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Safaga,

Port Safago has been undergoing a transformation, slowly metamorphosing into a holiday rsort. Like other cities on the Red Sea, the commercial port town sits close to great offshore dive sites. Unlike others, however, tourist development hasn't taken off in a meaningful way. But if the mass tourism in Hurghada is a turnoff, Safaga offers a small-scale and much more low-key alternative, though the best dive sites can still be seen on a day trip from Hurghada. Safaga is also the closest beach resort to Luxor and the Valley of the Kings, which lies 200 km (124 mi) to the southwest; when cruise ships offer land excursions to Luxor, they often do so through Safaga.

Dining

Taverna Barba Kiriakos

The owner of the InterContinental Abu Soma Resort was born in Greece, and this genuine taverna with its blue-and-white decor and fishing boat outside is a little reminder of his homeland. Start with a crisp Greek salad or dolmades (stuffed vine leaves). Excellent slow-cooked stifado (beef stew in tomato sauce) and moussaka (a dish of eggplant, ground beef, and tomato sauce) make delicious entrées. Plate throwing is optional.

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