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Information on Egypt Travel
Egypt is a transcontinental country spanning the northeast corner of Africa and southwest corner of Asia, via a land bridge formed by the Sinai Peninsula. Wikipedia
Currency: Egyptian pound
Places of interest
Pyramids of Giza-Sole survivors from the ancient Greek-listed Seven Wonders of the World, the amazing pyramids at Giza are the planet’s oldest tourist attraction! Known as Cheops, Chephren and Mycerinus, the pyramids were already more than 2,000 years old when Herodotus the Greek historian visited them (5th century BC).
Temples of Abu Simbel-Possibly the most awe-inspiring temple of all ancient Egypt, with its gargantuan rock-cut façade, the great Sun Temple of King Ramses II at Abu Simbel was created to revere the mighty pharaonic ruler King Ramses II. Guarding the entrance to the temple and hewn into the side of a mountain are four famous colossal statues of the pharaoh himself.
Valley of the Kings-Home of the legendary Valley of the Kings and Temple of Karnak, 4000 year-old Luxor is ancient Egypt at it’s best. Highlights include the legendary Valley of the Kings, Valley of the Queens and the Temple of Queen Hatshepsut. The Valley of the Kings is studded with often highly decorated tombs, constructed to once house the regal sarcophagi-enclosed mummies of the mighty pharaohs awaiting their passage into the after-life. Some of the best known tombs are those of Ramses II, Seti I, Amenhotep II and of course, the tomb of King Tutankhamen.
Siwa Oases-Siwa, once the most mysterious of all Egypt's oases, is also the most fascinating. It's history has not only been shaped by all major civilisations, but also by the contrast of the surrounding desert with the lush soil of the oasis setting. The modern town of Siwa is set among thick palm groves, walled gardens and olive orchards, with numerous freshwater springs and salt lakes.
Hurghada, Red Sea-Hurghada was founded in the early 20th century and took on a growth explosion thanks to tourism in the 1980s. In reality, the Hurghada of today comprises three main centres and numerous self-contained tourist villages.
King Tut Exhibit, Egyptian Museum-Discovered intact in 1922 by Howard Carter, the Tomb of Tutankhamun is possibly one of the most dazzling archaeological finds ever. Tutankhamen lived over 3,300 years ago during the New Kingdom period. For two centuries, Egypt had ruled as a world superpower, while its royal family lived an opulent lifestyle.
Aswan & Philae Temple-The picturesque town of Aswan is set on the River Nile and it's start point for both the felucca journey downstream to Kom Ombo & also optional Abu Simbel excursions. Elephantine and Kitchener Island are worth exploring and sampling the restaurants along the corniche is a good bet.
Bahariyya Oasis-Situated in a 2000 sq km depression about 330km south-west of Cairo is Bahariyya Oasis. Dating back to ancient times, it was prosperous until the 4th century, when attacks from surrounding tribes and the decline of Roman rule left much of its agricultural land to be reclaimed by the surrounding desert. The Western Desert around the oasis forms a very unusual moon-like landscape. Remote and surreal, it makes a great place to visit.
British passport holders travelling to Egypt normally require a visa.
For visits of up to 30 days, you can get a visa on arrival by payment in Sterling, US Dollars or Euros; the visa fee is US$25 at approved bank kiosks within airport arrival halls, before reaching immigration counters. There’s no need to buy a visa from an agent. In many cases agents will charge more than US$25 for a visa. If you’re harassed by an agent, report the incident to the tourist police in the airport terminal.
Alternatively you can get a visa from an Egyptian Consulate outside Egypt before you travel. If you’re entering Egypt for work or business it is preferable to get a visa before you travel.
British nationals travelling to Sharm el Sheikh, Dahab, Nuweiba and Taba resorts for up to 15 days receive a free entry permission stamp upon arrival. If you intend to travel out of these areas or stay longer than 15 days, you must get a visa.
If you have travelled to one of the South Sinai Red Sea resorts, entering without a visa and your plans change you can normally purchase a visa at Sharm el Sheikh airport to allow you to travel elsewhere.
Applications for visa extensions should be made at Egyptian Passport and Immigration Offices. You may have difficulties leaving Egypt with an out of date visa. You will not normally be allowed to leave if the visa is out of date by more than 14 days.
Further information and enquiries contact the Egyptian Consulate in London or the Ministry of Immigration.
Your passport should be valid for a minimum period of 6 months from the date of entry into Egypt.
The Egyptian authorities have confirmed they will accept British passports extended by 12 months by British Embassies and Consulates under additional measures put in place in mid-2014.
UK Emergency Travel Documents
UK Emergency Travel Documents (ETDs) are accepted for exit from Egypt, but not accepted for entry or transit.
To leave Egypt on an ETD you will need to visit an Egyptian Passport and Immigraton Office to complete the exit formalities. Some passport offices outside of Cairo may assist, but in many cases you will have to complete the formalities at the National HQ at:
Immigraton Office Mogammaa El Tahrir, Tahrir Square, Down Town, Cairo 1st floor: Tel.: 27956301/2/3
Opening hours: 8am-2pm from Saturday-Thursday (N.B. The immigration office is a 10 minute walk from the British Embassy).
Please note that the immigration clearance may take up to 5 working days. Please adjust your travel plans accordingly.
Yellow Fever vaccination is required for travellers who are arriving from, or have transited through, countries with risk of yellow fever transmission.
Previous travel to Israel
Evidence of a previous visit to Israel like as an Israeli entry/exit stamp in your passport does not normally cause any difficulties when entering Egypt. It is, however, for the Egyptian authorities to determine the right of entry into the country. If you have any concerns, you should contact the Egyptian consulate.
Evidence of testing for HIV is required if you are applying for a work permit.
5,000 Egyptian pounds is the maximum amount of local currency you are allowed to bring in or take out of Egypt. There is no limit to the amount of hard currency that you may bring in, but sums that exceed USD 10,000 should be declared on arrival. Certain valuables like electrical equipment, video cameras etc must be declared on arrival. Satellite phones and radio communications equipment brought into Egypt without prior clearance from the Ministry of Telecommunications are likely to be confiscated. Electrical items noted in passports on entry to Egypt must be produced on exit from the country. Failure to do so will result in payment of high rates of customs duty. Contact the Egyptian embassy in your country of residence for further information on customs requirements
Egypt's economy depends mainly on agriculture, media, petroleum imports, natural gas, and tourism; there are also more than three million Egyptians working abroad, mainly in Saudi Arabia, the Persian Gulf and Europe. The completion of the Aswan High Dam in 1970 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, limited arable land, and dependence on the Nile all continue to overtax resources and stress the economy.
The government has invested in communications and physical infrastructure. Egypt has received United States foreign aid since 1979 (an average of $2.2 billion per year) and is the third-largest recipient of such funds from the United States following the Iraq war. Egypt's economy mainly relies on these sources of income: tourism, remittances from Egyptians working abroad and revenues from the Suez Canal.
Egypt has a developed energy market based on coal, oil, natural gas, and hydro power. Substantial coal deposits in the northeast Sinai are mined at the rate of about 600,000 tonnes (590,000 long tons; 660,000 short tons) per year. Oil and gas are produced in the western desert regions, the Gulf of Suez, and the Nile Delta. Egypt has huge reserves of gas, estimated at 2,180 cubic kilometres (520 cu mi), and LNG up to 2012 exported to many countries. In 2013, the Egyptian General Petroleum Co (EGPC) said the country will cut exports of natural gas and tell major industries to slow output this summer to avoid an energy crisis and stave off political unrest, Reuters has reported. Egypt is counting on top liquid natural gas (LNG) exporter Qatar to obtain additional gas volumes in summer, while encouraging factories to plan their annual maintenance for those months of peak demand, said EGPC chairman, Tarek El Barkatawy. Egypt produces its own energy, but has been a net oil importer since 2008 and is rapidly becoming a net importer of natural gas
TOURISM IN EGYPT
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 tourism sector employs about 12% of Egypt's workforce Tourism Minister Hisham Zaazou told industry professionals and reporters that tourism generated some $9.4 billion in 2012, a slight increase over the $9 billion seen in 2011.
The Giza Necropolis is Egypt's most iconic site. It is also Egypt's most popular tourist destination since antiquity, and was popularised in Hellenistic times when the Great Pyramid was listed by Antipater of Sidon as one of the Seven Wonders of the World. Today it is the only one of those wonders still in existence.
Egypt has a wide range of beaches situated on the Mediterreanean and the Red Sea that extend to over 3,000 km. The Red Sea has serene waters, coloured coral reefs, rare fish and beautiful mountains. The Akba Gulf beaches also provide facilities for practising sea sports. Safaga tops the Red Sea zone with its beautiful location on the Suez Gulf. Last but not least, Sharm el-Sheikh (or City of Peace), Hurghada, Luxor (known as world's greatest open air museum/ or City of the 1/3 of world monuments), Dahab, Ras Sidr, Marsa Alam, Safaga and the northern coast of the Mediterranean are major tourist's destinations of the recreational tourism.
With a lot of touristic activities in Egypt it's considered a fun place for historical, religious, medical and entertainment tourism. To enter Egypt, it is necessary to have a valid passport and in most cases a visa. In addition to UK and EU nationals, citizens of the following countries can obtain visa upon arrival at any of the Egyptian ports of entry: Australia, Canada, Croatia, Georgia, Japan, New Zealand, Norway, Macedonia, Republic of Korea, Russian Federation, Serbia, Ukraine and USA. Nationals from UK, EU and USA traveling to Sharm El Sheikh, Dahab, Nuweiba and Taba resorts, for a maximum of 15 days, do not require a visa prior to traveling as a free entry permission stamp will be granted upon arrival.[