Best things to do in Egypt

Discover the best Egypt has to offer, from camel rides in the desert and sailing trips along the Nile to ancient sites where you can walk in the footsteps of pharaohs

  • The prospect of the pyramids — perhaps with a camel or two passing in front — might be the thing that draws people to Egypt, but there’s so much more there awaiting you. Expect an astonishing number of ancient sights, from the tombs of the pharaohs strung out along the Nile valley to temples found far from the riverbanks. As well as exploring the valley, no trip should miss a journey on the Nile river itself, preferably on a felucca — a wooden sailing boat — at sunset. Water-based adventures continue at the Red Sea, home to coral reefs that make it one of the world’s best snorkeling and diving sites. And then there’s the desert — camping under the stars after a meal cooked on the open fire is an experience you’ll never forget.
Day Trip To Cairo From El Gouna By Plane | El Gouan Excursions to Cairo

1. Marvel at the pyramids of Giza

Your first glimpse of Egypt’s most famous pyramids will likely be from the plane flying into Cairo. From that distance the gargantuan structures, slowly being absorbed into the sprawl of the city, are impressive enough, but you need to get up close to really appreciate them. A half-day guided tour with an Egyptologist is the ideal way to take in the Giza complex. You’ll explore the three pyramids of Giza, and the Sphinx that acts as their guard, learning about their construction 4,500 years ago and life in the ancient world. The trip ends with that most classic of desert experiences: a camel ride.or ATV Ride at the desert of the pyramids

2. Learn to dive in the Red Sea

The Red Sea is one of the world’s greatest dive locations — and the good news is that it’s accessible even to beginners. Sharm el-Sheikh is well set up for novices, with plenty of operators offering Padi courses over several days. Get comfortable with the equipment in the pool; once you’re confident, you’ll be taken out with a dive-master for scuba diving over the reefs, gliding among clown fish and rays. If you already know what you’re doing, there are plenty of outfitters who’ll take you out to the best dive sites,including Ras Mohammed, one of Egypt’s national parks. There are multiple snorkeling opportunities too.

3. Sail along the Nile

There can’t be many more romantic or timeless experiences than watching the sun set over the Nile, with the backside palm trees casting shadows on the water and the distant mountains turning pink in the fading light. Ramp up the romance a notch by taking to the river on a felucca from Luxor. These wooden sailing boats are a common sight and have been used for millennia. A sunset trip also includes dinner on Banana Island (named for its fruit trees) and a dip in the water, should you wish. The true highlight, though, is the simple pleasure of drinking hibiscus tea on deck as the day slowly fades away.

4. See the first pyramids

The pyramids at Giza get all the attention, but there are well over 100 pyramids in Egypt. Those at Djoser and the Dahshur complex, south of Cairo, are less crowded than at Giza, and can be visited on one of the city’s easiest day trips, combined with a tour of Memphis, Egypt’s first capital. Highlights are the Step Pyramid, the world’s oldest pyramid (built 2,630BC) and now reopened to visitors after a long restoration; the perfectly shaped Red Pyramid; and the Bent Pyramid, with a top section that seems to bend in from the base. You can go inside all three.

5. Go for a camel ride

Families who base themselves in Sharm el-Sheikh have plenty of activities on tap — and not just the watery pursuits offered by the Red Sea. A great day trip is to head inland and have an action-packed time exploring the Sinai desert. There are plenty of itineraries to choose from, but a fun all-round option for children includes a quad-bike safari, camel ride and barbecue dinner in a Bedouin camp, with entertainment provided by belly dancers. End the day by gazing at the constellations through a telescope; free from light pollution, the night sky is ablaze with stars here.

6. Sleep in the desert

The wonders of the White Desert, another national park, are most often appreciated on a day excursion but you’ll add a whole other dimension to your experience if you stay the night. After travelling into the desert by cross-country vehicle from Cairo, you’ll spend time exploring the otherworldy landscape of rock formations, palm groves and oasis villages, before enjoying a traditional Arabic dinner cooked on the fire. You can choose to sleep either in a tent pitched on the sand or in the open air under the stars. Either way, you’ll drift off amid utter silence, with the feeling that you’re miles from anywhere.

7. Explore the Karnak and Luxor temple complexes

The east bank of the Nile valley around Luxor is home to some of the most important and impressive historical sites in Egypt, if not the world — the Karnak temple complex and Luxor temple among them. A day’s guided tour can take in both, with a knowledgeable Egyptologist providing insight into the towering statues, columns and stone buildings, translating the hieroglyphics, and generally bringing ancient Egypt to life. The tour ends at the Luxor museum, home to artefacts collected from the tombs and temples. You can also visit in the evening, when the rose-pink sky fades to black, for the spectacle of the hokey if evocative evening Sound and Light Show.

Add a Comment

Your email address will not be published.