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The Perfect Itinerary For Your First Visit To Egypt!

Updated: Jun 5, 2022

If you are visiting Egypt for the first time, it can be overwhelming to start planning, especially as a lot of major sites are spread out all over the country. After living in Egypt and becoming a guide here I can highly recommend this itinerary to give you the best flow to your trip and see all the major sites and experiences Egypt has to offer!

Day 1 Giza Pyramids

Day 2 Sakkara

Day 3 Egyptian and Civilization Museum

Day 4 Drive to Siwa

Day 5 Siwa Day: Mountain of the Dead, Salt Lakes, Cleopatra’s Bath, Desert Adventure with dinner under the stars

Day 6 Return from Siwa

Day 7 Morning flight to Aswan, Visit Philae Temple, Nubian Village, and Unfinished Obelisk, board Nile Cruise

Day 8 Early morning visit to Abu Simbel, Nile cruise departs with evening tour of Kom Ombo Temple

Day 9 Visit Edfu Temple, sail all day and in the afternoon arrive in Luxor- visiting Luxor and Karnak Temples

Day 10 Morning Hot Air Balloon Ride, afterwards see Hatshepsut Temple, Valley of the Kings, disembark Nile cruise, evening flight back to Cairo

Day 11 Final Day- Visit Coptic Cairo, Citadel of Saladin, Alabaster Mosque, and end in Khan el Khalili

In my opinion this is the PERFECT way to experience Egypt for the first time! With this line up, you are beginning with the oldest sites in the country (Sakkara and Giza Pyramids) and making your way along history to the most recent with Coptic Cairo, all the while so many beautiful Egyptian experiences sprinkled in along the way.

Most Egyptian itineraries do not include the Siwa Oasis, but this special village is a must see for the person who wants to see another side to Egypt. Because it’s a 9 hour drive from Cairo, it’s kept most of it’s old Egyptian charm, and is such a great experience to see the Bedouin culture and the awesome sites of the oasis (Salt Lakes, sand dunes, Cleopatra’s bath).

*Note on Safety: Often the Siwa Oasis is on the USA's Travel Advisory list and makes travelers hesitant to visit. In the years I've been here I have not heard of a single issue for tourists and I would not recommend something that would be a liability to my company or put my client's in danger. That being said if you do plan on visiting, I highly recommend you go with a tour guide (like ourselves) or an organized group. Be aware if you are American visiting, as you pass through checkpoints you may have Police Escorts for your safety. But again, from my personal experience never had a reason to feel concerned.

Now as you head south and into Upper Egypt, I always suggest taking a Nile cruise!

1. Cause it’s EPIC (You’ll feel like Cleopatra sailing in style along the Nile) and 2. Because in all honesty it's the best way to experience the temples of Egypt. The tricky part with planning your trip to Egypt will be aligning your dates with the sailing dates of the Nile cruises as they sail on specific days of the week. Fridays from Aswan and Mondays from Luxor. You’ll have to plan your dates around their schedule. I recommend starting in Aswan and making your way up the Nile to Luxor because you work your way up from the smaller temples of Philae and Abu Simbel to the grandeur of Valley of the Kings and Karnak Temple.

You absolutely can shorten this itinerary by eliminating the trip to Siwa, which would make this trip only 8 days. Or you can also extend the trip as the Nile cruise schedule can be longer.

Something to keep in mind: JET LAG. It can be a b*****.

Highly recommend your first day in Cairo being a shorter day or make it a rest day to adjust to the time zone. I typically suggest to our clients for our tours to take the first day off, or starting with the Pyramids cause it’s often a shorter tour and then you’ll feel so fulfilled already having knocked it off your bucket list!

Weather: Choosing a time of year to visit is also important because the weather will play a role in your experience. Egypt is sunny year round with it averaging around 14 days of rain a year (you’re lucky if you get a rainy day in Egypt) so typically you can count on beautiful sunny days during your visit.

June through early September it will be HOT in Egypt. The average temperature during these months is 95-100F. Not to mention the humidity goes into high gear during the summer. If you are used to warm temperatures then it is do-able but if you are not used to the heat I would recommend visiting in Spring or Fall.

The best times to visit Egypt are April-May and October-December. The weather is warm, but the humidity is at bay. Average temps are 70-90s which makes visiting this desert country much more enjoyable.

Late December through February the temperature drops and it actually gets cold in Egypt, in the evenings it gets into the 40s. So be prepared by packing layers for your days.

Hope this helps with all your Egypt planning and wish you a magical adventure!

If you would like to do this itinerary with us, we can arrange everything so you can experience this all for yourself (without the hassle of figuring out all the details (airport pickups/transportation/domestic flights/Nile cruise schedule) or choosing the tours that will give you these same experiences.) Please contact our “Tours” page and write in the comment box “Gimme The Perfect Itinerary!”


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