Egypt holds a great deal of fascination for the traveler; it is a convergence of Asian and African cultures, of ancient grandeur and sleek modernity, of languages and customs. There is so much to see, do, and experience when visiting; knowing the best time to travel to this kingdom in the desert is essential so you can have the experience you’ve always dreamed of.
Timing a vacation is one of the most difficult aspects of any trip: you want to be able to enjoy lovely weather while avoiding the thickest crowds and preferably paying lower prices for your accommodations, food, and attractions. Because Egypt is such an immensely popular destination, and because of the extreme climate, there is a window of time during which you should visit most of the country. Unfortunately, because this is the peak time, you will find more crowds and higher prices.
The high season runs from October to May, with December through February being the best time to travel in Upper Egypt. The temperatures are much milder in the winter: in the evening, the mercury can plunge to 32 (0 C), and during the day, it can climb to 65 (18 C). Cities such as Luxor and Aswan are best visited during this time, though the beaches on the coast can be too chilly for sunbathing. They’ll be quiet though!
Summer in Upper Egypt can be unsafe for those unused to desert heat: Luxor, Aswan, and Cairo heat up to over 104 degrees F (40 C); heat, combined with dust, pollution, and noise makes it unbearable to most people. Summer is a great time to bake on the beaches of Sinai, the Red Sea, or the Alexandrian Coast. Temperatures are still scorching but you have the moderating effect of the sea. Schools and universities have let out, and most Egyptians try to take their vacation. Visitors from neighboring Arab countries stop over to escape to the relatively mild temperatures of Egypt’s coast. You will find the beaches very crowded and noisy. Hotel rooms will have to be booked in advance, and you will pay a premium.
A trip during March to May or September to November offers a great compromise for those who want to visit Upper Egypt and the coast without having to fend off thronging crowds.