Egypt is one of the most famous travel destinations in Africa. It’s also one of the fastest growing tourist destinations in the world according to UN studies! It’s not hard to understand why when you’re standing in front of ancient pyramids, riding a camel through the vast deserts or sailing the mighty Nile. Not to mention the long list of mesmerizing monuments.

Egypt should definitely be on your Bucket List (it’s number 11 on ours!), but we know it can be hard to tick off all there is to see in a short amount of time. So we’ve collated 9 experiences to consider when you find your way to Egypt for your next vacation. Egypt has a few unexpected aces up its mystical sleeve…

1. Truly captivating ancient sites 

First things first, let’s talk ancient sites and monuments. Sure, you know about the pyramids and the Sphinx. But there is nothing that quite prepares you for coming face to face with something that has been around since 2504 BC. It has a way of putting life in perspective. Plus, the history is just fascinating. Especially when you travel with a local guides. These experts can give you the inside scoop on all the weird and wonderful aspects of its construction and turbulent history.

Camels in front of a pyramid in Egypt.
Colours, camels and sun in Egypt.

2. A burgeoning modern art scene

Next up – the modern art scene. Hieroglyphics are far from the most exciting thing happening on the walls in Cairo. Think photography exhibitions celebrating the work of Egyptian women; short film festivals; contemporary art shows and more! We can highly recommend that you try to squeeze in a few modern art experiences on your trip to Cairo.

3. Old-school cruises down the Nile

This is timeless glamour at its best. Step back in time and experience the riverside attractions of Egypt from a a traditional felucca. A felucca is a wooden sailboat that have been used in the Mediterranean region for years. On board there is plenty of shade and mattresses on which to recline while you are steered down the scenic river. It’s one of the best ways to get into the frame of mind of Egypt’s elite classes of late.

4. Snorkeling & scuba diving in the Red Sea

Ah, the Red Sea! If you think this famous body is impressive from the shore, wait until you get beneath the surface to scuba or snorkeling. This is when the true magic of its underwater world comes to light. Plus, it’s a great way to keep cool when the temperatures soar in summer.

Red Sea Scuba sessions, Egypt
Red Sea scuba sessions, Egypt

5. Desert-bound hot air balloon rides
The sheer vastness of the Egyptian dessert comes into proper focus when you view it from above. Sure, you could go up in a helicopter to size it up. But there is something so romantic about slowly drifting in a hot air balloon over the West Bank of Luxor at dawn. Imagine watching the sun rise over the curvature of the earth while you drink in the beauty of the stark landscape bathed in delicate hues of primrose and gold.

6. Visits to perfume trading houses

Egypt is renowned for its perfume trading houses. In fact, ancient Egyptians associated their perfumes with the gods. They believed fragrances were the sweat of the sun god, Ra. Given the influences of ancient Egypt on the Roman and Greek civilizations, the use of scents spread from Egypt throughout the world. A visit to one of the modern-day trading houses is a wonderful way to learn more about the history of perfume in Egypt. Definitely stock up on a few lovely fragrances and perhaps even tailor your own.

Felucca on the Nile River at sunset, Egypt
Cruise the nile on a traditional Felucca.

7. Authentic Nubian dinners with the locals

Foodies, assemble! There is no better way to really get under the skin of a culture than breaking bread with some hospitable locals. In Cairo, visitors have the opportunity to sit down to an honest-to-goodness Nubian dinner. The food is prepared and served in age-old tradition – this is farm-to-table cuisine at its best! Egypt’s Nubians are experts in pairing nature with taste. In the past, their farms along the narrow strip of the Nile valley provided them with all the food they needed. Today the traditional cuisine honours these roots. Think delicate, stone-fired bread from ancient grains, richly spiced vegetable dishes, fragrant fish parcels and (there has to be something a little weird…) marinaded camel’s liver. Indulging in these delicacies in the home of a local provides a rare glimpse into the everyday lives of these warm and inviting people.

Related: Read about our team’s first-hand experience in Egypt.

8. Cairo market encounters

Haggling, bustling, a riot of colour, a cacophony of sound – Cairo’s market. This is the city’s personality distilled. Aside from being the very best place to pick up souvenirs and keepsakes, it’s also provides unbeatable opportunities for people-watching. While it can be tempting to rush from one famous attraction to the next, one of the most rewarding things you can actually do is to find a spot where the locals are doing what the locals normally do. Grab a richly-brewed coffee, find a spot to settle down and watch these colourful people as they revel in their various crafts and interact with one another.

Sampling perfume in Egypt perfume house
Perfume tasting in Egypt is a very special experience.

9. Wonderfully strange & unusual attractions

If you like your travels punctuated with a few strange and unusual attractions, you’re in luck – Egypt has plenty to spare. Like the twin colossi sculptures depicting Pharaoh Amenhotep III that used to sing a song at dawn (for real – go read up!), or the stone relief at the Hathor Temple that is said to depict an electrical light. There are many offbeat attractions to enjoy in between the temples and markets that typify an Egyptian tour.


So, what do you say? Ready to venture to the land of the Nile and see what all the fuss is about?  Egypt is a hot new retro destination for 2019, so consider that tour to this majestic country with family and friends. Check out our Egypt tours here.

Questions & Comments




  1. Just did your Classic Europe tour last month. Excellent. Could you send me more information about your Egypt tours. Thanks

    • Guest Explorers says:

      Hi Ed,

      We are so glad to hear that you’ve enjoyed our Classic Europe tour. You may read up about our Egypt tours here. We hope to see you aboard one of our Egyptian tours soon!

  2. Im interested in tbe trip to Egypt.
    Could you please send me all the information.
    Thank you,

    Maru

    • Guest Explorers says:

      Hi Maru,

      We are excited to hear that you are interested in one of our Egypt tours. You may read about our amazing Egyptian tours here. Alternatively you can view our Egypt tours via the website here. We hope to see you in Egypt soon!

  3. Bienvenido II juat says:

    When is your deadline for signing up for this egypt tour?
    I intend to join your end of march schedule.

    • Guest Explorers says:

      Hi Juat,

      We are excited to hear that you would like to join one of our Egypt tours! We suggest you book sufficiently ahead of time in order to allow yourself enough time to prepare for this trip.
      Alternatively you may contact one of our sales agents for more information. We hope to see you aboard our Egypt tour in March!