Best way to travel within egypt
I am hoping to travel Egypt independently in the near future, but am concerned because it is so set up for tour groups will I have trouble organising transport by myself? How easy is it to organise transport and what is the best way to get from place to place?
Generally it is very easy to travel throughout Egypt. It depends where you want to go on which transport you choose however.
Within Cairo and other towns/cities, taxis are very easy to hail and generally very cheap. Just don’t let them try and rip you off!
From Cairo, Egypt is served by a fair network of flights, Egyptair is quite common, and is a cheap and quick way to traverse long distances. Depending on the season though tickets may not be easy to get at the last minute and you will miss out on a lot of overland travel options, so flying isn’t my preferred choice.
There is also an extensive short and long distance bus network that services most of Egypt and Sinai. 1st class is usually the best and most comfortable option, but they will still be long, crowded journeys with frequent stops and military checks (keep your ticket and passport on you at all times for these random checkpoints). If you choose to travel by bus though it is extremely easy to buy your ticket on the day at the station ticket booth or on the coach itself.
With the ubiquitous and famous Nile cutting a swathe through Egypt, boat is another obvious way to get around and having a cruise down the Nile is a fantastically slow, timeless experience. You can of course choose one of the many modern cruise ships which head up and down the Nile, but in my opinion it is much better to take shorter journeys on a Fellucca, a traditional sail boat. You can simply walk up and negotiate a trip and price with the captain there and then and sleep on deck under the stars. The price will depend on the length of the trip and your haggling skills.
Train is another option, and a really good one too. Tickets are easy to get and you can just turn up on the day to get your ticket. Take your passport with you as you will need to present it when you buy your ticket, but other than that it is straightforward. Routes lead to most places within Egypt and trains are frequent and quick. The Abella night train from Cairo to Luxor is an absolute experience in and of itself too!