Egypt: Cairo and Dahab

21st November 2016

I flew into Egypt from Turkey, saw the pyramids of Giza and then had some time to see more of Egypt before heading somewhere else.  The original plan was to head south through Egypt. I loved Cairo so much and ended up spending a week there and instead heading east towards Jordan.

Hectic Cairo traffic, Egypt
Hectic Cairo traffic, Egypt

Cairo

Cairo is one of the most hectic cities I have been to. It’s almost like the Arabic equivalent of Bangkok. Just walking around the city for hours is good fun. I was staying at The Australian Hostel hostel and it’s super cheap; a private room cost about $10 USD. About 10 minutes walk away was the Egyptian museum.

The Egyptian Museum - Cairo
The Egyptian Museum – Cairo

The Egyptian museum was awesome. I managed to blag my camera in without paying to 50 Egyptian pounds extra. Straight away I realized is that I know almost nothing about ancient Egyptian history.

It’s cool to walk about, through the rooms with hundreds of old items. In one room that says no cameras you can see most of Tutankhamun’s artifacts. I stood there staring at the famous solid gold mask in the eye and it felt strange. I tried to take a sly picture but security noticed so I had to go back in 5 minutes later and take one on my phone.

Khan el-Khalili Bazar in Cairo
Khan el-Khalili Bazar in Cairo

Khan el-Khalili Bazar

One evening I headed out to the Khan el-Khalili night bazar and it was so hectic. From the hostel in a taxi it was £0.50 in a taxi and the whole journey there you could see a market along the main road.

Khan el-Khalili was a bit of a tourist trap just put on to sell shit to foreigners at an inflated price. What I decided to do was walk back to the hotel and see some of the more local markets. There was some sort of street market the whole walk back to to the city. People were selling any old thing along the main road. I bought the exact same thing everyone buys at markets; absolutely nothing.

Khan el-Khalili Bazar - Cairo, Egypt
Khan el-Khalili Bazar – Cairo, Egypt

Dahab

Dahab is a seaside resort. I’m a city person, but I was hopeful that it will be a nice change. The past two months I have been on the move a lot so it  makes for a nice time to chill out.

A bus from Cairo to Dahab cost 120 Egyptian points (about £6). It’s an overnight bus leaving Cairo at 11:45 and arriving into Dahab early morning. The bus turned out to be a modern and comfortable bus; I had two seats to myself to spread out and sleep for the night. Sunrise woke me up and we were heading through the Sinai region of Egypt, close to Dahab. One side was desert and the other the red sea.

Walking the streets late at night - Cairo, Egypt
Walking the streets late at night – Cairo, Egypt

Dahab was quiet, like really quiet; it’s between seasons but I expected to see more people. Walking along the seafront is nice but you go 100m in a different direction and you see people living in poverty, living crumbling buildings. People only ever see the resort when they go on holiday, they never see the poverty. Resorts give you a warped perception of a country.

There’s not much to say about Dahab. It was a chilled out week, I met some cool people and got some things done on the laptop. Israel and Jordan are north east from Dahab so I guess thats the next stop.

Cairo streets
Cairo streets
Cycle cargo - Cairo, Egypt
Cycle cargo – Cairo, Egypt
Mystery meat at the Khan el-Khalili Bazar - Cairo, Egypt
Mystery meat at the Khan el-Khalili Bazar – Cairo, Egypt
%d bloggers like this: