Egypt Travel Guide for 2023: Visa Info & Trip Essentials

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By Visaly

Have a look at this Egypt travel guide and you’ll realize how Egypt beckons travelers with its rich history and stunning landscapes. But before you book and start to travel, you will absolutely have to prepare yourself. This Egypt Travel Guide for 2023 offers a comprehensive overview of visa information, travel tips and essentials specific to the country. Whether you're a first-timer or a seasoned traveler, this guide will help you prepare.

What Can You Expect When Visiting Egypt ?

Read this Egypt travel guide and you'll quickly realize the allure of this country. From its rich cultural sites to its sun-kissed landscapes, Egypt beckons with promises of unforgettable memories. Here’s a quick snapshot of what to expect. Trust us, by the end of this section, you'll be itching to pack your bags ! Don't hesitate to bookmark this article for later reference if you don’t have the time to read it fully right now.


Egypt's culture blands ancient traditions and contemporary influences. You will absolutely love its bustling bazaars and the reverberating call to prayer. Use this Egyptian travel guide to immerse yourself in this authentic country.


Expect a predominantly desert climate : hot days and cooler nights. But the Nile Delta offers a pleasant respite with its Mediterranean touch. Remember to pack light and breathable clothing.

Is Egypt Dangerous ?

Yes, Egypt faces its challenges, but it's mostly safe for tourists. Always stay informed about the regions and follow local advice before you leave. The question of "how dangerous is Egypt" will depend on your precautions and awareness.

Do I Need A Visa For Egypt ?

Yes, most travelers require a visa. The specifics vary depending on nationality, but our Egypt tourist guide will delve deeper into the requirements later.

How Long Can I Stay In Egypt ?

Tourist visas allow a 30 day stay with some possible extensions. Some specific visas will allow you to stay for several months, and even years ! Comply with laws in Egypt to avoid huge fines and deportation.

Can You Drink In Egypt ?

Egypt is predominantly Muslim, so alcohol isn't widely consumed. However, in popular tourist sites and hotels, you will find alcoholic beverages almost everywhere. Always drink responsibly and respect local customs.

Seeing It All Isn't Possible

Egypt's beauty and vastness mean that you won’t be able to capture all its wonders in one trip. From its sprawling deserts to its historical treasures, there's always more to explore ! Use this Egypt tourism guide to prioritize your must-sees and bookmark this comprehensive guide for future trips. The land of the Pharaohs awaits multiple visits !

Key Advice From Locals Before You Go

To make you have a smooth and enriching journey, we've gathered some invaluable advice from locals in this Egypt tourist guide. These Egypt travel information will provide you with an authentic and hassle-free Egyptian experience.

  • Be Respectful : Egypt is a land of deep-rooted traditions and religious beliefs. Always show respect to its people, nature and religious practices. A little courtesy goes a long way.
  • Currency : the official currency is the Egyptian Pound (EGP). Always keep some cash on hand, especially you visit local markets.
  • Credit cards and ATMs : major cities and tourist spots accept credit cards but many local establishments might not. ATMs are widely available but always inform your bank of your travel plans to avoid any hitches.
  • Time zone :  Egypt operates on Eastern European Time (EET), which is UTC +2.
  • Sockets : Egypt uses Type C and Type F sockets. We would advise you to carry a universal adapter if you're coming from a country with different plug types.
  • Budget : depending on your travel style, you can budget around $50 to $100 per day for a comfortable experience. Of course this could be cheaper with more modest hotels and street food.
  • Traffic : Egyptian roads are often chaotic, especially in Cairo. Always be cautious when you cross streets and consider hiring local drivers or using ride-sharing apps for safer commutes.
  • Scams : Beware of scams, especially with taxis. It's always best to book airport-to-hotel transfers in advance to avoid overcharges or fake taxis.
  • Street food : Egyptian street food is a delight. You’ll love falafel and koshari, amongst many others. Ensure the food is freshly cooked and the stall looks clean.
  • Learn a few words : Pick up some basic Arabic phrases to enhance your travel experience. Words like “Shukran” (Thank you) and “Salam aleykoum” (Hello) will help build a friendly rapport with locals.
  • Dress modestly : given Egypt's conservative nature, both men and women should dress modestly, especially when visiting religious sites.
  • Stay hydrated : the Egyptian sun is relentless. Always carry a bottle of water and wear sunscreen to protect yourself from the heat.
  • Bargaining : haggling is an integral part of Egyptian market culture. Don't shy away from bargaining, but always do so with a smile and in good spirit.
  • Cultural etiquette : when you visit religious sites, always remove your shoes, return greetings and avoid public displays of affection.

And remember, the best Egypt tips for first-timers often come from the heart of its people !

Requirements To Enter Egypt

In this section of our best Egypt travel guide, we've compiled everything you need to know about entering Egypt and ensure you're well-prepared for your Egypt itinerary.

List Of Documents You Need to Enter Egypt

Before you start to visit Egypt, make sure you have the following documents at hand :

  • A valid passport with at least six months' validity is one of the must Egypt requirements for entry.
  • A completed visa application form.
  • Recent passport-sized photographs.
  • Proof of sufficient funds for the duration of your Egypt itinerary.
  • Hotel bookings or invitation letter from an Egyptian host.
  • Return or onward flight tickets.
  • Any additional documents based on the visa type you're applying for.

Types Of Visas for Egypt

Egypt offers different visa types to cater to different travel purposes :

  • Tourist visa : this is the most common visa type for travelers wishing to explore Egypt's wonders. It's valid for 30 days.
  • Business visa : For individuals who intend to conduct business or attend conferences. Additional documents like an invitation from an Egyptian company might be required.
  • Transit visa : for travelers passing through Egypt en route to another destination for more than six hours.
  • Work visa : mandatory if you're planning to work in Egypt. This will usually require an employment contract or job offer from an Egyptian employer.
  • Student visa : if you intend to study in Egypt. An acceptance letter from an Egyptian educational institution will be required.

For travelers from the USA, we would advise you to check the latest entry to Egypt from USA regulations before you plan your trip.

How To Get Egypt Visa (Step By Step Application Process)

Here are the few steps you’ll have to follow in order to apply for an Egyptian visa : 

  1. Determine your visa type : decide which visa type you need based on your travel purpose.
  2. Gather required documents : compile all the required documents mentioned in the list above.
  3. Complete the application : fill out the visa application form. Some nationalities can apply online, others might need to apply at an Egyptian consulate or embassy.
  4. Pay the visa fee : the cost will depend on the type and duration of visa.
  5. Submit your application : if you apply in person, schedule an appointment at the nearest Egyptian consulate or embassy. If you apply online, follow the portal's instructions.
  6. Wait for approval : once submitted, your application will be reviewed in a few weeks.
  7. Collect your visa : if approved, you'll either receive an e-visa confirmation (for online applications) or need to collect your visa sticker from the consulate or embassy. 

Overstaying And Penalties

Overstaying your visa will lead to penalties. Short overstays might result in a fine, but prolonged overstays will lead to more severe consequences like deportation or bans from re-entering. Be aware of the Egypt requirements for entry during your stay to avoid these penalties.

When Is The Best Time To Visit Egypt

Egypt, with its ancient sites and Nile Valley, offers varied experiences throughout the year. The peak tourist season lies between October and April, when the weather is pleasantly cool. It’s the perfect time to explore pyramids and for Nile cruises with a tour operator. December and January, especially around Christmas and New Year, see the highest influx of tourists.

If you prefer fewer crowds and don't mind the heat, the summer months offer a more relaxed (and hot !) experience. All in all, the transitional months of September and May strike a balance between pleasant weather and moderate tourist traffic.

How To Travel To Egypt

In this part of our travel guide to Egypt, let’s walk you through the essentials about how to travel to Egypt and the top tourist attractions in Egypt.

Decide On Your Egypt Itinerary

List the top tourist attractions in Egypt you wish to visit. Here we think of the Pyramids of Giza, the temples of Luxor, the beaches of Sharm El Sheikh and the Red Sea, Abu Simbel, South Sinai… Prioritize based on your interests and duration of stay.

Budget To Plan

Egypt offers experiences for various budgets. As a mid-range traveler, budget around $50 to $100 per day and per person. This budget can go as low as $30 and as high as $150 per day depending on your travel habits.

How To Get To Egypt

Major international airlines service Egypt's primary airports in Cairo, Luxor and Sharm El Sheikh. Good news if you’re travelling to Egypt, there are also a few direct flights from Europe, Asia and the Americas !

Transport Around Egypt

Major cities have public transport, but the best way to travel to Egypt's attractions is through organized tours or Egypt private tours. For more freedom, you can also hire a car or use ride-sharing apps. Always be cautious in traffic !

Cost Of Living

Egypt is very affordable. Tourist hotspots are pricier but local markets and eateries offer great value for money. For longer stays, consider renting apartments or homes, way more economical than hotels.

Packing Things

Pack light, breathable clothing suitable for a desert climate. Don’t forget to also include modest attire for religious sites, as well as sunscreen, a wide-brimmed hat,and comfortable walking shoes.

Research Visa And Entry Requirements

We've touched upon this earlier, but you have to remain well-informed about visa and entry requirements, especially for extended stays. Refer to our detailed section above for comprehensive travel to Egypt tips on this topic.

Get Travel Insurance

Always secure comprehensive travel insurance before you get around Egypt. This should cover medical emergencies, trip cancellations and any potential loss of valuables.

Where To Stay

Egypt offers a wide range of accommodations from luxury hotels to budget hostels. For a more authentic experience, consider Airbnb or staying with locals. Hotels provide added security and amenities, but hostels and local stays are more affordable and offer a deeper cultural immersion. Always prioritize safety and check reviews before you book !

Safety Tips from Locals Often Overlooked by Tourists in Egypt

Delve beyond the standard advice found in most Egypt tours travel guides and have a look at local insights : 

  • Respect the culture and nature : abide by local customs and protect Egypt's natural wonders. This not only ensures your safety but also enriches your Egypt travelling guide experience.
  • Wear a helmet : given the hectic traffic, especially if you're renting a scooter or bike, always wear a helmet. It's the best way to explore Egypt safely on two wheels.
  • Ask before photographing : some locals might find it intrusive. Always seek permission before you capture moments.
  • Avoid driving : if you're not accustomed to the traffic patterns, we would recommend you use public transport or organized tours. This travel tip for Egypt is very important if you’re unfamiliar with the local driving culture.
  • Learn basic phrases : learn some simple Arabic phrases to immerse yourself completely.
  • Stay hydrated : the desert climate is dehydrating. Always carry water and avoid prolonged exposure to the sun for optimal Egypt travel safety.
  • Dress modestly : dress conservatively. It is both a sign of respect and safety, especially when you visit religious sites.
  • Avoid isolated areas at night : Egyptian authorities recommend you stick to well-lit and populated areas.

Most Amazing Destinations In Egypt & Things To Do

Egypt offers both bustling urban centers and serene and lesser-known spots. In this section, we'll guide you through the top urban destinations that are a must-visit and introduce you to some hidden spots forgotten by tour operators and tour company that promise a unique experience away from the crowds.

Top Urban Destinations In Egypt

Egypt's cities are a fusion of history, culture and modernity. Each city offers a unique experience for travelers.


The heart of Egypt is home to the iconic Pyramids of Giza and the Sphinx. Dive into ancient Egypt at the Egyptian Museum then use your travel guide to Cairo to find the best bazaars and nightlife clubs and bars.


You will for sure love this Mediterranean port city. Alexandria boasts the famous Qaitbay Citadel and the modern Bibliotheca Alexandrina. Don’t hesitate to lose yourself amongst its Greco-Roman past while you enjoy its contemporary life. A must-visit in any Alexandria Egypt travel guide !


Often termed the "world's greatest open-air museum," Luxor houses the Valley of the Kings and the majestic Karnak Temple. Your Luxor Egypt travel guide will for sure lead you through its ancient wonders and the Nile valley and beautiful banks. A must see during your Nile cruise !


Nestled in the Nile valley, Aswan offers a laid-back charm with its Nubian villages and the majestic Abu Simbel temples. Your Aswan Egypt travel guide would highlight its significance in ancient Egyptian history.

Sharm El Sheikh

A paradise for beach lovers and divers ! Sharm El Sheikh is renowned for its coral reefs and rich marine life. The nightlife here is dynamic so it’s a top spot in any Egypt Sharm El Sheikh travel guide.

Lesser-Visited Places In Egypt

Beyond the urban hustle, Egypt hides some less known sites that offer tranquility and a deep dive into its diverse landscapes and cultures.


Welcome to this beautiful oasis town. Fayoum is known for its relaxed landscapes and ancient sites. The Wadi El Rayan waterfalls and Lake Qaroun are nature's marvels that any Fayoum travel guide Egypt would proudly showcase.


A small town on the Sinai Peninsula. Dahab is a haven for divers and travelers seeking a relaxed beach vibe away from commercial tourist spots. Perfect for a day trip or more !

Siwa Oasis

Located in the Western Desert, Siwa Oasis is a beautiful retreat known for its ancient Oracle Temple and the Cleopatra Pool.

White Desert

There you’ll find a surreal landscape of chalk formations. The White Desert offers a unique camping experience under the stars and amidst its otherworldly beauty.

Marsa Alam

A lesser-known beach destination. Marsa Alam offers pristine beaches and is a gateway to the Red Sea's stunning coral reefs.

Important Dates In Egypt

Planning your Egypt itinerary ? Remember to be aware of significant dates and events that might influence your travel experience. World-famous events or a local holiday, these important dates in Egypt will help you make the most of your visit.

World Famous Events In Egypt

Egypt hosts several events that draw international crowds :

  • Cairo International Film Festival : held annually in November, this event celebrates cinematic achievements and attracts filmmakers and enthusiasts from around the world.
  • Abu Simbel Sun Festival : twice a year in February and October, this event celebrates the sun's alignment with the statues of Ramses II. A spectacular view !
  • Luxor African Film Festival : celebrate African cinema ! This March event showcases films from across the continent in the historic city of Luxor.
  • Alexandria Mediterranean Film Festival : held in October, this festival celebrates films from Mediterranean countries and fosters cultural exchange.

Most Important Holidays In Egypt

Here are the most important Egypt’s holidays : 

  • Sham El Nessim : celebrated on the Monday following Coptic Easter, this holiday marks the beginning of spring with picnics and feasts.
  • Eid Al-Fitr and Eid Al-Adha : these are the two most significant Islamic holidays. They’re celebrated with prayers, feasts and family gatherings.
  • Revolution Day : commemorated on July 23rd, this national holiday marks the 1952 revolution that led to the establishment of the modern Egyptian republic.
  • Coptic Christmas : celebrated on January 7th, this is a significant holiday for Egypt's Christian community. It’s marked by church services and festive meals.

Things You Simply Must Experience in Egypt

From its rich culinary heritage to unique activities and memorable keepsakes, there are certain things that every traveler should indulge in. Let our travel guide for Egypt lead you through some of the must-experience.

3 Foods You Must Try

Egyptian cuisine is a delightful blend of flavors and traditions. Amongst the must-tries  of Egyptian gastronomy, you’ll find Koshari, a hearty dish made of rice, lentils and pasta topped with spicy tomato sauce. Don't miss out on Ful Medames, a fava bean stew often enjoyed for breakfast. And for dessert, savor the sweetness of Basbousa, a semolina cake soaked in syrup and often adorned with almonds.

3 Things You Should Do

Get yourself a day trip with a felucca ride on the Nile during sunset and let the gentle waters transport you through time. Next, spend a night in the White Desert, where you can wake up to a mesmerizing sunrise amidst the chalk rock formations. Another great day trip would be to immerse yourself in the dynamic atmosphere of Cairo's Khan El Khalili bazaar, where history and commerce intertwine amidst narrow alleys…

Top 3 Souvenirs To Bring Home

Egypt offers loads of original souvenirs. You can consider bringing home a Papyrus painting to reflect ancient Egyptian art and history. Handcrafted and showcasing intricate designs, Alabaster vases from Luxor make for a timeless keepsake. And for a touch of Egyptian fragrance, lotus and jasmine essential oils are a must-buy !

Few Useful Tips For Solo Travelers In Egypt

Are you thinking about traveling solo in Egypt ? Even if it will be an enriching experience, it’s always better to be well-prepared. As the best travel guide Egypt has to offer, we've curated some tips to ensure a safe travel : 

  • Egypt tourism safety : always stay in well-reviewed accommodations, preferably those frequented by other solo travelers.
  • Internet access : the internet in Egypt for tourists is pretty reliable in urban areas. However, consider getting a local SIM card to stay connected, especially if you venture into remote regions.
  • Local etiquette : respect local customs and dress modestly, especially when you visit religious sites.
  • Stay alert : like any other destination, there are things to watch out for in Egypt. Beware of overly persistent vendors or unsolicited guides. Trust your instincts and always prioritize your safety.

14 Etiquette Tips for Your Egypt Trip

To ensure a respectful and enjoyable experience during your visit, here are some essential etiquette tips from our customs Egypt travel guide tailored for people traveling to Egypt :

  1. Dress modestly : especially when you visit religious sites, it's best to cover arms and legs. This is a fundamental Egypt rule for tourists to remember.
  2. Greet with the right hand : the left hand is considered unclean. Always use the right hand to eat, greet and give or receive items.
  3. Avoid public displays of affection : limit physical contact in public places, especially between opposite genders.
  4. Tipping is customary : known as “baksheesh”, small tips are expected for various services to align with Egypt tourism practices.
  5. Accept hospitality : if offered tea or coffee during a shop visit, it's polite to accept, even if you don't intend to buy anything.
  6. Seek permission before you photograph people : especially in rural areas, always ask before you take photos of locals.
  7. Remove shoes : when you enter someone's home or visit a religious site.
  8. Avoid discussing politics : given the region's sensitive political climate, it's best to steer clear of political discussions.
  9. Bargaining : on bazaars and local markets, haggling is a part of the shopping experience.
  10. Respect the call to prayer : five times a day, activities might pause for the call to prayer. Be patient and respectful during these times.
  11. Avoid touching the opposite gender : unless you're familiar with the person, it's best to avoid physical contact.
  12. Understand local time : known as “Egyptian time”, locals usually have a more relaxed approach to punctuality.
  13. Avoid criticizing Pharaoh history : Pharaohs are a source of pride in Egypt tourism. Always speak respectfully about them.
  14. Learn basic Arabic phrases : with words like “Shukran” (Thank you) that will show a lot of respect for locals.

Are Digital Nomads Welcome In Egypt ?

Absolutely ! Egypt is becoming a hotspot for digital nomads thanks to its history, affordable living and beautiful landscapes. The government has even introduced the Egypt Digital Nomad Visa to ease longer stays for remote workers. This visa simplifies the residency process but also positions Egypt as a welcoming destination for the nomadic community.

Can I Travel To Egypt Without Vaccine

Yes, you can travel to Egypt without specific vaccinations. However, for your safety and health, we recommend that all travelers consider getting vaccinated for hepatitis A and typhoid. Depending on your planned activities and travel reasons, additional immunizations might be advisable. Consult with a healthcare professional before your trip to ensure you're protected.


How to hire a guide when traveling to Egypt ?

Contact a reputable tour operator or check online platforms for certified local guides.

How safe is Egypt for tourists ?

Egypt is pretty safe for tourists, but be cautious in crowded areas.

Is Cairo safe for American tourists ?

Yes, Cairo is safe for American tourists with usual travel caution.

Is Alexandria Egypt safe ?

Yes, Alexandria is safe for tourists, but remain vigilant.

Is Egypt Sharm El Sheikh safe for tourists ?

Yes, Sharm El Sheikh is a popular and safe tourist destination.

Is it safe for Americans to travel to Egypt ?

Yes, many Americans visit Egypt safely each year.

Do you have to be vaccinated to go to Egypt ?

No, but vaccinations for hepatitis A and typhoid are recommended.

How to get to Egypt without flying ?

Travelers can enter Egypt by road from neighboring countries or by sea.

Is Egypt a good place to visit ?

Absolutely ! Egypt offers rich history, culture and iconic landmarks.

Is it safe to travel to Egypt pyramids ?

Yes, the pyramids are safe and popular tourist attractions.

What are the requirements to travel to Egypt ?

A valid passport, visa and sometimes additional documentation based on purpose.

Do I need a visa to travel to Egypt ?

Yes, most travelers require a visa to enter Egypt.

How many days are enough to visit Egypt ?

A 7 to 10 day trip allows a comprehensive exploration of key sites but you can stay several months to really immerse yourself.

Is it safe to drink tap water in Egypt ?

No, it's better to drink bottled water to avoid some diseases.

What's the best time of year to visit Egypt in terms of weather ?

Months from October to April offer pleasant temperatures and fewer crowds.

Are credit cards widely accepted in Egypt ?

In cities and tourist areas, yes. Carry cash for remote areas.

What is the tipping culture in Egypt, and when is it appropriate to tip ?

Tipping, or "baksheesh", is customary for services like taxis or housecare ; amounts vary by service.

Is it safe to fly to Egypt ?

Yes, international and domestic flights to Egypt are safe.

Are people in Egypt friendly ?

Yes, Egyptians are known for their warm hospitality.

Is it safe to travel to Egypt as a woman ?

Yes, but solo female travelers should exercise additional caution.

Wrap Up

Prepare yourself for a journey like no other. Understand the nuances of Egyptian etiquette and ensure you're well-prepared with the right visa and safety measures thanks to this Egypt travel guide. Whether you're a solo traveler, digital nomad or a history enthusiast, Egypt beckons with its timeless allure !

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