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  • Location:Sharm el-Sheikh, Egypt
  • Duration:12 hours (approx.)

Egyptian Desert Experience: St Catherine's Monastery, Bedouin Lunch, and Nawamis Tombs from Sharm el Sheikh

Experience the Egyptian desert's most extraordinary sights on a full-day expedition from Sharm El Sheikh to St. Catherine’s Monastery and Nawamis, with a traditional lunch in a Bedouin home. Discover ancient rituals and art in the remote monastery, built on the legendary site of Moses’ burning bush. Browse a Bedouin handicraft center and get a glimpse of daily life in the desert as you enjoy a classic meal in a local home; ride a camel across the sand to Nawamis, an arid plateau dotted with enigmatic, bronze-age tombs. 


  • Full-day trip into the Sinai Desert with an expert guide, from Sharm el Sheikh
  • Visit historic St Catherine’s Monastery, built beneath Mount Sinai and believed to stand on the site of Moses’ Burning Bush
  • Explore the monastery’s rich, art-filled interiors, and view the site of the Burning Bush
  • Be welcomed into a local family's home for a typical Bedouin lunch served with tea
  • Shop for handmade clothes, jewelry and trinkets at a Bedouin craft center
  • Enjoy the views over the Sinai desert as you travel in an air-conditioned vehicle

What You Can Expect

Egyptian Desert Experience: St Catherine's Monastery, Bedouin Lunch, and Nawamis Tombs from Sharm el Sheikh

Visit holy St Catherine's Monastery on your full-day tour

Leave your Sharm el Sheikh hotel in an air-conditioned vehicle in the early morning. As you head into the Sinai desert, listen to the fascinating history of St Catherine’s Monastery from your driver, who doubles as your guide.

Arrive at St Catherine’s Monastery, where you can stop to snap photos of the gardens and monks’ quarters enclosed within the walled compound. Built between 527 and 656 AD beneath Mount Sinai, this magnificent complex is thought to stand on the site of Moses’ Burning Bush. It's also the site where the relics of St Catherine, believed to have been executed for her Christian beliefs, are enshrined.

Head inside and watch the monks pursue their daily business amid the spectacular, richly gilded church. Browse the priceless artifacts, mosaics and religious iconography and pause at the Burning Bush — a bramble-like tree that still grows here and if you wish, receive a private blessing from a priest.

Next, visit a Bedouin handicraft center and browse for books, as well as clothes, jewelry and other accessories handmade by local Bedouin women. Then, head into a local family’s home for a traditional Bedouin lunch. These meals usually consist of small plates of food shared between everyone, so expect moreish treats such as meat stew, salad, hummus, pickles and pitta bread. Enjoy some tea with your meal and hear more about the local cuisine and customs from your friendly hosts.

After lunch, drive to a nearby desert plateau for your camel ride. Climb onto one of these hump-backed herbivores and plod over the sands to the plateau of Nawamis. These UNESCO-listed sandstone tombs date from the Bronze Age and resemble flat-topped igloos. Take photos as your guide tells you more about how they were used by long-ago nomadic herders.

Afteward, relax on your return journey to Sharm el Sheikh where your tour ends with a hotel drop-off.
From USD $ 119.49

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Tour code: 6510EDT


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