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There are a number of festivals, holidays and other events celebrated in Cairo each year.
The main ones are listed below.

January 1: New Year's Day (national holiday)

January 7: Coptic Christmas (national)

January 7th is the day during which Egyptian Coptic Christians (the country's second religious community with more than 10% of the population) celebrate Christmas. Orthodox religion is indeed using a Julian calendar and not the Gregorian one. Families go to church, visit relatives and prepare meals consisting in rice, garlic, meat and bread. A festive atmosphere takes over Alexandria and Old Cairo's Coptic neighbourhoods.

Third month of the Hijri calendar: Mawlid al-Nabi (Birth of the Prophet, national holiday)

This festival celebrated on the twelfth day of Rabi'al-Awwal commemorates the birth of the Prophet Muhammad and is one of the most important days on the Islamic (or Hijri) calendar. Egyptian Muslims use this opportunity to recall the values advocated by the Prophet. It is also a day when families gather to share a traditional meal in a festive atmosphere.

May 1: Labour Day (national holiday)

Ninth month of the Hijri calendar: Ramadan (celebrated nationwide)

The Islamic holy month of Ramadan, during which the Quran was revealed to the Prophet Muhammad, is an especially pious time in Egypt, a country with a majority Muslim population. Fasting begins each day at sunrise and ends at sunset. For the entire month, Cairo, like the rest of Egypt, operates at a slower pace during the day and stirs into action at nightfall.

First three days of the tenth month of the Hijri calendar: Eid al-Fitr (national holiday)

This three-day festival marks the end of Ramadan and is a time for family celebrations across Cairo, with exchanges of gifts, especially new clothes, and great feasts bringing together all family members. Music, dancing and street processions are also a prominent feature.

July 23: Revolution Day (national holiday)

Commemorates the birth of the Egyptian republic on this day in 1952, when the Free Officers, led by the young Gamal Abd-al Nasser, toppled the Egyptian monarchy in a military coup. Highlights include official remembrance ceremonies, military parades, concerts and fireworks.

Tenth day of the last month of the Hijri calendar (date changes each year): Eid al-Adha (national holiday)

This festival celebrated on the tenth day of Dhu al-Hijjah honours Ibrahim's proof of his obedience to Allah. Allah asked him to sacrifice his son Ismael, but just as Ibrahim was about to make the sacrifice, Allah told him to offer a ram instead. Traditionally, to remember Ibrahim's offering, each family sacrifices a sheep in the morning and the remainder of the day is spent in prayer and celebration, feasting on the roast mutton and sharing the meat with others.

December 25: Christmas (celebrated nationwide)

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Cairo has a desert climate. Temperatures are quite high for most of the year. Nevertheless, the proximity to the Mediterranean Sea helps to lessen the impact of the heat somewhat. Skies tend to be clear and sunny year-round, and especially during the transitional periods between seasons. Cloudy or rainy days are very rare in the summer.

Month Min. Average Temperature (°C/F°) Max. Average Temperature (°C/F°) Average Rains (MM) Best Time to Travel
January 9/48 19/66 6/0.24 Not the best period to go
February 10/50 20/68 4/0.16 Not the best period to go
March 12/54 23/73 3/0.12 Not the best period to go
April 15/59 28/82 1/0.04 Good period to go Good period to go
May 18/64 32/90 0/0.00 Good period to go Good period to go
June 20/68 34/93 0/0.00 Good period to go Good period to go
July 22/72 35/95 0/0.00 Good period to go Good period to go
August 22/72 35/95 0/0.00 Not the best period to go
September 20/68 34/93 0/0.00 Not the best period to go
October 14/57 29/84 1/0.04 Not the best period to go
November 14/57 25/77 4/0.16 Not the best period to go
December 10/50 20/68 6/0.24 Not the best period to go
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Cairo International Airport

The Cairo International Airport is located about 22 kilometres (14 miles) north-east of the city centre.

  • Four terminals:
    • Terminal 1
    • Terminal 2 (Air France)
    • Terminal 3
    • Terminal 4

Getting from the airport to Cairo and back:
  • By car
    • Accessible via Gizeh pyramids Road.
    • Parking areas are available adjacent to Terminal 1. The fare is about EGP 20 for 3 hours and EGP 100 for 1 day.
    • Several car rental companies have counters in the arrivals halls of all terminals.
  • By bus
    • Cairo Transport Authority (CTA) public buses connect the airport with all points of interest in Cairo, but not all of them are air-conditioned. The fare is EGP 5 per person and the travel time to the city centre is about 75 minutes.
  • By shuttle
    • The airport operates its own air-conditioned shuttle bus service, with departures every half hour and a travel time of about 45 minutes to the city centre. A one-way ticket costs EGP 35.
  • By taxi
    • There are three main types of taxis available at the ranks outside the terminal buildings: older black-and-white taxis (unmetered, price must be negotiated beforehand); newer white taxis (metered); and yellow Cairo Cabs (metered and air-conditioned). Expect to pay around EGP 200 for the trip from the airport to the city centre
  • Services: shops, bars and restaurants, free Internet access (Wi-Fi) available in the airport.
  • Telephone: +20 (0)2 2265 5000
  • Website: www.cairo-airport.com/en-us/

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The Egyptian capital is notorious for its traffic congestion. Nevertheless, it is possible to get around the city easily, thanks to Cairo's good public transport system and the ubiquitous taxis.

By rail

Despite its high ridership, the Cairo Metro is a fast, efficient and inexpensive way to get around the city. There are three main lines: The 35-station main line stretches for 43 kilometres (27 miles) from the southern suburb of Helwan up to New Al-Marg. The second line, about 21 kilometres (13 miles) in length, connects Shubra with Giza. A third line operates from Attaba to Ahram (Heliopolis), for a total length of 12 kilometres (7.5 miles). Trains run about every 5 minutes from 5:30 a.m. to 12 a.m. The middle two cars of each train, the fourth and the fifth, are reserved for women, although the latter are also permitted to travel in any other car. A single ticket costs EGP 2 for the first 9 stations, EGP 5 for seven more stops.

By bus

As a general rule, public buses and minibuses are not recommended for tourists, as regular passengers often include pick-pockets. In addition, this mode of transport is difficult to use for visitors not able to read Arabic, because very few signs are in English. Same fare as in the metro, EGP 3.

By taxi

Taxis are plentiful in Cairo. When using the older black-and-white cabs, it is important to remember that they do not have meters. For these taxis, it is best to negotiate the price beforehand. The newer white cabs and the yellow Cairo Cabs do use meters, with the initial charge starting at EGP 8 and short trips usually running about EGP 15. Cairo Cabs must usually be booked in advance by telephone. Fares charged by taxis waiting outside hotels are usually about twice those charged by taxis hailed in the street.

By car

Renting a car to get around Cairo is not really recommended, due to traffic congestion and often inadequate signage. If you decide to rent a car in spite of these difficulties, an international driver's licence is required.

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Visitor information

Upon your arrival in Cairo, you can get in touch with local tourism professionals for further information and to help organize your stay.

Tourist Information Offices in Cairo

Offer practical information and many useful recommendations (accommodation, restaurants, public transport, festivals, cultural events, etc.).

  • Tourist Information Office (Airport)
    • Address: Cairo International Airport
    • Opening hours: 8 a.m. to 8 p.m.
    • Telephone: +20 (0)2 291 4255
  • Tourist Information Office (Cairo City Centre)
    • Address: Adly St., Cairo
    • Opening hours: 8 a.m. to 8 p.m.
    • Telephone: +20 (0)2 391 345 402
  • Tourist Information Office (Giza Pyramids)
    • Address: Giza Pyramids, Giza
    • Opening hours: 8 a.m. to 8 p.m.
    • Telephone: +20 (0)3 385 0259
  • Tourist Information Office (Al-Manyal)
    • Address: Manyal Palace, Cairo
    • Opening hours: 8 a.m. to 8 p.m.
    • Telephone: +20 (0)2 5315 587
  • Ramses Station
    • Address: Ramses Station, Cairo
    • Opening hours: 8 a.m. to 8 p.m.
    • Telephone: +20 (0)2 2579 0767
  • Tourist Information Office (Giza Station)
    • Address: Giza Station, Giza
    • Opening hours: 8 a.m. to 8 p.m.
    • Telephone: +20 (0)2 3570 2233

Egypt travel guide

The official website maintained by Egypt's tourism authority provides a wealth of information on Cairo.

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Currency and Exchange Rates

The currency used in Egypt is the Egyptian Pound (EGP).

JPY1 = EGP0.14

EGP1 = JPY7.25

The above exchange rate is given for information because is variable.

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Medical information

See your doctor before you travel. It is also recommended to take out insurance covering medical expenses and repatriation before your trip. Cairo counts several hospitals and medical institutions, as well as quality medical practitioners and health specialists.


Booster doses of diphtheria, tetanus, pertussis and polio vaccines are recommended. Depending on the length of your stay and hygiene conditions, the following additional vaccinations are also recommended: typhoid, hepatitis A and B.

For more information, contact Air France's international vaccination centre:

call the centre at +33 (0)1 43 17 22 00

Food safety

It is recommended to keep strong food hygiene practices: make sure produce is carefully washed and food is properly cooked before eating.


It is strongly recommended to drink water from sealed bottles.

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Administrative formalities

Entry requirements for Egypt

All foreign nationals must be in possession of a visa to enter Egypt, regardless of the length of their stay.

For further information, visit the website of the Egyptian Ministry of Foreign Affairs:


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Useful addresses

To enjoy peace of mind during your stay in Egypt, visit the website of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of your country.

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Essential phrases

Here are a few basic Arabic phrases that will make your stay in Cairo a little easier:

Hello / Good morning / Good afternoon: Sabah al-khair Hello / Good morning / Good afternoon: <em>Sabah al-khair</em>

Good evening: Masaa al-khair Good evening: <em> Masaa al-khair </em>

Goodbye: Maasalama Goodbye: <em>Maasalama</em>

Yes: Na'am Yes: <em>Na'am</em>

No: Laa No: <em>Laa</em>

No, thank you: Laa, shukran No, thank you: <em>Laa, shukran</em>

Thank you very much: Shukran jaziilan Thank you very much: <em>Shukran jaziilan</em>

Please: Min fadlik Please: <em>Min fadlik</em>

I don't understand: Laa afham I don't understand: <em>Laa afham</em>

Could you repeat ?: Mumkin te'id ? Could you repeat ?: <em>Mumkin te'id ?</em>

What time is it ?: Kam el sa'ah? What time is it ?: <em>Kam el sa'ah?</em>

Sorry: Afwan Sorry: <em>Afwan</em>

Excuse me: Airport: Mataar Excuse me: Airport: <em>Mataar</em>

Train station: Mahattat al-qitaar Train station: <em>Mahattat al-qitaar</em>

Taxi: Taxi Taxi: <em>Taxi</em>

Hotel: Funduq Hotel: <em>Funduq</em>

Hospital: Mustashfa Hospital: <em>Mustashfa</em>

Bank: Bank Bank: <em>Bank</em>

Telephone: Telephone Telephone: <em>Telephone</em>

I'm (…): Ana (…) I'm (…): <em>Ana (…)</em>

I'm looking for (…): Abhass ane (…) I'm looking for (…): <em>Abhass ane (…)</em>

How much is (…)?: Bikam (…)? How much is (…)?: <em>Bikam (…)?</em>

Do you have (…)?: Hal 'indak (…)? Do you have (…)?: <em>Hal 'indak (…)?</em>

Where can I find (…)?: Ayna ajed (…)? Where can I find (…)?: <em>Ayna ajed (…)?</em>

Where can I buy (…)?: Ayna ashtarii (…)? Where can I buy (…)?: <em>Ayna ashtarii (…)?</em>

I'd like (…): Ourid (…) I'd like (…): <em>Ourid (…)</em>

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Good to know

+ phone number (without 0)
-7 : 00
of time difference with
There is no Daylight Savings Time in Egypt

Usually open Monday to Thursday and Sunday from 8:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m.
Government offices
Usually open Sunday to Thursday and Sunday from 8 a.m. to 2 p.m.
220 V / 50 Hz

In Cairo, it is customary to leave a tip at the city's hotels and restaurants. If you are satisfied with the service, an appropriate amount is between 5 and 10% of the bill.

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