When you think of Egypt, you probably picture… sand. Like, lots of it. And while there is indeed a lot of sand (we’re a desert nation, after all), what we locals know and are eager to share with visitors are all the different (and aesthetically pleasing) sides of Egypt there are.
Whether you favor sea views, cityscapes, river scenes or stark desert beauty, we’ve put together a list of the most stunning (and Instagram-able) views in the country.
1. Castle Zaman (Taba/Nuweiba)
Perched on a cliff midway between the Sinai towns of Taba and Nuweiba, overlooking the Gulf of Aqaba, is this restaurant and day-use spot.
Castle Zaman is famous for its slow-cooked “castle food” -- platters of meat, seafood and fresh vegetables cooked for hours with local spices, dates and figs. Guests can pass the time by swimming in their pool overlooking the sea or by exploring the castle.
Read more about Taba and Nuweiba here: Egypt's Red Sea Riviera: Where To Stay
2. Farsha Mountain Lounge (Sharm El Sheikh)
Farsha is a mountain lounge, restaurant and bar in the Red Sea town of Sharm el Sheikh, serving up both comfortable seating in a colorful Bedouin style and spectacular views.
The vibe is chill, different than Sharm’s usual party scene, and guests can kick back with a local beer and shisha while enjoying the warm sea breeze.
3. Marriott Mena House (Cairo)
With the best pyramids view of any hotel in Egypt, the Mena House started out as a royal lodge for the Khedive Ismail for when he or his guests wanted to rest after hunting in the desert or spending time at the pyramids. It was then sold to a British couple in 1869 and turned into a hotel in 1887. You can read more in our article 11 Historical Hotels in Egypt You Can Still Stay At Today.
Today you can enjoy your breakfast or take a swim in the pool with the Pyramids of Giza as a very, *very* distinct backdrop.
For a list of Cairo's best hotels that are deemed tried and true by locals, head here.
4. Agiba Beach (Marsa Matrouh)
While the whole of the North coast in Egypt offers awesome Mediterranean Sea views and white sand beaches, one of the most distinctly memorable spots is Agiba Beach near the coastal town of Marsa Matrouh.
Agiba translates to ‘a wonder’ in Arabic, and this little cove is accessible only through a sandy path down from the clifftop.
For more breathtaking beaches, read our article 9 World-Class Beaches in Egypt.
5. Hot Air Balloon (Luxor)
This one might be a little unexpected, but it’s absolutely legit -- the best way to see the ancient city of Thebes and its necropolis (now modern-day Luxor), is from above.
In the early morning hours, you can gently float over the ancient city and see where the Nile’s blues and greens fade into the desert, and the open-air temple complexes like Luxor Temple and Karnak.
6. Sofitel Gezirah (Cairo)
This hotel has the happy real estate of the tip of the island of Zamalek in Cairo, surrounded by the Nile.
The pool and a handful of their restaurants are all right on the water, framed by Cairo’s sprawling cityscape. It’s especially beautiful at night with all the lights reflecting on the water (also get ready for some pimped out passing feluccas and their upbeat Arabic music.
7. Mt. Sinai Summit (Sinai Peninsula)
If you’re into hiking, then the trek up to the summit of Mount Sinai (known as ‘Gebel Moussa’ in Arabic) is a must. Actually, even if you aren’t into hiking, you have the option of climbing the mountain old-school on the back of a camel.
Mount Sinai is considered holy by the Abrahamic religions, because it’s where it’s believed that Moses encountered the Burning Bush and received the Tablets of Law. Even for non-believers, Mount Sinai is known as being a spiritual and cleansing spot.
For more camping spots in Egypt, head here.
8. Old Cataract Hotel (Aswan)
Across from Elephantine Island on the Nile, this 19th century Victorian palace is now a hotel with some of the best views Aswan has to offer.
The juxtaposition between the Victorian architecture and the ancient river and sand dunes of Aswan is definitely worth a visit, and has been visited by notable names from Princess Diana to Winston Churchill.
Our full local's city guide to Aswan is here.
9. Dahab Promenade (Dahab)
The small Red Sea town of Dahab is known as divers’ paradise, pulling in people from all over the world who are interested in diving and snorkeling. The town has adopted a bohemian, laid-back vibe with a melting-pot of different nationalities and languages, who all share the joint interest of sea and sun.
Dahab’s promenade is comprised of a series of open-air, seaside restaurants, bars and cafes, all with stunning views of the Red Sea and Sinai mountains.
10. White Desert (Farafra)
Egypt’s Western desert at Farafra is a pristine, stark wilderness where you can camp, do Jeep safaris, sandboard, immerse yourself in natural hot springs and see the Milky Way and an infinite amount of stars at night.
The massive white chalk formations in the White Desert are some of the coolest natural wonders in Egypt (and very “gram-able”).
Here are some other of the best places to camp in Egypt.
11. Stanley Bridge (Alexandria)
This iconic bridge in the ancient seaside city of Alexandria overlooks the Mediterranean Sea on one side and a small beach on the other, and in front and back is Alexandria’s cityscape and Corniche.
While it’s not the most peaceful or quiet of spots -- cars will be zipping past -- we recommend taking a walk down the bridge either early Friday morning or late at night for some of the best views Alexandria has to offer.
12. Mahmya (Hurghada)
This Red Sea island is about an hour’s boat ride from the Hurghada port, and has one of the clearest water beaches in Egypt.
Boats are easily rented from the port, and on the island itself is a restaurant, private beach and bar -- a great day trip if you’re in Hurghada.
For more tropical islands in Egypt, head here.
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