Travel is only glamorous in retrospect.
— Paul Theroux, 1941 -




The regularity and richness of the annual Nile River flood, coupled with semi-isolation provided by deserts to the east and west, allowed for the development of one of the world's great civilizations. A unified kingdom arose circa 3200 B.C., and a series of dynasties ruled in Egypt for the next three millennia. The last native dynasty fell to the Persians in 341 B.C., who in turn were replaced by the Greeks, Romans, and Byzantines. It was the Arabs who introduced Islam and the Arabic language in the 7th century and who ruled for the next six centuries. A local military caste, the Mamluks took control about 1250 and continued to govern after the conquest of Egypt by the Ottoman Turks in 1517. Following the completion of the Suez Canal in 1869, Egypt became an important world transportation hub, but also fell heavily into debt. Ostensibly to protect its investments, Britain seized control of Egypt's government in 1882, but nominal allegiance to the Ottoman Empire continued until 1914. Partially independent from the UK in 1922, Egypt acquired full sovereignty with the overthrow of the British-backed monarchy in 1952. The completion of the Aswan High Dam in 1971 and the resultant Lake Nasser have altered the time-honored place of the Nile River in the agriculture and ecology of Egypt. A rapidly growing population (the largest in the Arab world), limited arable land, and dependence on the Nile all continue to overtax resources and stress society. The government has struggled to meet the demands of Egypt's growing population through economic reform and massive investment in communications and physical infrastructure.


Egypt (Arabic: مصر Misr / Másr; officially, the Arab Republic of Egypt, Arabic: جمهوريّة مصر العربيّة Gomhuriat Masr Al-Arabiah) is in north-eastern Africa with its capital located in its largest city, Cairo. Egypt also extends into Asia by virtue of holding the Sinai Peninsula. Egypt is bordered by Israel and the Gaza Strip to the north-east, by Jordan to the east, by Sudan to the south and by Libya to the west. The country is bounded by the Mediterranean and Red Seas (to the north and east respectively) and geographically dominated both by the Nile River and its fertile well-watered valley, and by the Eastern and Western deserts.

Egypt is perhaps best known as the home of the ancient Egyptian civilization, with its temples, hieroglyphs, mummies, and - visible above all - its pyramids. Less well-known is Egypt's medieval heritage, courtesy of Coptic Christianity and Islam - ancient churches, monasteries and mosques punctuate the Egyptian landscape. Egypt stimulates the imagination of western tourists like few other countries and is probably one of the most popular tourist destinations world-wide.

Read more about Egypt in our Egypt travel guide »

A travel warning has been issued for Egypt

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Featured journals from


Long Nile cruise from Cairo to Aswan

by egypttravelexpert

Discover all Egypt through Long Nile Cruise Holiday from Cairo to Aswan. 600 Miles from Cairo to Aswan along the Nile following the footsteps of the Pharaohs. In an unforgettable journey through the Nile to discover the wonders of ancient Egypt.

Dec 2016 - Dec 2017  »  Egypt | United States | Morocco

Cairo, Nile Cruise & Hurghada All-inclusive Holiday

by travabiatravel

10-Days Egypt holiday to Cairo, Nile Cruise from Aswan to Luxor 3 nights with beach extensions 3 nights on the coast of the Red Sea with flights, guide, sightseeing and hotels included. Book your holiday to Egypt with us.

May 2018 - Jun 2018  »  Egypt | Jordan | Benin

Private Boat Fishing In Hurghada

by SunAzur

Go fishing in the Red Sea with a private full-day trip from Hurghada. Enjoy an all-inclusive tour that provides you with the equipment you need, along with food and drinks to stay refreshed. In the morning, you'll be picked up from your hotel and transferred to the jetty. After boarding, set out on the water. Take in the nature and the beauty of the small islands you pass by. Eventually you will drop anchor and have time to go fishing. You will also be able to swim, snorkel, or scuba dive. At lunchtime, dine on an open buffet lunch of fresh seafood. Then enjoy the rest of your afternoon in the sun before you are returning to your hotel in the early evening. What's Included: • Private fishing boat with all equipment • Round-trip transfer in air-conditioned vehicle • Guide assistance • Entrance fees to all the mentioned sites • Unlimited soft drinks and mineral water on board • All taxes and service charges • Seafood lunch Price : 450$ maximum 6 person

Jan 2014  »  Egypt

Egypt Tours

by ShaspoTours

Egypt Day Tours, We offer Egypt Day Tours and Egypt Excursions to Cairo, Luxor, Aswan, Hurghada and more, Egypt Day Tours and Egypt Excursions are different with Shaspo Tours

Jul 2015  »  Egypt

Featured hotels in


EgyptSerenity Makadi Heights 

Safaga Road, P.O. Box 324
Makadi Bay

Price (US$): $62 - $99 / night

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Location. Located in Makadi Bay, Serenity Makadi Heights is a beachfront luxury hotel in the desert. Hotel Features. Dining options at Serenity Makadi Heights include 6 restaurants. A swim up bar, a poolside bar, and a bar/lounge are open for drinks. Room service is available 24 hours a day. The hotel serves a complimentary hot and cold buffet breakfast. Guests can enjoy a complimentary evening social on select days. Recreational amenities include a children's pool, a lazy river, a health… more »

EgyptM/S AMARCO Luxor-Aswan 4 nights Nile Cruise Monday-Friday 

In front of Luxor Temple

Price (US$): $346 - $484 / night

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Location. Located in Luxor, M/S AMARCO Luxor Aswan 4 nights Nile Cruise Monday Friday is on a river and close to Luxor Temple, Luxor Museum, and Karnak. Nearby points of interest also include Colossi of Memnon and Ramesseum. Property Features. M/S AMARCO Luxor Aswan 4 nights Nile Cruise Monday Friday's restaurant serves breakfast, lunch, and dinner. A poolside bar and a bar/lounge are open for drinks. Room service is available during limited hours. Recreational amenities include an outdoor… more »

EgyptDusit Thani LakeView Cairo 

The Lakeview, El Tesseen Street
City Center, Fifth Settlement

Price (US$): $210 - $490 / night

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Location. Dusit Thani LakeView Cairo is a business friendly hotel located in Cairo and attractions in the region include City Stars, Saladin Citadel, and Sultan Hussan Mosque. Regional points of interest also include Khan el Khalili and Museum of Islamic Art. Hotel Features. Dining options at Dusit Thani LakeView Cairo include a restaurant and a coffee shop/café. A swim up bar, a poolside bar, and a bar/lounge are open for drinks. Room service is available 24 hours a day. Recreational… more »

EgyptFairmont Nile City Cairo 

Nile City Towers 2005 B
Cornish El Nil

Price (US$): $189 - $350 / night

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Location. Fairmont Nile City Cairo is a business friendly hotel located in Cairo, close to Sports Center Gezirah Sporting Club, Coptic Museum, and Egyptian Museum. Additional points of interest include Cairo Tower and Khan el Khalili. Hotel Features. Dining options at Fairmont Nile City Cairo include 8 restaurants. A bar/lounge is open for drinks. Room service is available 24 hours a day. Recreational amenities include an outdoor pool, a children's pool, and a health club. There is a full… more »

EgyptHilton Hurghada Resort 

Hurghada Bay Safaga Road
Hurghada 02

Price (US$): $46 - $125 / night

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Location. Hilton Hurghada Resort is located on the beach in Hurghada's Village Road neighborhood and local attractions include New Marina. Hotel Features. Hilton Hurghada Resort features a restaurant and a bar/lounge. Room service is available 24 hours a day. Recreational amenities include a fitness facility. Spa amenities include beauty services and a hair salon. This 5 star property offers small meeting rooms, limo/town car service, and audiovisual equipment. High speed (wired) Internet… more »

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Full name
Arab Republic of Egypt

Northern Africa, bordering the Mediterranean Sea, between Libya and the Gaza Strip, and the Red Sea north of Sudan, and includes the Asian Sinai Peninsula

Geographic coordinates

27 00 N, 30 00 E

Area comparative

slightly more than three times the size of New Mexico

Border countries

Gaza Strip 11 km, Israel 266 km, Libya 1,115 km, Sudan 1,273 km


2,450 km


desert; hot, dry summers with moderate winters


vast desert plateau interrupted by Nile valley and delta

Lowest point

Qattara Depression -133 m

Highest point

Mount Catherine 2,629 m

Natural resources

petroleum, natural gas, iron ore, phosphates, manganese, limestone, gypsum, talc, asbestos, lead, rare earth elements, zinc


80,471,869 (July 2010 est.)

Ethnic groups

Egyptian 99.6%, other 0.4% (2006 census)


Muslim (mostly Sunni) 90%, Coptic 9%, other Christian 1%


Arabic (official), English and French widely understood by educated classes

Government type



28 February 1922 (from UK protectorate status; the revolution that began 23 July 1952 led to a republic being declared on 18 June 1953 and all British troops withdrawn 18 June 1956); note - it was in ca. 3200 B.C. that the Two Lands of Upper (southern) and Lower (northern) Egypt were first united politically

National holiday

Revolution Day, 23 July (1952)

Chief of state

President Mohamed Hosni MUBARAK (since 14 October 1981)

Head of government

Prime Minister Ahmed Mohamed NAZIF (since 9 July 2004)

Internet country code


Internet users

20.136 million (2009)


86 (2010)

Ports and terminals

Ayn Sukhnah, Alexandria, Damietta, El Dekheila, Port Said, Sidi Kurayr, Suez

Other countries in the region