About Egypt 2017-03-31T15:29:19+00:00

 

About Egypt

Egypt (Arabic: مصر‎ Miṣr), officially the Arab Republic of Egypt (Arabic: جمهورية مصر العربية‎), is a transcontinental countryspanning the northeast corner of Africa and southwest corner of Asia via a land bridge formed by the Sinai Peninsula. Most of its territory of 1,010,000 square kilometers (390,000 sq mi) lies within North Africa and is bordered by the Mediterranean Sea to the north, the Gaza Strip and Israel to the northeast, the Gulf of Aqaba to the east, the Red Sea to the east and south, Sudan to the south andLibya to the west.

Egypt is one of the most populous countries in Africa and the Middle East, and the 15th most populated in the world. The great majority of its over 84 million people[4] live near the banks of the Nile River, an area of about 40,000 square kilometers (15,000 sq mi), where the only arable land is found. The large regions of the Sahara Desert, which constitute most of Egypt’s territory, are sparsely inhabited. About half of Egypt’s residents live in urban areas, with most spread across the densely populated centres of greater Cairo, Alexandriaand other major cities in the Nile Delta.

Egypt has one of the longest histories of any modern state, having been continuously inhabited since the 10th millennium BC.[10] Its monuments, such as the Giza pyramid complex and its Great Sphinx, were constructed by its ancient civilization, which was one of the most advanced of its time. Its ancient ruins, such as those of Memphis, Thebes, Karnak, and the Valley of the Kings outside Luxor, are a significant focus of archaeological study and popular interest. Egypt’s rich cultural legacy, as well as the attraction of its Red Sea Riviera, have made tourism a vital part of the economy, employing about 12% of the country’s workforce.

The economy of Egypt is one of the most diversified in the Middle East, with sectors such as tourism, agriculture, industry and services at almost equal production levels. Egypt is considered to be a middle power,[11] with significant cultural, political, and military influence in North Africa, the Middle East and the Muslim world.

Tourism is one of the most important sectors in Egypt’s economy. More than 12.8 million tourists visited Egypt in 2008, providing revenues of nearly $11 billion. The sector employs about 12% of Egypt’s workforce.

Important Tourist Information

The currency in Egypt is the Egyptian pound – usually abbreviated as EGP and sometimes, LE or L.E.. The 1/100th unit of EGP is the Piastre. The approximate exchange rate for 1 USD is 7.0 EGP as of August 2013. The Central Bank of Egypt controls the circulation of currency. As of May 2009, the currency notes in circulation have a denomination of EGP 200, 100, 50, 20, 5, 1 and Piastres 50, 25.

There is no limit on the amount of currency which the visitors may bring to Egypt, however, they must declare the currency and amount upon arrival and departure with bank receipts. If you are carrying Egyptian Currency, it should not exceed EGP 5,000.

Credit cards like American Express, Diners Club, MasterCard and Visa are accepted in most tourist establishments.

Banking hours
8:30am – 2pm Sunday to Thursday, closed Friday, Saturday and most public holidays.

Tips
The popular “baksheesh.” Remember that in Egypt, you pay “baksheesh” for rendered services, and the amount is up to you. Your tour guide will be glad to help you determine appropriate tips when necessary.

Peak tourist season in Egypt runs from mid October to May, during winter and spring. From May until October, the temperatures are fairly high, especially in Luxor and the southern parts of the country.

Egypt is one of the hottest and sunniest countries in the world. With the exception of a strip along the Mediterranean coast, Egypt has a desert climate, being entirely within the Sahara. The Mediterranean coastal strip has an average annual rainfall of 100–200 mm. In central and southern Egypt several years may pass without any significant rain.

Light cottons and comfortable shoes are recommended for the hot summer months. Hats, Sunglasses and sunscreen are recommended for protection against the harsh rays of the sun. Egypt is religious country; therefore, modest dress is essential. Short dresses should be avoided, particularly when visiting religious sites.

Winters are generally warm in the south of Egypt, but temperatures fall rather abruptly at night so that desert evenings in winter can be quite chilly. The heat of southern Egypt in summer is fierce, and there is almost no relief from one day to another. The very low humidity, however, makes the heat more bearable.

All visitors to Egypt must hold a current passport with at least 6 months validation. Visas for a stay of one month may be obtained from all Egyptian Consulates or upon entry to Egypt. (for most nationalities)

A comprehensible knowledge of Egyptian religion is indispensable for anyone who wishes to grasp the essence of the Egyptian civilization. Religion had deeply dominated all aspects of Egyptian culture—art, science, government, and law. In short, religion was the womb of Egypt’s ancient culture. Egyptian religion can be characterized by its infinite complexity and diversity.

This diversity is justified by the constant growth of religious beliefs over the many centuries during which new ideas were introduced without ever discarding any old ones (except during the reign of Akhenaten). Therefore, to the ancient Egyptian this diversity of beliefs and gods was acceptable; because of which each divine power was approached through a variety of images related to nature, animal and human life.

Music is a very important part of Egyptian culture. Elements of western pop music are increasingly being integrated into contemporary Egyptian music and contemporary musicians are experimenting with newer styles.

Ahlan wa sahlan (Welcome)
Shokran (Thank You)
Sabah el kher (Good Morning)
Baksheesh (Tip)
Ma`a el salama (Good Bye)
Bokra (Tomorrow)
Kolo Tamam (All Good/OK)
Feloos ( Money )
Ana / Enta (Me / You)
Ana Baheb Masr (I Love Egypt)
Insha’allah (If God wills)
Chai (Tea)
Kahwa (Coffee)
Laban (Milk)
Helw (Beautiful/Nice)

We invite you to try the delicious typical dishes of Egypt, such as: koshari (lentil and rice dish), mahshi (stuffed vegetables) and ful medammes (broadbean stew). When it comes to fruit, Egypt is a paradise of fragrant and tasty fruits. Don’t forget to taste the guavas, dates, figs, and large variety of juicy mangos!

Most hotels serve local dishes. The typical Egyptian foods are rice, pita bread (aysh) and fava beans. Special dishes include roasted ground lamb like kebab, vegetable casserole, and stuffed, grilled pigeon. Desserts like Ahwa and Baklava are local favorites. Italian, French and Indian cuisine can be found in hotels and restaurants. Locally brewed beer and bottled sodas may be found throughout the country. Do not miss out on Egyptian coffee.

Our Tour Guides and Operators will gladly help you find any type of food you desire throughout your trip.