Originally Posted by Stoo
Cairo Taxi & Fedora Story:
Awesome story! While one branch of Egyptian culture takes very much after the Ferengi (if you catch the Star Trek reference), the vast majority of Egyptians are caring and helpful people. Tourists often give Egyptians a bad rap, because the only Egyptians they've run into are the pesky peddlers outside the pyramids.
Originally Posted by Stoo
I'm itching to go back. My girlfriend & I are considering another trip but she wants no 'Indiana Jonesing' and wishes to spend the whole time at Sharm el-Sheikh for the beautiful beaches we keep hearing about. This would be fun for the snorkelling (& scuba, which I've never done) but I'd much rather go down the Nile to see the Abu Simbel temples and, of course, Luxor.
Have you ever been to any of these places, Goodeknight?
Never been to Sharm el-Sheikh, but I know a lot of people who have been, and there's definitely a consensus that it's gorgeous. I did go snorkeling at Dahab and that was great. I've since gotten my scuba license and was able to dive at a premiere spot in South Africa. Loved it. If you manage to get your license before you go, you'd have a chance to dive at one of the world's top dive destinations (at Sharm). But great snorkeling would be an easy alternative.
I have been to Abu Simbel, and it was fantastic. (Incidentally, those places would be "up" the Nile from Cairo.) Abu Simbel's a bit remote, so it was a long haul by bus to get out there. But though it was just about the only thing to see in that neck of the woods it was well worth the day trip. Having nothing around actually adds to the mystique a bit. I'm assuming you know the history of cutting it into bits to move it out of the man made flood zone. One of my professors at AUC was part of one of the teams trying to document all the little monuments before they got covered by Lake Nasser.
Finally, saving the best for last, Luxor is one of my favorite spots on the planet. You really get the feel for classical Egypt there. Pace of life is much slower, in contrast to the hustle and bustle of Cairo. People are friendlier. And across the Nile it's like you stepped back in time a thousand years. Mud brick houses, green fields, donkeys, and date palms. The temples and other monumental structures are absolutely amazing. The fact that many are surrounded by that lush countryside with the slow pace of life just makes it all the better. Add the Valley of the Kings, and I'm about ready to bolt for the door and head to the airport myself!
Here's something to consider -- on one of my trips there, I rented a motorcycle at one of the hotels, took it across the Nile on the ferry, and went tooling around the countryside between Valleys of the Kings and Queens, Tombs of the Nobles, Hatshepsut's temple, Ramasseum, etc. Think you'd really enjoy that.
Another trip, when my wife and I were just dating, we hired a "guide" and some donkeys, and he took us up over and around the hills and paths to the same spots. Another memorable experience.