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Anywhere you go, you can explore a new culture or take in the beauty of a landscape, but there are few places in the world that let you uncover the ancient world as if it were frozen in time. In this way, Egypt tours stand out.
Add in the rich, mesmerising history; beautiful ancient architecture; an incredible mix of ancient and modern life; and endless sites and experiences to explore and you’ll soon discover that Egypt is a one-of-a-kind destination.
With so much on offer, we share our 5 must-see places y in Egypt.
1. The Pyramids and Great Sphinx of Giza
Standing in the warmth of the hot sun, you feel small trying to take in the immensity of what people were able to create with little more than their own hands. Step inside the Pyramids of Egypt and as the heat gives way to a sudden chill, you are transported to an ancient time.
The only lingering reminders of modern life are the people travelling with you. Even the most visceral descriptions can’t replace the real thing. There’s a reason the pyramids are considered a wonder of the world.
Pharaohs – who were expected to become gods in the next life, filled these structures with everything they needed to rule. Unknowingly, they preserved art and artefacts that tell the story of how their people lived, how they worked, what they valued, how they dressed, and so much more.
The Pyramids of Egypt
After exploring the pyramids, a visit to The Great Sphinx is a must. The awe-inspiring monument is a beautiful mystery. No one knows exactly when or why it was made, but these questions only serve to make travelling through its temples more exhilarating.
2. The Food of Cairo
You’re probably familiar with the famous sites, but may not know about the delicious cuisine that awaits! Egypt is home to incredible comfort foods, delectable sauces, fire-baked breads, fresh spices, and sumptuous cheeses.
Traditional Egyptian food
Some of the highlights of the region include:
- Mulukhiyah: A soup with taro root, ghee, lemon, meat (often lamb), and tons of fresh spices.
- Ful Medames: A traditional breakfast food made with spiced fava beans and served with pita.
- Koshari: A rice and pasta dish with lentils, chickpeas, tomatoes, garlic, and crispy fried onions, all in a tomato-vinegar sauce.
3. El Alamein
Egypt is known for its rich ancient history, but the significance of this site is closer to living memory. In WWII, two battles were fought in this location on the Mediterranean coast. The first battle ended in a stalemate, while the second marked a clear victory for the Allies. Today, there are thousands of graves that serve as a grim reminder of the nearly 80,000 lives lost.
The gruesome history of the battleground is contrasted by the breathtaking beauty of the region, featuring fine sands and gorgeous beaches.
4. Karnak and Luxor Temples
The ancient city of Luxor was once the capital of Egypt and has become one of its largest urban centres. Here, the ancient and modern worlds collide in a unique and captivating way. Two of the must-see attractions in the city are the Karnak and Luxor temples.
- Karnak Temple: Built over 2,000 years ago and expanded over 1700 years, Karnak is the largest religious building ever created, spanning 1.5 km by 0.8 km. One point of interest within its massive walls is the Sacred Lake, an extensive man-made lake used for rituals.
- Luxor Temple: Known as ‘the palaces’, Luxor is much smaller than Karnak but just as compelling. Its paintings and statues outside of the First Pylon tell the story of Ramses II. Inside, you’ll find a shrine to Alexander the Great and the birth room of Amenhotep III.
5. The Valley of the Kings
There’s one glaring problem with burying your leaders with everything they’ll need in the afterlife: raiders. The Valley of the Kings was an attempt to solve this problem. Fearing the riches would be stolen, ancient Egyptians created a hidden collection of underground tombs.
The 62 known tombs are brimming with furniture, clothes, jewellery, food/drink, and sacred objects. But despite everything that has already been found, there is always more to discover.
Experience all of this with our expert local guides on our Egypt: Alexandria to Aswan tour.
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