Egypt , officially: the Arab Republic of Egypt, is a transcontinental country spanning the northeast corner of Africa and southwest corner of Asia, via a land bridge formed by the Sinai Peninsula.
Egypt is one of the most populous countries in Africa and the Middle East, and the 15th-most populated in the world. The great majority of its people live near the banks of the Nile River, an area of about 40,000 square kilometers (15,000 sq mi), where the only arable land is found. The large regions of the Sahara Desert, which constitute most of Egypt’s territory, are sparsely inhabited. About half of Egypt’s residents live in urban areas, with most spread across the densely populated centres of greater Cairo, Alexandria and other major cities in the Nile Delta.
Egypt has one of the longest histories of any modern state, having been continuously inhabited since the 10th millennium BC.Its monuments, such as the Giza Necropolis and its Great Sphinx, were constructed by its ancient civilization, which was one of the most powerful of its time and one of the first six civilizations to arise independently in the world. Its ancient ruins, such as those ofMemphis, Thebes, Karnak, and the Valley of the Kings outside Luxor, are a significant focus of archaeological study and popular interest from around the world. Egypt’s rich cultural legacy, as well as the attraction of its Red Sea Riviera, have made tourism a vital part of the economy, employing about 12 percent of the country’s workforce.
The economy of Egypt is one of the most diversified in the Middle East, with sectors such as tourism, agriculture, industry and services at almost equal production levels. Egypt is considered to be a regional and middle power, with significant cultural, political, and military influence in North Africa, the Middle East and the Muslim world.
Egypt is famous for its ancient civilization and some of the world’s most famous monuments, including the Giza pyramids, the Great Sphinx and the ancient temples of Luxor dating back thousands of years. Although focus of most tourist visits remains the great monuments along the Nile, possibilities for Egyptian travel also includes snorkeling and diving along the Red Sea coast. Other tourist attractions in Egypt include camel trips into the mountains of Sinai, tours to remote oases or visits to the Coptic monasteries of the Eastern Desert.
Sharm el-Sheikh is a city situated on the southern tip of the Sinai Peninsula, in South Sinai Governorate, Egypt, on the coastal strip along the Red Sea. Sharm el-Sheikh is the administrative hub of Egypt’s South Sinai Governorate, which includes the smaller coastal towns of Dahab and Nuweiba as well as the mountainous interior, Saint Catherine’s Monastery and Mount Sinai. Nowadays it is a major touristic hotspot and resort city in Egypt.
The city experiences a subtropical arid climate. Typical temperatures range from 18 to 23 °C in January and 33 to 37 °C in August. The temperature of the Red Sea in this region ranges from 21 to 28 °C over the course of the year.
Marsa Alam, Kosseir and Sharm el-Sheikh have the warmest winter night temperatures of cities and resorts in Egypt.
Hurghada is a city in the Red Sea Governorate of Egypt. It is a main tourist center and third largest city (after Suez and Ismailia) in Egypt located on the Red Sea coast.
Hurghada counts 248,000 inhabitants and is divided into three parts:
- Downtown (El Dahar) is the old part;
- Sekalla is the city center;
- El Memsha (Village road) is the modern part.
Sekalla is the relatively modest hotel quarter. Dahar is where the town’s largest bazaar, the post office and the long-distance bus station are situated.
The city is served by the Hurgada International Airport with scheduled passenger traffic connecting to Cairo and directly with several cities in Europe.
Hurghada has a subtropical-desert-climate , with mild-warm winters and hot to very hot summers. Temperatures in the period December–January–February are warm, while November, March and April are comfortably warm. May and October are hot and the period from June to September is very hot.
Cairo is the capital of Egypt and the largest city in the Middle-East and second-largest in Africa after Lagos. Its metropolitan area is the 16th largest in the world.
In Cairo, and along the Nile River Valley, the climate is a hot desert climate, but often with high humidity as it is not very far from the Mediterranean Sea and the Nile Delta. Wind storms can be frequent, sometime from March to May and the air often becomes uncomfortably dry. High temperatures in winter range from 19 to 29 °C , while night-time lows drop to below 11 °C , often to 5 °C . In summer, the highs rarely surpass 40 °C , and lows drop to about 20 °C . Rainfall is sparse and only happens in the colder months, but sudden showers do cause harsh flooding. Snowfall is extremely rare.
Cairo is a vibrant, exhilarating, exotic, fascinating and welcoming city. Home to the best Pharaonic, Coptic and Islamic sights in Egypt, this city is where you never know what incredible, half-forgotten monument you might stumble across while wandering around. Enjoy the Nile view from your hotel room balcony, visit the capital’s medieval markets by Khan El-Khalili, or walk down the Nile promenade. There are also plenty of cinemas, theatres and modern malls. Go for an opera or enjoy oriental music dance shows.
Good for short breaks and long stays; you’ll get to see the Giza Pyramids, thousands of ancient artifacts in the Egyptian Museum of Antiquities and much more.
Giza Pyramids and the Sphinx
The Pyramids of Giza are among the wonders of the world, the wonder being why and how the ancient Egyptians managed to build them. The provenance of the massive human-head-on-a-lion’s-body that we call the Sphinx is equally mysterious. Possibly sculpted from a hunk of spare limestone, it is believed to have been some sort of guardian of the Pharaohs’ tombs.
A limited supply of tickets to actually enter the great pyramids are available in the morning at 9am and in the afternoon at 1pm.
The Pyramids of Giza, situated in the immediate vicinity of the southwestern suburbs of Cairo are the undisputable top attractions in Egypt. The pyramids at Giza were built over the span of three generations – by Khufu, his second reigning son Khafre, and Menkaure. The Great Pyramid of Khufu is an awe-inspiring 139 meters (455 feet) high making it the largest pyramid in Egypt, although nearby Khafre’s Pyramid appears to be larger as it is build at a higher elevation.
Mosque of Ibn Tulun
Built between 876 and 879 AD, the Mosque of Ibn Tulun is one of the oldest mosques in Cairo. It was commissioned by Ahmad ibn Ţūlūn, the Abbassid governor of Egypt. The mosque is constructed around a courtyard, with one covered hall on each of the four sides. The minaret, which features a helical outer staircase similar to that of the famous minaret in Samarra, was probably built several centuries later. Parts of the James Bond film The Spy Who Loved Me were filmed at the Mosque of Ibn Tulun.
Home to at least 120,000 items of ancient Egyptian antiquities, the Egyptian Museum is one of Cairo’s top attraction. There are two main floors of the museum, the ground floor and the first floor. On the ground floor there is an extensive collection of papyrus and coins used in by the ancient Egyptians. On the first floor there are artifacts from the final two dynasties of Ancient Egypt and also many artifacts taken from the Valley of the Kings. Highlights include the objects from the Tomb of Tutankhamen and the Royal Mummy Room containing 27 royal mummies from pharaonic times.
One of Cairo’s well-known modern monuments, sometimes considered Egypt’s second most famous landmark after the Pyramids of Giza, it stands in the Zamelek district on Gezira Island in the River Nile, close to Downtown.
Built from 1954 to 1961,the tower was designed by the Egyptian architect Naoum Shebib. Its partially open lattice-work design is intended to evoke a pharaonic lotus plant, an iconic symbol of Ancient Egypt. The tower is crowned by a circular observation deck and a rotating restaurant with a view over greater Cairo. One rotation takes approximately 70 minutes.
Mosque-Madrasa of Sultan Hassan
Massive yet elegant, this great structure is regarded as the finest piece of early-Mamluk architecture in Cairo. It was built between 1356 and 1363 by the troubled Sultan Hassan.
Beyond the striking, recessed entrance, a dark passage leads into a square courtyard whose soaring walls are punctured by four iwan s (vaulted halls), one dedicated to teaching each of the four main schools of Sunni Islam. At the rear of the eastern iwan, an especially beautiful mihrab is flanked by stolen Crusader columns. To the right, a bronze door leads to the sultan’s mausoleum.
Opposite the grand mosque, the Mosque of Ar-Rifai is constructed on a similarly grand scale, begun in 1869 and not finished until 1912. Members of modern Egypt’s royal family, including Khedive Ismail and King Farouk, are buried inside, as is the last shah of Iran. Their tombs lie to the left of the entrance.