How can one visit Egypt and experience the whole of its ancient history, which covers thousands of years? Egypt is a very popular world destination, therefore there are many well-planned itineraries you may schedule to maximize your time there. The ideal number of days you can have in Egypt is 5 days, during this time you can include the most important historical landmarks. For example, one can wander down the Nile River and the Pyramids of Giza. With longer trips, you may also visit beaches, and deserts, and even pass into another country.
It is hard to exactly say the number of days that you need to stay in Egypt to cover the whole of the country’s attractions. Part of the answer to this question depends on how you get there. For sure, you can get away with a shorter stay and still be OK if you’re adding a visit to Egypt to a journey to another location in the area. You won’t want to go all that way to Egypt and then fly back a few days later if you just made the trip from North America. You should linger a little longer.
1. Short trips to see Egypt
Okay, let’s start with the shorter journeys and move on to the longer routes. If you’re already in Turkey, Jordan, the United Arab Emirates, or Israel and want to stop by Egypt while you’re in the area, you won’t need much rest time since you’ll just be in the air for a few hours at most. Cairo is a given if you just want to make one trip to Egypt since it is home to the majority of the sights to visit, including the Pyramids. They are located on the western fringe of the urban sprawl, just outside the city.
Therefore, if you just fly to Cairo, you may spend a day seeing the Pyramids and Egyptian Museum, another day touring the city, and on the last day departing. That’s about the quickest journey you can do, but only if you’re already in the area. It involves spending two full days on the ground in Egypt. Add a day or two to your tour to fly down to Luxor if you want to take a quick excursion and visit it as well.
Adding Luxor to your visit
A flight to Luxor takes around an hour. There’s also an overnight train that you may take, but please only do so if you’re younger than roughly 27 and still like living the backpacker lifestyle. Flying offers you much more time to see things and relax as opposed to being worn out after a sleepless night on a rough, painful train journey that lasts for ten hours, and you still have to do it all over again to come back. So simply follow my suggestion and book a flight from Cairo to Luxor and return.
It is feasible to see Luxor in one day. Take one of the early flights out of Cairo in the morning to be there about midday. Then, rush around and visit the main attractions for the rest of the day before returning on one of the later flights in the evening. Spending one night in Luxor is definitely worthwhile if you don’t want to be hurried and have more leisure. After spending the whole day walking around the Valley of the Kings, down into the tombs, up again, and all around the massive temple complexes, you’ll be fatigued, so it will be wonderful to return to your hotel and unwind. Instead of seeing everything in one day, you may stretch it out over two and take your time.
The bottom line is to give Cairo at least two days and Luxor, if not two, at least one more day. Therefore, adding Egypt to your itinerary while you’re already in the area would take 2-4 days overall.
2. Long trips to see Egypt
You’ll want to stay a bit longer if you’re traveling across the seas to see Egypt. It’s insane to go so far for only two or three days. You should spend at least four, preferably five, and ideally six days there. If you have five or six people, I’d advise spending two days in Cairo, one night in Luxor, and one day traveling from Cairo to Alexandria. If you have more time, you may also spend the night in Alexandria. But I’ve done it several times as a day trip. I believe the only time I ever remained there for more than one day was the first time I went, which I did as a weekend vacation since I was living there at the time.
The Red Sea or the Sinai may be included if you have more than 5 or 6 days. Because it’s becoming a bit more difficult for the government to police, I’d advise the majority of people to stay away from the Sinai at this time. You can take a chance if you’re a very daring traveler and you really want to visit Mount Sinai and St. Catherine’s Monastery, but I wouldn’t suggest it right now for most people. I’ve been there a lot, and it’s cool to go when it’s completely safe, but they’ve had some problems lately, so I’d stay in Egypt proper where there’s still enough to see and do.
Keep your visit to Egypt safe
It would be quite safe to go to the Red Sea town of
Sharm el Sheikh at the southernmost edge of the Sinai if you want to. Or you may take a flight or a car to Hurghada, which is on the African side of the Red Sea. Except for the Sinai, which is in Asia, most of Egypt is in Africa, but the African side of the Red Sea is in what I refer to as “Egypt proper.” This area of the Red Sea is accessible without traveling into the Sinai and is as stunning.
Although Hurghada is the major Red Sea town in Egypt, El Gouna, a little resort town located approximately 15 miles north of Hurghada, is my absolute favorite destination to go to on Egypt’s Red Sea coast. The resorts are considerably better, the town itself is much prettier, and there are a lot fewer tourists and crowds there.
To make the most of your visit, schedule a minimum of 2 full days in the Red Sea if you decide to make the trip. You will thus spend a minimum of 7-8 days in Egypt if you include the Red Sea.
Trips between 5 to 8 days
Even when traveling all the way from North America, vacations to Egypt typically last between 5 and 8 days. As long as you stayed for 5 full days, I wouldn’t shout at you for traveling here and just staying for 5 days. However, you should at the very least see Cairo and Luxor. You may visit
Alexandria, the Red Sea, or even an oasis if you stay longer. Fayoum is a tiny oasis that is located approximately two hours outside of Cairo. However, if you want to really experience an oasis, you’ll need to go farther into the desert (to Dakhla, Kharga, Farafra, or even the renowned Siwa Oasis way out there near the Libyan border). Though you’ll need to add a few more days to your itinerary to make room for it. Go deeper into the south
The extreme south of Egypt, including the area surrounding Aswan, Lake Nasser, and even Abu Simbel in the very far south on the border with Sudan, is another significant area of the nation that we haven’t yet explored and sees a lot of tourists. If you have an additional day, you may also include Aswan in your schedule. Aswan is a charming small riverfront town with a significant Nubian influence. However, the Aswan High Dam is the primary attraction there. It enabled Egypt to finally regulate the flow of the Nile farther north after thousands of years since, as you may recall, the Nile flows from south to north.
The Temple of Philae is very close to Aswan. However, I believe the major reason people go all the way to Aswan is that it serves as a jumping-off point for trips to Abu Simbel. This latter is located approximately 200 miles south of Aswan and can only be reached via Aswan, either by military convoy or by air.
Ramses the Great erected this amazing ancient temple as one of many memorials to himself during his 66-year rule. Even though it is very remote and few people now take the effort to see it. Due to the challenges of traveling to Abu Simbel, including Aswan and Abu Simbel, your schedule requires at least an extra 2 days.
There you have it, then. The time and money required to create a fantastic vacation after you are in Egypt are well worth it. But making sure your vacation is actually the trip of a lifetime requires careful preparation. And it will be if you carefully read this and heed even half of my advice. Yalla!
Before you go! Is Egypt safe?
For first-timers, Egypt may be a busy and stressful and perplexing location to visit, and traveling there can be both a struggle and an adventure.
While the nation is safe to visit, there are certain safety concerns that may be difficult. You must be cautious of harassment and small-time theft, among other things, even if these issues are not always present.
In crowded marketplaces and on public transportation, take care of your possessions and keep an eye on your pockets. Additionally, stay up with current developments and politics, since this may be a volatile region of the globe.
What is the best time to visit Egypt?
Egypt has hot weather all year long, with a more desert-like environment in the interior and a Mediterranean temperature around the shore.