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Last updated : Nov 2009
Egypt Getting Around - Internal Travel
Egypt Internal Travel - Getting Around Egypt - TravelPuppy.com
Air

Egypt Air operates daily flights between:

• Cairo
• Alexandria
• Luxor
• Aswan
• Abu Simbel
• Hurghada

For information on schedules, contact local offices or see Egypt Air.

Air Sinai operates services from Cairo to:

• Eilat
• El Arish
• Hurghada
• Luxor
• Ras El Nakab
• St Catherine
• Sharm el-Sheikh
• Taba

Sea/River

There are slow and fast ferry services linking Hurghada with Sharm el-Sheikh in Sinai.

Slow ferries operate daily on Monday, Wednesday, Friday with a journey time of 5 to 6 hours.

Fast ferries operate daily on Monday, Tuesday and Saturday with a journey time of 1 hour 30 minutes.

The traditional River Nile sailing boats, feluccas, can be hired by the hour for relaxed sailing on the Nile. Regular Nile cruises operate between Luxor and Aswan, and sometimes between Cairo and Aswan, usually for the following periods: 4 nights, 5 days (the standard tour), 6 nights, 7 days (extended tour), and 14 nights, 15 days (full Nile cruise). There are over 160 individually owned boats of all categories operating on the River Nile.

Rail

A comprehensive rail network run by Egyptian State Railways (telephone number: (02) 574 9474 or 575 3555) offering a high standard of service is operated along an east to west axis from Sallom on the Libyan border to Alexandria and Cairo, and along the Nile to Luxor and Aswan. There are also rail links to Suez and Port Said. Regular trains from Cairo to Alexandria operate, and also many luxury air-conditioned day and night trains with sleeping and restaurant cars from Cairo to Luxor and Aswan for the Nile Valley tourist trade.

Bookings for the overnight train should be made 1 week in advance through a travel agent or through:

Abela Egypt,
Ramses Station,
Ramses Square,
Cairo

Telephone number: (2) 574 9274 or 574 9474
Fax number: (2) 574 9074
e-mail: info@sleepingtrains.com
website: www.sleepingtrains.com

On Egyptian state railways, children under 4 years travel free. Children aged 4 to 9 years pay half fare. Holders of Youth Hostel cards can also get reductions. For further details of other possible reductions, contact the Tourist Office.

Road

Traffic drives on the right. Besides the Nile Valley and Delta, which have a broad road network, there are paved roads along the Mediterranean and African Red Sea coasts. The road looping through to the Western Desert oases from Asyut to Giza is now paved.

The speed limit is usually 90 kilometres per hour (56 miles per hour) on motorways and 100 kilometres per hour (62 miles per hour) on the desert motorway from Cairo to Alexandria with substantial fines for speeding.

Private motoring in the desert regions is not advised without suitable vehicles and a good guide. For further details, contact the Egyptian Automobile Club based in Cairo.

Bus

The national bus system serves the Nile Valley and also the coastal road.

Main routes are from Cairo to:

• St Catherine
• Sharm el-Sheikh
• Dahab
• Ras Sudr
• El-Tour
• Taba
• Rafah

• from Suez to El-Tour and Sharm el-Sheikh
• from Sharm el-Sheikh to Taba, Neweiba, El-Tour, Dahab and St Catherine.

Coach services operate between from Cairo to:

• Agami,
• Marakia-Mrabila
• Marina-Aidda Sidy Abd El Rahman
• Matrouh
• Ma’amoura Beach and
• Hurghada

Taxi

These are available in the larger cities and are metered. Long-distance group taxis for all destinations are quite cheap. Fares should be agreed in advance of trip.

Car hire

This is available through Budget, Europcar, Hertz, Avis, Thrifty and local companies. The driver must be at least 25 years of age.

Documentation

An International Driving Permit and visitor’s own insurance are required to drive any motor vehicle. Carnet de Passage or a suitable deposit is essential for the temporary import of visitor’s own vehicle. All vehicles (including motorcycles) are required to carry a fire extinguisher and a red hazard triangle by law.

Urban Transport

The government-owned Cairo Transport Authority operates buses and tram services in Cairo and also the cross-Nile ferries. There is a central area flat fare price. In addition, there are other buses and fixed-route shared taxi and minibus services run by the private operators. Vehicles generally wait at city terminals to obtain a full load, but there are many frequent departures. Fares are 3 to 4 times higher than on the buses.

Cairo’s suburban railways have been upgraded and provide a rapid transit network, including Africa’s first underground railway. Alexandria also has buses and tramways, with first and second class accommodation and distance-regulated fares.

The following chart gives approximate travel times (in hours and minutes) from Cairo to other major cities/towns in Egypt.
  Air Road Sea
Alexandria
0.30 3.00 2.30
Luxor
1.00 12.00 17.00
Aswan
2.00 16.00 19.00
*Port Said
0.45 3.00 3.00
St Catherine
0.30 4.00 -
Hurghada
1.00 8.00 -
Sharm el-Sh’k
1.30 7.00 -
Marsa Matr’h
1.30 5.00 9.00
Arish
1.00 5.00 9.00
Ismailia
- 2.00 2.30
Suez
- 4.00 4.00
New Valley
2.00 12.00 -
 
Note : *Overnight journey.
Useful travel links
AA route planner directions and maps within Egypt