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Egypt hotels

Egypt's tourist industry caters for over 10 million visitors a year, with the majority just visiting Red Sea beach resorts but still a huge number doing sightseeing based tours in the Nile Valley. To handle such large numbers, Egypt has a very large number of hotels in the major centres, though some areas are still underdeveloped. Most Egyptian hotels are of a modern style, with few 'heritage' or 'boutique' style options available. There are some notable exceptions however, with the Oberoi Mena House in Cairo, and the Old Winter Palace in Luxor being excellent examples of luxury, colonial style hotels.

Choosing hotels

If you are travelling on one of our small-group tours, or you have booked one of our set tour itineraries to do privately, then we will let you know the hotels to be used on your tour a couple of weeks before departure. If you have specific requirements for hotels to be used for your holiday, then subject to availability we can always book them, but we will arrange and price the tour as a tailor-made itinerary.

Star ratings

The star ratings given on this website are the official ratings the hotels have received from the local tourism authorities. Within each town, city or area however, there is a very wide variation between the standard of hotels within each star rating. At the top end of each level, the star ratings are comparable internationally, but overall you should be prepared for standards to be a little lower than you may expect from the star rating given (this particularly applies at the 5-star level, where many hotels have obtained a 5-star rating that we would really consider to be 4-star hotels).

Comfort ratings

All of our tours have been assigned different 'comfort ratings' to give you an idea of the level of accommodation used. More information about comfort ratings...

Basic comfort ratingTours that we have assigned this comfort rating in Egypt will use several 2 or 3-star hotels and possibly simple desert camps for a major portion of the tour. There will normally also be at least one higher level hotel at around the 4-star level (eg. in Cairo, Luxor).

Standard comfort ratingIn Egypt these tours generally use 4-star hotels, though some hotels at the lower end of the 5-star range may also be used, and a few nights may be spent in more basic accommodation (eg. lower level hotels, felucca sailboats).

Luxury comfort ratingThese tours feature stays in on some of the very best 5-star hotels available in Egypt. We select hotels that we know are at or near the top of the 5-star range within each area, and this may mean that the level of accommodation varies during the itinerary (eg. if you stay in the best hotel in Cairo and the best hotel in Aswan, you should not expect the same standard).

Area variations

The level of hotels available varies in different parts of the country. Some notes on our most visited areas are given below:

Cairo - As the capital city, Cairo hosts some of the best hotels in the country, with excellent examples available at all levels. Options are generally split between those in the city centre (which have better access to the bazaars, Egyptian Museum, and the River Nile, and more to do within walking distance of the hotel), and those on the outskirts of the city near the pyramids or airport (these tend to have larger grounds and pools but less to do immediately around them).

Luxor - The 3-star hotels in Luxor are not great, and there are very few good 4-star options (eg. El Luxor Hotel). We may use some of the lower 5-star level hotels for tours with a 'standard' comfort rating (eg. Pyramisa Isis Luxor Hotel). At the top end, there are some very good 5-star hotels used on our 'luxury' tours (eg. Steigenberger Nile Palace, Sonesta St. George). The Old Winter Palace is the very best of the lot, and we offer this on tailor-made tours.

Aswan - There is a limited selection of hotels available in Aswan compared to the demand, and the standard at each level does not match what is available in Cairo or Luxor. Many stays here will be just for one night, or will be based onboard a cruise boat or dahabiya.

Hurghada - The hotels in Hurghada form a long strip along the coast to the north and south of the old town. Some are popular with package holiday tourists, and some are mainly used by particular nationalities (especially Russian, German and Italian). Most hotels here are beach resorts with private beaches, pools, several restaurants and gardens within the complex, and offer a minimum of half board. There is a wide variety of standards available, and when selecting hotels for both our group and tailor-made tours, we take account of the quality of the accommodation, service, food standards, and predominant nationalities using the hotel.

Dahab - Dahab is a much quieter and less developed resort town than Hurghada and Sharm-el-Sheikh (which is one of the main reasons why we like it and use it on many of our tours). There are some decent, fairly simple 3-star options in the main bay area within walking distance of the many cafes and restaurants. Nearly all the 4 and 5-star hotels however are located a shuttle bus or taxi journey away with not much within walking distance of the hotel itself.

Alexandria - Located on the shore of the Mediterranean sea, the city of Alexandria has a very different feel to the rest of Egypt, with many old colonial buildings remaining in the centre. Several of these have been converted into hotels at around the 3 and 4-star level (eg. Windsor Hotel), and these are full of character, if a little faded and dated. The main strip along the coast through the city is several miles long and most 5-star hotels are located along this with a private beach area on the other side of the main road to the hotel. 5-star hotel levels generally aren't quite as good as those available in other Egyptian beach resorts.

Deserts - Several of our tours visit the desert oasis towns of Siwa, Bahariya, Farafra, Dakhla and Kharga. Accommodation options in these towns are limited and relatively simple and basic compared to the rest of Egypt. We aim for comfortable but simple hotels at around the 3-star level, with more basic options used in some oases. Higher level, boutique style desert hotels are becoming more available, particularly in Siwa, and we use these where possible, subject to availability.

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Egypt Uncovered, Head office: Leigh House, Varley Steet, Leeds, West Yorkshire, LS28 6AN

Phone: +44 (0) 845 130 48 49 Fax: +44 (0) 845 130 48 84

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