Egypt advice

Old Aug 15th, 2018, 10:10 AM
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Egypt advice

Hi, I'm looking for some general Egypt advice. Hoping someone will chime in. We're a couple in our early sixties, used to travelling abroad independently. Going on our first ever organized tour, to Israel, for two weeks in January. And thought, since we're so close, a chance to see Egypt. We want to do it on our own. We would start on the Sinai, (we like desserts, plus all the layers of cultural signficance makes it very appealing) So maybe 2 or 3 nights at St Catherine, couple of day hikes, maybe guided, maybe on our own. Then maybe a night or two at Dahab for some swimming and walking in Abu Gollam. Then to Cairo. I've read that the buses to Cairo aren't exactly comfortable. And taxis are not too expensive. Is that true? In Cairo, maybe 5 nights. It looks like there's maybe three days of day trips from Cairo that we would want to do, three different pyramid sites, early christian monastic sites. and a couple days in the city. Don't know if we'll need a guide for this, at least a lot of taxis. Any advice? And guesses on expenses? We would stay in mid range hotels, just need to be clean with a decent bed and bathroom. Think we'll call it quits at that point, maybe a trip to Luxor, but I think we'll be ready to come home by then. Just starting our research, appreciate any advice you can give.
jah53 is offline  
Old Aug 15th, 2018, 01:09 PM
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You may find Trip Advisor a more useful site for Egypt planning. I got a great deal of help from some very knowledgeable regular visitors there.
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Old Aug 15th, 2018, 05:00 PM
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My wife and I did an Egypt (12 days) and Jordan (5 days) last November. We are also in our early 60s. It was wonderful.

We didn't want to be on our own. Too great of a chance of being taken advantage of. So after researching some of the tour companies, we chose Djed egypt dot com, and they were great. Handled all the logistics and provided excellent private guides in air conditioned vans. They were also very prompt in responding to emails. Google them. They are well reviewed on tripadvisor, although there aren't a ton of them.

Couple more thoughts.

The country is safe, at least as safe as many other countries in the world, like the US, my home.

It's dirt cheap. Tourism is still down like 80-90% and the Egyptian pound was significantly devalued in the first part of last year. The US dollar goes a LONG way.

The sights are incredible. So is the history. We did 4 nights in Giza (we arrived there from the US), flew to Aswan for 2 nights where we spent one full day riding in a van 3 hours one way to the south to see Abu Simbel (wow!), took a terrific 3 night Nile cruise to Luxor using a small sailboat owned by Djed (which was one of the best things we did, and please note, Djed will sail regardless of the number of passengers on board unlike many other Nile cruises who will cancel if there aren't enough passengers), and spent 3 nights in Luxor, which was the right amount of time IMO. Then we flew to Jordan to see Petra (another major wow).

You won't regret it.

Last edited by dcd; Aug 15th, 2018 at 05:03 PM.
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Old Aug 18th, 2018, 08:47 AM
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We are 'on our own' travelers, but decided on using Memphis Tours for our trip to Egypt. I am so glad we did. Our guides were a tremendous help to us, alerting us to various scenarios and keeping us safe at all times. We felt very relaxed and safe throughout our trip. I would highly recommend checking them out and seeing if any of their many tours will fit with your plans. Have fun...Egypt was a wonderful country. Tourism is down. We were met with 'Thank You for visiting our country' from nearly everyone we encountered.
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Old Sep 27th, 2018, 07:49 AM
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the buses are not too bad, sometimes it can get very crowded, or the driver will drive like crazy, or the aircondition is too cold, but you can also have luck. so for long rides i would save money and take the bus
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Old Nov 9th, 2018, 09:18 PM
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I wouldn't take a taxi and yes I've heard that the buses aren't too comfortable. When I was in Cairo I took an Uber everywhere I went. Uber is much cheaper and comfortable. Plus you don't have to deal with the hassle of trying to negotiate a good price.
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Old Nov 11th, 2018, 10:03 PM
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We spent 3 days in Cairo in 2016. Though we are primarily do-it-yourself types, for this holiday we hired both a driver and a guide. Cairo doesn't really lend itself to being a do-it-yourself destination; plus, tackling 4.000 years of history on our own seemed daunting. It is a large and populous city; the public transportation mainly consists of microbuses and ad hoc slug lines (though there is an overcrowded subway system if one is so inclined); and my Arabic language skills are honed just enough for basic greetings, identifying "shai" (tea) and "koshary" (an Egyptian national dish) on a menu, and otherwise staying out of trouble.

With our guide we toured the main sights (including a guided tour of the National Museum, much appreciated!); she also arranged the certified camel tour to the pyramids. One can barter with "independent" camel guides, but that activity is discouraged for a number of reasons. Our guide arranged the tour for us with the government-owned and licensed camel guides, as the camels are well cared for and the guides are knowledgeable. DD and I felt confident touring the Souk alone, though our driver transported us to and from.

I hope this is helpful.
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Old Dec 1st, 2018, 10:43 PM
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Don't depend on buses or taxis. before travelling to Egypt I'd suggest downloading Uber or Careem applications. They are extremely helpful, especially in Cairo.
You can try using both applications and I believe that they are as good as each other and that there are no huge differences between their services or fares.
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