There are few historical civilisations that capture the imagination quite like the Ancient Egyptians. The remarkable treasures that they left behind are by far the biggest draw for visitors to Egypt, and this remains one of the most exciting destinations in the world. Channel your inner Indiana Jones and explore the pyramids of Giza, the temples of Abu Simbel and the magnificent Valley of the Kings. Just the names of these extraordinary places are enough to conjure up images of dimly lit burial chambers, mysterious hieroglyphics etched into stone, and the gilded mask of Tutankhamun.
Of course there is more to this complex country than the pyramids, and Egypt is a fascinating destination for anyone interested in contemporary politics and the changing face of the Arab world. The colourful and often chaotic capital, Cairo, may not be everyone’s cup of tea, but if you really want to get under the skin of Egypt then this is the place to start. Beyond the narrow strip of greenery that hugs the Nile are the rolling dunes of the Sahara Desert, one of the world’s most starkly beautiful landscapes, while the Red Sea coast is a magnet for snorkellers and scuba divers.