During our childhood, we all have come to know about Egypt for different places, be it our school or the movies of Mummy. However, we all had a thought that it is unsafe to go on Egypt tours just because of a couple of incidents that took place over there. But what lies in the reality of the Egyptian Empire are the divine beaches, a pristine culture, fascinating marine life and more than a hundred of pyramids!
Located in the Northeastern corner of Africa and Southwestern corner of Asia, Egypt is a Mediterranean country sharing borders with Sudan in the south, Libya in the west and Israel to the northeast. With more than 95% dwellers, Egypt is the third most populous country in Africa and 15th in the world. The capital of Egypt is Cairo which is one of the largest city in Africa as well as Middle East. Moreover, the Ancient Egypt has one of the oldest and most interesting civilizations in the history dating back to 3100 B.C. with Narmer as its first king. The Nile River plays a significant role in the urban settlement as it is the main aquatic source to more than 90 million people. With a length of around 6,695 Kilometers, it is providing support to not only Egypt but three more countries. Travelling through sandstones and cliffs, the Nile enters Egypt from the north of Sudan. Since the river has a northwards direction of flow, it has thus given the south side of Egypt the name Upper Egypt;. Within the area of the Nile River are the most ardent natural wonders such as temple of Abydos, temple of Esna, temple of Karnak, temple of Kom Ombo, temple of Dendara, temple of Philae, and temple of Edfu Being a land of cultural gems, Egypt offers an array of natural wonders. To start off, lets mention the obvious ones first The Pyramids! Egypt possesses one of the Seven Wonders of the Ancient World The Great Pyramids of Giza. Moreover, you can shop from the largest bazaars in the Middle East, Khan-el-Khalili, located in Cairo. You will be further amazed to know that the concept of 365 days calendar was invented by Egypt which is followed by most of the countries. During your youth travel to Egypt, you will also come across some of the prominent mosques and temples where you can take a break from the daily chaos of life and open your mind or try some meditation retreats too. Some of them include Al-Azhar Mosque, Al-Hakim Mosque, Mohamed Ali Mosque and temples like Luxor temple, temple of Kalabsha, etc. Egypt also serves as an impressive place for adventurers by offering quad bike tours in deserts, camel rides, canyon climbing and many more!
Culture In Egypt
While visiting a new country, one must familiarize himself with the language, customs and etiquettes of the respective country. Therefore, one must know certain facts about Egypt before beginning his Egypt trips. Islam is the predominant religion of Egypt with around 90% of people practicing Islam. Moreover, Egypt has in possession a sizeable Christian population too. The Arabic language is the national language and is widely spoken and written across the nation. Further, the Prophet Muhammed is considered to be the Gods last Envoy to bring revelation to mankind. He is believed to have brought a message not only to its own people but to the mankind at large. The Quran is known to be their holy book just like the Torah and the Bible. There are a lot of traditions carried out by people of Egypt. Among these, Food gatherings are one of the significant traditions of Egypt where families, friends and relatives enjoy the feast together while sitting around a roundtable. You can also enjoy in the Nile cruise ships where you get to taste the tantalizing cuisines against the background of sparkling city lights and a gentle wind. There are also many dance forms which add to the captivating beauty of the Egyptian culture. One of the popular dance forms is Belly dance which can be seen in every aspect of Egyptian life, be it a cabaret or a wedding ceremony. When someone imagines Egypt, then all he can think of are the pyramids. But Egypt tours have so much more to offer. Cairo (The Capital City of Egypt) and many other Egyptian cities boast of numerous skyscrapers, highways, restaurants, western clothing and many incredible museums too! All these factors sum up to become the Modern Egypt. The Egyptian people too are known for their great sense of humour and welcoming nature. The reasons behind Egypt being a culturally diversified are the various foreign influences on the civilizations of the nation. The cultural diversity is further reflected in the foreign language such as Spanish, English, German, French, etc. being widely spoken in different areas of Egypt
Learn The Egyptian Way Of Life With A Local
Through Moksh Youth Travel to Egypt, you get to stay with a local host family of Egypt where you can experience the life of an Egyptian. Homestay in the Bedouin Villages is also popular as you get to experience a nomadic way of life there which is very interesting because you get a glimpse of some unique aspects of the Egyptian culture. The minorities in Egypt, consisting of Bedouins, Turks, Greek people, etc. hold around 5% population of Egypt. Nevertheless, among the rest of the population, the majority is Muslims and only 17% are Arabs as being proven by DNA analysis. Through these facts, it gets clear that Egypt constitutes a world in itself. However, Egyptians never identify themselves as Arabs. Even after being conquered by numerous countries, the identity of the Egyptians remained pristine and rooted deeply to the fundamentals of people. The lifestyle in Egypt is the same as it is in any other part of the world. The primary place for settlement is apartment buildings as only the rich can afford to live in independent bungalows. Unlike other nations, the Egyptian government observes Friday as a holiday rather than Sunday. This is because majority of the Egyptian population are Muslims who hold Jumuah prayer on Friday.
What Is A Cultural Tour?
More than sightseeing, it is an exploratory trip to Egypt, where you immerse into a new culture and explore a city, unlike tourists in Egypt but like a local! When you are a tourist of Egypt, eat the Shawarma, become a part of the Egyptian festivals and live the language like its your own! Through a cultural tour, you get a front line view of the native history, art, architecture, religion etc. Typically, a cultural tour may be urban or rural or both. The purpose of such Egypt tours would be to have a Global exposure all by yourself or with a group of close friends & learn the minute details of the Egyptian way of Life along with the top tourist destinations in Egypt!
Anybody, who is 16 years old and above, is welcome, without any exceptions!
Language lessons are organized during the Egypt tour in order to enable the students interact with the locals themselves and obtain a better image of the Egyptian culture. These lessons act as a boon to their overall personality as they get to explore something on their own while being out of their comfort zone.
Other than incredible sightseeing destinations, Egypt offers some of the best places to accommodate too! The hotels and resorts of Egypt are so magnificent that they may seem to you as small palaces. You can choose your stay from a modern luxury resort to a well-furnished lodge that has affordable rates as well. People often prefer to stay in cities like Cairo, Alexandria and Luxor during their visit as they provide several options for accommodation, be it budgetary or luxurious. You can avail a good discount too if you book your hotel room in advance. Moreover, you will find many hotels in Egypt that take payments in US Dollars or Euro too. The rates of accommodation also depend upon the season in which you are visiting the country. For instance, the prices of the hotel rooms go up during festivals such as New Year, Eid-Al-Fitr and Eid-Al-Adha. Here are a few other types of accommodation facilities in Egypt listed below:
- Apartments: For those who are looking for independence in Egypt, apartment serves as a good option. The apartments are furnished with washroom and kitchen so that you can get the opportunity to prepare your own food. Moreover, the location of the apartments is such that various amenities like cafes, laundry, malls are close to them.
- Host families in Egypt: If youve a keen interest to experience the Egyptian lifestyle and learn the language, then you should go for homestays where you can keep in touch with the local people and get familiarize with the expressions and slangs as well.
- Students Residence: Through students residence, you get to interact with students from other countries. In a students residence, students of all age group and from different countries share a house and live together. This can be an eye opening experience, as you get to learn not only about Egyptian culture but culture of other countries too!
Egypts historical culture has combined different cultures from around the world to make a blend of its own tantalizing culinary heritage. Moreover, these cuisines are so delicious that you dont want to miss out on them while your trip to Egypt. During the stay, one must taste the following cuisines-
- Molokheya- It is a soup made of green leaves and coriander cut into small pieces mixed with chicken, meat, seafood or beef. It is generally eaten with rice or bread.
- Koshary- being one of the most traditional foods in Egypt, it can be easily found in any part of the nation, starting from street food to high rated estaurants. It is a blend of rice, macaroni and chicken with a topping of vinegar, garlic sauce and chilli sauce.
- Ful Medammes- It is the most common tradition cuisine that you will mainly found in breakfast. It is generally beans cooked in oil and salt.
- Falafel (or Tameya) - This is another Egyptian breakfast that includes eggs, cheese and bread providing a unique flavour.
- Hawawshi: It is generally Pita, or flat bread, stuffed with meat or beef and spiced with chillies, pepper, onion, etc. After the stuffing is done, it is baked in a regular oven. People often address this dish as Egyptian meat pie.
- Shawarma: Though not originally belonging to the nation, Shawarma is yet one of the most popular cuisines in Egypt. It is originally made of lamb or mutton cut into thin slices and wrapped in thin bread.
- Sayadiyah: It is seafood which mainly uses like bluefish, bass or whitefish. After marinating the fish with ingredients like lemon juice and other spices, it is baked with rice and veggies. Sometimes, meat and chicken may be added to give it some extra delight.
- Konafah: Speaking of Egyptian Cuisines, Konafah holds a special place in the hearts of the people of Egypt. It is a very thin pastry with stuffing of seviyan.
- Umm ali: Umm Ali is another Egyptian cuisine, the history of which dates back to 13th century. It is believed that the wife of sultan Ezz El Din Aybak prepared this dessert for the purpose of celebrating the victory. It is a bread pudding prepared with milk, sugar, dry fruits and coconut.
- There are many other cuisines such as Mahshi which is a vegetarian dish, or Fattah which is regarded as a main dish of the Islamic festival, Eid-al-adha.
Moksh Overseas is one of the Top Foreign Education Advisor in India, known ubiquitously for its honest, transparent modus operandi. Moksh is equally popular for the innovative and unique approach to any endeavor it takes up. Owing to the rich experience of almost a decade in the field of Foreign Education, Moksh is well versed in the art of blending Education and Travel and thereby, provide the youth in India, a memorable and productive Global Exposure.