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Egypt’s biggest draws are its dazzling ancient sites (pyramids, tombs, palaces, etc.). Tickets for most of these sites can be purchased through a tour operator or at your hotel.

Things to do in Egypt

Cruise the Nile

Taking a full vacation on a boat up the Nile is a great way to experience the monuments and daily life of the Egyptians. If you don't have the time, take a sunset float on a felucca (ancient Egyptian sailing vessel). Thomas Cook can arrange such tours, but the easiest way is just to make arrangements through your hotel upon arrival.

Thomas Cook, 17 Sharia Mahmoud Bassiouni,
Tags: cruise | smart splurge | things to do

Egyptian Exploration Society

Join this well-respected British archeological society for a minimal fee (about US$22) and sign up for one of their archeological digs at various sites throughout Egypt.

The British Council, 192 Sharia el-Nil, 011-202-33-00-1886,
Tags: things to do | tour | adventure | archeology

Golf near the pyramids

Tee up on one of Egypt’s best golf courses under the watchful gaze of the Great Pyramid.

Mena House Oberoi, Pyramids Rd., 011-20-2-33-77-3222,
Tags: golf | things to do | sports

Horseback riding

If you’re up for a tour of the pyramids the old fashioned way, hire a horse and guide at MG Stables to take you around Giza, or take a five-hour ride to Saqqara to see the ancient step pyramid.

MG Stables, Sharia Abu al-Houl, 011-20-2-33-85-3832
Tags: things to do | tour | horseback riding | adventure

Hot air balloon ride

An aerial tour of Luxor and the Valley of the Kings is a great way to gain perspective on the geography of this culturally rich region. Balloons depart at dawn for a 50-minute tour.

Magic Horizon Balloons, Ohed St., off TV St., 011-20-3-95-365-060,
Tags: smart splurge | things to do | tour | adventure


Located in Luxor and buried under the sands of the Sahara for over 1,000 years, Karnak is still being excavated. The astounding complex includes the Temple to Amun, Great Hypostyle Hall with its famed gigantic columns, and the colorful festival temple.

Tags: things to do | culture | history | tour | archeology

Luxor Temple

Begun during the 14th century BC and later modified by Alexander the Great in the 4th century BC, this temple is usually open late, so come at sunset when the building is bathed in golden sunlight. Notice the single obelisk guarding the entrance. The second one is now in the Place de la Concorde in Paris.

Corniche el-Nil,
Tags: things to do | culture | history | tour | archeology

Pyramids of Giza

Rise early and beat the crowds to tour the iconic Sphinx and the Pyramids of Giza, built over 4,000 years ago. On the south side of the Great Pyramid, don’t miss the Solar Barque Museum, which showcases a reconstructed funerary boat.

, 011-20-2-33-838-823,
Tags: things to do | culture | history | museum | archeology

Snorkeling and scuba diving

The Red Sea is well known for its spectacular array of coral and fish. Go on a dive safari with Aquarius Diving or enjoy a more leisurely snorkeling adventure.

Aquarius Diving, Hurghada Marriott Beach Resort, El Corniche Rd., 011-20-65-344-6950,
Tags: snorkeling | things to do | tour | wildlife | adventure

The Pharaonic Village

A short drive outside of Cairo, this family-friendly theme park has reproductions of ancient Egyptian monuments, complete with actors playing the part of a Pharaoh and his court.

3 El Bahr El Aazam St., 011-20-2-35-71-8675,
Tags: family | things to do | culture | history

Valley of the Kings

One could easily spend a day trekking through this famous necropolis. For 500 years, between the 16th and 11th centuries BC, Egyptian kings were buried in this hot and arid valley. Pick your tombs carefully as a ticket is only valid for three tombs (62 to choose from, but Tuthmosis III, Seti and Ramses VI are three of the best). A separate ticket is needed for the tomb of Tutankhamen.

Nile Valley,
Tags: things to do | culture | history | tour | archeology

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