Elephantine Island on the Nile - Egypt today/Hend Safwat Elephantine Island on the Nile - Egypt today/Hend Safwat

ET presents Egypt's most attractive winter destinations

Wed, Nov. 28, 2018
CAIRO – 28 November 2018: When winter season is upon us, we usually find ourselves searching for winter destinations and wonderlands.

Egypt is one of the most popular and oldest tourist destinations throughout the world, especially in winter, as it is the time when some Egyptian cities truly shine.

Here are the Egyptian cities which look more stunning in winter.

1- Luxor

Luxor and Aswan cities are located in southern Egypt. They have nearly half of the world’s monuments and they are the best place to spend your vacation, especially in the winter because of their warm weather throughout the year; the sun rises up to 11 hours a day during summer, and rises for more than 8 hours a day in winter.

Both of these cities are characterized by their historical sites which attract tourists from all over the world. Luxor is well-known as the world’s greatest open air museum because of its unique archaeological treasures. It also is the second most visited place in Egypt after Cairo.

The most important sites in Luxor are:

a- Temple of Karnak: It was the largest and most significant religious complex in ancient Egypt and it honored not only Amun but other gods such as Osiris, Montu, Isis, and Ptah as well as some Egyptian rulers.

The temple is famous for the Sound and Light Show held every night which is considered one of the most wonderful and exciting ways to discover this temple.

b- Valley of the Kings and the Queens: This valley is an amazing place and a royal burial ground; around 62 Pharaohs were buried in it.

c- Temple of Deir Al-Bahari: In the 15th century BC, the Temple of Deir Al-Bahari was built on the west bank of the Nile so as to commemorate the achievements of Queen Hatshepsut.

Deir Al-Bahari means Northern Monastery and it comprises one of the most wonderful mortuary temples in Egypt.

2- Aswan

Aswan was known as Syene during ancient Egypt which means market because it was located on the main trade route between Egypt and the southern lands. After the construction of the High Dam, Nubians fled to Aswan after water flooded their homeland. Therefore, this city is rich with Nubian culture.

The most important sites in Aswan are:

a- Kom Ombo Temple: Kom Ombo means the Hill of the Gold. Kom Ombo temple is an unusual double temple, as it merges between the temple of Sobek-the crocodile god- and the temple of Haroeris –the falcon god. It was established during the Greco- Roman era.

b- The Nubian Village: The village is divided into three main regions: Upper, Middle and Lower Nubia. The Nubian village is located on Elephantine Island on the Nile River, near Aswan. One of the most common traditions of the Nubian village's residents is raising crocodiles in their homes as pets.

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Temple of Deir Al-Bahari, Luxor governorate, Egypt –Ccvia Wikimedia commons

c- Abu Simbel Temple: It consists of two enormous temples located on Egypt’s borders with Sudan. This temple was established by Ramses II in the 13 century BC to commemorate Ramses II’s victory at the battle of Kadesh. In 1968, this temple was entirely relocated after building the Aswan High Dam reservoir and lake Nasser.

3- Sharm El-Sheikh

It is a resort town in the southern coast of Sinai Peninsula. Sharm El-Sheikh is one of the world’s extraordinary diving destinations. It is rather hot in the summer and warm in the winter, which leads it to be one of the most attractive cities in Egypt, especially in winter.

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A resort in Sharm El-Sheikh, April 22, 2016- CC via Wikimedia commons

Many tourists visit this city to enjoy its magnificent mountains, exotic coral reefs, picturesque clear blue water, luxurious resorts and gorgeous beaches.

In 2000, the United Nations Educational, Science and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) recognized Sharm El-sheikh as the finest city in the world for peace and beauty.

Additionally, Sharm El-Sheikh is known as “City of Peace”, as this city witnessed many international peace conferences and forums, after witnessing the signing of the Camp David peace treaty between Egypt and Israel.

The most important sites in Sharm El-Sheikh are:

a- The Heavenly Cathedral: Located at Hay El-Noor district in Sharm El-sheikh, it is the biggest Coptic Church and was regarded as one of the world’s 10 most beautiful churches in 2010.

This church’s features explain religious murals of Biblical stories such as the Creation and the Exodus.

b- Ras Mohamed National Park: It is one of the most interesting and famous national parks in Egypt and it is located on the southernmost tip of Sinai. Ras Mohamed has several amazing areas for drivers, as the park is surrounded by unique coral reefs.

c- Naama Bay: It is the most famous shopping spot in Sharm El-sheikh. Naama Bay provides various kinds of merchant displays, where tourists find clothes, souvenirs, jewelry stores, gift shops, restaurants, nightclubs and hotels.

4- Dahab

Dahab means gold in Arabic. The city derived its name from its yellow shiny sand. It is the second most treasured diving destination in south Sinai after Sharm El-Sheikh.
The most important sites in Dahab are:

a- The Blue Hole: Professional drivers come from all over the world to explore the uniqueness of the Blue Hole. The Blue Hole is one of best snorkeling spots in Egypt and one of the top 5 blue holes in the world, as it contains wonderful fishes, friendly dolphins, unique coral reefs and various caves.

Dahab_Beach
A beach in Dahab, Egypt, December2003- CC via Wikimedia commons

b- The lighthouse: It is famous for teaching all levels of divers from beginners to professional.

c- Ras Abu Galum: Located north of Dahab, Ras Abu Galum is a wonderful place for snorkeling and diving. Ras Abu Galum's Bedouins are very friendly with tourists and visitors.
 
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