The land of the pharaohs is magnificent for the grandeur with which Egyptians pays homage to both life and death. Not without its conflict, Egypt's tourism levels took a considerable dip in the aftermath of the Arab Spring which started in 2011. However the destination remains relatively safe, with authorities aiming to ease security concerns.
From its vast deserts to the dramatic Red Sea, these are some of the unique experiences you should add to your itinerary when visiting this ancient North African country.
What to do:
Sail gently down the Nile River
What better way to see this, the most mighty of all natural features in Egypt and its surrounds than by hopping on a felucca, dhow or cruise boat and make your way down or up the Nile River. Sailing along the lush Nile Valley, travellers here can expect to be blown away by sights of spectacular golden dunes, Ancient Egyptian monuments, wildlife and everyday Egyptians going about their business.
Cross the desert on a desert safari and camp under the stars
You can't go to Egypt and not check out the desert. Try taking to the deserts on a desert safari and take in the endless, stunning ranges of desert landscapes where Egypt's scenic sunsets and starry nights can be best appreciated - far from the light and noise pollution of its bustling urban centres. The Egyptian Desert is one of those mystic places where regular living practices are suspended or absent, a place where water access is everything and land ownership is nothing.
Stay overnight in Siwa Oasis
After a long trip through the barren desert landscapes of Egypt, you will long for the tranquil and nourishing offerings of a literal oasis. One of the best of these oasis' can be found on the other side of the Western Desert at Siwa Oasis. Here you can find a location full of mineral springs, salt lakes and endless olive and palm groves. There's plenty to do here too - check out the Temple of the Oracle, once visited by Alexander the Great himself to consult the Oracle of Siwa and finish your day by taking a dip at Cleopatra's Pool, where the legendary queen herself is believed to have once swum.
Scuba dive in the Red Sea
For all its land-based activities and its place as a land of deserts in the popular imagination, Egypt is surprisingly one of the best destinations for water activities. Starting in the 1950s when Greek and Italian workers began spearfishing while residing in the country, Egypt has been renowned for its excellent scuba diving offering in the Red Sea. With amazing coral that attracts thousands of species of marine life and year-round sunshine leaving waters warm and inviting - scuba diving or snorkelling in the Red Sea is something travellers should definitely do when in Egypt.
Take a hot air balloon over Luxor
Take a ride in the skies over Luxor and have your breath taken away by its majesty. Hop on a hot air balloon early in the morning and see the sunrise in the clouds and marvel as the sun hits and lights up temples and the fertile green areas of the Nile Banks.
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