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Egypt – A traveler’s paradise

Egypt – A traveler’s paradise

Egypt is one of the most famous tourist destinations across the globe. It’s cultural and architectural history has been survived by a lot of wonders and ruins that still exist. Besides that beaches and safaris have also become an intrinsic part of most Egypt vacations. Therapeutic tourism is another form of tourism that has gained popularity in recent years, especially around the regions of Hurghada and Red Sea Coast.

Egypt tours can be undertaken as either group tours which are cheap and time efficient, or in the form custom individual tours. Most of the Egypt Tour Packages are based on group tours. There are minor differences according to the types of groups these packages are pitched for. For example, family based packages include many adventure based activities for kids like snorkeling, there are also Egypt tours specifically for certain scholars who visit the country to study the Egyptian cultural heritage.

Egypt vacations should be planned keeping the weather conditions in mind. While summers are mostly hot and dry, the Delta summers are humid. Winters on the other hand, are generally mild with occasional spells of rain. Also, some sandstorms can be expected between March and May. Since most Egypt vacations can be fully customized one can plan their bookings keeping in mind the weather conditions they can be comfortable with. There are certain health related issues one must know of before visiting Egypt:

  • For all medical emergencies in Egypt one must dial 121 for assistance.
  • People with severe allergies or undergoing treatments should carry a health note from their practitioner clearly specifying an individual’s medical condition.
  • Egypt does not offer any health cover to most visitors traveling from other countries. It is therefore highly recommended that travelers take a health insurance policy before traveling to the country.

Major tourist destinations in the country include:

  • Luxor: Luxor is known for its temples. Also, most of the now famous Nile cruises begin from this destination. It was the ancient capital of Thebes.
  • Western oases: The most famous of the lot includes Dakhla, Farafra and Bahariya, found in the middle of the Saharan expanse. They are known for their dates, olives and picturesque landscape. Most Egypt tours postcards derive their photographic landscape from these oases.
  • Alexandria: The city is the country’s largest seaport. It is known for its ancient library which is said to be one of the most significant ones in the ancient world.
  • Cairo: Besides being the capital of Egypt, it has become famous for its nightlife, and a popular destination for international conferences and cultural festivals. It is the starting destination for most Egypt vacations due to its location and accessibility. The famous pyramids and Gaza Sphinx are located in this city.
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Budget-Friendly Egypt Vacations

Budget-Friendly Egypt Vacations

For many travelers, going on a holiday with a tight budget is a real challenge. This is because it is easier to just choose the more pricey travel options than to really take time out to plan a travel itinerary that will let you visit the areas that you plan on visiting as well as have a fun vacation experience even on limited resources. This also applies to Egypt vacations. The costs that one would need to plan for

 

 

include:

  • Transportation (which can consist of airfare, private vehicle rentals for entry into Egypt from a nearby area and transportation to get you from one destination to another when you are already in Egypt)
  • Lodging for the entire length of your stay
  • Food
  • Travel guides or companions
  • Tickets and entrance fees for the tourist attractions that you wish to see
  • Pocket money for souvenirs and other incidental expenses such as medicines
  • Clothing appropriate for hot weather if you are coming from a country with a cold climate and thus have no clothes that are appropriate for desert and beach wear

When we talk about budget-friendly travel, it should not automatically mean making your own travel arrangements. This is because travel agencies partner with many operators of tourist attractions, airlines and hotels to secure a bulk rate that would make the Egypt tour packages that they offer less expensive or with only a slightly higher than if you were to book each travel item on your own. Even if there should be a slight price difference, the convenience of having someone else arrange your travel itinerary for you would take away the time and stress that you may experience in your travel preparations and instead turn this into time spent on planning how you will take advantage of the sights and sounds that you will experience and the new people that you will meet in your Egypt vacations. Add to this the fact that local people would know the area better than you do and thus can provide a more efficient means of transportation. Thus, opting to go on an economy Egypt tour packages can bring an added advantage to you. This case is particularly true for European visitors because there are many European charter services and travel houses which have a busy business activity in Egypt. In return for this, they are able to get large discounts from hotels, airlines and ground travel operators, and these all result to very affordable travel prices even with profit already considered.

An important tip that will be able to save you money is to a hybrid kind of travel, which means that you take advantage of Egypt tour packages that already contain some basic travel arrangements such as lodging, transportation and sightseeing to your preferred tourist spots, but also gives you extra time to do independent activities besides the ones that you have already paid for. This way, you already have the essential arrangements covered yet are not constrained to visiting only specific spots and in case you want to expand your sightseeing a little bit further.

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Plan your vacation in Egypt

Plan your vacation in Egypt

Egypt is known for its architectural and cultural heritage. Unlike many other ancient civilizations, the architectural wonders built by Egyptians have stood the test of time. It is because of such riches that Egypt attracts a lot of visitors every year. Given the popularity of Egypt amongst travelers and tourists worldwide, many other modes of popular tourism like safari tourism and therapeutic tourism are being promoted. Many Egypt tour packages now include these forms of tourism along with other modes like cultural tourism.

Egypt vacations are one of the most exotic vacations one could consider for a holiday. Though Egypt is known for its ancient architectural wonders, it also has some of the most famous beaches and restaurants. Egypt vacations in fact are ideal for both the luxury, and frugal traveler. Travelers can treat themselves to the best of luxury hotels and restaurants in Cairo and Sharm-El-Sheikh, while a place like Dahab which is in Sinai, is popular amongst backpackers worldwide. Many Egypt tours are now themed around vacation ideas including:

a)      Beach vacations: This is mainly centered around the resort town of Sharm-El-Sheikh. It offers an amazing landscape waiting to be explored.  The Shark reef and Na’ama bay attract a lot of adventure tourists every year. Beaches have now become an important attraction for most Egypt vacations.

b)      History vacation: This primarily includes traveling around Cairo and the Nile river valley. Most Egypt tours start with Cairo. Also, known as the City of the Thousand Minarets it is known for its museums, the famous Khan Al-Khalili bazaar, Pyramids and the Sphinx. The Nile valley on the other hand, is famous for its temples at Abu Simbel and Luxor. These Egypt tours areideal for scholars who wish to study the ancient Egyptian culture.

c)       Shopping vacations: Egyptian bazaars also known as souks are some of the most famous markets in the world. Most of them are based in Cairo. The Egypt Tourism and Shopping Festival is also very popular and draws a lot of tourists every year.

To attract more tourists to their country, the Egyptian government organizes various festivals throughout the year. These include music, shopping and film festivals. These festivals draw a lot of famous personalities every year contributing to increasing their popularity. Sinai for example, has become a famous host site for many music festivals. Cairo hosts The Cairo Film Festival which is held annually. It has the distinction of being the first international film festival to be held in the Arabic-speaking countries.

It is very cheap to have a vacation in Egypt. Egypt vacations can be planned on a very nominal budget and yet be turned into one the most assorted vacation one could have abroad. Many travel agencies now offer cheap trips to Egypt that are well organized.

If one plans to go around exploring restaurants in the country, it is advisable to check for recommendations online. There are various sites that offer comprehensive restaurant reviews which give a fairly good idea of the quality. With proper planning one can keep their accommodation and food costs to impressively low figures.

Egypt thus has a lot to offer to any traveler. While most travel around the country through the popular mode of tour packages, one can choose to explore the country at their own will by adopting the ways of a backpacker.

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What to Take for your Egypt Travel

What to Take for your Egypt Travel

Despite the presence of numerous sites, museums and monuments that are all a testament to Egypt’s glorious history, the Egypt that you will find when you go on your Egypt travel is sophisticated and modern. In fact, when you take Egypt tours you will not have much difficulty on stopovers because almost everything you will need is already available in its major cities and tourist hubs. However, there are still some basic items that are difficult to find or very expensive in some locations, so you might take note of the basic items that you can bring for your Egypt travel, whether you are traveling alone or on a family vacation taking advantage of Egypt tour packages being offered.

First of all, the overall climate in Egypt is one where you are continuously exposed to the oppressive heat, so you will need to prepare adequate clothes and covering for your body.  To protect your head, bring a large brimmed hat, whose shade is a welcome respite for women from the hot Egyptian sun. Having a cover for the head also makes it acceptable for women who are touring ancient churches and mosques. You might also want to bring sunglasses to protect your eyes from the heat and dust. For women visiting important religious sites, you should have scarves or other similar apparel that will adequately cover your shoulders and arms. This is also a practical way to protect your skin from the sun during treks. If you find yourself unable to bear the hot weather, the same cloth or scarf can be soaked in cold water to relieve your head of the heat which can cause you to have a heatstroke.

Another must-have when going on your various Egypt tours is the Squeeze Breeze, or a water bottle which has a sprayer and a battery-operated fan attached. This can easily prevent you from fainting in the heat, which can sometimes easily reach 104 degrees Fahrenheit. Still on the subject of protection from the sun is of course the ultimate protection for your exposed skin, sunblock. If you live in a tropical country or are fond of visiting beaches, you should know that sunblock protects your body from dangerous ultraviolet rays and also prevents you from getting a painful sunburn.

In a very hot weather such as what you can expect from an Egypt travel, you should bring a canteen or water holder so you can easily stay hydrated even when you are in the middle of the desert or on the inner sanctum of an pyramid or tomb and away from access to water and other liquids. For a more comfortable travel experience, you might consider buying a water canteen that you can tie around your waist or shoulder, keeping your hands free for holding other important items.

Lastly, you would do a considerable amount of walking when going on Egypt tours, so you might as well bring along comfortable walking shoes that are made of light material and allows your feet to breathe while protecting your feet from the heat, sand and small stones that you may encounter while going desert trekking or exploring ruins.

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Know More about Cairo

Cairo By Night

Cairo By Night

The Egyptian capital stretches out along both banks of the Nile. The governorship of Giza on the west bank and that of Cairo proper on the east bank merge to form the same vast conurbation. With an insatiable appetite for space, the largest city on the African continent makes daily inroads into desert sands and farmlands. This is happening at such a rate that no one knows for certain whether Cairo’s population has reached ten, fifteen or perhaps even twenty million.


Cairo was a source of amazement to travelers even at the time of the Mameluks. But the indomitable city of Cairo is still in the eyes of the Egyptians “The Victorious”, “Mother of the world” or simply “Misr”, the name for Egypt as a whole. As long as the visitor is willing to lose his way then he too can discover the sweetness of Cairo nights lit by green neon illuminated mosques, the warmth of small, everyday cafes, the pleasure of strolling along narrow streets and the smiling good humor of the city’s people.


On the east bank of the Nile, between Tahrir and Ataba Squares and Ramesses Station lies the centre of modern day Cairo. Europeanised since the mid nineteenth century, this quarter was built along the same lines as Haussmann’s Paris: the streets are broad and meet at right angles and rococo apartment buildings with stucco mouldings were considered the height of modernity. This area also conceals some architectural gems dating from the early nineteenth century.


Along Talaat Harb Street, Qasr el-Nil Street and the Avenue of the 26 July, enormous painted posters advertise films currently showing in the cinemas. On Thursday evenings, the citizens of Cairo crowd the pavements of this window-shopper’s paradise. There are fabric remnant shops, clothes and shoe shops as well as major department stores, such as City Star, excellent pastry shops, fashionable fast-food outlets and belly-dancing cabaret clubs. The crowds are a mix of tourists and students from the American university.
On leaving the main thoroughfares and entering the amazing alleyways of Khan El Khalili, the visitor can discover small restaurants and workaday cafes where men in suits and ties come to smoke their nargileh and drink their extra sweet tea away from the bustle.
Tahrir Square (Liberation Square) in the heart of the city represents Cairo as a whole. An oriental-style building houses the American University. An enormous, semi-circular building, the Mogamma, houses several government departments. A visa extension might require a visit to this building in which case a cold beer to follow on the terrace of the Nile Hilton is sure to be appreciated.

Reference : Egyptian Tourism Authority

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History of Tahrir Square

Can you give us a bit of history of Tahrir Square in Cairo?

Tahrir Square came into existence 140 years ago during the time of another ruler who was considered ruthless, Ismail. He had lived in Paris, in Haussmann’s Paris and saw the changes that came about in France under Napoleon III and he wanted to remake Cairo in the image of Paris. If George Bush was the decider, Ismail was the modernizer. So he redesigned an area that was all pretty much vegetation adjacent Nile, and from time to time would be flooded by the Nile. It was known as Ismailia Square because of him.

Why from a design angle was it so successful as a point of protest?

Twenty-three streets lead to different parts of it, which is why it was so successful with the demonstrators. There isn’t one big boulevard that you can block off, and there are two bridges that lead to it as well. One of them saw a clash between the regime and the demonstrators. It’s also the case that all of downtown Cairo, which isn’t that big, has a street that leads to side or another of Tahrir Square.

Tell me about the name, Liberation Square, and it’s import.

Tahrir Square got its name by a presidential decree in 1955. It was supposed to be a sign of Egypt’s liberation from the British–who actually left in the 20s–and also from the monarchy of King Farouk. Actually in Tarhrir Square there is a large pedestal that was put in place in the time of King Farouk that was supposed to have a statue of him on top. But it never got built and power changed hands so President Nasser decided to keep the pedestal with nothing on it as a reminder of the failure of the Egyptian monarchy. But honestly it’s not really clear to me what liberation the presidential decree was recognizing. In my opinion Tahrir Square didn’t earn it’s name until January 25th, 2011.

Reference : dwell.com

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