Panorama of the Week: Hurghada Fresh Market, Egypt

When most people think about the Red Sea resort town of Hurghada, Egypt they likely imagine relaxing on the beach, scuba diving, adventuring in the desert, golfing, and lounging at a big resort. Hurghada does have all of that.

Rarely, however, does one think about fresh markets and a taste of local Egyptian culture. It’s there in Hurghada, if only you look hard enough.

You won’t find that local culture on Sheraton Street, an area which many people refer to as a souk when in fact it’s actually a street lined with souvenir shops and touts. Actually, we advise you skip this street altogether.

But if you do wish to catch a little slice of local life to go with your flashy new sunburn (er, tan), ask around for the local vegetable market. And when you arrive at the market, be sure make your way deep into the back sections where tourists rarely venture.

There you’ll find ordinary Egyptians making their way, shopping, playing with their kids and going about their daily lives. And you’ll be rewarded with human interaction and scenes like this.

Panorama: Fresh Market in Hurghada, Egypt

panorama directions

Disclosure: Our trip to Egypt and the UNWTO conference is being provided by Egyptian Tourism Authority. As always, the opinions expressed here are entirely our own.

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  1. says

    @Dean: Agree! Fresh markets are usually one of our first stops in each place we visit. Gives you a feel for local people, food and life all in one go!

  2. says

    @Christy: Fresh markets are where it’s at. A non-threatening environment, no souvenirs to buy, and vendors almost always give free samples. How can you beat that? Not to mention, fruit and vegetable people are the friendliest around.

  3. says

    Are you currently in Egypt? Just curious what the atmosphere is there. Do you feel any of the turmoil still vibrating? I’ve been wanting to go, but concerned about the unsettling in the government.


  4. says

    @Chrissy: We were in Egypt last at the end of April 2012. We were also there in December 2011 during some of the protests. When we were in Egypt last, people were talking about the upcoming elections, but with determination that they will go peacefully, that this is a necessity for the country to move on. I really hope they are correct, but only time will tell.

    However, one thing to keep in mind is that even if there are demonstrations they are usually held at Tahrir square and the rest of the city (and country) is usually not affected much.

  5. says

    @Daniel: We definitely got our fill of foul in Egypt – a healthy & hearty snack. Ate it a lot at breakfast for some reason, but not as a sandwich. Interesting.

  6. says

    Yea it’s often served as a dish with olive oil, tomoatoes and onions and then just eaten either as is or scooped up in pita bread. The sandwiches im referring to are essentially just pita bread filled with the above concoction. From someone who’s not a huge fan of beans it actually tastes pretty good!

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