12 Fascinating Places & Tourist Attractions in Egypt

by Fay

Known for its dazzling and ancient history dating back 1000s of years and its mouthwatering food, Egypt is certainly one of my favorite countries to visit in Africa.

Many think that Egypt is only a place of Pyramids, primeval monuments, and tombs. However, Egypt boasts other less popular attractions giving travelers plenty of things to do.

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The Great Pyramids of Giza

Sitting majestically on the outskirts of Cairo, the great pyramids are the highlight of Egypt and usually the first place tourists visit when they arrive.

The great pyramids are the oldest and the most intact of the Seven Wonders of the Ancient World. Located in Giza, the most recognizable district in Egypt, the pyramids of Pharaohs Cheops (Khufu), Chephren (Khafre), and Mycerinus (Menkaure) have been for many years the main attraction in Egypt for travelers worldwide.

Abu Simbel Temples

The archeological site Abu Simbel is another popular place to visit in Egypt. The temples were built during the reign of the Pharaoh Ramesses II in the 13th century BC. The lasting monument of Abu Simbel clearly represents the ambition of Ramesses as statues of himself, his mom, his wife Nefertiti, and his children were carved in the facade of the temples.

Unfortunately, in 1960, the temples were at risk of disappearing under the rising water of the Aswan dam and that’s why they were moved from their original location thanks to a massively engineered re-location that was carried out by UNESCO.

The temples are a wonder of all meanings, so make sure to go inside to check out the awe-aspiring inside wall carving and the statues that tell the story of an ancient era.

Great Sphinx of Giza

Just a few meters away from the great Pyramids, lies the Great Sphinx guarding the land of the dead. The Sphinx’s head appears to be the Pharaoh Khafre. However there is no evidence to prove it.

Many aspects of this giant monument are still unknown such as who really built it, when, and why. But honestly, it just makes it more exciting to have a wonder lying in the heart of Egypt’s desert holding ancient secrets that probably no one will discover.

Siwa Oasis

At first glance, Siwa Oasis reminded me of Cappadocia city in Turkey but it turned out to be a lot better. Siwa Oasis is one of the less popular places in Egypt but maybe because it’s an off-beaten track and not many people are into these kinds of places.

Siwa Oasis is located about 600km far from Cairo which makes a once-in-a-lifetime adventure. From the 12th-century fortress of Shali, the Temple of the Oracle, to the 29°C Cleopatra Spring, Siwa holds breathtaking sceneries represented in beaches, lakes, golden sands, culture, and history. 

Valley of the Kings

Valley of the Kings was the principal burial place of the major royal figures of the Egyptian New Kingdom, as well as a number of privileged nobles. Now, the valley showcases tens of rock-cut tombs and chambers.

This marvelous place consists of two valleys: the East Valley (where the majority of the royal tombs are situated) and the West Valley (Valley of the Monkeys). The royal tombs are decorated with scenes from Egyptian mythology and give clues as to the beliefs and funerary practices of the period.

Almost all of the tombs seem to have been opened and robbed in antiquity, but they still give an idea of the opulence and power of the pharaohs.

Sharm el-Sheikh

If you are looking for a European lifestyle vacation, Sharm El Sheikh is definitely the way to go. Packed with all kinds of luxurious resorts, restaurants, and other entertainment options. Sharm El Sheikh is also known for its golden beaches, clear blue water, and the hot sun for the best sunbathing experience.

Besides, Sharm (as some call it) is one of the famous spots for Scuba diving in Egypt and the world. Ras Mohammed National Park offers astonishingly colorful reefs and marine life.

Mosque of Ibn Tulun

Ibn Tulun Mosque is one of the oldest mosques in Egypt as well as the whole of Africa. It is built around an open huge square courtyard allowing natural light to travel through.

The mosque was commissioned by the Tulunid dynasty ruler Ahmad ibn Tulun in 878/879 AD. This famous tourist attraction features the ancient architecture of Egypt.

Its decorations are created from carved stucco and wood while the minaret shows influences from both the Lighthouse of Alexandria and the famous minaret in Samarra.

St. Catherine’s Monastery

Saint Catherine’s Monastery is an Eastern Orthodox monastery located on the Sinai Peninsula near the town of Saint Catherine in Egypt. Built between 548 and 565, the UNESCO World Heritage Site is one of the oldest working Christian monasteries in the world and a site that contains the world’s oldest continually operating library.

Egyptian Museum

The Museum of Egyptian Antiquities, known commonly as the Egyptian Museum or the Cairo Museum is another famous place to visit in Egypt. The museum is home to an extensive collection of 120,000 ancient Egyptian antiquities.

Constructed in 1901 by the Italian construction company, Garozzo-Zaffarani, to a design by the French architect Marcel Dourgnon, Egyptian Museum is one of the largest museums in the region.

The Karnak Temple Complex

Commonly known as Karnak, this famous place in Egypt comprises a vast mix of decayed temples, chapels, pylons, and other buildings near Luxor, Egypt. The complex is a vast open site and includes the Karnak Open Air Museum

The site is a part of the monumental city of Thebes, and in 1979 it was inscribed on the UNESCO World Heritage List along with the rest of the city. The Karnak complex gives its name to the nearby, and partly surrounded, modern village of El-Karnak, 2.5 kilometers north of Luxor.

Dahab

Dahab is a new contructed town in Egypt. Located in about 80 km (50 mi) northeast of Sharm el-Sheikh, the fishing town has become a famous diving destination in the country.

Dahab has 3 different spots: Masbat where you can visit the Bedouin  fishing village Asalah and it is the place to go for Scuba diving, Mashraba is where tourists go for hotels and more entertainemnt options and finally Medina which boots strong winds for surfing lovers.

Hurghada

Hurghada is considred one of the main tourist centers and an another renewed place for coral reef and marine life in Egypt. The city is located on the red sea coast and it is mainly known for watersports like windsurfing, kitesurfing, yachting, scuba diving and snorkeling.

Hurghada is one of the loved places in Egypt by European toutists thanks to its warm weather all year round.

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