Uncover the iconic history of Egypt
Dating back thousands of centuries, it’s not hard to find something spectacular in Egypt. Here are our top tips on everything you need to know before you go.
Explore ancient history
The world’s oldest civilisation, Egypt boasts no end of ancient delights to discover, with history having lined the banks of the River Nile for the last 5000 years. Explore the tombs of the Valley of the Kings, stand beneath the colossal temples of Abu Simbel and wander the grandeur of Luxor. Of course, the symbols of Egypt are the iconic Pyramids standing tall in the desert, which simply have to be seen to be believed.
Indulge in Egyptian cuisine
Egyptian cuisine has remained unchanged for thousands of years, which means that its flavours and tastes are ones that are long established and perfected. Staple beans and lentils often appear in traditional dishes, as well as aish, a popular Egyptian bread. Whether you decide to treat yourself to a luxurious restaurant or experience the flavours of the local street food, Egyptian food is a huge part of the country’s culture and is certainly delicious.
Enjoy the beaches of the Red Sea
When you think of Egypt, tropical beaches probably aren’t the first things that come to mind – but the Egyptian coastline certainly doesn’t disappoint. Head to the southern tip of the Sinai Peninsula and you’ll find Sharm el-Sheikh, Egypt’s premier beach destination. With sunshine all year round, Sharm el-Sheikh is the idea spot to sit back and relax on the palm-fringed beaches. If you prefer to be more active on your beach holidays, the resort also offers some of the best watersports in the world, from windsurfing to sailing.
The currency of Egypt is the Egyptian pound, which is broken down into 100 piastre and 1000 millime.
One dollar is currently worth Egyptian pounds.
Here’s a roundup of what you can expect to spend in Egypt, with prices in Australian dollars:
|Inexpensive meal for one – $5.60||Bottle of water – $.035||0.5 litre beer – $1.87|
|Mid-range restaurant meal for one – $15||Cappuccino – $2.40||Local bus ticket – $0.28|
Travelling around Egypt
By public transport
Buses and trains are plentiful in Egypt and the network is well developed. There’s a good metro system in Cairo too. It’s helpful to learn a few Arabic numbers to be able to recognise the buses and trams that you’re trying to find.
Taxis are a common way to get around the cities of Egypt, and it’s always useful to have your destination written down in Arabic to help out the driver. Prices start at around E£3, and are around E£1.40 for every km.
Calèches are horse-drawn carriages that are probably only used by tourists, but they’re a fun way to do a little sightseeing. Fares are generally higher than taxis, but taking a calèche is more for the experience than for getting from A to B. Generally, you can pay whatever you see fit at the end of a journey.
The emblem of Egypt, no trip to the country would be complete without a ride on the back of a camel. Of course, you won’t be able to treat a camel like a taxi to take you home, but a guided tour through the desert or around the pyramids is a must-do. Prices should be around E£20 for a quick ride.