30 Traveller reviews from Holiday Watchdog
Underwater camera essential !!
"Arrived here after 8 nights(Marriot) in Hurghada, we had heard Sharm was to be a completely different Egyptian experience and in some ways it was, certainly not as cultural as our first stop but plenty more to do in this purpose built resort.
The best thing about beach holidays in Egypt is the sea life, Snorkelling just within 3ft of water at the hotel beach you will see an amazing array of tropical fish, I even saw a blue spotted stingray in the shallow end!. It is very safe to snorkel here as the bathing area is sectioned off with buoys.
The Hotel is in a good location on the bay, between the Marriot and the Hilton. My room was on the ground floor in the garden area, a nice room but it was next to the 'janitor/cleaning station' which was very noisy. The shower went from medium temperature to scalding hot every now and again I complained a few times, an engineer came and said there was no problem. Hmmn. I eventually gave up complaining and accepted the situation which meant for the duration of my holiday could not actually stand underneath it. Breakfast was very good, although getting fresh coffee sometimes became quite challenging.
There was a nice beach with plenty of sun beds, water sports where available everywhere at what seemed reasonable prices. Plenty of diving schools, I chose the Hilton for a beach dive with a guide (1 to 1) for 30 minutes including a brisk (5-10 mins) introduction on how to dive!!! all for about 30 GBP. It certainly was money well spent although a little daunting.
If you are doing stuff in and around Naama bay, use your legs to get there as the Egyptian taxi experience is horrendous. If they don't get you on the inflated price (sometimes 10 x what it should be) they try and switch notes you give them, and if you are not on the ball it will cost you dearly. In this situation, just mention that you are going to contact the 'Tourist Police', this has an amazing effect and you normally don't end up paying a thing for your ride!! :)
Lots of people trying to sell you tours, my advice is to book at the hotel, you may pay a little more but believe you me, its worth every penny from my experience! Cairo/Giza visit is a must, and for an unforgettable experience go into the 'Mummy' rooms (extra 10 GBP) at the museum - scary stuff !
Eating - Hard Rock cafe and the mexican were excellent and cheap as long as you don't drink spirits.
All in all, I would go back to Naama bay, but probably would not stay at the Novotel, there are plenty to choose from and if you look hard enough online, you can find good rates!"
- Travel date: Wed 6th of February 2008
Five Star Novotel
"Have just returned from the Novotel Sharm el Sheikh 14/01/2008,
This hotel deserves it's 4-5 Star rating,
Rooms are spacious with the largest double bed i've ever seen,flat screen t.v. large balcony,+air conditioning,
There is a out-side heated swiming pool, plenty of sun-beds , and your own private beach which is attached to the gardens again with your own sun-beds and brolly's,+ you are given a fresh towel every day, the food is excellent with plenty of choices, and we never had a upset stomach whislt there,
The hotel is approx a 15 minute walk from nama bay centre which is accessed via a nice walk along the front prom, again this is a nice walk as all the hotels have bars over-looking this walk-way, be aware of the egyptions who try to hassle you in nama bay centre some-times it can be very annoying, just try and ignore them,
A couple of tips you do not have to buy a visa at the airport if you are planning to stay in sharm el sheikh (we did not ) you only need a visa if you are planning to go out of the resort,(visa cost approx Â£10 )
Also do not get in a taxi till you have agreed a price , a taxi to the old town should cost no more than 35-40 egyption pounds, there is 10 egyption pounds to our 1 pound, so the old town should only cost approx Â£3.50-Â£4.00, hope this helps.
We would say a winter break for sun-shine is a definate yes for egypt, but do take a small coat/jumper for the evening as it does get chilly,
Hope all this is of benefit and happy hols,
Pete/Mary, from Brum."
- Travel date: Thu 17th of January 2008
Beautiful hotel and setting
"Our Christmas trip to Egypt couldn't have been more perfect. I went with my two brothers (adults) and stayed in the Novotel in Naama Bay. The hotel is brilliantly located, right on the beach, and about 10 mins walk from the centre. You pass a lot of other hotels on the way. In my opinion of the hotels in the area the Novotel is the definitely the best.
It's also exceptionally clean, and the staff are so friendly. There are poolside activities every day such as aqua aerobics and belly dance lessons and the animators put on a little show every night at the bar. The bar is great and the waiters such as Whalid, etc. are great fun.
On Christmas eve 24th December we were invited to a special dinner in a marquis in the grounds. There was a live crib complete with camel, and we were served mulled wine before hand. In my life I never experienced such a spectacular buffet. There was even a fresh spaghetti options.
The resort had lots to offer us in the way of activities. We did a trip where we went in a jeep out into the "desert" to see a makeshift bedouin village then camel riding and then snorkelling at the Blue Hole. On the way back we stopped to shop in Dahab which has a great shopping street and is much cheaper than Naama Bay. The boys also played golf and went go karting. The quad biking looked great.
In the town you can have local food as well as Hard Rock and TGI Fridays, and a good Mexican restaurant. Some of the local restaurants can be dodgy so get a recommendation from your hotel. The local restaurant above the Hard Rock is very good.
The weather was great at Christmas time. The days were warm - about 25 degrees but the sun set about 4.30pm and then it got cool. You could do with a warm coat for night time.
All in all a fabulous place that I would recommend to anyone."
- Travel date: Sat 12th of January 2008
Would thoroughly recommend this hotel....
"Would thoroughly recommend this hotel. It was spotlessly clean, staff were extremely polite and helpful and the location was perfect.
We ate out every day and despite taking the precaution of bottled water for brushing teeth, using anti-bac hand wash after handling the money, 4 out of our family of 6 people suffered sickness and/or tummy upsets.
However, the chemists are pretty clued up and know what to prescribe to clear up the infection so didn't spoil the holiday.
My husband and 3 sons went quad biking at sundown in the desert which they all enjoyed, played golf at Movenpick Golf Resort (about Â£60 for 18 holes (includes electric buggy), half price for juniors under 16, club hire about Â£20) which they enjoyed too.
We didn't rate the snorkelling trip to Tiran Island as the sea was very rough, we were travelling against the current and it seemed to take forever to get there (the rep had said an hour but it was more like 2 hours).
Lots of people were seasick and when we arrived at the island (you are still at sea, you don't actually moor at the island) the sea was so cold, hardly anyone snorkelled.
I had a go at one stop but didn't see any fish, just a couple of jelly fishes. There were actually lots of fish at the reef opposite the hotel which you access from a jetty on the beach and the water is only waist deep so I would give the boat trip a miss.
The aqua park is clean and new but I am convinced that is where my daughter got so ill after swallowing so much water - best avoided with young children.
Naama Bay in the evening is nice to walk to (about 10 mins walk to centre), lots of shops and very persistent shop owners (just don't make eye contact and if you still get caught, just say "later" or just "no thanks" and keep walking).
If you want to buy something, have in mind what you want to pay before you go into the shop - you have to barter - so start at about half of what you want to pay and you should end up agreeing on the price you thought of before you went in!
All in all a lovely holiday and we would definitely go back to this hotel."
- Travel date: Mon 16th of April 2007
I went to Sharm El Sheikh on April 14th...
"I went to Sharm El Sheikh on April 14th for a week and stayed at the Novotel Sharm (10 minute transfer from the airport), I found this hotel fantastic, it is situated along the promenade in Naama Bay (on the Beach), itâs a 5 minutes stroll to the town. The hotel is a 5 star and my partner and I were treated like a King and Queen, the staff were so friendly, checking you had everything you wanted and that you were enjoying yourself.
The service was just superb the beds were changed every day and the towels changed twice a day.
You had 24 hour room service, laundry service, sky television,
re-stocked mini-bar, safe, cleaner, on-site shop, bureau de change, hairdresser, gym facility, masseurs. The room was great the bed is absolutely huge (no chance of it being hogged by the other half) plenty of room and a beautiful balcony overlooking gardens, the room is air-conditioned and the bathroom is a good size.
We stayed on a bed and breakfast basis and had a great selection to choose from you could easily stay 7 days and eat something different everyday. The location is ideal its dead in the centre of Naama Bay, from our hotel room it took 1 minutes to get to breakfast or the pool and the beach 2 minutes max where a towel waiter is there ready to give you fluffy blue towels to use on the beach loungers, absolute heaven.
I would highly recommend this hotel it is smaller (if you call 2000 odd rooms small) than the Hilton and Jolieville but the service is of a higher standard, it is my boyfriends 4th time in Sharm El Sheikh and this hotel by far is the best that he has stayed in.
The town is great you have The Camel Bar if you are a Diver or footie addict, the food is plentiful you have Mexican, Chinese, Swiss, Hard Rock Cafe, Indian, French, Cantonese. Highly recommend the buffalo wings in the Mexican (Naama Bay Hotel), the nightlife is great two you have PACHA there and a great club called little Buddha.
As for the beautiful fish you see when snorkelling and scuba diving, I just canât describe. The only way I can sum up the holiday as a whole is that it is paradise, it is so clean, and by far the best place I have ever been."
- Travel date: Thu 31st of March 2005
The Novotel Naama Bay was absolutely fan...
"The Novotel Naama Bay was absolutely fantastic, the staff were wonderful, the rooms was exceptional and the food was out of this world. This hotel was so good I have spent two days trying to book again for this month with no luck.
If you want the best go to the Novotel, the rooms are cleaned daily, the staff will fall over themselves to help and are genuinely polite and not 'slimy' like many hotel staff.
The food is just perfect and the choice will have you thinking hard what to eat next. The only mistake I made was to go B&B but on saying that the charge to eat dinner in the hotel was only Â£12.50pp plus drinks so we had the choice to eat out if we wanted a change.... Â£25 for two people was exceptional value considering the high quality of the food... Donât take my word for it... Go there and have fun, the private beach is not crowded and very, very clean with waiter service...
Enough said, apart from a big thank you to all at the Novotel. I hope to see you all again soon."
- Travel date: Fri 30th of April 2004