Why travel to Egypt
Abu Simbel’s Great Temple was cut into this rock cliff in 13thC BC on the command of Ramases II (now that fellah had an ego and a half), one of two temples here in far south Egypt. The little figures above the large statues are baboons. Photo by Olaf Tausch.
The sights are on every list of see before you die… Cairo’s pyramids, the fantastic temples, tombs and monuments of Luxor and Abu Simbel and the endless desert bisected by the lush length of the Egypt’s Nile River.
Cairo is chaotic and grubby but offers magnificent buildings, a thousand years of drama, the Egyptian Museum and the world’s best bazaar.
The people too are friendly and hospitable if you get a chance relax with them, the sky is almost always azure, the scuba and snorkelling in the Red Sea are world class and Egypt tours are inexpensive if you choose. This is North Africa at its very best.
Best time to go to Egypt: October – May for main sights, and April-November for dive places.
Worst seasons: Christmas in Egypt and Easter school holidays are hugely overpriced and overcrowded while June-September is massively hot, especially around Luxor and Aswan; expect 35C-45C+/ 95F-113F+.
In wintertime, December-February, nights will be chilly in Cairo but with T-shirt days. The further north the colder, so Alexandria might be unpleasantly chilly, according to personal acclimatisation.
Length of stay?
Minimum worthwhile stay, not including flights: 4 days (Cairo only) Recommended: 2 weeks – 4 weeks for an all-Egypt encounter.
During Ramadan most, if not all Muslims will neither eat nor drink during the daytime and consequently many cafes, restaurants and even shops may open only after sunset.
Public eating, drinking and smoking by tourists may upset the locals. In one Muslim country the only alcohol served to us during our visit was in a teapot, into tea cups in a first class hotel. Furthermore service personnel may be missing, careless or irritable during the daytime.The last day of Ramadan, known as Idd al Fitr, can be a wild time with much celebrating, depending on location.
Dates depend on the full moon rising in your location so they may differ by one day depending on where you plan to be.In 2018 Ramadan will start on the 16 May and will continue for 30 days until the 14 of June.
In 2019 Ramadan will start on the 6 May and will continue for 30 days until the 4 of June.