News About Nuweiba, Egypt by Gasser Riad of Nature Travel in the Sinai.
Please feel free to email Gasser (email@example.com) with any news items you would like to have posted.
The Official Tour Egypt Voice in Nuweiba November 11th, 2005
According to Modern Bride, the average couple forks up about 3,657.00 USD for a honeymoon. Thats a bit short probably of what would be needed, but imagine treating your new princess to this: Its one of those soft, Red Sea evenings. Just a bit of wind, but thats because your terrace sits atop a cliff overlooking the sea, in a castle. The only sound is that which nature provides, well, at the moment. The servants are busy toiling elsewhere, and it is just you and your new spouse, feeling as though you are soaring over the lovely sea, its color shifting between blue, turquoise, green and gray, here high up in your perch. Tonight, and for the next few, this is your castle. There are no other rooms available for other guests, because there are no other rooms.
It doesnt have to be this quiet. Inside your lavish quarters are all the modern amenities. It consists of two floors providing what many of the most luxurious honeymoon suites in hotels do not. First of all, there is the view of the sea, from many windows. But there is also a satellite, large screen TV, DVD, stereo and even internet access, but for once, web browsing is not on your mind. Sitting by the fireplace on a comfy cushion might be better, toasting a loving commitment with a glass of fine wine, or perhaps a bit of snuggling in the hammock with its real mattress, or a soak in the carved marble bath. Need something? Just ring for your private barman, your private chef, or the masseuse.
Of course, you could also take a dip in your private natural spring-fed swimming pool right on the edge of the rocky cliff, or maybe take a soothing stroll around the Japanese Koi pond, the cascades and waterfalls about your castle.You might even stroll down to the level of other mortals, and walk along your private beach.
This is Castle Zaman. As it turns out, Geziret Faraum, the old Crusader fortress on Pharaohs Island in the Gulf of Aqaba is no longer the only castle on the Eastern Sinai coast. But unlike Geziret Faraum, this much more comfortable and well appoined castle can be yours, at least for a while, for about $1,000 USD per night. That may be a rather stiff amount, though not for a suite in many fine hotels, but it is a penance for a honeymoon in a castle by the sea that will live on in your memories forever.
When architect turned cartoonist Hany Roshdy was denied a residential license to build a house near Nuweiba, he decided to build something just a bit grander, and it seems that the commercial license was easier to get than the residential one. Roshdy is the mastermind behind the popular pharaoh cartoon in Egypt known as King Dude, as well as Say Cheese rats that are now printed on many greeting cards and t-shirts. Some have even called him the Walt Disney of Egypt, so perhaps his endeavor is not so surprising. And yet, Walt Disney his is not, for old Walt made most of his dreams from concrete and steel.
He now has his view of the Red Sea that he wanted, but from the lofty grandeur of the Zaman Castle. Zaman is actually Arabic for "the past", and he took steps to make sure that the touristic castle is as close to an actual monument as he could. Architecturally, strict adherence was given to ancient construction techniques, which were revived specifically for the project. Every single stone in its construction was handpicked from nearby mountains, and neither metal nor concrete were used in the construction process. Together with local craftsman, Roshdy painstakingly collected granite and basalt stones from dried spring beds around the cliff. The stones, shaped and polished by once gushing water, were color coordinated and used to create Zamans imposing walls. These were lined on the inside with stone slabs specially transported from El Arish. A true architectural achievement, its construction revived ancient techniques of building stone vaults and cross vaults. In fact, many first time visitors who are unaware of its history end up believing it is actually an ancient monument, and even those who know its secrets are hard pressed to find a flaw that might reveal its more modern construction.
There are even environmental awareness features. Reclaimed wood was used in all construction and furniture, and chandeliers and lighting fixtures are all handcrafted from recycled glass bottles.
An underground treasure room has been excavated from beneath the castle. Here one can experience the marvel of an ancient party trick. Midday on April 22, August 20, December 31, and January 1, a sunbeam passes directly through a hole, and subsequently through a glass lens, to magically light a candle in the darkness of the dungeon. This striking, Abu Simbel-like shrine has been constructed to evoke images of pharonic times, and indeed it does. What a neat trick. Now days, there is a treasure hunt-style gift shop in the treasure room where one can purchase a few physical memories of their visit to the castle.
At about 35 kilometers distance from the Taba airport, this thoroughly comfortable and modern, yet authentically executed structure is completely Egyptian, and not very difficult at all to visit. When it is not being rented for honeymooners, it is available for special parties and other events, and when none of that is going on, one can simply visit the castle, have a drink in the bar or a rather authentic medieval dinner in the restaurant. In the end, this is not the sort of creation that a corporation could, or would dream up. A real commercial endeavor would figure out ways to cut costs, perhaps with a bit of plastic or steel here and there. But there is love in these stones, the furnishings, not made so much of wood, but of dreams, and the pools are full of memories in this castle by the sea.
Posted by Administrator: - 11:27 am - 1 Comment
August 29th, 2005
Last month we, my husband and my 2 children Dudu (8) and Duva (5) went for a real adventure experience. Nature Travel wants to introduce an adventure of rock climbing to the region and in the Sinai we have beautiful places that invite rock climbing.
Naturally Gasser wanted to have a first hand respond from his family. So, accompanied by our professional guide and friend Sam we drove out into the desert by jeep all excited about what this would be like. About 15 km south of Nuweiba we left the asphalt road and drove towards Bir Zrair, a Bedouin settlement. A few km before the settlement we turned into Wadi al Sid which provides perfect conditions for a snappling tour. The Wadi ends in a gap of about 10 meters.
We left the car and Sam gave us an introduction. It is like swimming , he said. Lay back, the rope will hold you. Have confidence. Put your legs on the rock, and be sure that you have a good hold. Move down step by step but dont look down.
We were all excited. Gasser was the first one to go. He connected the belt and the rope and put on a safety hat to protect against small loose stones that might fall while climbing down. With a loud good bye and a big smile, Gasser let himself down and slowly descended step by step, while we were watching and shouting and laughing. Then it was Dudus turn. As a young boy fond of the mountains and outdoor living he had no problems, though my heart was pumping watching him descending easily.
Duva refused. Sam brought a huge basket for Duva to sit in while we pushed the basket over the edge. With loud laughter and happy screaming Duva made his way downwards.
Then it was my turn. Connected to the rope I moved my leg over the edge searching for a hold on the flat rock. Then slowling moving my other leg downwards until I found a small crack for support I began the descent. This was the most difficult part. Under the guidance of Sam I relaxed my body as if I was swimming and let my legs do the work, not looking down nor up, just concentrating on the rock in front of me. Each step seemed to be easier and my self confidence rose. When my feet reached safe ground I was happy and proud to have mastered my first rock climbing experience.
At the end of the tour, which took about 5 hours, we enjoyed a picknick of fresh bread baked in the campfire and tea and headed back to the car driving to the beautiful bay of Ras Abu Galloum where we spend the night under a million stars.
Posted by gasser: - 12:07 pm - No Comments
August 19th, 2005
Here is the web address for the new SwissCare Nuweiba Beach resort, including some nice pictures.
Posted by Administrator: - 8:37 am - No Comments
July 23rd, 2005
Dear All, Good day from Nuweiba. We are 170 north of Sharm el-Sheikh and we felt very very badly about what happened. In fact, my wife and my children was too close to the accident with one English friend and thank god they came back to Nuweiba early in the morning after the attack safely. I believe what happened in the UK could be happen any where in the world. I pray for those who lost their lives and their families. Let us pray all of us to the whole world to be save from terrorism.
Posted by gasser: - 7:43 am - 1 Comment
June 23rd, 2005
Coming soon Swiss Care Nuweiba Resort Hotel The resort is located on over forty thousand Square metries of beautiful front land in Nuweiba some 3 km from thr port and 5 km from the town The beach is sandy and flat, with a lovely long Coral reef, that offers excellent snorkelling and swimming. The resort shall efentually consist of: 1-48 one bedroom suites 2- Six restaurants and bars 3- Reception, lounge and meeting rooms 4- 13 shops Large selecion of recreation activities with a large fresh water swimming pool, children area, beach volley ball and soccer, billiardes, darts, water sports, inter net service, massage service, beautiful spacious beach and gardens and a dive center operated by the renowned British owned.
Posted by gasser: - 1:06 pm - 2 Comments
June 21st, 2005
The best and most peacful night you can have while you are in the Sinai can be found at Ras Abu Galoom, one of the natural protected area on the east coast. I was recently there with my family celebrating my older sons birthday with our Beduin friends, eating fresh fish cooked by the Beduin ( Ahmed and Aied ). It was a grand time.
Posted by gasser: - 5:33 am - 2 Comments
June 16th, 2005
We now have DSL Internet connections in Nuweiba for the first time. It is operating fast and very well. Its a lot of fun to use the computer to keep in touch with all of our friends abroad and I hope it will improve business. In addition, many of the hotels are also getting the DSL service and providing it to the tourism market. This has all really helped because prior to this we had many problems with the internet. However, we hope you come to Nuweiba and forgot about everything and just enjoy the holiday away from the daily routine.
Posted by gasser: - 2:27 pm - 3 Comments
Last Updated: June 22nd, 2011
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