Posted by on 23 Jan 2024
When it comes to ancient wonders and legendary man-made landmarks, there is none quite as iconic as the Pyramids of Giza. These majestic, colossal pyramids tower over the Nile River and people from all over the world flock to admire this architectural masterpiece from a bygone civilisation.
But these imposing, celebrated pyramids aren’t the only thing that Egypt has to offer. There are also plenty of stunning and culturally rich hidden gems in Egypt among its many cities and deserts. Keep reading to discover seven of these lesser-known wonders that will make your Egyptian adventure one to remember.
Valley of the Kings
Located in Luxor, the Valley of the Kings is a chamber in the middle of the desert that houses the ancient tombs of pharaohs, nobles and high priests of Egypt’s New Kingdom dynasties. There are over 60 tombs inside, as well as countless murals and hieroglyphs that depict the enigmatic ways ancient Egyptians laid their dead to rest.
Arguably the most popular tomb in the Valley of the Kings is KV62, otherwise known as the Tomb of Tutankhamun. In this tomb, you can see the mummy of King Tut himself, along with intricate murals on the wall depicting his funeral procession. Other famous tombs include those of Ramses II and Seti I.
The Citadel of Cairo
If you love scenic city views and historic structures and temples, the Citadel of Cairo is one of the best things to see in Egypt. It was built back in the 12th century to defend the Sultanate against Crusaders. This mediaeval fortress gives you a high enough vantage point to see a panoramic view of the historic district of Cairo. It’s also home to significant mosques and museums.
One point of interest you can’t miss here is the Muhammad Ali Mosque, which sits at the summit of the fortress. It is known for its imposing dome and ornate double minarets. From its position at the top of the citadel, it is the most visible and prominent mosque in the Egyptian capital.
Catacombs of Kom El Shoqafa
Known as one of the Seven Wonders of the Middle Ages, the Catacombs of Kom El Shoqafa in Alexandria houses burial sites that showcase Egyptian, Roman and Greek funerary practices.
The three storeys of chambers are a testament to the many cultural influences that have informed Egypt’s burial traditions. It’s one of the most fascinating Egypt attractions for those who love learning about diverse cultures.
Aside from burial sites, the catacombs are also riddled with intricate hieroglyphics and art that honour plenty of these cultures’ beliefs. There are paintings of famous scenes from Greek mythology and even sculptures of deities and other sacred symbols from civilisations' past.
The remote Siwa Oasis is located in Egypt’s Western Desert. Aside from its vast landscapes, there are also plenty of historical sites to visit here, from sacred temples to towering fortresses.
The oasis is home to the 13th-century Shali Fortress, a mud-brick archaeological site with an old mosque. From the top of the fortress, you can enjoy stunning views of the entire Siwa Oasis.
This part of the desert is also where you’ll find the Temple of Amun, which was home to an oracle back in the day. Alexander the Great famously visited this temple, where the oracle prophesied about the kingdom he would rule in the future.
Wadi Al-Hitan (Whale Valley)
One of the more unique Egypt attractions is Wadi Al-Hitan in Al Fayoum. This area is also referred to as “Whale Valley.”
In this UNESCO World Heritage Site, you’ll find hundreds of well-preserved whale fossils sitting on the desert sand. It’s an amazing stop for palaeontology enthusiasts who want to learn more about the Archaeoceti, which are an extinct species of ancient whales.
Want to fit in a bit of hiking during your journey? Consider paying a visit to the Coloured Canyon in Egypt’s Sinai Peninsula. As its name suggests, this canyon boasts vibrantly coloured walls and rock formations. These stunning bright hues were created thanks to the unique mineral deposits in the formations.
Meanwhile, wind and water over the centuries have created spectacular patterns in the canyon’s layers of rock. Enjoy a hike in the canyon during the daytime to see the beauty of sunlight filtering through its narrow spaces and passageways. It’s undoubtedly one of the most beautiful hidden gems in Egypt, making it a must-visit for photographers and nature lovers alike.
Egypt is an excellent place to relax and unwind while on holiday, especially considering hitting the beach can be one of the best things to do in Egypt according to locals. Hurghada, a resort town along the coast of the Red Sea, is famous for its pristine, white sand beaches that are so picturesque they can rival the idyllic shores and crystal-clear waters of Fiji.
If you love marine wildlife, Hurghada is the spot for you. The Red Sea is known for its vibrant and colourful coral reefs. Snorkelling and scuba diving in Hurghada’s waters is an amazing way to see them up close. You can also book water sports excursions to enjoy your time under the sun, from parasailing to windsurfing.
Explore These Uncharted, Historic Egypt Attractions
The Pyramids of Giza will always capture the hearts of people visiting Egypt for the first time. But if you’re a more adventurous soul and want to explore a bit off the beaten path, add the attractions above to your Egypt itinerary.
Whether you’re a history buff excited to see the intricate Catacombs of Kom El Shoqafa or an avid hiker longing for the vibrance of the Coloured Canyon, there’s always a hidden gem for someone in the historic land of Egypt.
Want to discover more iconic, ancient landmarks around the world? Check out all of Entire Travel Group’s Holiday Packages and excursions to find the best holiday destination for you.