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Egypt travel facts

Egypt map
Area (sq km): 995,450
Population: 77,505,756
Nationality: Egyptian
Local Name: Misr
Language: Arabic,
French,
English,
Berber
Time Zone: +2 GMT
Currency: 1 pound = 100 piastres
Rate: www.xe.com
Capital: Cairo
Dialling Code: +20
Electricity: 220V/50Hz
Internet Code: .eg
Religion: Muslim,
Coptic Christian
Climate: Hot Desert,
Mediterranean
Government: Republic
Inoculations: None
Driving: Right
Int'l License: Required
Banking: Su-Th 8.30-14.00
Major Airports: Cairo(CAI),
El Arish(AAC), Luxor(LXR),
Sharm El Sheikh(SSH),
Taba(TCP)

Abu Simbel and Aswan Dam

The stunning Aswan Dam area is a winter resort haven. Egypt tourism in this region takes in many interesting attractions such as the nearby sights of Aswan Dam, Lake Nassar and celebrated Abu Simbel Temples. It's a lovely place to book your villas in Egypt for a delightful holiday.

Aswan High Dam
Aswan High Dam

Aswan is in southern Egypt bordering the mighty Nile River. The city basks in hot sun for much of year making it a great winter holiday destination and the perfect place to rent villas in Egypt. Aswan enjoys a relaxing pace and is by far one of Egypt's most beautiful cities. Aside from such modern additions as the Aswan Dam, this glorious Nile settlement is rich in history and ancient antiquities with cultural roots of Arab, Greek and Nubian.

The main attractions in Aswan include the massive granite Unfinished Obelisk near the main cemetery. The Noble's Tombs are carved out of the side of a mountain and contain ancient inscriptions relating stories of nobleman and Nile adventures.

Philae Island is south of the Aswan Dam and is home to many ancient temples that were all relocated after the Nile was dammed. Elephantine Island and Kitchener's Island are popular day trips from Aswan.

Aswan Dam & Lake Nassar

The Nile River is the life line of Egypt, its main artery. History tells the story of the mighty Nile flooding each summer leaving abundant nutrients and minerals in the soil surrounding the Nile.

This made the land around the Nile very fertile and attracted people that cultivated the land and established settlements. Unfortunately the summer floods could wipe out entire harvests so a project began at the end of the 19th Century to control the water of the Nile.

The first dam built was called Aswan Dam, or now Aswan Low Dam. It was soon realised that this dam would be inadequate. In the mid-20th Century through foreign investment the Aswan High Dam was built creating the Lake Nassar Reservoir, the world’s largest man-made reservoir. In the event of flooding many temples and monuments were relocated to areas of safety. Some monuments were bequeathed to nations that helped fund the Aswan Dam.

The Temples of Abu Simbel

The second most popular tourist attraction in Egypt after the pyramids is Abu Simbel. The Abu Simbel Temples are a UNESCO recognised site and part of the larger Nubian Monuments. The Abu Simbel Temples are two separate temples next to each other carved in red stone.

These massive archaeological sites date all the way back to the 13th Century BC. The Abu Simbel Temples were built for Pharaoh Ramesses II and his beloved wife Nefertari. During the construction of the Aswan High Dam, the Abu Simbel Temples had to be relocated otherwise they would be buried under the waters of Lake Nassar. The temples now overlook the lake on the western banks and are a must see when renting villas in Egypt in the area.

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