Cairo?

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Nov 1st, 2012, 11:46 AM
  #1
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Cairo?

My coworkers and I are planning on taking a trip to Cairo at the end of January. It happens to be my birthday week and our semester break from work!
We are thinking to go for 4 nights 5 days or 3 nights 4 days. We are coming from Turkey (so do we need a visa? I have a dual USA-Turkish citizenship)

I have found some nice hotels near the nile river. Any suggestions on hotels? 3-5 starts, preferably and something that has a nice view

Also, any good tours in the area? We'd like to see as much as possible.

Will the weather be nice? (Nice to us would be anything over 20 Celsius

Thanks!
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Nov 2nd, 2012, 12:37 PM
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January is cold. I doubt it will be up to 20 C in January. Jan and Feb are the two coldest months of the year. 18C and under I think is what you need to expect.

If you are willing to pay for 5 stars, I think the best hotel with the BEST location is the Cairo Marriott by far. There are others but not as well located. If you can live with out the view but you want an EXCELLENT hotel and probably the best VALUE in the city - the Longchamps Hotel is fabulous. Both are in the town of Zamalek. Very nice up scale area.

Certainly USA passports need a tourist visa to enter Egypt, but it can be obtained at the airport for $15 USD. If you prefer to travel on your Turkish passport, or if any of your friends are using Turkish passports, it would be wise to call the Egyptian Embassy in Istanbul or Ankara (wherever the embassies are at) and see what they say about visas for Turks.
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Nov 3rd, 2012, 04:25 AM
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The best time to visit Egypt in November to March when the weather is cooler- but note that this is the high season when prices go up.
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Nov 4th, 2012, 04:32 AM
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I would recommend the 5* hotel Sofitel Gezira.. it has the best views of the Nile due to its perfect location and arquitecture.
The atmosphere is great and you can feel the river in a totally different way, from one of the bars. It is outside, after crossing the big reception.
According to your budget, you can choose between several hotels.
I would not recommend to go on a 3* hotel, if you can afford a 4*.
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Nov 4th, 2012, 07:25 AM
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If you are going in January and need a good private tour guide then contact Debbie at Casual_Cairo.

[email protected]
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Nov 6th, 2012, 09:46 AM
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Just back from Egypt 5 days ago, I stayed at Fairmont Nile city was luxury for 2 nights and Ramses Hilton for last 2 night. I recommend Fairmont Nile City. both with same price
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Nov 6th, 2012, 09:48 AM
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For tours it better to check with any local travel agent, I've heard from my guide over 5000 company
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Nov 12th, 2012, 10:13 AM
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Yes, the Egypt visa for westerners is simply a stamp you can buy for $15 at the airport. The only warning is you need cash I think - US$, Euro, UK or Egyptian? If you are planning a side trip (ie to Petra Jordan and back), you need to get the multi-entry ($30?) or buy a new one for $15 when you return to Egypt. (Jordan has a similar arrangement - pay at entry)
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Nov 18th, 2012, 01:50 AM
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Think those with a Turkish passport will need visa, this is from the Egyptian Embassy in London

http://www.egyptianconsulate.co.uk/visas.php

This is the Egyptian Embassy in Turkey and their phone numbers

http://www.egyptturkey.com/en/?page_id=8

Second what Casual Cairo said about the Marriott - fantastic hotel but yes a little on the higher budget side. Plenty of other hotels to choose from, from budget to mid - range.

Try www.booking.com

or a local agent who can give you a package like hotels and tours together. Try www.egyptqualitytours.com that's who we have used a number of times and always got us great deals.
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Nov 18th, 2012, 08:24 AM
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scotsgirl - what hotels do you stay in with that company?
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Nov 19th, 2012, 01:51 AM
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Sanatana Hotel in Dokki in clean & cheap
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Nov 28th, 2012, 01:11 AM
  #12
 
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Hi CC

Sorry for the delay replying to you, work and family taking all my time at the moment

Ok from what me and DH can remember names wise

Cairo - We have stayed in the Marriott 3 times, Hilton Ramesis twice (sp), had a bit of luxury at the Four Seasons Cairo Plaza (for our wedding anniversary), stayed at the Happy City 3* one time, been at the Meridian Pyramids, Novotel near the airport, had a self catering apartment for a family trip one time, stayed at the Mena House twice, another 4 star I can't remember the name when we stopped for one night before going early to the Oasis for the Desert Safari. Can't remember the name of the hotel at the desert safari think it was West Desert or something like that. Also did some camping twice in the white desert.

Luxor stayed in sofitel karnak, Steigenberger, St George, Lotus, pyramisa, novotel, hilton spa, Old Winter Palace (during anniversary trip), winter pavillion, mercure, also had self catering apartment once there as well with our family group.

Cruise boats have sailed on St George (that was during anniversary trip as it was a quite a bit more expensive), Nile Ruby, Miss Egypt, Grand Princess, Dolphin (a good few years ago), sonesta moon goddess (a little more expensive than the others), emilio, radamis, semiramis 2, and maharusa(sp). Have had other cruises but not with this company, it was before we found them.

Alexandria, palestine helnan (sp), radisson blue, also had a self catering during family group trip, and Four Seasons San Stefano (during anniversary trip as it is was a big treat), azur as well.

Aswan, Movenpick, Ibrotel, Pyramisa Island, Basma, Marhaba or marhaban? 3* during a budget trip we had, night at the old cataract (during anniversary trip as it was also quite expensive I remember).

Hurghada - sonesta, dreams resort

Sharm - jollie ville peninsula, royal savoy (during anniversary trip), Hilton dreams

Dahab - Hilton and Swiss Inn

Also had a couple of nights on a felucca - but no toilets was a bit of an issue, but great experience all the same.

I think I got them all but will double check again with hubby and my leaflets cos I seem to collect memorabilia from most of the hotels I go to, leaflets, pens, notepads and the likes. I know strange but true.

Did that answer your question?
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Nov 28th, 2012, 05:25 AM
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You must have some real FREQUENT FLYER miles with all those hotel stays. WOW! Why don't you just buy a flat here, it would be cheaper!
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Nov 28th, 2012, 08:24 PM
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yes, DH did look into it before, but we would need 5 flats one for Luxor, one for Aswan, one for Cairo, one for Alex and one for Hurghada or Sharm or Dahab

I just re-read what I wrote and it actually is quite a list but we didn't do them all in the one year! This is over a good number of years and some stays were one or two nights at some of the hotels. Cruises were not all 7 nights either some were 3 nights or 4 nights.

Don't know how you get frequent flyer miles with most of those hotels though? how do you do that? I have a points card for Hilton and collect miles with British Airways and Avios, Lufthansa and Swiss Air, Egyptair and KLM, but never seem to have enough for free flights. Have had a couple of flights with points from British Airways but with the others I need about a million points! and sometimes it works out cheaper to use Easy jet, thomas cook, or Thomsons for the flights.

For anyone in the UK I just found out a few months ago that you can convert tesco clubcard vouchers for avios miles (£2.50 gets you 600 miles), and with avios you can swap them over to British Airways miles as well or vice versa. I will achieve a free first class flight one day! I really want to get one that you can have those lie down seats, they have better headphones and blankets DH can sit in economy.

How do you collect frequent flyer in those hotels and cruises then? might see if we can backdate any!
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Nov 28th, 2012, 08:40 PM
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CC - also wanted to ask you what the situation is like there just now. Watching on the news and reading on internet. Knowing the geography of Tahrir Square and the Palace is I know it is not the whole of Egypt that affected but is in a relatively small area, but just wondered how it is there just now. Is it limited to Tahrir and the Palace area? What about Luxor and Aswan, alexandria and the Red Sea Areas.

Is the museum still open beside Tahrir?

Don't mean to hi-jack this post but what do you think being on the ground there is going to happen, I see there are protests planned for Friday and MB asking for one for Saturday! What's your thoughts on what the outcome might be? if you wouldn't mind giving us an idea that would be great as we only see young boys throwing bricks in the side street off tahrir on the TV here in the UK.
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Nov 29th, 2012, 09:51 PM
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Scotsgirl - I was joking about actual miles and points on the hotels. The point was you have been here so many times and obviously spent so much time in hotels that you should have some sort of a plan for earning points.
You don't need a house in every city, but having one point to base yourself in makes it much easier to go to the other places you want to go and not have to pay any agency to get you a hotel. LOL

I'm going to hold off until after the weekend to give any comments on "the situation". I have to go down town today and tomorow for some Christmas Bazaars. If I manage to get to those (and I suspect I will) unscathed, I'll come back and report it so you all will know that Christian Christmas Bazaars are still going on. I've been to 3 Christmas Bazaars around town since Nov 16 and not a one of them has been disrupted by any of the issues you are seeing in the news, so don't let the press scare you too much. I guess covering a local Christmas charity event wouldn't be exciting enough for the evening news.

I should be back to report these last 2 bazaars went off without a hitch too.
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Jan 3rd, 2013, 08:07 AM
  #17
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Casual_Cairo is everything safe there? I am flying out in a few weeks and just want to make sure =]
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Jan 3rd, 2013, 11:56 PM
  #18
 
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As a tourist, I'm still convinced you will be fine. I don't know who you are traveling with, but providing you are with a reputable company with good guides, they will not be taking you in areas where you could get hurt.

Listen to your guide and any advice the people at the hotels give you. Not a bad idea to use trusted drivers as well if that is an option for you.

I feel safe and I'm pretty close to the palace.
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Jan 5th, 2013, 12:07 PM
  #19
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I am traveling with one of my coworkers, we are both female. We are going to be there for 5 days and have booked with habibitours... I emailed them and they said there is nothing going on in Egypt that will effect our safety, but I still want to make sure.
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