Found in northeast Africa, Egypt is at the top of many travelers’ must-see lists, and with its rich history and diverse landscapes, it is easy to understand why. But with terrorist activity, criminal enterprises, and conflict still present in some areas, people often wonder if Egypt is a good place to visit.
There are many wonderful reasons why a trip to Egypt should be on your to-do list, and if you avoid certain areas, follow local customs, and work with a tour guide, it can be a fun and safe vacation destination.
Continue reading to learn more about Egypt and the places you should visit while you are there.
What Is Egypt Like?
Egypt is a country that can be found in northeast Africa. Although it is 90% desert, there are areas near the Nile River that are not as dry as the rest of the country. Additionally, many highly populated cities and villages can be found throughout the country.
One of the most prominent things about Egypt is the Nile River, which is the only source of water for most of the country. This massive riven runs the entire length of Egypt and splits the country in half.
The weather in Egypt can vary depending on where you visit, with areas closest to the equator being the warmest. Additionally, temperatures can fluctuate quite dramatically in the desert, with it getting quite cool at night.
The country has a rich geographic and cultural history, and many of its biggest attractions are historical sites that date back thousands of years. Although some areas should be avoided, the larger cities are generally safe for tourists, especially if you hire a local guide.
Is Egypt an Expensive Place to Travel To?
Although one of the biggest factors is the currency exchange rate between your currency and the currency of the country you are visiting, Egypt is a generally cheap place to visit. This is especially true when compared to bigger countries such as the United States.
Below you can find a table outlining some of the average costs you will encounter when visiting Egypt.
|Service/Good||Price in Egyptian Pounds||Price in USD||Price in EURO|
|Hotel Per Night||1 Star: 497 EGP 5 Star: 5,118 EGP Average: 888 EGP||1 Star: $27 5 Star: $279 Average: $48||1 Star: 15 EURO 5 Star: 257 EURO Average: 45 EURO|
|Car Rental||Compact: 935 EGP Luxury: 4,800 EGP Average: 2,100 EGP||Compact: $50.98 Luxury: $261.70 Average: $114.49||Compact: $46.87 Luxury: $240.63 Average: $105.27|
|Eating Out||Cheap Restaurant: 30 – 100 EGP Expensive Restaurant: 200 – 800 EGP McDonalds: 70 – 100 EGP||Cheap Restaurant: $1.64 – $5.45 Expensive Restaurant: $10.90 – $43.62 McDonalds: $3.82 – $5.45||Cheap Restaurant: 1.50 – 5.01 EURO Expensive Restaurant: 10.03 – 40.10 EURO McDonalds: 3.51 – 5.01 EURO|
|Coffee||20 EGP||$1.10||1.00 EURO|
|Wine||150 EGP||$8.18||7.52 EURO|
|Sightseeing||Solo: 275 – 2293 EGP Couple: 550 – 4568 EGP Family: 1119 – 9135 EGP||Solo: $15 – $125 Couple: $30 – $249 Family: $61 -$498||Solo: 14 – 115 EURO Couple: 28 –229 EURO Family: 57 – 458 EURP|
|Travel||Flight: 2659 – 5961 EGP Train: 56 – 5962 EGP||Flight: $145 – $325 Train: $3 -$110||Flight: 134 – 298 EURO Train: 3 – 102 EURO|
What Is There to Do in Egypt?
There are endless sights to see in Egypt—a country whose history dates to the time of the Pharaohs. Below we look at some of the most noteworthy things to do while in Egypt.
The Pyramids of Giza
This is one of the most obvious things to put on your to-do list, but we would be remiss if we didn’t at least mention them. Built around 5,000 years ago, these giant structures still baffle scientists, who have yet to discover how they were made or why.
Depending on which structure you want to explore, tickets will cost anywhere from 25 EGP to 100 EGP ($3 to $11 USD), and travelers should plan to spend at least half a day there. People interested in this might also plan to visit some of Egypt’s lesser-known pyramids as well.
Nile River Cruise
Drifting slowly past some of Egypt’s most breathtaking sights is something that should be on the list of any tourist. However, because of lodging accommodations on the boats, some travel experts suggest breaking the trip into sections and staying onshore when you can. There are multiple cruises available, and they will typically cost between 8254 EGP and 23845 EGP ($450 – $1300 USD) and can span several days.
Egypt’s capital city, Cairo, is a sight to behold. Located on the Nile River, Cairo is full of ancient structures, tombs, and mosques. Additionally, travelers can choose to explore Islamic Cairo or Coptic Cairo, with each offering something different to tourists. Crowds and over-eager shop owners can be a hassle, but they should not keep you from experiencing this beautiful city.
Alexandria, Egypt’s second-largest city, sits on the Mediterranean Sea and offers an array of things for tourists to do and see. Travelers can explore the National Museum, the Stanley Bridge, or the Catacombs of Kom El Shoqafa. Staying in Alexandria can cost anywhere between 294 EGP and 1376 EGP a night ($16 – $75), and travelers often spend a day or two exploring the city.
Most people do not think about beaches when planning to visit a mostly desert country, but Egypt holds some of the most beautiful beaches in the world. There are a wide variety of beach resorts to choose from, with each offering its own unique views. For example, people staying in Sharm El-Sheikh can enjoy scuba diving, nearby shopping, and Ras Mohammed National Park.
The Red Sea
If given a chance, you should visit the red sea. Its high salt content makes it a unique place to swim, and its gorgeous reefs and many shipwrecks make it a favorite among scuba divers. There are many places to stay along the Red Sea, including Ain El Sokhna, Sahl Hasheesh, and Safaga.
This popular pilgrimage site is said to be the very spot where Moses received the Ten Commandments. The trail starts at Saint Catherine’s Monastery, and hikers can choose between an easy or hard trail. It is three miles, one way, and how long it takes will depend on how much time you spend taking in your surroundings.
This is by no means an extensive list of things to do while in Egypt, and there are thousands of other sites and places to visit. Families might enjoy Egypt’s many child-friendly destinations, offering camel rides and educational tours, while more adventurous folks might enjoy exploring some of the lesser-known areas of the country. With so many things to do, it is highly recommended to do some research and plan your trip before you go to avoid being overwhelmed.
Is Egypt Safe for Tourists?
Although there are some areas that should be avoided, if you take the correct precautions and avoid risky areas, Egypt can be a safe vacation destination.
Travelers should avoid areas that are not commonly frequented by tourists. Additionally, there are many travel warnings associated with areas such as The Sinai Peninsula, The Libyan border, and The Western desert. Hiring a travel guide to help you navigate and avoid dangerous zones is always a promising idea.
Most tourist attractions have a military presence, which will help visitors feel less uneasy. Also, some travel experts suggest women wear a wedding ring (even if they are not married) to avoid being hassled.
Although there are some areas that should be avoided, thousands of people travel to Egypt each year and return completely unharmed. Furthermore, they have a wonderful time. From wandering through the pyramids to floating lazily down the Nile River, there is no shortage of things to do in Egypt, making the country a must on anyone’s list of places to travel.
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