If you’re looking for a great destination for a family vacation, look no further than Egypt. There is so much to see, so how do you narrow it down to the best choices? To make it easier, we’re sharing 23 of the best places to visit in Egypt for families.
While a country in the Middle East may not be the first place you’d consider visiting if you have kids, it’s a great option. With its rich history, mesmerizing architecture, and beautiful landscapes, there’s something for everyone in Egypt. Now that you’re ready to start planning your family travel to Egypt, deciding where to go is going to be a priority.
Best Places to Visit in Egypt for Families – Cairo
More than likely, your trip to Egypt is going to start and end in Cairo as this is the capital and where the major international airport is located (airport code: CAI). There are so many fun places to go in Cairo for families that you’ll have plenty of options to choose from.
1. The Great Pyramids of Giza
Have you really been to Egypt if you haven’t seen the Giza Pyramids? These iconic structures are the only remaining wonder of the ancient world and are absolutely worth the hype. Located on the Giza Plateau, there are three main pyramids (Khufu – also known as Cheops or the Great Pyramid, Khafre, and Menkaure), each built by different rulers.
If you are feeling brave and aren’t claustrophobic, you can actually explore the inside of the largest pyramid, Khufu, and wonder how they were built over 4000 years ago.
You also have the opportunity to take a camel ride out among the pyramids and get a different perspective of the enormous structures.
2. The Great Sphinx
The Sphinx is also one of the most famous ancient monuments in Egypt. Located close to the Pyramids, kids will have a blast trying to perfect the kissing pose.
Another great way to experience the Sphinx and the Pyramids is to come in the evening for the sound and light show. It tells the story of Egypt from the Sphinx’s point of view. It’s a great, entertaining way for kids to learn about the history of the area.
Saqqara is another must visit for anyone interested in ancient Egyptian history. This site is home to the world’s oldest pyramid, the Step Pyramid of Djoser. Families can also explore the many tombs and temples that are found here.
This site is not nearly as crowded as the Great Pyramids and is often overlooked, but there are many interesting historic sites to explore and lots of fascinating information to learn. Families can easily spend an hour or two here and not get bored.
4. Egyptian Museum
The Egyptian Museum is another one of the must-see family activities in Cairo. It houses one of the largest collections of Egyptian artifacts in the world. Families will love exploring the many exhibits and learning about the history of the ancient Egyptians.
We recommend having an Egyptologist take you through the museum. It’s the best way to get the most out of your visit since the museum so large and signage is pretty minimal. A guide will also know the best things to see and how to make the museum interesting for kids.
5. Pharaonic Village
The Pharaonic Village is a great place for families to learn about Egyptian culture. This living museum features a replica of an ancient Egyptian village plus over a dozen other exhibits.
Visitors can explore the village, watch traditional dances, and even ride in a replica of an ancient Egyptian boat. Other attractions include an amusement park, shopping, henna tattoos, dressing up like an Egyptian photo booth, arts and crafts, an escape room, a petting zoo, and various daily events.
6. Nile Dinner Cruise
When you’re in Egypt, you have to spend some time on the waters of the river Nile. A Nile River cruise is a great way to experience Cairo from a unique perspective. Families can enjoy a delicious meal while cruising down the river and taking in the city’s sights.
7. Cairo Zoo
If children get tired of artifacts and museums, the Cairo Zoo is a great place to take them for a day of fun. This zoo is home to over 3000 animals, including lions, tigers, and giraffes. Families can also enjoy a ride on the Nile Riverboat or the camel train.
8. Khan al Khalili bazaar
The Khan el-Khalili bazaar is a great place to find souvenirs and gifts for the whole family. This market is full of vendors selling everything from spices to jewelry.
Let your kids try their hand at bargaining with the vendors and find some unique treasures to take home to remember the amazing vacation. The bazaar can get very busy and crowded, so keeping an extra watchful eye is a good idea so no one gets lost.
Best Places to Visit in Egypt for Families – Luxor
Luxor is one of the most interesting places to visit in Egypt. This city was once the capital of Egypt (when it used to be called Thebes) and is home to many famous temples and tombs. The hotels and attractions are split between the east bank and west bank of the Nile River.
9. Luxor Temple
The Luxor Temple is one of the most famous temples in Egypt. This temple was built to honor the gods Mut, Khonsu, and Amun and is full of beautiful artwork. Families can explore the many chambers of the temple and learn about its history.
If you can swing it, you should try to visit the temple during the day and at night. If you can only choose one though, see it at night. It is an entirely different experience seeing the pillars and statues lit up and shouldn’t be missed.
10. Karnak Temple
The largest religious structure ever built, the Karnak Temple complex is another one of the best places to visit in Egypt with family.
While much of the complex no longer exists, you can imagine how massive and awe-inspiring it must have been when it was built. If you are short on time, concentrate on the precinct of Amun, the largest section of the complex.
11. Valley of the Kings
The Valley of the Kings is one of the most popular places for tourists to explore, and for good reason. Visitors get the chance to enter the tombs of some of the mightiest pharaohs in history. Many of the tombs are so well preserved the colors look like they were painted yesterday!
Everyone wants to see the tomb of King Tutankhamun because it’s the famous one, but there are dozens of other tombs to explore here that are much more impressive. Some great ones include K11 (Ramesses III), KV8 (Merenptah), and KV2 (Ramesses IV).
12. Temple of Queen Hatshepsut
The Hatshepsut temple is one of the most beautiful temples in Egypt. She was one of the only known female pharaohs and also one of the most successful. This is a great temple to explore and learn more about her fascinating history.
13. Hot air balloon ride
A sunrise hot air balloon ride is one of the most popular but also one of the most stunning activities you can do in Luxor. Families with older children should absolutely add their family bucket list.
Not only do you get to see the city of Luxor and the temples from a unique perspective, but the view of the sun coming up over the valley is one you won’t forget.
14. Dinner with a local family
Getting to know the locals is an incredible way to teach kids about other cultures and how they live. Having dinner with a family will allow you to enjoy a delicious meal and also experience what life is like for them.
Best Places to Visit in Egypt with kids – Aswan
Aswan is a beautiful city in southern Egypt. It is the home of many fascinating temples and also the jumping-off point for many day trips and cruises. It’s another great city to add to your Egypt family vacation.
15. Abu Simbel Temple
Abu Simbel is probably the most famous temple in Egypt. While the journey from Aswan to get here is long, it is absolutely worth the effort.
There are actually two temples here. The larger, more popular one is dedicated to Ramses II and the smaller one to his wife Nefertari for worship to the goddess Hathor. You can also learn about how the entire temple was moved when the Aswan High Dam was built and Lake Nasser flooded the original location.
16. Philae Temple
Philae Temple is a great place for families to explore because it’s located on the island of Philae and can only be accessed by boat. Kids will enjoy wandering the temple structures and learning the fascinating history of the island.
You can also come to the temple in the evening for their sound and light show if that sounds like something your family would enjoy.
17. Kom Ombo Temple
The Kom Ombo Temple is one of the most unique temples you’ll see in Egypt. It’s dedicated to two gods, Sobek the crocodile god, and Horus the falcon-headed god. It’s basically two temples in one which makes it worth exploring.
18. Edfu Temple
Edfu Temple was dedicated to the god Horus and is one of the best-preserved temples in Egypt. This temple is best combined with Kom Ombo as a day trip from Aswan as there is not much else to see in the area.
19. Felucca ride
Another must-do activity on your family trip to Egypt is to sail down the Nile on a felucca. A felucca is a traditional Egyptian sailboat and is a great relaxing activity to help break up the sightseeing. It’s also a great way to see the scenery along the banks of the Nile and take a peek at what current Egyptian life is like.
If you are more adventurous, consider an overnight stay on a felucca and sleep under the stars on the river. It’s an activity your family will always remember!
20. Nile cruise
One of the most popular ways to experience the temples and attractions along the Nile is to take a cruise from Aswan to Luxor or vice versa.
If a relaxed approach to sightseeing is more to your liking, a Nile cruise might be right for you. The amenities and excursions vary tremendously between companies, so do some research to find the one that fits your family’s budget and needs the best.
Best Places to Visit in Egypt For Families – Hurghada
Hurghada is a beach resort town on the western side of the Red Sea, about 5 hours from Luxor. It’s a fantastic place to spend a few days relaxing and taking advantage of all the local activities.
Family-friendly activities in Hurghada are practically endless. Water enthusiasts will love the water park, aquarium, glass-bottom boat tours, snorkeling, and scuba diving. It is a top destination for scuba divers in Egypt.
You could also just find yourself a spot on the beach by the hotel and let the hours drift by.
Hurghada also has a theme park, jeep excursions to the desert, off-roading on sand dunes, and many other tours and attractions. Whatever your family wants to do, you can probably find it here.
Best Places to Visit in Egypt For Families – Sinai Peninsula
Head east to the Sinai Peninsula and discover a different side of Egypt. The southern part of the peninsula has excellent resorts and similar amenities as Hurghada but on a smaller scale.
For families who like something a little more off the beaten path, Dahab is a great place to stay for a few days. The expat-friendly community is small but mighty, offering a quieter Red Sea option but with plenty of activities to entertain you.
One of the biggest draws is the Blue Hole, a famous sinkhole with excellent snorkeling and scuba diving opportunities to view the stunning marine life and coral reefs.
Out of the water, you can take ATV and camel rides. Don’t forget to spend some time in town exploring the shops, meeting the local people, and eating at some of the excellent restaurants.
23. Sharm El Sheikh
For those who want more access to amenities or a more resort-oriented stay, Sharm El-Sheikh is a great choice. There are some fabulous luxury hotels in this area.
Some of the best scuba diving in the world is found here, as well as Ras Mohammed National Park.
Beautiful beaches can be found everywhere in the area, and there are lots of shopping and restaurant choices. The Old Market is also not to be missed.
Questions People Ask About Traveling to Egypt with a Family
How can I travel to Egypt with kids?
Now that you know the best places in Egypt for families, how do you go about visiting this stunning country? Here are a few things to consider when planning your trip.
1. Hire a tour guide
Egypt is a country that is difficult to navigate on your own if you don’t read or speak Arabic. Plus, there is so much history and information that you would miss if you didn’t have someone to give you the details at all the sites. If you try to organize a family holiday on your own, you miss out on a lot of what the country has to offer.
Consider hiring a tour guide for your family vacation to Egypt. There are so many options out there for every budget and trip length that you will have no problem finding a great choice that fits your family.
You can either go with one tour guide who will be with you the whole trip, or you could piece together day trips that suit your travel style better. Whichever you choose, you’ll have a better experience with a guide to help navigate you through the country and be your source of information throughout your trip.
2. Consider a Nile cruise vacation
Lots of people like to opt for a Nile cruise for part of their Egypt vacation. Many of the cruises include excursions to the most popular temples and attractions, and you can pick and choose what you’d like to see.
If cruising is something that you and your family would enjoy, this is an excellent option for seeing some of the famous sites along the Nile.
When is the best time to travel to Egypt?
Egypt’s climate is hot and dry as it is mostly desert. In the summer the heat is sweltering and can be unbearable during the day. Spring and fall have more tolerable temperatures although it can still be quite hot in the daytime. Winter has the most pleasant daytime temps but the evenings can get quite cold – dropping into the 40s or even lower.
Overall, the best time to visit Egypt is from October to April. This is the cooler season, and families can avoid the larger crowds of tourists too.
Be mindful of Ramadan
Ramadan is the ninth month of the Islamic calendar and is observed by the Muslim community with fasting and praying. During this time, many attractions in Egypt may be closed or have restricted hours.
If you want to be able to see many of the places on this list, you might want to avoid visiting during Ramadan to prevent disappointment if landmarks or restaurants are closed.
What to wear in Egypt
Egypt is predominately an Islamic country and dresses conservatively. To be respectful of the culture, it is recommended that both men and women cover their knees and shoulders, and women should cover their heads in religious places.
In the seaside towns and resorts, this is not expected as there are lots of tourists and expats, but keep this in mind when exploring the temples and other attractions.
While everyone’s packing list and travel essentials will look different, here are a few things you should take with you:
- Light, breathable clothing
- Sunscreen and chapstick
- Wide-brimmed hat
- Bathing suit
- Comfortable walking shoes
- Scarf for women to cover their head as needed
- First-aid kit with basic medications for diarrhea, motion sickness, etc.
- Universal travel adapter
- Sweater or jacket for cooler nights
Is tipping expected in Egypt?
Tipping is expected everywhere in Egypt, even for asking questions or taking pictures, so carry small change with you all the time. This may seem odd or annoying to you, but know that it is part of the culture so you should plan for it ahead of time so you aren’t taken by surprise.
Bring medications when traveling in Egypt
It’s a good idea to bring some medications for diarrhea, seasickness, stomachaches, etc. with you as they may be hard to find in-country.
Do you need a visa to go to Egypt?
Check to see if you will need a visa when traveling to Egypt. U.S. citizens will need a visa to enter the country. You can buy them at the airport when you arrive, or you can apply for one online before you go.
If you’re looking for an amazing and unique family vacation destination, be sure to add Egypt to your list. With so much to see and do here, you’ll have trouble fitting it all in! Start planning your trip now and enjoy everything this incredible country has to offer.
About the author: Stef is the author of Open Road Odysseys, a road trip travel blog about budget travel and outdoor-focused itineraries. She aims to inspire anyone with a desire for adventure that an unforgettable road trip IS possible on a budget.