We (my partner and I) are about to travel through Africa for a month and we are planning on spending 9 days in Egypt.
We are planning on spending the first couple of days in Cairo and then moving on. We don't have anything particular in mind, but would really like some advice on what to do for the rest of the time.
Is there any 'must see' places or places we shouldnt bother with??
Thanks in advance!!
That is a tough question as it will depend on what interests you the most. I would recommend you consider something like:
2 days Cairo then night train to Aswan, free afternoon on day 3 in Aswan, early morning (Day 4) trip to Abu Simbel then free afternoon followed by night train to Luxor, Day 5 would be a free day in Luxor, Day 6 a tour of the West Bank (Valley of Kings and Queens etc), Day 7 transfer to Hurghada on the Red Sea Coast, Day 8 Hurghada and Day 9 back to Cairo.
You really don't have time for much else! This way you will cover the major historic points of Egypt and you can always come back when you have more time.
Hope that is helpful - let me know if you need more.
Cheers and happy trails,
You haven't said what your priorities or level of interest is in either modern or ancient Egypt....but there is so much to see here that I, personally, would not want to waste any time in the Red Sea unless you were just looking for sea and sand and time out....for that you don't have to come all the way to Egypt!
My must sees would be the Temples at Abydos and Dendera because they are different to all the others and the most preserved, even having the top floors and underground crypts intact. Most people who go to the West Bank only see the Valley of the Kings and Hatshepsut's Temple, which is a shame because there is also the Ramesseum, Medinet Habu, tombs of the Nobles, Workers' Village there, so to see them all would take 1 day. Karnak & Luxor temples you would do on the same day. You could chill out on a cruise and see Edfu, Kom Ombo and Philae....it can be a very romantic and enjoyable experience if you get the right ship. You could fly from Aswan to Abu Simbel and from Abu Simbel to Cairo.
Egypt is different for everyone. Not many people I meet really take time to realise that the Pharaohs and the Queens were living breathing people with ups and downs, triumphs and crises like ourselves....if you do take time to think about that then the temples and tombs take on a whole new dimension and they are places you won't want to leave! So many people whizz through here without stopping to think about their lives and the pieces of the puzzles left behind. Sorry for rambling! Having a nostalgic moment about ancient Egypt! In Cairo of course the pyramids and in particular the Gt. Pyramid...must be there early in the morning to get into that one. Saqqara is also very different but there is no much to see in Memphis. Cairo Museum...depending on your level of interest can take from a day to week to see! If you want to experience the egyptian side of Khan El Khalili (market) then go between 11pm and 3am...that's when egyptians go there. Al Azhar park is beautiful by night! Salahadeen's Citadel can take a whole day there is so much there and it is another place that people don't realize how much is there, especially those that are taken on tours there, City of the Dead is like no place I have ever seen. People live in the tombs and "take care" of the dead....most of them are very welcoming to tourists.
Hope this helps.
as all my friends said,,,this will be great , as for me as an egyptian guide to all of egypt ,,,you need to go to the major places,,,,aswan,luxor,,,cairo and may be one day in alexandria.....wish this will help.
ok, let's see what we get here, it's 2 tourists want to spent 9 days in our lovely EGYPT 2 of them (days) at Cairo and the rest ....! ok, if u and your partner want to enjoy the summer sun and marvilous sight in egypt i suggest 2 or 3 days in Sharm or Hurgada and then you can make a magic tour in Sewa Oasis (at least 3 days ) and the last day you come back to cairo.
1. this is a few places but it good one coz i collect to you modern and ancient places
2. this is trip it is not rank so its up to you
3. more places Alex, Luxor , Aswan ,Tabaa ,
I hope that help you , and you are so welcome to Egypt
is arrival day
-going to the pyramids at 7 am of Giza to see 9 pyramids
and see the solar boat museum (it is need a privet tickets)
-sqarrah pyramids to see the first pyramid in the history back to 4600 years ago and some old Pharaohs tombs around it
back to the hotel
day numb 3
moving at morning to Alexandria city (3 hours by the car away from Cairo220 km ) visiting there
1-catacomb(Roman tomb under ground)
2-great library of Alexandria
3-Roman theater back to the 4Th century
4-fort of Qayet bay in the same place of
the old light house of Alexandria
6-the old market of the city
7-mountazah garden(Turkish palace)
back to Cairo hotel
-visiting the Egyptian museum seeing the treasures of Pharaoh tut ankh Amun
and ancient Egypt,mummy rooms(need a privet ticket)
-going to fort of salah Alden back to 12 the century
and mosque of Mohamed Ali
-visit house back to 500 years ago in Islamic Cairo(alsehemy)
-be in bazaar of khan El Khalil (street of history )one of the best open bazaars in all middle east
at night having the sleeping train to Aswan
Arrival Aswan having there a cruise ship visiting Philae temples on the Nile is famed for its Philae Temple- dedicated to the goddess Isis. We also visit the High Dam.
board the cruise ship for a 2 night voyage on the Nile, as you sail toward Luxor. visit the Temple at Kom- Ombo.
(Overnight on board)
EDFU & KOMOMBO
Relax Aboard . Sail Past Various Outcrops and Scenes of Nile Village Life, After a Visit to The Temple of Horus, the largest after the Temple of Karnak.
(overnight on board)
After breakfast & check out from the cruise . go a head to the West Bank Highlights Include the Valley of the Kings. See first Hand How Egypt´s Ancient Rulers Attempted to Confine thieves Wrongdoers and Mortality with Fantastic Tombs Hollowed Deep in the Surrounding Mountains of the Valley. Perhaps The Most Famous Tomb Is that of The Boy- King Tutankhamen. See also the Temple of Queen Hatshepsut- Carved out of the Theban Hills In Honour of One of Ancient Egypt´s Few Women Rulers. See Also the Colossi of Memnon, As you Wonder About this Ancient Necropolis.
In the after noon having a tour in the East Bank. Taking in highlights such as the temple of Luxor built by pharaoh Amenophis III and the Spectacular Temple of Karnak. Gigantic In Proportion It´s A Feast for the Eyes.later transfer to the train station
arriving to Cairo at night having a light show at giza pyramids
good luck and nice trip insha Allah
Oo Egypt is a great country to visit!
Though I have noticed that there are MAJOR problems with backpacking around...for starters, to go between places you need to join convoys, which can depart very early in the morning (as the case of the convoy to Abu Simbel from Aswan, which leaves at about 3:00am!)
My friend said that they don't let you, as a non-Egyptian, take a lot of the public transport and you are fairly limited in the journeying between towns.
Luxor is fascinating - Karnak and Luxor temples are worth a visit, I would advise joining a tour group, not necessarily booking a guide, but just sort of tag along with another group - remembering to tip the tour guide afterwards. Thats what we did and they point out fascinating things, which you wouldn't notice otherwise, which honestly, make the temples far more interesting.
Abu Simbel is awe-inspiring, honestly. Its definately worth a visit!
Kom Ombo is worth a trip, as is Edfu. IF you can, try to visit Esna, though you will almost certainly have problems. My mate made it and he said its definately worth a trip...I didn't make it.
If you have never been to the Middle East before, stock up on LOTS of small change - lots of one Egyptian Pound notes. They will expect tips for EVERYTHING, seriously, pushing your cases at the airport...there are also hundreds of men wandering around the temples showing you things, and will expect tips, but a lot of the time its worth it. Plus, they aren't very good photographers in my experience, so if they offer to take a photo of you, make sure they do it properly!
I'd also like to visit the Western Desert - Siwa Oasis, I've heard, is fascinatingly weird.
This is probably too late, but oh well.
Oh - and get up as early as possible to visit the temples and stuff to avoid the tourist hordes. Plus, avoid the heat of the day...which can be extreme (50oC when I went), though its not as bad as it sounds, honestly.
Plenty of bottled water.
Forgot to mention the Valley of the Kings/Queens. Hapsetsut is a bizzare woman and is essentially the worlds first transvestite, check her temple/tomb out.
King Tut is a let down, its not NEARLY as glamorous as the other tombs, its small and gloomy. BUT, seeing Tut's mummy is something special, since he is the most well known pharoah in the whole of Egypt.