The land, where the glorious history and the spirited present are intertwined by the world’s longest river – the Nile, is waiting for you to discover it. Open your eyes and listen carefully. A blend of thousands of years of Arab history and famous legacy of the pharaohs await you. By exploring the desert, mysterious temples and large cities, you will see that Egypt is truly a land of contrasts, which has something for every traveller no matter where you go. Read on to find out what travel tips we have in store for you this time.
Let’s start with the capital of Egypt – Cairo. I recommend visiting the Khan El-Khalili bazaar in Cairo’s old town to start getting to know the Egyptian soul right away. There, you can master the art of haggling or observe the hustle and bustle while sipping tea. The centre is ideal for exploring mosques from various periods that are still full of riches from bygone eras. The main attraction, the famous Pyramids of Giza, lies a little further away, guarded by the sphinx holding its head up high. I suggest touring the Pyramids at night and they’ll tell you their story with the help of lights and sounds over some tasty traditional food that most certainly includes the delicious kunafa. If you’re thinking about a day trip, it’s best to go on a trip to Alexandria, one of the most legendary cities of the Old World. You’ll start exploring Alexandria in the world’s largest library that is home to six million books. You’ll also visit the world’s oldest church and a whole lot of traditional markets where people sell all kinds of things. The tour will even take you to the romantic Montazah Palace Gardens. To the west of Alexandria is the Nile Delta, swelling with birds and lotus blossoms. What else is there to do in Cairo? You can go on a day cruise on the Nile with traditional felucca boats, just like Cleopatra. This will give you a real sense of what it’s like sailing on the world’s longest river. Boarding the train to Aswan in southern Egypt and observing green fields, the Nile and villages speeding by is rather exciting for travellers. Just give in to the beauty of the Egyptian landscape.
Aswan is a wonderful city of the ancient Nubian Egypt, situated between the desert and the river. Tourism is present in the city centre as well as on and around the dam, but as soon as you venture out onto the surrounding hills, all signs of tourism quickly dissipate. The first tip for city sightseeing is to first explore the Aswan Dam and the Philae Island with its temple of Isis. Of course, a visit to Aswan isn’t complete without a trip to Abu Simbel temples, the resting place of Ramesses II and his queen Nefertari. If you head further up the Nile, you can explore the Nubian culture in the mysterious dunes. There, the locals can show you how bricks or perfumes are made. You can then continue exploring the temples by visiting the temple of Horus, the god of the sky and hunt. It took more than two hundred years for the temple to be built and it tells the story of light prevailing over darkness. The Karnak temple complex is even more majestic. And what’s there to see in the temples? You can simply walk among the hundreds of years old buildings and feel the spirits of priests who once performed rituals there. The deeper you delve into the temples, the older they get. There are sphinxes lined up, waiting for you to discover them, as well as a colonnade chamber and good luck charms in the form of scarabs. You can experience all this as part of a guided tour of the entire Luxor temple complex, so you can really get the bigger picture. After that, head out to the final resting place of the pharaohs in the Valley of the Kings where you can take a look at their former dwellings. The place is the most beautiful and the least hot when night falls. The tombs are quiet and bewitching and they tell a story of the pharaohs, of their life and their final journey. If you feel like it, you can even explore the surrounding desert. The nearby sight, the temple of Hatshepsut, a pharaoh, is full of secrets and stories. But what’s there to do when you’ve had enough of history and stones?
You should take a trip to Sharm El Sheikh on the coast of the Red Sea and on the outskirts of the Sinai Desert. I recommend staying at the HI Sharm El Sheikh hostel. And the tips on what to do there are as follows. Tourism is well-developed, which means you definitely have a chance to meet fellow travellers. But when you get tired of tourists, head out into the vast desert, which is always interesting for travellers. Our chosen trip includes camels and quad bikes. It starts in a Bedouin village in the evening and is then followed up by a ride through the desert where you get to explore the dunes at sunset. The Sinai Desert is roadless, peaceful and full of gorges with mysterious names. Travellers will also enjoy exploring the depths of the Red Sea, which is especially beautiful in the Ras Mohammed National Park. There’s barbecue waiting for you on the boat when you’re done exploring. So, get under water and explore the vibrant underwater world of coral reefs and other marine inhabitants. The boat also includes snorkelling equipment. A perfect sunrise will be waiting for you on top of Mount Sinai where Moses received the Ten Commandments. As an interesting fact, let me add that there are 750 steps leading up and it takes you about two to three hours to get to the top. After heading back down, you should really visit Saint Catherine’s Monastery, a UNESCO World Heritage Site. And after that, you can do a little shopping in Dahab, known as the Flower Power City that always has something for every traveller. You’ll get plenty of chances to buy souvenirs in Egypt.
A trip throughout Egypt will take you across various deserts and fields irrigated by the Nile. And don’t forget the diverse contemporary dance and song culture as well as the countless craft goods. The country’s mysteries and friendly people will definitely make sure this won’t be your last visit.