You're probably not going to be in Matruh for anything but the diving, or perhaps to break a slow trip to Siwa. The Mediterranean here is a stunning and ever-changing shade of blue, and the beaches are of fine white sand. Just offshore there are a number of World War II wrecks, and the water is crystal clear. On the downside, however, the westward expansion of the local summer holiday market has been making itself felt here, and between June and September the town is packed. Perhaps more important, though, the standard of both food and lodging is low. The best hotel is budget-standard, and you'll quickly find yourself debating between bad local options and Pizza Hut. In the winter, the city rolls down the shutters, and the choices become even more restricted.