517 in the center of the town. Upon reaching the site, your attention will be instantly locked by the muzzles of two protruding cannons that were installed by the French to defend the town and harbor, which was strategically important back in the day for its trading and busy port. Nowadays, one can overlook the bazaars from the ramparts and check out the activities below and simply get a panoramic view of the town.
The Ottoman Castle
Address: Ottoman Castle, Oman, Qesm Al Qoseir, Red Sea Governorate, Egypt
Hours: 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. (all days)
5. Take a walk along Port Said and enjoy some amazing fish delicacies
During the late 19th century, Port Said was Egypt’s city of vice and disreputable in all ways possible. Today Port Said is a popular pedestrian-only boardwalk bordering the Red Sea, delivering close proximity views for visitors to stop by and admire the local environment. Take a walk along the coastline and build up an appetite and head over to Calamaro Fish Restaurant or El Fardous Fish Restaurant. If you have had your lunch, then you can head over north to visit the Church of the Blessed Virgin Mary and the martyr Barbara.
Address: Port Said, Qesm Al Qoseir, Red Sea Governorate, Egypt
6. Take a walk around the ancient Roman port of Myos Hormos (El Quseir El Qadima)
El Quseir El Qadima is a significant site to visit mainly due to its association with being an old Roman port called Myos Hormos “Mussels Harbour” in the heyday. This is the site where numerous amphora and old pottery artifacts were found, which are believed to be of Indian and Chinese origin. Even the police station is supposedly a historical site. This ancient Roman port is located 8 kilometers (5 miles) north of the city center of El Quseir. Walk through the streets of El Qadima to invoke a sense of going back in time and unearthing the history of this place, which was once an active port where pottery, slaves, wine, precious minerals, and spices were traded from India and East Africa to Europe and the Mediterranean.
El Quseir El Qadima
Address: Near Hamrawein Port, Qesm Al Qoseir, Red Sea Governorate, Egypt
7. Visit the Church of the Blessed Virgin Mary and the Martyr Barbara
The Church of the Blessed Virgin Mary and the Martyr Barbara was established in 1920 as a Catholic church by the Italian phosphate mining company. After the church fell into disrepair due to nonpatronage, the Coptic church adopted it in 1964 and renamed it Virgin St. Mary Church. But in 1995, a change in name was initiated and the church was renamed to Virgin St. Mary and St. Barbara Church.
Church of the Blessed Virgin Mary and the Martyr Barbara
Address: Al Shareka, Qesm Al Qoseir, Red Sea Governorate, Egypt
8. Get the thrills of the desert safari along the rugged terrains of El Quseir
Indulge into the exhilarating and fun desert safari while admiring the stunning Quseir desert and mountains. Take a guided trip offered by Mövenpick Resort and enjoy the pristine desert surroundings and mountains. Drive through the Wadi Al Anz and into a mining town which has been long abandoned and turned into a ghost city. Continue your journey to a Bedouin oasis and watch the desert as you see the sunset giving you photographic opportunities. Depending upon your requirements a choice of jeeps and quad bikes are available to make your desert safari memorable.
Address: Sirena Beach, El Quseir, Egypt
Phone: +2 065 3350 410
Website: Mövenpick Resort, El Quseir
9. Shopping in the souk at El Quseir
Next to the Ottoman castle, you can find local souks that offer handmade goods and souvenirs that you can take back for your family and friends. Shop in the friendliest atmosphere at the traditional bazaars that sell papyrus, spices, alabaster statues, souvenirs, t-shirts, jewelry and leather goods. On Friday, the shops take on a different turn as the Bedouins come along and set up shop with their products and create a fascinating environment.
Souk at El Quseir
Address: Qesm Al Qoseir, Red Sea Governorate, Egypt
The historic Roman port still has much more to offer
The old street of El Quseir bears testament to its history through battered ramparts, shrines of holy men, the ghost towns and the idle phosphor mining company that lead to the only church falling into disrepair. All that is changing and El Quseir is getting geared up to welcome new visitors and share with them its legacy.
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