With the Pyramids of Giza, Nile River, Mount Sinai, the Red Sea, and so much more, Egypt is the perfect destination for the adventurous traveler. As one of the oldest countries in the world, Egypt is sure to amaze you whether you are a history buff or not.
When planning your trip to Egypt, it’s essential to decide what time of the year you want to travel, as you can have a different experience based on the season you visit.
Here are the best times to visit Egypt for weather, prices, crowds, and cultural events.
For the best weather
Egypt is a desert environment, so that means that it can get very hot. If you want to visit Egypt for the most pleasant weather, try traveling during the country’s colder season, which stretches between November and April. The coolest month of the year is January when the daily high temperature reaches about 66°F (19°C).
Regardless of what time of the year you visit Egypt, you can be sure that you won’t need to pack an umbrella or rain jacket. Of the little rain that the country receives, most of it falls on the coastal cities, such as Alexandria. Egypt only gets about 15 days of rain in an entire year.
For the lowest prices
If you are a budget traveler, definitely visit Egypt during its low season in the summer. Summer in Egypt is between June and September. Contrary to other vacation destinations in the world, summer is Egypt’s lowest season because it experiences extremely hot weather, with temperatures going as high as 95°F (35°C).
During this time, you’ll find the lowest prices on hotels, airfare, and attractions due to the lower rate of tourism in the country. If higher-end accommodations or resorts are usually not within your budget, this is a good time to visit to lock in the more affordable prices and have a luxury stay for less.
It is still possible to have a great trip to Egypt during the summer heat and could save you hundreds of dollars. Most accommodations and transportation have air-conditioning, which will help immensely to keep you cool. Make sure to take the necessary responsible precautions before traveling in the summer. Pack light and quick-dry clothing, bring and wear plenty of sunscreen, always wear a hat when you walk in the sun, and drink lots of water. Be aware that norms surrounding dress are probably very different compared to your home country, so remember to only pack conservative clothing. Women should bring cover-ups for bathing suits and a cloth to cover their heads when entering a mosque.
If you plan to do a lot of sightseeing, make sure to schedule excursions in the morning, before the hot afternoon temperatures creep in. Another great activity you can take advantage of during the hot summer is swimming. Egypt has some of the most beautiful beaches and access to the Red Sea, which is the saltiest sea in the world.
For the smallest crowds
The low season of summer will see the smallest crowds in Egypt. However, if you can’t handle the heat but still want to avoid the high tourism, consider visiting during the shoulder seasons. The shoulder seasons are the times of the year when it is neither peak nor low season. In Egypt, the shoulder seasons are between March and May and September and October. Shoulder season gives you the best of both worlds – weather that is not too hot or cold, and smaller crowds at attractions. This time of the year is also great for last-minute travel, as you don’t need to book things very far in advance for cheap prices.
For seeing cultural events
If you want to see authentic cultural elements in your travel to Egypt, consider traveling during one of the country’s many secular or religious holidays. One of the most known holidays in Egypt is Eid al Fitr, which falls approximately on October 2nd of every year. This holiday commemorates the end of Ramadan, and you will find the streets fill up with celebration. It’s a great time to try traditional Egyptian desserts which are typically prepared during this time, such as kahk and ghouraiyyeba.
April 9th is Sham El Nessim, or Egypt’s Easter. The name of the holiday literally translates to “smell the breeze” in Arabic. During this day, everyone packs a lunch in a basket to have a picnic outside.
Ramadan is the biggest observed holiday in Egypt, where Muslims fast from sunup to sundown. It lasts one month and is considered a time of rest for many people in the country. Be sure to do research on when Ramadan is before booking your travel, as the dates vary every year. During Ramadan, some attractions or restaurants may be closed or have modified hours. It can still be an insightful time to visit, however, as you have the opportunity to witness hundreds of worshippers flood to the mosques and break their fasts at night.
Egypt is one of the most unique attractions in the world. The country has attractions for almost any traveler, from its historic monuments, pristine beaches, or bustling city nightlife.
Because of the country’s variable climate and observance of many different holidays, it is important to carefully plan what time of the year you want to visit Egypt. If you don’t mind larger crowds and want the most pleasant weather, travel during the country’s high season between November and April. If you don’t mind extremely hot temperatures and want the cheapest possible prices, visit Egypt during the summer between June and September.