Heading to Egypt? Well my friend, you are in for quite a trip!
Here are some of the must see places in Egypt to consider adding to your itinarary on your trip to the motherland. Starting with the most iconic, let’s go!
Christened as the “world’s greatest open museum,” Luxor is a city in Egypt covered in museums and monuments. The ruins of the Karnak and Luxor temple complexes tell a story of a time when the great city of Thebes was in the height of its splendor.
Visiting the temple complexes will leave you in awe as the monuments are so large and grand.
The Valley of Kings contains 63 tombs of Kings belonging to the 18th, 19th, and 20th dynasties. There are striking and detailed paintings of the journey of the kings through the underworld.
There are many places to visit, temples to visit and monuments to hold in awe in Luxor so make sure that you visit it while you are in Egypt.
2. South Sinai
South Sinai surrounds the town of St. Katherine located in the high mountain region of Egypt. This area is on this list of 10 must-see places when visiting Egypt because of its many attractions.
Among these are the Monastery of St. Katherine and Mt. Sinai, two attractions that are of much religious significance. Dive under the waters that border South Sinai and explore the spectacular reefs. South Sinai receives more rainfall than the surrounding areas.
As a result of this, there a number of Bedouin orchards and permanent water pools in which you can take a plunge. While you are there, you can enjoy the cool climate, the eye-catching flora, and fauna and take in the views of the surrounding peninsula.
3. Siwa Oasis
Yes, the Siwa Oasis is really an oasis in the desert. Located in the western desert, the Siwa Oasis is just as refreshing as the first drop of water to a man who has gone many weeks without a drop.
In the Siwa Oasis, the swaying of hundreds of palm trees and olive trees give a welcome respite from the desert’s heat. A very small Berber population and its unique culture are as a result of the Siwa Oasis isolation from the outside world.
One of its most popular tourist attractions and among the reasons for Siwa Oasis being on the top 10 Must-See Places in Egypt is the ruins of the oracle of Ammon. It is said that the sheer beauty of the oasis and the culture of the people cast a spell on visitors that makes it hard for them to leave.
Alexandria, a town established by Alexander the Great many centuries ago, remains up to this day. It is now the second-largest city, a major economic center and one of the top 10 must-see places in Egypt.
Located on the Mediterranean and with a history that the oldest person in the world cannot recount, Alexandria is a full packaged tourist destination. The warm waters of the Mediterranean, the white, sandy beaches, the cuisine, and the culture make Alexandria a prime summer resort.
More than that, Alexandria boasts a large number of museums that contains artifacts and facts about ancient times. There great sites like the Lighthouse of Alexandria and the Great Library.
Whether you are a student of ancient history or just seeking tan, Alexandria holds something that will entice and entertain you.
5. White Desert (Sahara el Beyda)
What can be so entertaining about a desert so much so that it is on the list of 10 must-see places to visit when in Egypt? Well, the White Desert is the place for geologists and persons who like to gape in awe at the magnificent structures created by nature.
The White Desert has huge chalk rock formations that is draw for tourists like the ones previously mentioned. The colors of these rock range from snow-white to cream.
Some rocks closely resemble foods; some resemble animals and are given the names of these items. Among the names given are “mushroom” and “ice-cream cone” and “chicken and automatic bomb”.
Some visitors kick it up a notch and camp in the desert with Bedouin guides just to catch the changing faces of the chickens and mushrooms and the reflection of the sunset across the formation.
6. Egyptian Museum
There is this one place that you must see when visiting Egypt and that is the Egyptian Museum. Located at Tahrir Square, the museum is home to an estimated 160, 000 objects and are from far back as 5000 years ago.
Travel back in time to when pharaohs ruled supreme and Cleopatra bathed in milk and honey. Start from the ground floor and go on a trip back in time to when pharaohs ruled supreme and Cleopatra bathed in goat’s milk.
Move on up to the upper floor and get lost in history and the tombs exhibits. View the treasures of Tutankhamun or just get an idea of the daily activities of a typical Egyptian in ancient times. Take a selfie with a mummy if you dare. The history of ancient times is a beautiful thing.
7. Abu Simbel
Abu Simbel, a little village in Egypt, 40 miles from the Sudanese border is the second location on this list of ten must-see places when visiting Egypt.
Thousands of tourists take the arduous journey to visit Abu Simbel to gape in awe at its magnificent temples. The larger of the two temples is dedicated to Ramses II while the smaller one is dedicated to Nefertiti, his favorite wife.
Interestingly, the world almost lost the grand temples as Lake Nassa threatened to submerge them. In 1960, the government of Egypt, along with UNESCO started an appeal to save the temples.
A successful appeal saw the temples being cut into blocks and then reassembled 60 meters above the cliff where they originally constructed.
North of the Aswan Dams is Aswan, a thriving center for shoppers and tourists alike. Aswan is on the list of top 10 must places when visiting Egypt as there are just too many things to see and do.
Among the list of things you can do is to explore the villages and temple ruins of Elephantine Island. Tour Nubia Museum and learn about the history and culture of ancient and modern Nubia.
Stop at the Temple of Isis (Philae Temple) to wonder about how the Egyptians managed to get the building to have such perfect symmetry. UNESCO also saved this monument from rising waters.
Finally, if you are an Agatha Christie fan, then surely the Old Cataract Hotel is a place you must see. Oh and do not forget to shop at Saria al-Souq.
9. Islamic Cairo
Many centuries ago, Arab Muslims conquered Egypt and established Cairo as their capital. Each successive leader built mosques, tombs, madrasas, and hammams.
The high number of these buildings in Islamic Cairo caused UNESCO to declare Islamic Cairo as a World Cultural Heritage Site. It was here that the first mosque, the Amr ibn al-‘As Mosque, was built.
Other buildings of importance are Bayt al-Sihaymi and the Qalawun Complex which holds a mosque, a madrasah, and a mausoleum said to be the world’s most beautiful after the Taj Mahal.
Pick up some knowledge at Al-Azhar Mosque, the world’s oldest operating university. Don’t forget to shop at Cairo’s largest souk (market). The buildings may be old but Islamic Cairo is still buzzing with activates so be sure to visit.
10. Pyramids of Giza
You should not be surprised that the Pyramids of Giza is at the top of the list of top 10 must-see places when visiting Egypt. Built approximately 4500 years ago, the pyramids are of much historical significance.
Not to mention, modern scientists are still confounded at how the Egyptians managed to build such imposing and magnificent structures. There are three pyramids each built by Pharaohs Khufu, Khafre, and Mankaure.
Expecting to become gods in the afterlife, the pharaohs constructed pyramid tombs for themselves with things they think they would need in the next life. This included things from slaves to a pet.
There is also the Sphinx, built by Pharoah Khafre that stands guard at the pyramids. Taking a trip to the Pyramids of Giza would be a once in a lifetime opportunity that you would never forget.
Remember that life is not the number of breaths you take but the moments that take your breath away. Live life and take that trip to Egypt. Do not forget to send me a postcard. A Postcard? Do people still send postcards?