Egypt is a great destination for us if you want to enjoy the sun and relax for a week: And in addition, you have a great opportunity for diving and snorkeling almost everywhere on the Red Sea. This is our travel post of the Hotel Jaz Samaya.
Table of contents
The choice of hotel in Egypt
Choosing the right hotel, on the other hand, was a little more difficult. Actually we originally wanted to go to Sharm el Sheikh. But after the terror warnings of recent years, this holiday region in Egypt seems to be slowly getting back on its way. Direct flights are almost no longer offered. At least since November there are probably some direct flights from Germany. However, we had not found a reasonable price here for our travel period.
As an alternative to Sharm el Sheikh (if you want to dive) mainly the region around Hurghada (El Gouna, Safaga, Makadi Bay) or Marsa Alam. After a long research of good reviews on Tripadvisor & Holidaycheck, the search for a beautiful house reef and a direct flight from Germany, we finally decided on an all-inclusive package at the Hotel Jaz Samaya in Coraya Bay.
Since we really wanted to have a direct flight, we had previously informed ourselves on the Internet on which weekdays there are direct flights from Frankfurt to Marsa Alam. It is the case that TUI flies back and forth on Tuesdays and Sunexpress on Sundays. We then booked the offer online via L’TUR. The price included the flight from Frankfurt, hotel accommodation, all-inclusive meals and on-site transfers from Marsa Alam airport to the hotel. So the all-round carefree package 😉
The flight from Frankfurt to Marsa Alam
The flight from Frankfurt to Marsa Alam takes about 4.5 to 5 hours. You should know that Sunexpress does not include food in the ticket price – not even a sip of water. So either buy something at the airport or just on the plane. Again, the choice is large, there are even hot meals. Furthermore, there is no entertainment program, i.e. you should remember to take a book, your own laptop with a movie or a neck pillow to sleep – otherwise it can get boring.
Tips for the Visa in Egypt
Arriving at the airport of Marsa Alam, you are taken by bus to the arrivals hall. Here, the whole package tour operators are already standing with their signs and waiting for their guests. Since you need a visa for Egypt as a German, you have 3 options here:
1. You can get a visa in advance at the Egyptian Embassy/Consulate in Germany. Then you can actually go directly to your respective agency desk, have your name checked off on the list, hand in the transfer voucher and briefly mention that you don’t need a visa.
2. You can get the visa at the airport from your tour operator (at a small surcharge). For this purpose, you go to the person with the sign of the booked tour operator, register, hand in your transfer voucher and have the visa glued directly into his passport. This would have cost us 33 euros per person at L’TUR. Afterwards on the bus, this money is collected by the responsible tour guide.
3. The very best and cheapest option: you go directly in the arrivals hall left to the only bank counter and buy there your visa yourself. Cost: 25 US Dollars or 25 Euro. Afterwards, you go to your agency for a short time, have your name checked off on the list, hand over the transfer voucher and inform the employees that you have already purchased your visa from the bank. They then write this down briefly and have it signed.
When the visa issue is done, you line up for passport control, get the suitcases off the conveyor belt and head towards the exit. Here you will find a similar picture as in the arrivals hall. Dozens of people stand with the various agency signs. Once you have found your, you can check it off again on the list and are then taken by the staff to the right bus. In the parking lot there are certainly always 30 of these small and large buses of the different providers, which bring the tourists to their hotels.
The Hotel Jaz Samaya
With the Hotel Jaz Samaya we had chosen accommodation that is close to the airport, so we don’t have a long transfer time. The hotel itself is located in a complex called “Madinat Coraya” and consists of several hotels and a water slide park. The Jaz Samaya is the last hotel – coming from the main road – and is therefore partly located on the bay and partly on the open sea.
The check-in at the hotel was very friendly. We were greeted with a small welcome drink. But we had the feeling that the check-in process took a little while… we waited about 30 minutes before we had our room card in our hands… even though only 6 people have arrived with us. The suitcases were taken out of our hands at the beginning and then, when we were in the room, we waited another 20 minutes. We first got a room in Building D overlooking the sea, which consisted of a small hallway, the bathroom, a space with luggage rack and 2 sofas as well as the actual room. However, we quickly saw that the room (and especially the bathroom) are already very habitual and even had some defects: rusty spots on the bathroom fittings, torn window rubbers, etc. The room has not been renovated for many years and you can unfortunately see this in many places! After a complaint to the management, we got a new room to the pool the next day, which was recently renewed and therefore much better. The air conditioning was extremely noisy even on the smallest of 3 steps. A TV with German programmes (ARD, ZDF, Arte) is available. The possibility to prepare coffee and tea is also available. Two 1.5 L bottles of water are provided daily in each room, which are free of charge. Free internet is only available in the lobby, but the connection is very slow.
And it was explained that the Jaz Samaya is a pure TUI hotel, so here are almost exclusively German guests. The staff often speaks very well German. The restaurant was clean and there are enough free seats (which may have been due to the fact that the hotel was only occupied for about 40). We found the food ok, but sometimes not very varied (if you compare it from day to day). The waiters are very friendly and try to help with problems.
We found the food and beverage stalls directly on the beach of the neighbouring hotel, which can be used. If you are on the beach all day long, you don’t have to walk back to the hotel restaurant for every drink, but you can get something here quickly.
The Hotel Jaz Samaya does not have its own real beach. There are a few small bays with loungers, but the way into the water is blocked here to protect the corals. There are a total of 3 pools and we always got a free lounger. At the neighbouring hotel Jaz Lamaya, on the other hand, there is a huge beach area. But also here you can only get into the water via the jetty or have to go to the middle of the bay.
We have chosen the Jaz Samaya mainly for diving. The very well organized diving school of the Coraya Divers is only about 500 meters from the hotel (Google Maps) and can be reached in 5 minutes via the way on the beach. Our travel report to the diving school of the Coraya Divers can be found here.
All travelogues from Marsa AlamAll travel reports from our stay at Jaz Samaya Resort in Marsa Alam (Egypt) with diving and snorkeling in the Red Sea. Marsa Alam – Jaz Samaya Resort in Coraya Bay (Egypt)
Marsa Alam – The Dive Center from Coraya Divers (Egypt)
Marsa Alam – Diving on the house reef of Coraya Bay (Egypt)
Marsa Alam – Diving in Marsa Shouna & Umm El Ros (Egypt)
Marsa Alam – Swim with dolphins in Shaab Marsa Alam (Egypt)