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“A day to remember”

St. Catherine's Monastery
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Private Tour: St Catherine's Monastery and Moses' Mountain at Sunrise
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Private Tour: St Catherine's Monastery
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Overnight Trip to Saint Catherine Monastery from Cairo
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Owner description: This is the 6th century formidable fortification and still working Christian monastery. It has the second largest collection of illuminated manuscripts.
Kingston-upon-Hull, United Kingdom
Level 6 Contributor
60 reviews
7 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 146 helpful votes
“A day to remember”
Reviewed 13 October 2013

Staying at Taba Heights, Sofitel Hotel with Thomson's we where disappointed that Thomson's no longer run trips to St Catherine's but in the hotel foyer is a limousine service. So within minutes all was sorted for my wife and I to visit the Monastery by taxi the next day.

At 7.30am our taxi driver Mohammed Saadi was waiting for us outside our hotel and for the next 8 hours he entertained us with his wit and knowledge. At no time did we feel at unease with Mr Saadi driving, he took great pride in his car and in his driving of it. Our drive to St Catherine's was around 21/2 to 3 hours but the time past very quickly because of the "crack" we was having with Mohammed. We did pass 4 road blocks, two of them having to show our passports. The tickets to St Catherine's are bought just past the last road block and cost 25 el each (around £2-50p or $4)

First stop was the gift shop with toilets next door. A short drive takes you to the carpark. Only 2 coaches and 4 cars was in the carpark. From the carpark it is maybe 600 yards, slightly uphill to walk to the Monastery. We was pestered by locals asking if you wanted to ride up in cars or by horse and cart. After walking up we stopped for a coffee and tea before looking around St Catherine's itself. We did the tour with our driver who acted as our guild. The trip took us around one hour.

When we left the Mon

Visited October 2013
Thank ian480
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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English first
Level 5 Contributor
50 reviews
25 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 83 helpful votes
“Piece of history”
Reviewed 2 October 2013

It is worth the visit as you come down the Mount Sinai hike, you can enjoy a cool drink under the pergola and contemplate the silent nature of the desert. We were there in July, it is particularly hot during the day, we spend time in the morning as we came down from the mountain, we left before noon as temperature reaches its peak, the advantage during that time of the year is the small number of tourists, that makes a huge difference as you visit these places where calm is part of the experience

Visited July 2013
2 Thank Mtltravel2013
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Chicago, Illinois
Level 5 Contributor
58 reviews
9 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 15 helpful votes
Reviewed 1 October 2013

We had a pickup at 5:30am, then drove around 300 miles through the desert- which was BRILLIANT!!!!!

When we arrived the guide told us all about themoanastry and there were annoying locals trying to offer us camel rides- this was annoying because the guide didnt even tell them to go.

The Children are very cute, but they do pester- so take sweets or give them the remainder of a breakfast box.

We did not buy a guidebook and i would not advise it- buy one before you go!

It does take a while but the terrain is beautiful and the monastry is worth the visit.

Visited September 2013
Thank Emily4920
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Edinburgh, United Kingdom
Level 6 Contributor
98 reviews
35 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 60 helpful votes
“A welcome respite”
Reviewed 30 September 2013

Sinai does not have much to offer the tourist looking for historical sites. St. Catherines is the only one currently available and is well worth the trip. Close to Mount Sinai, which we had climbed on a previous visit- an exhilarating and exhausting challenge. On that occasion the monastery was closed to visitors - take care when you arrange your trip to St. Catherines- it is often closed. We were glad we made the return trip this summer. The monastery is different and a very welcome diversion from the sun , sand and sea of the coast, There are relics, architecture and art covering the 1000 + years or so of the monastery's history

Organised by our excellent tour operator, Memphis Tours of Cairo, and guided by Ahmed their very knowledgeable and friendly local representative, we combined our trip to St. Catherines with a walk along the Coloured Canyon - an interesting clamber up and down gullies that displayed unusual rock formations, some multi-coloured and sculptured by wind and water over the years, with a welcome cup of tea with our bedouin guide.

A very good day out

Visited July 2013
Thank JohnGP
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Beijing, China
Level 3 Contributor
13 reviews
11 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 11 helpful votes
“The Holy Monastery of the God-trodden Mount Sinai, Saint Catherine’s Monastery”
Reviewed 28 September 2013

The Greek Orthodox monastery of the God-trodden Mount Sinai is located at the very place where God appeared to Moses in the Burning Bush, beneath the Mount of the Decalogue. In the providence of God, it is at this site also that the holy relics of Saint Catherine are enshrined. This is the oldest continuously inhabited Christian monastery, with a history that can be traced back over seventeen centuries. The monastery predates the divisions of the Christian world, its origins extending to late antiquity.

The monastery has never been destroyed in all its history, and thus it can be said to have preserved intact the distinctive qualities of its Greek and Roman heritage. Members of other Christian confessions have honoured the monastery, coming as pilgrims to this holy place. But from its beginnings, the Christian inhabitants of Sinai belonged to the Greek speaking world, and it has remained so to this day.

The earliest description refers to the Monastery of the Holy Virgin, for the revelation of God at the Burning Bush was seen as a type of the Virgin Mary and the Incarnation. The monastery is also especially dedicated to the holy prophets Moses and Elias, who both came to this mountain, and who both spoke with Christ at the Transfiguration. More recently, it has been known as Saint Catherine’s Monastery. This remains its name today, though the monastery has not lost its earlier dedications.

More than one hundred and seventy Sinai saints are honoured by the Church. In addition to Saint Catherine, these include Saint John Climacus, abbot of Sinai and author of The Ladder of Divine Ascent. They also include the ascetic fathers Hesychios and Philotheus, two saints with the name of Anastasius, Gregory of Sinai (who transplanted the Hesychast traditions to the Slavic peoples), and Symeon Pentaglossos (who translated relics of Saint Catherine to Rouen, and thereby helped establish the veneration of Saint Catherine in the West).

The monastery can be thought of as a veritable Ark for its spiritual treasures. These include the manuscripts and early printed books preserved in the Sinai library, which is celebrated throughout the world for the antiquity and importance of its volumes. It also includes the monastery icons, which include the most important collection of pre-iconoclastic panel icons, and icons of the greatest beauty and significance dating from the time of the Comnene dynasty.

The monastery has been honoured by rulers throughout its history. These include the Empress Helena, the Emperor Justinian, Mohammed the Founder of Islam, Sultan Selim I, the Empress Catherine of Russia, and Napoleon Bonaparte. Contemporary heads of state have continued to show their interest in the monastery. The Holy Monastery of Sinai has been celebrated throughout the world for its spiritual and cultural radiance. It has been revered not only by Christians, but also by Moslems and Jews. It has recently been listed by UNESCO as a World Heritage Site, both for its cultural and for its scenic significance.

The monks of Sinai, from earliest times until the present day, maintain a dedication both to prayer and to the support of pilgrims and visitors. They live at peace with the native Bedouin. They maintain the ancient spiritual heritage of Sinai, a heritage that extends from the giving of the Law, through the whole of the Old and New Testaments, to the multitude of saints whose memory has been enshrined at Sinai – above all, to the All-holy Theotokos, to the holy prophets Moses and Elias, and to Saint Catherine.

Visited April 2013
2 Thank chanyang
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC

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