Egypt is a highly desirable destination for some people, but not everyone is aware of its delights. Similar to Morocco in some aspects, it’s a country full of historical treasures and a variety of tourist attractions, but it also features an array of quirky additional offerings such as ship wrecks and glorious reefs to explore underwater. You can also cruise down the world-famous Nile River and soak up some sun on one of the country’s pristine beaches, such as the Sinai.
Essentially, there are plenty of things to do for all types of holidaymakers on a range of different budgets. For some people, the idea of relaxing around a pool all day will simply never appeal. Likewise, for others, the opportunity to explore local markets doesn’t tickle their fancy either.
After learning about Egypt’s dazzling temples and tombs on television documentaries, or dabbling in the odd game based on ancient Egypt like the 3 Tiny Gods slot game at casino.com, people are generally attracted to the Egyptian culture and its rich historical treasures and tourist attractions. It’s a country with plenty to offer in that respect, and so much more too. You’ll certainly need an itinerary to take everything in. Below is a look at some of the options worth considering ahead of a potential visit to this truly beautiful country.
1. Cruise the River Nile
We mentioned it above but cruising down the River Nile is a fantastic option to kick things off with. It’ll give you a great overview of what Egypt is all about, and a taste for further adventures. A famed waterway, the Nile is one of the most relaxing ways in which to take in the temples, all of which are accompanied by stunning sand dunes and an all-around tranquil journey. The Temple of Kom Ombo and Edfu’s Temple of Horus are simply unmissable in particular.
There are plenty of cruises to choose from, lasting from a few hours to several days depending on what you want to see. If you have time, go for the one that runs between Luxor and Aswan for the treasure trove of archaeological sites that line the riverbanks.
For a more traditional experience, choose a felucca cruise and chill out on deck, watching the landscape sail by. You can sleep out beneath the twinkling stars at night, and share scrumptious Egyptian meals with your fellow passengers whilst listening to stories about ancient Egypt.
2. Visit a truly special temple
Egypt isn’t short on temples, but not many come close to Abu Simbel and its special offering. With it being Ramses II’s great temple, it is hugely popular. It features amazing statuary standing guards outside as you view it from far away and boasts a truly gorgeous interior filled with wall paintings. With its rich history adding never-ending layers to its story, you’ll be nothing but amazed at this truly stunning sight.
Another incredible temple worthy of a visit is the Temple of Hatshepsut in Luxor. Unusually, it’s built into the mountainside and isn’t far from the Valley of the Kings so you can combine the two quite easily. There are lots of pillars and statues to admire, as well as a chapel and a sun court. Hatshepsut was one of Egypt’s first ever female pharaohs so she perhaps deserved to be celebrated in such magnificence.
3. Dive the Red Sea
A favourite destination for many divers, the coral reefs of the Red Sea offer an abundance of sea life in what is a breathtaking experience for anyone who wants to explore beneath the waves. From sharks to dolphins to dugongs, you’ll see it all. Sharm el-Sheikh on the Sinai Peninsula is a great option. From there, you can check out the Ras Mohammed National Park and the Straits of Tiran.
Diving in the Red Sea isn’t just for the experts. If you’ve never done it before, there are plenty of operators who offer taster sessions and diving courses – there’s really nowhere more spectacular to learn in the world! If you don’t fancy diving, you won’t have to miss out as the snorkelling is amazing here too, and many of the Red Sea resorts offer snorkel hire for reasonable prices. In some places you can go straight from the beach, or head out to sea by boat to explore the reefs that are slightly further out.
4. Enjoy the Egyptian Museum
Not many countries have the historical richness that Egypt has, making a visit to the Egyptian Museum one of the most rewarding experiences you’ll have on your trip. With heaps on offer from the Pharaonic world, the museum in downtown Cairo has a whole host of remarkable collections and a range of intriguing exhibits. From ancient art to golden treasures, visiting the Egyptian Museum is a must.
Exhibits in the Middle East’s oldest museum date right back to the Predynastic Period. Don’t miss the incredible statues of some of the famous kings like Khafre and Khufu, who built the pyramids of Giza. You can also see burials, treasure, jewellery, and plenty of sarcophagi. There are over 120,000 piece to admire, so make sure you leave plenty of time for your visit.
5. Explore the unique White Desert National Park
An extraordinary natural wonder, Egypt’s White Desert National Park is something that you wouldn’t expect to see on earth, given its truly kooky nature. Featuring oddly shaped chalk pinnacles and massive boulders, all being housed on a landscape full of sand, it’s a truly stunning environment to explore and enjoy. The white landforms look almost like snow, which is certainly not something you’d expect to come across in a desert.
Popular with desert adventurers and overnight campers in particular, the White Desert National Park is one of the most unique destinations on earth. It sprawls across a vast 300 square kilometres just northwest of Cairo, and belongs to the Sahara Desert’s Farafra depression.
The main feature of the national park is Crystal Rock, which can easily be seen from the main road a short drive north of Naqb As Sillim. This desert rock arch will have you grabbing for the camera! For a closer look, pull on your boots and hit some of the hiking trails that snake through this wilderness landscape. Take plenty of water as there is little shade.
If you have time to visit even more incredible locations in Egypt during your holiday, you should definitely check out Siwa Oasis, visit St. Catherine’s Monastery, relax on South Sinai beach, and of course see the pyramids of Giza.
Have you visited Egypt? What sights would you add to the list?