Saturday, August 17, 2013

Are you going to Egypt?

Everyday, day or night, you switch on to CNN, BBC, Al Jazeera or Skynews and you'd be hit with news about the violence in Egypt. It used to be news about Syria. Both situations are just as bad, worrisome and saddening, like why are we killing each other?

Egypt, like China, has a rich history and civilization that date back centuries so it should be a very interesting place to visit from what we know. If you are thinking about going to Egypt, you may want to hold on to that plan for now.

With the escalating unrest, many countries are issuing travel warnings about going to Egypt including the seaside resorts along the Red Sea though one owner of a diving centre in Hurghada said:

"Most of the events are 600 kilometres away in Cairo and in Alexandria, but people just don't realise that," he told Reuters by telephone.

"Downtown Hurghada is absolutely quiet. All I saw today were some people and police sitting together protecting the church."

He said the media coverage of the deadly violence was partly to blame.

Let's see which countries are issuing travel advisories to their citizenry..

German tour operators Thomas Cook Germany and TUI Germany, part of Europe's largest tour operator TUI Travel, cancelled all trips to Egypt after the German foreign ministry advised against travelling to the beach resorts popular with European sun-seekers and divers.

Similar advice from Sweden's foreign ministry led Swedish tour operators to stop all trips to the resorts of Sharm el-Sheikh, 400 kms from Cairo on the Sinai Peninsula, and Hurghada on the Egyptian mainland.

Belgium followed suit, extending a travel warning to tourist resorts on Friday that led to travel agencies Neckermann and Jetair cancelling all trips to Egypt until August 31.

The United States on Thursday warned Americans against travelling to Egypt and urged U.S. citizens living in Egypt to leave the country.

Egypt attracted 14.7 million visitors in 2010 including 2.8 million Russians, 1.5 million Britons and 1.3 million Germans, according to OECD figures.

Three years ago the $13 billion (8 billion pounds) industry accounted for 11 percent of GDP, according to the World Tourism Organization.

Russia, the biggest source of tourists to Egypt, said its citizens should not travel to the country and its tourism agency advised against tour operators promoting Egyptian holidays.

Britain's foreign office has advised against travelling to Egypt except to Red Sea resorts, although a spokesman said this guidance was under constant review.

He said some tourists in resorts at Hurghada had been advised not to leave their hotel grounds after one man was killed in clashes there on Wednesday.

Millions of foreigners visit Egypt each year to laze on its beaches, tour ancient ruins and cruise along the Nile.

Travel advice issued by governments affects tourism as travel health and cancellation insurance will often not apply to locations deemed unsuitable for travel.
Source: The Star..Travel firms cancel holidays as violence grips Egypt

The two images above capture the views from the top of one of the Seven Wonders of the Ancient World. They are two of a number of illicit photos taken by tourists in March of this year who secretly climbed the wonder of the world at night.

A group of Russian tourists waited until official visiting hours were over at Egypt's famous Giza Necropolis, before scaling the enormous Great Pyramid as the sun began to set.

The Russians managed to escape the attention of security guards at the ancient site, allowing photographer Vitaliy Raskalov to snap pictures of the surrounding desert and the majestic Sphinx from the top of the 455ft structure.

Here's another view from the top of the Great Pyramid..

For more information and photographs, visit The view from the TOP of the Great Pyramid: Illicit photos taken by tourists who secretly climbed wonder of the world at night

Better yet, view a video by CNN from which the above photos have been taken, I think.

The Russian photographer has apologized for ignoring regulations prohibiting the public from climbing on the Pyramids at Giza, Egypt.

"No words can express the fascination I felt when seeing my childhood dream come alive. Probably this very feeling made us climb onto the top of the Pyramid and see the the panorama of the whole complex, the desert and Cairo itself.

"It took us around 20 minutes to get to the top. We were taken breathless by the view.

"What we saw from up there was the seventh wonder of the world. We tried to capture the beauty of the scenery in the photos, so that the others could also see this magnificent panorama."

He said they were not the first to scale the pyramids.

"The pyramid's peak was filled with different inscriptions in many languages, some of them being hundreds years old." More on CNN..Russian photographer apologizes for pyramid photos


  1. I worked in Cairo in 1998. That was just after the Luxor Massacre.

    It was a tough year for me - Egypt has never been kind to independent career women - but the city fascinated me. The current events are awful, and I worry about friends who haven't responded to my emails.

    I don't have much hope that things will improve.

  2. How come Bananaz missed this..? Was in Egypt in 2005 under company's incentive trip and that was my best trip ever in all our yearly trips. My wish came true for me to be able to 'crawl' inside one of the pyramid but unfortunate not able to meditate there as it was packed with tourists inside.