When experiencing the renowned cities and sites, waterways and archaeological wonders of Egypt, there are a variety of transportation options available. Here, we highlight how to get around Egypt on vacation.
Whether visiting the metropolis of Cairo, winding along the delta branches around Aswan, or setting a course to Abu Simbel, traveling in Egypt has an ambiance of its own, connecting you to ancient monuments or seaside getaways.
The following information will give you insight into Egypt transportation and help you decide the best modes of transportation for your trip.
Whether by luxury boat or sleek dhabiya, traveling between Aswan and Luxor on the River Nile is the most scenic and relaxing way to cover the long and historical distance between these pivotal destinations, which are among the best places to visit in Egypt.
A Nile cruise combines travel with intrigue, as passengers have the opportunity to discover temples and monuments along the river banks. Organized excursions give visitors a chance to step ashore for a while to discover treasures on land, before returning to their floating hotel for overnight.
Flying is the easiest and fastest way to travel long distances in Egypt. With many airports, five of them international, it’s easy to reach the far corners of the country quickly and conveniently.
Domestic services are generally conducted by Egypt Air and use Cairo as the center for transfers, with several departures per day connecting popular destinations. Leave Cairo in the morning and find yourself enjoying sun-filled Sharm el Sheikh a little while later, or standing in front of the Karnak temple at sunset, experiencing the top things to do in Egypt.
Egypt has the oldest rail system in Africa and the Middle East, and journeys may take some time as frequent stops are made between destinations. However, the experience is authentic and comfortable.
Taking the train in Egypt can provide a sense of nostalgia and romance, with long-distance journeys offering sleeping cars and air-conditioning. Step back in time as you travel through desert and towns, the clicks of the tracks beneath you.
Connecting from Cairo, travelers who choose rail travel venture to destinations such as Alexandria, Luxor, or Aswan, and embrace the means of getting there as part of their overall Egyptian experience.
Traveling with a private driver and guide is certainly the best way to experience any destination within Egypt, as the expertise and the comfort of being in secure hands is the perfect way to discover fascinating landscapes, historical monuments, and cultural landmarks.
The driver’s knowledge of local roads, driving culture, and ways to avoid traffic comes in handy and has visitors at key sites within minutes. Convenient drop-off points right in front of monuments and museums make this form of travel popular.
Air-conditioned and comfortable vehicles make it easy to sit back, relax, and enjoy the surrounding scenery, rather than worrying about departure times, reading road signs, or missing the appropriate turn on your luxury Egypt tour.
Drivers up for a challenge can rent a car from major car rental agencies in main cities such as Cairo or Luxor, with drivers traveling on the right side of the road.
Car rental gives you freedom of movement on your time, but requires extra attention to navigate vehicles traveling in seemingly made-up lanes.
You can make driving in Egypt part of your adventure, but it is not necessary within larger cities or when visiting popular destinations. Take a slow drive just outside city centers, perhaps to nearby sites such as Memphis or Saqqara.
Buses are popular and easy modes of transportation in Egypt, widely used to connect nearby places like Cairo and Giza, or distant cities like Cairo and Alexandria, perhaps reserved for more adventurous travelers.
The bus system is far more varied than the railway network, giving you better reach to places beyond the Nile valley, with frequent stops making the journey a little longer than you may think, but providing a truly local experience.
A bus does not give you the same freedom as a private driver or car, and they do not travel as fast as a train, but the mode of transport provides a different way to reach farther into a country filled with fascinating destinations.
Boats are a great alternative for exploring Egypt, whether a short transfer in Cairo on a felucca or a longer trip between key cities along the Nile.
Dhabiyas and cruise boats are popular methods of getting between Aswan and Luxor, and key destinations in between, among them Edfu and Kom Ombo. Traveling this way presents a sense of adventure or romance, whether during a family tour or honeymoon trip, as well as access to popular cultural or historic destinations countrywide.
The Nile is not only a water resource, but an ancient highway on which boats of all kinds can travel deeper into the country or up to the Mediterranean Sea.
Taxis are a popular way of getting around Egypt, offering the freedom to move at your pace, while giving you a more relaxed environment than a bus or metro.
It is usually better to ask for the meter rather than try to bargain for a price, especially because the driver has the best knowledge of areas covered. Language barriers may present a challenge, but taxi drivers are friendly and will easily navigate busy streets and suburbs.
The metro is also available in Cairo and buses offer plenty of local routes in larger cities. Search for routes and timetables ahead of time and be prepared to wait to embark on an epic adventure as you embrace this popular local means of transport.
Ridesharing apps are readily available in big cities like Cairo and Alexandria, but not very accessible outside major metropolitan areas. Using ridesharing apps can help navigate the typical traffic or provide alternative means to the radical transportation encounters quintessential to cities like Cairo.
There are many amazing experiences waiting to be discovered in Egypt and finding your way to and around them is simple, with a variety of travel styles to choose from. From private, guided experiences to more adventurous rail or boat options, the best way to get around on Egypt tours is up to you.
When you are ready to plan your Egyptian adventure, take a look at our Egypt travel guide for more information on when to visit, where to go, and more before speaking to an Egypt travel specialist to begin your journey.