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10 Tips For the Ultimate Black Travel Experience in Egypt
Egypt is one of the most magical places in Africa. The history of the country runs back thousands of years. Egyptian culture birthed some of the world’s most important inventions and technologies. Cosmetic makeup, toothbrushes and hieroglyphics all originated in Egypt. The people there were masters of architecture, mathematics and astrology. Egypt was the most advanced civilization in the world.
Today, Egypt has changed in modernity and culture. However, remnants of Nubian Egyptian culture are still a pivotal part of the country’s landscape. For a true Nubian travel journey, check out these 10 tips for the ultimate Black travel experience in Egypt.
Visit the Nubian Village in Aswan
About 8000 years ago, people from Africa and Sudan settled near the Nile River and created farming communities. They were the Nubians. Today, their population is less than 100,000. They speak their own language and have bright, colorful villages around Aswan. Travelers can reach the villages by boat and experience Nubian Egypt firsthand. You can even spend the night in some of the villages.
Experience The Majesty of Abu Simbel
Close to Aswan, travelers will find the majestic Abu Simbel temple. This grand structure was built by King Ramses II, immortalizing the leader in four giant statues carved into the stone. The temple is about a 3-hour drive from Aswan. Along the way, there are plenty of other sights to see including the Aswan High Dam, the Philae Temple and Elephantine Island.
Enjoy a Glass of Karkade
Back in the day, chilled hibiscus tea was the preferred drink of ancient Egyptian pharaohs. Travelers can grab a cup for themselves while in Egypt to tap into their royal side. In Egypt, the drink is called Karkade and the tart, cranberry flavored is sweetened with honey. In addition to being the premier beverage of Egyptian royalty, karkade also has tremendous health benefits including lowering blood pressure, reducing inflammation and fighting bacteria.
Dine With a Nubian Family
Having dinner with a Nubian family is the best way to experience Egyptian cuisine. There are plenty of restaurants to explore. However, there’s nothing, like home cooked meals built on centuries of traditional recipes. A few Egyptian dishes to try are traditional falafel, a bread called Aish Baladi and Koshari. There are also a variety of excursions that include dining with a Nubian family.
See the Crocodiles in Gharb Soheil
Another Nubian village near Aswan, Gharb Soheil is a place where crocodiles hold significant importance. Mummified crocodile heads adorn the doors of home and the animals symbolize a totem of blessings for Nubians. Many mention seeing domesticated crocodiles in the village who were pets for the locals. The Nubian reverence of crocodiles dates back to Pharaonic times.
Explore the Valley of Kings
Souks are traditional marketplaces where vendors sell all types of goods. Some of the most popular Egyptian souks are Alladin’s Cave, Fair Trade Luxor Outlet and Caravanserai. If you have a trip to the Nubian villages near Aswan, the Aswan Old Souks is a great bazaar to explore. The souks have a little bit of everything for sale including spices, handmade jewelry, street food and other souvenirs.
Learn About Black Culture in Egypt at The Nubian Museum
For a deep dive into Nubian culture, be sure to visit the Nubian Museum. The museum was built amongst the remains of Nubian monuments and has three-stories of artifacts, handicrafts and artwork from Nubia. There also is a garden attached to the museum where pieces of the Fatimid cemetery, prehistoric rock inscriptions and symbolic waterways are located.
Do Some Shopping at the Souks
Souks are traditional marketplaces where vendors sell all types of goods. Some of the most popular Egyptian souks are Alladins Cave, Fair Trade Luxor Outlet and Caravanserai. If you have a trip to the Nubian villages near Aswan, the Aswan Old Souks is a great bazaar to explore. The souks have a little bit of everything for sale including spices, handmade jewelry, street food and other souvenirs.
Ride a Camel Past the Pyramids of Giza
Standing as a true symbol of Old Egypt, the Pyramids of Giza have stood tall for over 4,500 years. They were built as a place for deceased pharaohs to rest until they transcended into the afterlife as gods. Today, travelers can go visit the iconic structures and take a camel ride past them.
Watch the Sunset at the Nile River
The Nile River is an eternal symbol of the strength of Egyptian culture. Down the Nile flowed resources, tools and nutrients needed to fuel farms and build entire civilizations. Wrap up a trip to Egypt by spending some time near the river watching the sunset and reminiscing about the vacation of a lifetime.