Tips for excursions in Egypt

During a visit to Egypt, you must not miss the pyramids of Giza. Among them are the Pyramid of Khafre, the Pyramid of Mykerinos and the Pyramid of Khufu. The latter is also known as the Great Pyramid of Giza and is the only surviving structure of the Seven Wonders of the Ancient World.

The pyramids were built as burial sites for the great Egyptian pharaohs after whom they were named. In the past, when pyramids were not heavily guarded, many robbers took the opportunity to steal the valuable treasures inside each pyramid. Today, the Egyptian government is doing everything possible to protect and preserve the majesty of these pyramids.

Directly next to the three pyramids is the Sphinx, which is also known by the Arabs as Abu Al-Hol or "Father of Terror".

Medieval Cairo

Cairo is the capital of Egypt and the most chaotic city in the country. Definitely not everything in Egypt is old and historical. Visiting Cairo in the summer months can be really arduous, with the scorching heat of the sun, dust and noise from almost every corner of the city making sure of that. But this part of Cairo, known as medieval Cairo, is not as chaotic as the rest of the city. There are even a lot of beautiful things to see here.

Medieval Cairo is full of mosques, Coptic churches, medieval city gates and bazaars or souks selling everything from framed grains of sand to swords to carpets – great deals for shopaholics! Medieval Cairo is also home to the world's largest mosque, the Muhammad Ali Mosque, as well as the world's oldest university, Al-Azhar Mosque.

Abu Simbel

The temples of Abu Simbel are indeed a sight you can't miss when visiting Egypt. Here one wonders how the ancient Egyptians managed to carve statues out of a rock without high-tech tools.

The two temples were built by order of Ramses II between 1274 and 1244 v. Chr. built. He dedicated the larger temple – the temple of Ramses – to the sun gods Amun-Re and Re-Harachte. The smaller temple – the temple of Hathor – was dedicated by Ramses II to his favorite wife, Queen Nefertari. The Ramses Temple was rediscovered by Swiss researcher Jean Louis Burkhardt.

Between 1964 and 1966, the Egyptian government moved the two temples to a site about 60 meters above their original location, as the construction of a nearby dam might have caused them to flood.

Always on 22. February and on 22. October the most amazing event takes place in Abu Simbel. These are the only two days of the year when the sun rising in the east illuminates all four statues of the Temple of Ramses.

The temple of Karnak

The temple complex of Karnak is considered the mother of all sacred buildings and was also known as Ipet-Isut or "most blessed of all places". The complex covers an area of more than 80 hectares, here are numerous temples that were considered a place for the gods more than 2000 years ago. The three main temples Mut, Month and Amun-Re are named after the Triad of Thebes to whom the temple of Karnak was dedicated.

The Temple of Amun alone, located in the center, occupies an area of 25 hectares and could accommodate more than ten European cathedrals. Inside you will find several smaller temples and a sacred lake. The Temple of Month is north and the Temple of Mut is south of the Temple of Amun.

The construction of the temple of Karnak began in the Middle Kingdom and was only 1.600 years later in the time of the New Kingdom ended. Each pharaoh added at least 2 hectares of land for himself to the temple.

The Nile

The Nile – or Bahr el-Nile, as the locals would call it – is the longest river in Africa and the second longest in the world. The Nile has played a significant role in the development of Egyptian civilization. But it is not only a historical site, it also offers visitors new and modern activities.

History buffs are advised to take a Nile cruise. As the ship travels downstream, a local guide will tell legends and stories about the different events that happened on the Nile River. For young and adventurous tourists, a wide variety of water sports activities can be organized, such as kayaking, rafting, fishing and even bungee jumping.

The Nile has always been a source of food and water for the locals and their ancestors who lived along the river. Today, the Nile is also a valuable source of energy, as one of Egypt's most important dams for generating electricity was built here.

The Valley of the Kings

The Valley of the Kings, also known as Biban El Moluk, is a valley built for the Egyptian pharaohs. Here they are buried. All the artifacts that were once in these tombs are now kept in the Egyptian Museum.

The Valley of the Kings consists of two parts: the eastern and the western valley. The eastern valley is more frequently visited by tourists because most of the tombs of the pharaohs of the New Kingdom are located here, for example of Tutankhamun and Ramses the Great. There is only one pharaonic tomb in the western valley, the tomb of Ay, Tutankhamun's successor. The decorations on the walls of the tombs and on the sarcophagi of each pharaoh vary, some showing simple stick figures while others are full of elaborate paintings.

The Valley of the Kings is surrounded by many myths and imaginations. Among the most famous are the Curse of the Pharaoh and the Book of the Dead.

Siwa Oasis

If you want to experience nature, history and adventure in one, then Siwa Oasis is the place for you!

One of the famous tourist attractions in Siwa is the Aghurmi temple. Four kilometers from the city center, this temple is considered the first place in Egypt that Alexander the Great visited. Above all he wanted to consult the oracle of the temple. The Persian king Cambyses ordered 50.000 men to destroy this place.

Another sight in Siwa is the Gebel al Mawta or Hill of the Dead. In the hill of the dead there are four interesting graves, which are worth a visit. The first one is the tomb of Si-Amun. Si-Amun was actually a rich Greek and not Egyptian. Then there is the tomb of Meso-Isis, which is unfinished, but with the skull of the deceased. On the walls of the third tomb, the tomb of Niperpathot, there are inscriptions and drawings in red color. The last one is the tomb of the crocodile, where you will see the ancient drawing of a crocodile.


Who would have thought that Egypt, a desert country, also has some pretty impressive diving sites? Hurghada on the Red Sea is one of Egypt's most important diving spots and is visited by professional divers from all over the world. The reefs of Hurghada are rich in marine life, the beauty of which you should not miss when visiting Egypt.

Hurghada is one of the best places to enjoy the sun, sand and nightlife. Around Hurghada there are plenty of restaurants, night clubs and accommodations of all kinds, from hotels to various resorts.

Since diving is the most popular tourist activity here, you will find numerous diving schools for students of all levels. The instructors are all licensed and well trained, so you don't have to worry about anything. Diving equipment can be bought almost everywhere in Hurghada.


Ancient Thebes, more commonly known as Luxor, is one of the top destinations in Egypt. The temple of Luxor was built around 1400 b. Chr. built by Amenhotep III and Ramses II, mainly to celebrate the Opet festival.

When you visit Luxor, you will see a mosque that is beautifully illuminated at night. It is considered the highlight of the place.

As Egypt can get very hot, especially during the summer months, it is recommended to visit Luxor between October and March, when the weather is much cooler. It is also important that you have four things with you: Water (to avoid dehydration), sunglasses (to avoid the sun's bright rays, which can be very harmful to your eyes), headgear (yet another protection from the sun's blazing heat), and a flashlight (especially if you're visiting tombs, as not all tombs are well lit).

The Egyptian Museum

This museum is considered to be one of the best in the world, so it must be included in every traveler's plans. The Egyptian Museum houses one of the world's largest collections of ancient artifacts. Many interesting possessions of the deceased pharaohs are kept here. Even if you are not a museum fan, you will never be bored in the Egyptian Museum, because every corner is full of interesting things that you will probably see only once in a lifetime.