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Egypt, for me, is family. It’s childhood. I was fortunate enough to have been able to spend my summers there as a kid on the Mediterranean, swimming and playing with my cousins, aunts and uncles. Egypt is also a place where my sister was married. The memories there are just too many to count, and I feel so lucky to have them. So naturally, it was one stop I wanted to make before making my way to Spain.

We drove out to Soma Bay, on the Red Sea, and stayed at the Kempinski, a 5 star resort — the staff are always so kind, and some even remembered us from the wedding 3 years ago. Everyday was pure paradise. Stumbled across a restaurant in the Marina called ‘SOBAR’ — great spot if you make it out there. The owners are, get this: Swiss-Egyptian and Canadian-Egyptian. There was poutine on the menu people (remember I grew up in Canada)! I didn’t get the chance to try the poutine, but their food and hospitality was bang on!

We went snorkelling and swimming, and of course indulged in the cuisine. At the Soma Bay Kempinski, there is a reef just in front and there is also a Pier that you can go to that is about 15 minutes walking, or you can take the shuttle bus from reception. There is also a shuttle along the beach that starts at 1:00pm. Travel Tip: The shuttle from reception is the best and fastest option, especially when it’s hot (i.e. The summer).


The day we went snorkelling out front, I was with my brother-in-law. He is quite the water/aqua life lover, along with my sis. He asked me if I wanted to go explore the reefs, and I said ‘YES’ (theme of the trip). We were out for a while, and I saw some super cool stuff like this huge blowfish that was hiding under a part of a reef. It was glorious.

When we got back, he showed me where we swam out to. I kid you not, had I known beforehand, I would NEVER have gone. I can’t even tell you how far out we got, but it was farther than the blue floating platform, which I had already decided was kind of far to swim out to. I was so happy that I did that, not to mention it was a great workout. There was one point where I looked up and no one was there, but soon after, I saw a head, and my brother in law checked in with me. He had dove down to get a better look and got the feeling that I didn’t know where he was by the way I was swimming around.

At the Pier, and after the first snorkelling adventure, I actually wanted to see a shark, but no such luck. Probably for the best hahahaha. I did see 2 eel, however and more blowfish as well as so much other beautiful aqua life. Swimming against the current first, and then getting carried back to the Pier along with the current was definitely the thing to do.

Last thing I’ll mention is the Daily Challenge I set for myself – I started small, but it was to hold the plank position for 2 minutes: 1 minute straight and 30 seconds each side. I feel stronger, and have kept it up. Once I had that down, I added Yoga to the mix. I used this great app called Active by POPSUGAR – they have all sorts of great stuff from exercise to nutrition.

What’s your daily challenge?

Lessons Learned:
• You can accomplish far more than you think you can – the only limits are the ones you set yourself so start small and build from there
• Communication — so key — and power by numbers. Anticipate, respond, and when you’re out in the water, make sure you have a buddy system! Always tell your ‘buddy’ if you are going out of the water or venturing elsewhere so everyone can be accounted for.
• It’s a small world. Not that I have to tell you that, but seriously.


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Natalia Edelmann

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