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Introducing Al-Quseir

Far removed from the resort clamour of the rest of the Red Sea coast, the historic city of Al-Quseir is a muddle of colourful and creaky coral-block architecture dating from the Ottoman era that is sadly bypassed by most tourists. This charmingly sleepy seaside town has a history stretching back to Pharaonic times when it was the main port for boats heading south to the fabled East African kingdom of Punt. Although nothing remains from this earliest era, strolling through Al-Quseir’s photogenic old streets – backed by the battered ramparts of the Ottoman fortress and speckled with the domed tombs of various holy men who died en route to or from Mecca – provides a fascinating glimpse into this region before tourism took over.