In the Beginning - Cairo

Hello Family and Friends!

I have currently completed the first 4 weeks of my travels and I thought it might be time to update everyone. Ofcourse the best place to start is Cairo, my first destination, where I spent 3 days from the 4th to the 6th of January, before the city became riot central!

After arriving at 5am in the morning, Shaun and I were unprepared for the smooth talking Egyptians awaiting our arrival. As soon as we got off the plane uniformed men approached us from all directions claiming that they were official tourist guides, inviting us into their shops (which were nowhere to be seen), pointing off into the distance (at what appeared to be car rental places), and instructing us to follow. In downtown Cairo, as white tourists - we stood out like a sore thumb. This was not missed by the Egyptian salesmen lurking the streets. Every few meters we would hear the lines "are you looking for a guide", "please follow me to see my business card", "I am a struggling artist", "What are you looking for?".

After getting over the (slightly humorous) haggling our next shock was the driving. Our first taxi ride involved our bags rolling around on the roof of an old black taxi which didn't look fit for road use, weaving through the streets of Cairo at a crazy speed. The cars weave in and out, around each other, almost touching, almost toppling over, and yet never seeming to make a dent. Seatbelts, speed limits and lanes are non-existent, and sleeping during a few seconds wait is the norm.

Our First Egyptian Meal with
Yummy Foul (Beans) and
Falafel and Dips!

Cairo at Night

Outisde the Egyptian Museum

 Our second day in Cairo we hired a tour guide to take us to Memphis (The location of the old kingdom), Saqqara (The ground for the new pharaoh's coronation), The Step Pyramid (The first Pyramid) and the Giza Pyramids. It was beautiful and breathtaking. 

Statue of Ramses II at Memphis

The Entrance to Saqqara
The Ruins of Saqqara


The Step Pyramid

The Great Pyramid of Giza

On our third day we explored Old Islamic Cairo wandering through the crowded markets. As we walked through the market there were constant calls of "welcome to Egypt", "where are you from" and then "Aussie Aussie Aussie...Captain Cook.....John Howard". While the Egyptians themselves were very helpful directing us, making jokes, and finding us whatever item we could possibly want, they did not turn out to be so fantastic at recommending food. Finding a toilet on the dirty streets of Cairo was not ideal!

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