Topics include Dining Scene, Egypt: For Foreign Visitors & more!
Egypt is no more dangerous then most of the western European countries that most TA members all come from. In fact many people feel safer in Cairo than their own city, but it is important to exercise a little more caution in a foreign country, just because the surroundings are different to what you're used to.
The point is, as long as you don't do something foolish, you should be okay in Cairo and much of Egypt in general.
The Egyptian police will do their best to secure every part of the city. Note that mistakes may happen, but nothing more than what may happen in other parts of the world.
One of the best ways to ensure personal safety when traveling to Cairo is to always be aware of surroundings when it public. When a location is crowded and feels unsafe, people should use their gut feelings and leave the area if it seems dangerous.
There is not a large prevalence of violent crimes in Cairo, but tourists should be aware of petty crimes, such as purse-snatchings, which are more common. In addition, it is recommended that tourists who are women should not travel anywhere alone as they may become victims of verbal abuse or sexual harassment.
Be aware of people who approach you on the street and try to take you shopping to areas or places that you do not know. Stick to shops recommended by others, or choose them on your own.
Terrorists have attacked touristy areas in Egypt in 2004, 2005 and 2006. While the security forces in Egypt have a number one concern to protect citizens and visitors, and the best advice that they can give tourists is to be aware of what is going on around them.
The United States government has continued to specifically warn travelers to try and avoid areas that are packed with people – especially tourist areas, and try to visit areas that have known security procedures in place. This is not just the case for Cairo, but all countries overseas.
The hope is that the threat of terrorist attacks will not prevent anyone from traveling to Cairo (or anywhere else in the world). Besides this threat, Cairo is a relatively safe city with a low crime rate.
TrafficAlso, be aware of your surroundings if you have to cross the streets in Cairo. Traffic is not as it is in Europe or North America, as cars never stop for pedestrians. Try to be patient and wait until there are no cars before crossing. If this does not happen, do not run in front of the cars. But if you do decide to cross, try to walk at a faster pace than normal, and cars will do their best to avoid you. Don't be scared, or else try to cross where there is a traffic light. If worse comes to worse, try to stick by the locals, and cross the street alongside them. Crossing with locals can be scary, but they manage and have experience.
If you go to the Pyramids and wish to ride a camel, have a guide (or a local) negotiate for you. If you run into any problems at any archaeological sites, there are tourist police, personnel or even an office where you can file complaints. They should be able to refund your money in a matter of minutes.
There are no compulsory vaccinations when entering Cairo, but there are recommendations. Some people will already have some of these. They are Hep A and B, Tetanus, Typhoid Fever and some people even suggest Yellow Fever. If you will be in the El Fayoum area, Malaria is also suggested. However there is only limited risk in this area.
When consuming Egyptian food, please be aware that there are many spices and ingredients which may not agree with a "foreign" stomach. Be especially careful of salads from places that are not trusted or advised. The methods of cleaning and/or cutting vegetables and produce may be questionable.
Try to drink bottled water. Any type, or kind, will do. Just be sure to read the label on the bottle to see how much TDS (Total Dissolved Salt) is contained. If the level is more than 200, do not buy it. That level is too high. In Egypt there are so many types of mineral water. Some are good, but a few types may cause stomach problems, diarrhoea, and other issues. To be safe, stick to water that has the least TDS as much as possible.
Regarding food, always eat in nice and clean places. You can try typical Egyptian food in so many reputable restaurants. Many web pages will provide you with this information, and you'll also find many recommendations in the forum.
If you are on a Nile cruise, do not brush your teeth with tap water. The cruise ships store tap water in tanks, of which can be stored for days. It is not always healthy for consumption, although it is fine to use to wash your face or to take a shower. Clean your teeth with mineral and/or bottled water.
Suggest washing hands after touching the money,
particularly the smaller notes which are really filthy or use
If you get sick, or need to consult a doctor, try the main hospitals
like El Salam Hospital, Dar El Fouad, New Kasr El Eini, and many
others. They have 24-hour clinics for emergencies, and they have good