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Travellers' questions that don't fit anywhere else This is an opportunity to ask any question, and post any notice you wish that doesn't fit into one of the other sections.
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  #1  
Old 16 Oct 2011
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Short desert trip/excursion in Egypt - Looking for advice

Fearing the winter, we are planning a short trip to the Egyptian Red Sea coast looking for some sun and diving. And we would like to make a 1 to 3 days desert excursion on motorbike.

Has anyone gone on a similar short trip and can recommend a tour company? No desert/off road experience, so we look for something accessible to newbies.

We found KTM Egypt Dakar Calling in Sharm El Sheikh, but we would prefer to go elsewhere (opposite coast to visit archeological sites) and ferries do not seem to work anymore to cross the Red Sea. Any experience with them or any other company?

Thanks in advance, all advice is welcome (location, company, destination, etc, as long as it involves some biking!)
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Old 17 Oct 2011
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Tough One

Hi,

A little tricky here. The KTM place in sharm had a good rep but very much depends who is guiding currently. There is some good spots near there for day trips or probably longer.

Dahab seems to have more and more collections of bikes outside shop fronts advertising trips. Some of them look in good condition but I have no direct experience or recomendations. Bikes are mostly 250's with a few bigger ones thrown in. The area around Dahab would be pretty spectacular too and personally Dahab is by far my favourite red sea location.

I'm pretty sure there is a bike trip company in Hurghada as the scandinavian guy (name will come to me) often comes up for the little mini rallies that are organised around Cairo.

I have to say that a bit of Egyptian sunshine, Dahab loafing around, the occassional dive or kite surf with a day or two of riding thrown has to be a holiday that's hard to beat.

As I was reminder coming through Nuweiba Port at the weekend, Egypt can be very frustrating at times, but it does have a huge amount to offer.

Come on you tourists and travellers. Get your arses back here, people need you.
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JT
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  #3  
Old 19 Oct 2011
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Dahab

JamieT, thanks a lot for your great reply. My gf is actually very happy, she wanted to go to Dahab...!!! She told me about it as well and looks to be the place.

My only concerns are: I'd love to go to Luxor, but avoiding flights since we'll go diving (and feel stupid with domestic flights). Looks like cannot have it all (can you confirm that there are no ferries?).

So, I've been looking for some kind of tour to the desert, but could only find choppers in the Sinai! Weird thing. I'll try harder. Plan B can always be to go to Sharm which is like 80kms south, just for the tour.

Thanks again, we'll join thoses arses getting to Egypt!
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Old 20 Oct 2011
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Bahareya, the White desert and the dunes nearby

Egypt is a vast country, and the roads are dreadful. Avoid as much as you can. However, if you happen to come to Cairo, and I recommend you do in order to understand the place and see quite interesting artifacts and the Giza Pyramids, you could quite easily venture out to the Western desert and enjoy riding bikes in the White desert. Some guy I have the coordinates somewhere operates a tour/bike rental from the Oasis International Hotel in Bahareya (Peter's place). Suzuki DR400 in pretty good conditions when I saw then almost 2 years ago. Bahareya is at 4 hours drive from Cairo, Peter can help you get there easily. The rooms are clean and comfortable, food and ambiance ok, it's a place where you can actually enjoy and wine, and the white desert is just very very impressive. Book an overnight out and try to sync with a full moon. Temperature can go down to 2-5 Celcius in the winter at night and striking 40 during the day. Fantastic place. Absolutely worth going, along with Dahab (by far the cool place to hang around in Sinai). As I said roads are very dangerous especially in the Sinaï and upper Egypt, and you should fly instead of driving / getting into a bus each time. Domestic flights are cheap, fast and efficient. Travel light though. As for the KTM place in Sharm, I've neglected posting a thread to express my... disillusion. Really they have a fanatic set-up with an entry door to the Sinaï, but all reveals an unexploited potential. For a few hundred € though, they will provide all the gear and a bike, with a guide and you'll enjoy tea with bedouins somewhere -- not too far, and not overnight. Security in the Sinaï has become an issue, mostly in the North but it's hard to predict. Siwa is also a place to visit, but way too far from Dahab, and I don't know of motorbike rental there. Going to Egypt is a quick jump from Europe so you can come often, indeed the people of this country really need tourism for a leaving, and they are -- for the greatest majority -- fantastically nice people. Worth dealing with the not so nice authorities, though sometimes it does get to you. Plan ahead! /C
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Old 24 Oct 2011
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Thanks a lot Squire, the Western Sahara sounds too good, but also too far for us now, especially if we want to avoid flying since we may go diving... I've seen pics of the White dessert, definitely very impressive.

I wrote to KTM Sharm, since they do not provide prices in their web, something I disliked from the beginning. I have no experience, so do not expect to ride a 450. My girlfriend is being thinking about joining, but she has a 125cc licence and makes 1,62cm and 50kg, so he proposed a 85cc... So, if you ride a smaller bike, price should be reduced accordingly (I'll have to ask). Price received by e-mail for a 4 hour ride: 150€/person, add 20€ for the gear per day.

I've been checking prices with enduro companies in Spain and Morocco and it looks expensive. I expect to bargain in a souk, but not online with KTM. Any idea/advice about prices? I've never done anything similar, so no idea.

Squire, I'd be very interested to know more about your experience and would be very thankful if you could give me more details (price included).
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