On August 31st The Foreign and Commonwealth Office (FCO) advised against all travel to the Governorate of North Sinai due to terrorist attacks. It is further advised that travel to the following areas should only be done if it is essential: Governorates of Beni, Suef, Asyut and Sohag, Governorate of South Sinai (except withing Sharm el Maya parimeter. Anywhere within a 50km radius of the Libya border (excluding Siwa),Desert lands of south-west Egypt.
Official language: Arabic ,English as well as French are widely understood languages.
The currency: Egyptian Pound
Welcome to the “Land of the Sun”. Step into the realm of the Pharaohs. Relive the rich culture and diversity in this desert paradise that is Egypt. A living museum, this country showcases the only remaining ruins of one of the “Seven Wonders of The World”, the great Pyramids of Giza. It’s filled with diversity where modern living clashes head on with living history. The surreal Valley of the Kings and the Sphinx open up a whole new appreciation to ancient worlds. Tales of great Pharaohs and their beautiful queens who ruled the lands come to life as you breathe in the desert air and all this wondrous country has to offer. You can explore to your hearts content, think; some of the world’s best diving spots, colorful markets, visiting ancient temples, experiencing what the call to prayer at sunset means to the locals or simply exploring the great little coffee shops and feasting on the delectable local food.
Who doesn’t know about the land of the great Pharaohs? There’s the Valley of the Kings and the Life source that is age old Nile River. This country began its real journey about 5000 BC with the start of the Pharaonic Egypt when the kings from 30 different dynasties turned the country into one of the world’s strongest forces ever seen. Wealth was the order of the day and it is obvious with the massive structures that stand as proof. After the Romans took over there were massive power struggles, British rule and then finally Egypt emerged an independent country in 1789. Egypt is truly unique in every sense of the word. Visitors get a personal experience with what life is like in the Muslim community and can ravel in the traditions and heritage of all things ancient Egypt. You can get swooped away in to an era long lost. Modern marvels such as the Aswan Dam and the ancient ruins of the old cities capture the hearts and souls of travelers young and old.
Must see places in Egypt
Pyramids of Giza
Originally standing 479 feet high this ancient World Wander is a reminder of a world that was. They are the largest of the mysterious pyramids and are kept under the watchful eye of the great Sphinx.
It’s a historical tradition that has you tracking up the mountain via camelback to visit the extraordinary sight of the sun rising over the desert landscape. It’s been done by pilgrims for thousands of years and was made famous in the movie scene from “The Mummy” where the curse starts at sunrise on that exact spot.
Picture crystal clear lakes and palm trees creating the perfect little shades along the water’s edge to cool down and restore tired travelers. Siwa is one of six oases found in the great Western Desert and is the perfect place to settle down before tracking into the desert. The oasis is also home to the age old ruins of Shali which makes for great rock climbing adventures.
View the feluccas (wooden boats) peacefully cruising along the Nile at sunset in this great town. Many attractions such as Elephantine Island in the center of the Nile and the famous Island of Plants make this a premium spot to visit and experience all the area has to offer.
Here you can expect to be amazed by the ancient city of Thebes. Scattered throughout the area are many statues and columned halls that take you back to an era where architecture spoke more than words ever could. Hot air balloon trips on offer provide spectacular views of the surrounds and allow you to soak up all of the beauty from a bird’s eye view.
The Suez Canal
This man made marvel that connects the Mediterranean and the Red Sea is a great tourist attraction. It’s a port that sees many a ship cruising out through the narrow passage onto the open waters and the view from Peace Bridge is one not to be missed out on.
Abu Simbel Temples
With a lookout over the great Lake Nasser, these two monumental statues dedicated to Pharaoh Ramses II and his wife Nefertari were discovered in 1813, covered in desert sands and then moved as part of a UNESCO initiative.
Must do activities in Egypt
Visit the Camel Market
See the City of Gold
Kom Ombo is roughly 30km North of Aswan and boasts the breath taking temples of Haroeris and Sobek. It’s a beautiful sight and a definite pit stop for travelers.
Dive in the Red Sea
Go to the Khan-el Kalili Bazaar
Cruise down the Nile
A river boat cruise on the great Nile is the ultimate experience where you get to see the stunning surrounds and drift in to another world.
Best time to visit Egypt
Tourists travel between the months of October and April
Did you know?
Egypt is the 15th most populated country in the world.
Ancient Egyptians were the inventors of the “365 day calendar year” as we know it today and they also claim the fame to the invention of time clocks.
The Great Pyramids are aimed at the constellation of Orion so that “spirits moving into the next world” could have a straight passage.
The world’s oldest dress (5000 years old) reigns from Egypt.
January – Christmas: The 7th of January marks the Coptic Christmas day and throughout Egypt, and especially in Cairo, colorful festivals, music and entertainment is a feast for the eyes and ears.
February - Abu Simbel Festival: Celebrating Abu Simbel’s rise to the throne, a natural phenomenon combined with human efforts takes place every year when the light hits the throne just right and creates a magical atmosphere.
April - Shem Al Nissim: It’s the first day of spring and outdoor entertainment and picnics are part of the celebrations of this National Holiday in Egypt.
May - South Sinai Camel Festival: Who doesn’t love good old camel racing? A tribute to the country’s national animal, this race is exhilarating to watch and is always accompanied by musical entertainment and food vendors from far and wide.
June - Leylet en-Nuktah: This is when the water levels of the Nile rise significantly and locals celebrate publicly throughout the country. In ancient times people went to extremes such as drowning girls in the Nile as it was believed that something had to literally “drop” in to the river in order to allow the water levels to rise.
August - Arts Festival: Said to be the most impressive in the entire Arabic world, this week long festival showcases the best arts with influences from Africa, Asia and Europe.
Egyptian cuisine is a mix from African, Middle Eastern and Mediterranean cooking and is delicious and packed full of healthy and wholesome ingredients. Try the one of the following when visiting:
- Full Medames & Koshari - Featured on basically every menu in the country this pasta dish which is flavored with pulses, garlic and tomatoes and then topped with fried onion, is a definite must try.
- Falafel – Its spicy mashed chickpea/bean patties that are served as a snack or a delicacy to be enjoyed on its own.
- Babaganoush – This spicy dip made with aubergine, beans, lemon and herbs is served as a side dish with most meals.
- Stuffed vine leaves – Vine leaves stuffed with spiced rice and cabbage, these tasty morsels will leave you asking for more.
- Mahalabiyaa – It’s a traditional rice pudding made with rosewater and a selection of spices and is the perfect dessert.