Sharm el Sheikh

Sunrise at Mt.Sinai and St.Catherine monastery. Entrance included

Badge of ExcellenceSharm el Sheikh, Egypt
Climbing Moses Mountain and visit St Catherine Monastery
  • 16 to 18 hours
  • Pickup offered
  • Mobile ticket
  • Offered in: English

Overview

    What's Included

    • Air-conditioned vehicle
    • Entrance fees
    • Hotel pickup and drop-off
    • Bedouin guide during climbing up the mountain
    • Food&Drink
    • Camel ride

    Meeting and Pickup

    Pickup points

    Select a pickup point

    Start time

    08:00 PM

    Pickup details

    We can pick up from any hotel in Sharm-el-Sheikh at the main gate. We do not pickup at the bus stations, port or airport.

    What To Expect

    Mount Sinai

    6 hours Admission Ticket Included

    St. Catherine's Monastery

    40 minutesAdmission Ticket Included

    Additional Info

    • Confirmation will be received at time of booking
    • Not wheelchair accessible
    • Service animals allowed
    • Infant seats available
    • Not recommended for pregnant travelers
    • No heart problems or other serious medical conditions
    • Travelers should have a moderate physical fitness level
    • This tour/activity will have a maximum of 18 travelers

    Cancellation Policy

    You can cancel up to 24 hours in advance of the experience for a full refund.

    • For a full refund, you must cancel at least 24 hours before the experience’s start time.
    • If you cancel less than 24 hours before the experience’s start time, the amount you paid will not be refunded.
    • Any changes made less than 24 hours before the experience’s start time will not be accepted.
    • Cut-off times are based on the experience’s local time.
    • This experience requires good weather. If it’s canceled due to poor weather, you’ll be offered a different date or a full refund.
    • This experience requires a minimum number of travelers. If it’s canceled because the minimum isn’t met, you’ll be offered a different date/experience or a full refund.

    Traveler Photos

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    Reviews

    4.5
    55 reviews
    Total review count and overall rating based on Viator and Tripadvisor reviews
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    Reviews by Viator travelers.
    Showing 1-10 of 55 reviews
    Tired but exhilarated
    Louise_K, Dec 2023
    Exhausting, exhilarating and exciting. Ascending at night adds mystique and charm. If you feel you can’t make it, then Bedouins are on hand (for a fee!) to take you some of the way on a camel. Amazing photos. Shame couldn’t stay in the monastery mins longer.
    Response from Host, Dec 2023
    Hello, Louise. Thanks so much for sharing your experience with us. We couldn’t agree more that the climbing is charming. Glad to know that you managed the trip and took amazing photos. We are happy to see you again soon. Best wishes, Cleotours team
    We had a good time, but wished a few things were different
    Elizabeth_P, Dec 2023
    Overall, we had a good time. Watching the sunrise from the top is so beautiful and definitely worth it! Cleotours was alright, but there were some things that we wished were different (see below). Here’s a description of our experience: The pre-trip communication was great. Natalie was very helpful and clarified where to meet the bus and let us know when the driver was going to be a few minutes late. We got picked up around 9pm and drove about 3 hours, with a couple stops along the way. Unfortunately, the bus was not air conditioned and there was less leg room than the back of an airplane. So it was very hot and stuffy, which made the ride pretty miserable. Our group was also a mix of English and Russian groups, which was a surprise after picking an “English” tour. We arrived at the entrance around 1:45am and waited in the security line for a half hour while one security person checked every single bag. While we waited, there were some vendors from whom you could buy ponchos. Started climbing with the Bedouin guide around 2:15am. The climb is pretty easy/moderate, not hard for those who are used to hiking, but a bit of a challenge for less athletic people. There were 18 people in our group at various fitness levels. At first, the guide made us go at the pace of the slowest person, an older woman who probably should have rented a camel but didn’t. This was very slow with lots of stops, a bit frustrating for those of us who were capable of going a lot faster. Eventually, the guide let us go by ourselves to each of the next kiosks (about 1km apart the whole way up) and then wait for everyone else to catch up. This was better since we could take each small section at our own pace (faster). Once we reached the steps (the last section before the top- there are 750 steps), we were able to go on our own and made it to the top around 5:15am, which was perfect because we were able to see the first part of the sunrise that many in our group missed out on because they had been held back. Don’t stop at the booths mid-way up the steps that claim they are the last place to rent a blanket/buy snacks before the top. This is not true, as there is another kiosk at the actual top. The top has a lot of places to watch the sunrise, but because we were there earlier than most people, we were able to get a prime spot away from the people on the rocks to the right side. The sun rose around 6:20am, but the colors were best for the 30 min before the sun actually came up. We had plenty of time to eat breakfast and enjoy the sunrise. It wasn’t as cold as we were expecting - about 48-50 degrees Fahrenheit, so we were okay without the blanket rental. We stayed at the top until about 7:00am and then started back down. The views the whole way down are gorgeous, especially since the whole way up is dark and you can’t see much besides the trail (and the stars!) And on the way down, you are allowed to go on your own without the guide, which we liked. We were back at the monastery by 8:25am, about 20 min before when they told us to meet back there, but ended up waiting for the group until 9:05am. There were only 4/18 of us back at the stated time so there was a lot of waiting around. The monastery tour was pretty disappointing, the “English” guide couldn’t really speak English - as native speakers, we could barely understand him - I have no idea how people for whom English was their second language could understand him. He basically stood in one spot and pointed around at a lot of things and then let us walk into the main sanctuary of the church. We didn’t get to see the library or any of the manuscript rooms (St Catherine’s is the second largest library of manuscripts in the world!) After the monastery “tour,” we got back on the bus around 10am and went back to Sharm el Sheik, arriving around 1:15pm, ready to sleep! Overall, we had a good time. A few things that Cleotours/Viator could do to make this tour better would be: -Clarification that the “English” tour will actually be English and Russian -Actually have air conditioning on the bus. Don’t advertise that there will be air conditioning when there isn’t. -Have different tours for different levels of fitness or don’t hold back the entire group when 1 person can’t keep up. We would definitely recommend that people do a sunrise hike of Mt. Sinai - it is amazing! We’re not sure we can fully recommend Cleotours though. The detail in this review is to give others an accurate assessment of their tour. Hopefully it helps others decide which tour to pick.
    Response from Host, Dec 2023
    Hello, Elizabeth. Thank you for taking the time to leave an amazing detailed review about your recent Mount Sinai tour. We really appreciate it. Thank you for pointing out the problems arose during the tour and bringing this to our attention. We apologise for not meeting your expectations about the trip and for any inconveniences might be caused. Please know that we will be addressing this review with the team so they can learn from it and do better in the future. - the tour run in two languages as we have to accept our partner’s clients for unforeseen reasons. - We checked the AC in the bus. It works properly. Usually at winter time we use it upon passengers request. - Regarding the idea about dividing groups according to physical level - we will think it over to provide the best solution for our guests. We hope you will give us another chance and contact us again when you’re ready for your next trip to Egypt. Kind regards, Cleotours Team.
    Amazing spiritual experience
    Marlene_T, Nov 2023
    There are many different booking options for this trip. I liked this one because (a) all fees included (other than optional camel ride and snacks) and (b) honest about the length of the trip. Others in my group had to pay entrance fees in cash which took some by surprise. And some were also surprised by how late our return was. (Expect to return about 1 to 2pm. That said, the experience is phenomenal. Our guide in the bus (who also conducted the monastery tour) and hike guide were both trilingual (Arabic, English, Russian) and thorough with explanations. Admin prior to the trip was clear on expectations and what to bring. The hike is long (my GPS watch measured 18 km total) but is definitely doable for people of good fitness. Camel rides are optional for those who need help, but the camels cannot do the last tough climb to the top. The youngest in our group was 8 and he was able to do it all. (Will admit he napped at every break and began to give up and cry when we were nearing the top but he hung in there. It was obvious he had a definite sense of accomplishment in the end.) The monastery trip at the end was fantastic. However everyone is so exhausted at that point that few have any real interest. Too bad as the monastery deserves a visit on its own. Be sure to bring cash to purchase snacks and water as needed (or bring your own) and tip your guides!! The tour is not costly on its own. Tips are much appreciated.
    Response from Host, Nov 2023
    Hello Marlene, Thank you so much for such amazing and full review. We are glad to know you’ve managed and enjoyed the trip with us. Special thanks for highlighting our guides efforts. We hope to see you again in Egypt. Kind regards, Cleotours team.
    Terrible Experience
    Mariam_R, Aug 2023
    I waited for the car 45 min outside the gates, sweating in the heat, as directed by the tour operator for 15 min before the scheduled pickup time...and they never showed up. I tried calling and messaging the tour company via whastapp as well as sending Viator messages and there wss no response until over an hour later when they simply said they would refund me. This was not a good option for me because the monastery is closed on Sundays and so now I have no option to see it before I leave. They claimed the bus came and waited for me but I never saw them and got no calls or messages until after the "bus already left". Extremely disappointed at the terrible communication as this ruined the experience that I was most looking forward to. Do not risk missing this trip by using this unprofessional company.
    Response from Host, Aug 2023
    Hello Mariam. Thank you so much for your time to leave a comment. We are really sorry to hear you had a frustrating experience. After this situation happened we decided to not accept bookings with pickup locations which are not listed on Viator as we faced a problem to find you between 2 gates of your compound. Security did not let go inside and did not provide any information whether anyone was at this point waiting for us. The bus arrived earlier, the guide checked both gates of the compound, made photos that nobody was there (these photos we sent you), made a call to a number left in the reservation form. But later we received messages from you from another number, that was quite confusing. And of course we have limited time to wait/search for a customer at a pickup location as there are other tourists waiting. So the bus had to move after 15 minutes. Also we have a strict timeline for this trip as it’s going with police convoy. We couldn’t take a risk to stay more at your location and loose the trip for all the passengers in the bus (police will not let the late bus go out of the city). We decided to continue operating only with hotels gates pickup , not hostels, compounds, apartments etc. We never had such issues with the hotels’ pickup. We do really apologise for the situation happened with you. This is not typical of us. Thank you one more time for a feedback. And we hope you will be back to Egypt and we would be more than happy to give you a discount for any trip. Best regards, Peter and the team
    A must do fall those who want to challenge themselves and their faith.
    Jenny_V, Aug 2023
    Just being on the mountain where Moses walked felt really special. Our guides were very kind and considerate of everyone, it wasn't too fast and not too slow, we made it to the top with enough time to see the sunrise. I also liked the fact that we were allow a bit of freedom on the way down.
    Response from Host, Aug 2023
    Hello Jenny, Thank you so much for your positive feedback! We're glad to have you as our customer and to see that you’ve enjoyed the mount hike. Hope to see you again in Egypt. Kind regards,
    Tough, but worth it
    Otvio_M, Jun 2023
    Great experience! The way up can be demanding, specially because of the cold temperature and the last strecth ("the steps") is very steep and tight. There are checkpoints every 1km where you can stop and have a warm beverage, making the way up a little bit more manageable for someone with average physical fitness. But after you reach the top and get to see the sunrise and the amazing views, it is definetly worth it
    Response from Host, Jun 2023
    Hello Otvio, Thanks so much for sharing your experience with us. We are happy to hear that your hike was memorable. Also we are totally agree with the statement that the sunrise and the amazing views are definitely worth all the efforts. Thank you and we hope to see you again soon!
    Intense and Beautiful
    Liam_S, May 2023
    This trip is quite the experience. It's gorgeous and a once-in-a-lifetime experience (you'll probably be happy only doing it once in your life), especially if you combine it with any other experiences on your trip because it can be absolutely exhausting. You get picked up around 8-9pm the night before, drive for about 4 hours, and start the hike around 2:30am. You reach the top around 5:30am (this probably depends on time of year, but it's at least 3 hours up). This is NOT an easy hike. If you're pretty fit, then you'll be able to do it just fine, but you should have good balance too. There are plenty of opportunities to fall, so be careful. The trip up is exhausting, but the return is almost more so, given the strain on one's knees. Taking a camel up and/or down is also an option, if you want to spare yourself. Over the 3 hours, you climb over 1km in altitude. It's a steep climb, topped off by a very steep climb up 750 steps to the top. At the top, the views are quite beautiful. It's a very different type of landscape to any you'll see in most places. Very dry mountains. It's a very beautiful and spiritual place. Absolutely worth the climb, especially if you have a religious connection to the spot. Once you get to the top, stake out a good spot to watch the sunrise, and enjoy. By the time you get back to the bottom, it's around 8am, and then you still go for a 1-2 hour tour of the St. Catherine Monastery. In theory this is great, and it is worth seeing (though it's nothing spectacular either), but you've also just hiked 6 very steep hours, probably on no sleep whatsoever. Then, you don't get back to your lodging until about 1-2pm. All in all, an absolutely worthwhile experience I look forward to never doing again. The guides for this experience were fine, there are a number of different ones for each part of the experience, no complaints, nothing to write home about either. They're just kind of there, and if you get lost — it's not easy to get lost, but if you wanted to — then they wouldn't figure it out until you were (i.e. weren't) back on the bus at 10am the following morning).
    Response from Host, May 2023
    Hello, Liam. Thank you so much for the great review on our mount Sinai trip. Definitely your comments will be helpful for a future travellers. We’re really glad you enjoyed The trip and managed the hike. Looking forward to seeing you again soon and thanks again!
    Not for the weak!
    Matthew_S, Apr 2023
    The Mount Sinai hike is not for the weak 😅 7km hike with about a 35% uphill grade and 775 steps at the end. Turns out I may have been the weakest link 🫣 I broke down and rented a camel, mostly because I wanted to ride the camel, but then found out we were only half way up so believe I definitely make the right call there, and that camel was worth every Penny of the $20 I paid for him. Camels do not climb stairs though so I still has to do 775 steps, which I could not have done (at least not in time for sunrise) without my fearless tour guide, Magde, who helped me up the stairs and most of the way down the mountain. The sunrise was beautiful and star gazing from atop the camel was absolutely breathtaking! Highly recommend this hike. If you’re able, the hike is great! But don’t be too proud to rent the camel! So worth it either way! There are stops along the way for drinks and snacks. Take advantage of bathroom breaks before you get there. About half way up, there is an outhouse but it is exactly that. St Catherine’s was closed when we went so cannot say anything about that.
    Response from Host, Apr 2023
    Hello Matthew, We can’t thank you enough for the kind words about mount Sinai trip. We really appreciate the time you took to write such a detailed review! It means a lot to us and lets us know we’re on the right track! Thank you for giving some pieces of advice to future travellers. That’s definitely is something useful. We are looking forward to seeing you in Egypt soon and thanks again!
    Absolutely amazing...
    AnnaOzga, Apr 2023
    Absolutely amazing experience Our guide Duna was great caring for all members of the group . And the experience on the top is one of its kind
    Response from Host, Apr 2023
    Hello, Anna! Thanks for sharing your positive review of our mount Sinai trip. Our guides team takes great pride in their work and it’s wonderful to see that their efforts are appreciated. Thank you. We hope to see you again in Egypt. Best regards, Cleotours team.
    Before you take the trip
    Danny_D, Mar 2023
    If you're tall or heavy set, do yourself a favor, don't join this tour, book yourself a private tour coz you will thank yourself for it!!! They crammed you in a 15 seaters mini bus like a can of sardines. The guide was ok so as the Bedouin guide climbing the summit.
    Response from Host, Mar 2023
    Hello, Danny. Thank you so much for your feedback. Sorry to hear that we couldn’t make your mount Sinai trip memorable. The tour vehicle depends on the group size. Usually we have a small group and do the trip by minibus Toyota Hiace. We would be happy to receive from travellers extra details before the trip regarding physique to assist with the requirement and as an option to offer a private tour. We are delighted to know that you liked both of your guides. Thank you. Best regards, Cleotours team
    Wonderful sunset view
    Asif_H, Mar 2023
    The trip was well organised. Guide was great. Must be fit to go up mountain but we’ll worth the trip
    Response from Host, Mar 2023
    Hello, Asif. Thank you for your valuable feedback. We are happy to know that you’ve managed the hike and enjoyed a wonderful view from the mount top. And thank you for your kind words about the guide. We hope to see you again in Egypt.
    Amazing views, great experience 👍
    Heather_M, Feb 2023
    This was a truly great experience. Guides were very friendly and informative. Drive up to the base of the mountain does take 3 hrs so be prepared for police check points and possible delays. It did get very cold up too, but her hired a blanket which is a must (only 100LE) worth every penny. Amazing views, you do need to be reasonably fit also as once you have climbed up 3/4 of the way there is 750 steps. However you can hire a camel which is also extra to get you to the steps. Amazing trip/experience would defo recommend 👍
    Response from Host, Feb 2023
    Hello Heather. Thank you so much for the review! I’m glad to hear that you’ve enjoyed your experience and managed the climb. The view from the mount is definitely worth the efforts you did. Thank you again for taking the time to share your feedback with us – it’s always appreciated.
    One of the hardest things you NEED to do!
    Antia_C, Feb 2023
    There is no exaggeration to the difficulty of this hike. Please stretch before you start the hike. Bring a coat! Bring water. Bring a blanket! Bring a thermal cup with something warm. This is a once in a life time experience and worth it. But it is just a difficult climb. I love hiking and this was a test to my endurance 100%. I cried alil during th climb because my limbs were soooo tired and we still had 750 something rock stairs left after climbing for 2 hours. All in all do the climb! It's worth it but your body needs to be ready for something like this! If it isn't ... pay for the camel lol.
    Response from Host, Feb 2023
    Hello, Antia. We’re really grateful and appreciate you taking the time to share your rating with us. Happy to know that you’ve managed the hike. Thank you for useful tips for future travellers. Sure that’ll help them to manage the climb. Thank you one more time and we hope to see you again soon!
    Don’t do it. But if you...
    Kelly_N, Jan 2023
    Don’t do it. But if you do, bring hiking gear, and money for blankets and camel rides! And to use the bathroom smh!
    Response from Host, Jan 2023
    Dear Kelly, thanks for sharing your feedback. I’m sorry to hear you had a frustrating experience. This trip requires a moderate physical training. I hope you’ve coped with the the hike and enjoyed the sunrise. Thank you for taking the time to leave a review, it is much appreciated. Kind regards,
    From Egypt sun to Egypt snow
    Lisa_T, Jan 2023
    Wow. What an experience! Highly recommend it!! My friend and I prepared ourselves for a cold (as advised) and challenging hike, but what we did not expect was snow!! This was not a negative for us, and we can not fault the experience as a whole. But a little tip to advise that there is a possibility for snow and ice, which led to dangerous conditions (especially on the decent) would have helped us be more prepared. I was fortunate to have good hiking boots on, whilst my friend wore trainers that wasn't ideal for snow and ice. So we would suggest wearing hiking gear for all possible weather conditions. That said, the hike itself is an experience worth doing. The guide was very helpful and friendly. There are stops along the way, for snacks and hot drinks, and you can purchase blankets and ponchos for colder climates (which lots of people were not prepared for). We felt the communication from the team beforehand was very good, although as stated above, more information on weather conditions for the summit wouldn't go amiss, or check yourself if you're able too. But we highly recommend this experience, and we loved it.
    Response from Host, Jan 2023
    Dear Lisa, we appreciate you taking the time to let us know about your experience. It is not every day that we receive feedback as detailed and thoughtful as yours. Thanks for the awesome review. We hope to see you again in Egypt.
    Amazing experience with amazing tour
    AbdulAziz_A, Dec 2022
    Highly recommend. The tour operator (Cleotours) immediately contacted us the second I confirmed my bookings, advising us to inform them in advance all the things that we need to bring. Very professional. They also constantly keep us in touch. The trip itself was amazing, but do note that you still need a relatively good stamina to do the hike.
    Response from Host, Jan 2023
    Hello, Abdul Aziz. Thank you so much for your kind words and for recommending us in your review! We’re glad we made your experience with us a great one and will be happy to see you again soon. All the best, The Cleotours team
    It’s a good experiences...
    Vanessa_S, Dec 2022
    It’s a good experiences but not for all people. The guide could be more friendly and improve their communication, must avoid the stop for buy thing
    Response from Host, Dec 2022
    Hello, Vanessa. First, we are glad to know that you've managed the hike and reached the mountain top to observe a picturesque sunrise. Thank you for your comments. It have been shared with our entire team and we will work it out. Thank you for helping us improve our trips. We hope to see you again in Egypt.
    Journey to Mt Sinai
    Oladipupo_M, Nov 2022
    The most memorable part of the trip was the camaraderie that was shown by other travelers on our bus and everyone's eagerness to help, encourage and cheer each other on, especially on the last grueling 750 steps up to the top of the mountain. The views along with the sunrise was simply awesome!! Definitely a trip of a lifetime!
    Response from Host, Nov 2022
    Hello, Oladipupo. We sincerely thank you for taking the time to share your thoughts with us. We were so proud to see that a brilliant team of travelers has gathered and has supported each other. Totally agree with you about the spectacular views and awesome sunrise. Thanks again, and we hope to make your next visit to Egypt just as positive.
    Mt Sinai - not exactly now what the Bible may have envisaged for the place in the future
    Avinash_R, Nov 2022
    The place is scenic and epic. Past the monastery and the wreak of camel dung prevails-thats the experience all the way up until the pinnacle summit steps. Camel dung needs to be avoided on almost every step. The place is also materially littered and dirty. Sad state to prevail for a Holy place. The guides try to expedite your climb to allow enough sales time at the shop huts along the way. Special place but the human intervention here has brought it lacking 💔
    Response from Host, Nov 2022
    Hello, Avinash. Thank you for taking the time to leave a review. All feedback is important to us and I am sorry that you had to write about this problem. Without a doubt, humans have some harmful impacts on the environment. There are several days per year when volunteers are coming to that area for a general cleaning. We will continue to participate in that campaigns. Thank you again for bringing attention to such an important problem. We hope to see you again in Egypt.
    Fabulous experience!
    Doni_J, Oct 2022
    Fabulous experience! Perfectly timed and planned by the tour guide to enable viewing sunrise at the summit. In my perspective, good health and fitness condition required, unless one opted for the Camel ride for most of the climb.
    Response from Host, Oct 2022
    Hello, Doni! Just wanted to let you know how much your review means to us. We are so delighted to know that you've managed the hike and enjoyed the trip. Thanks again, and we hope to make your next visit just as positive.
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