Must-see attractions in Egypt

  • Dune

    Nuweiba

    This large sand dune marks the end of Nuweiba City and the beginning of the Tarabin beachfront area. If you're in the Tarabin area, it's a good swimming…

  • Sohag National Museum

    Northern Nile Valley

    The recently renovated Sohag National Museum displays local antiquities, including those from ongoing excavations of the temple of Ramses II in Akhmim.

  • Ethnographic Museum

    Western Desert

    Occupying Sherif Ahmed’s house, which itself dates back to 1785, the museum’s everyday objects try to give life to the empty buildings around them.

  • Tomb of the Crocodile

    Siwa Oasis

    This tomb's name comes from its wall painting of a yellow crocodile representing the god Sobek. Many of the paintings inside are badly deteriorating.

  • Shag Rock

    Sinai

    This sloping reef of hard and soft corals is home to plentiful flitting fishlife. Depth: 15m to 25m. Rating: beginner to advanced. Access: boat.

  • Mosque of Gamal Ad Din

    Cairo

    Built in 1408, the facade of the Mosque of Gamal Ad Din has a row of shops below, the rent from which contributed to the mosque’s upkeep.

  • Lido

    Mediterranean Coast

    Marsa Matruh's main beach has decent sand and clear water, but during summer you'll have trouble finding space to throw down your towel.

  • Solar Barque Pits

    Giza

    On the east side of the Great Pyramid of Khufu note the solar barque pits that housed the giant ritual boats buried with the pharaoh.

  • Mashrabia Gallery

    Cairo

    One of the first indepen­dent galleries, Mashrabia is bit cramped but represents the bigger names in painting, video and sculpture.

  • Gezira Arts Centre

    Cairo

    The several galleries here host rotating contemporary exhibitions, but it was closed for restoration when we were last in town.

  • Cairo Atelier

    Cairo

    Off Sharia Mahmoud Bassiouni, as much a clubhouse as an exhibition space, frequented by Cairo’s art-world new and old guard.

  • Tarabin Beach

    Nuweiba

    Tarabin's skinny strip of beach is a mix of golden sand and small pebbles and has a decent snorkelling reef just offshore.

  • Wikala of Sultan Qaitbey

    Cairo

    This Mamluk-era merchant's inn dates from 1481 and was undergoing a vast restoration project when we were last in town.

  • Cairo Stock Exchange

    Cairo

    The rather grand facade of the Cairo Stock Exchange was built in 1928 and merges neoclassical design with art nouveau.

  • Tomb of the Unknown Soldier

    Alexandria

    This neoclassical monument is a tribute to the Egyptians who lost their lives in the 1967 and 1973 wars with Israel.

  • Ain Khudra

    Sinai

    The spring of Ain Khudra oasis is where Miriam was supposed to have been struck by leprosy for criticising Moses.

  • Carpet-Making Cooperative

    Western Desert

    In Bashendi's carpet-making cooperative you can see rugs being woven and browse through the showroom.

  • Omar Makram Mosque

    Cairo

    Omar Makram Mosque is the place where anybody who's anybody has a funeral.

  • Abu Mena

    Mediterranean Coast

    Thanks to Bedouin raids and marble pilfering, not much remains of the once-grand Byzantine pilgrimage centre of Martyroupolis, although the outline of its…

  • Tomb of Sayyed Al Shadhili

    Red Sea Coast

    The Eastern Desert is scattered with numerous Islamic tombs and shrines. One of the best known is that of Sayyed Al Shadhili, a Moroccan holy man and Sufi…

  • Police Museum

    Cairo

    The quirky but flyblown Police Museum is located within the Citadel's old prison building. Inside are displays of famous political assassinations,…

  • Bibliotheca Alexandrina El Gouna

    El Gouna

    Also known as the Embassy of Knowledge and linked to Alexandria's modern Bibliotheca Alexandrina library, this peaceful oasis is El Gouna's sleepy…

  • Waterwheels

    Al Fayoum

    Al Fayoum is famous for its more than 200 waterwheels, which have become a prominent symbol of the town and the oasis. These four rather rickety and…

  • Sikait

    Red Sea Coast

    Sikait, about 80km south-west of Marsa Alam, is thought to have been the main settlement for the workers in the Roman emerald mines. It's about 80km south…

  • Temple of Umm Ubayd

    Siwa Oasis

    This almost totally ruined temple was dedicated to Amun. It was originally connected to the Temple of the Oracle by a causeway and was used during oracle…

  • Cairo Zoo

    Cairo

    In a city not known for green spaces, this zoo is a haven for local families who come here to picnic and kick a ball about as well as gawk at the animals…

  • Monastery of St Mena the Miracle Giver

    Mediterranean Coast

    This monastery, built in 1959, is a major pilgrimage site for Egyptian Coptic Christians. Aswan granite and marble were used to build the large cathedral…

  • Frazer Tombs

    Northern Nile Valley

    Five kilometres south of Tihna Al Gebel, the Frazer Tombs date back to the 5th and 6th dynasties. These Old Kingdom tombs are cut into the east-bank…

  • Stanley Beach

    Alexandria

    On a tiny bay with the old Stanley Bridge soaring above it, this beach has a modest patch of sand for bathing backed by three levels of beach cabins. The…

  • King Farouk's Rest House

    Giza

    East of the Great Pyramid of Khufu is a ruin of a different era: King Farouk’s Rest House, a grand neo-Pharaonic structure built in 1946 by Mustafa Fahmy…

  • Ezbekiyya Gardens

    Cairo

    The Ezbekiyya Gardens, designed in 1870s, were once considered among the finest gardens outside Europe. They once covered more than 20 acres, with exotic…

  • Nugrus

    Red Sea Coast

    The ruins of the actual emerald mines for which the region was once famed can be seen on the slopes of Nugrus, where the ground is littered with pottery…

  • Tanta Museum

    Cairo Outskirts & the Nile Delta

    The Tanta Museum is closed, and there's no known date for its reopening. If it is open though, it houses a good collection of artefacts found in the area…

  • El Qadim

    Red Sea Coast

    Located 7km north of Al Quseir in a small bay abutted by the Mövenpick Resort, this dive site boasts a complex network of interconnecting caves and…

  • El Kaf

    Red Sea Coast

    An easy plunge 10km south of Al Quseir that appeals to divers of all levels, El Kaf is a canyon pitted with small caves and passages, and accented by…

  • Shorbagi Mosque

    Alexandria

    The picturesque Shorbagi Mosque lies at the heart of the old Ottoman Anfushi district. Built in the mid-18th century, it shows how salvaged remnants of…

  • Hurghada Public Beach

    Hurghada

    Hurghada's public beach is not so appealing – it is often full of litter, and foreign women may feel uncomfortable about the attention they will attract…

  • Gawhara Palace & Museum

    Cairo

    South of Mohammed Ali’s mosque is the Gawhara Palace & Museum, a lame attempt to evoke 19th-century court life, but it’s most often closed. There are…

  • Al Fath Mosque

    Cairo

    On the south side of Midan Ramses is Cairo’s pre-eminent orientation aid, Al Fath Mosque. Completed in the early 1990s, the mosque’s minaret is visible…

  • Temple of Alexander

    Bahariya Oasis

    The Temple of Alexander, southwest of Bawiti, is one of the few places in Egypt where Alexander the Great’s cartouche has been found. Despite this fame,…

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