After a few years of low tourism in Giza, the tides are turning as the political situation has calmed down, and tourists are returning in larger numbers.
While it may seem straightforward to get around (you can see the pyramids from parts of Cairo after all), navigating the area can sometimes be complicated, and there are often people around that are out to scam you or make a buck.
These tips should help you get around smoothly and safely:
Giza is only a 30-minute cab ride from Cairo International Airport (CAI) and dozens of international airlines fly directly to Cairo from Asia, Europe, North and South America, and other parts of Africa.
If you’re just coming to see the pyramids and not staying long, you can just hail a cab when you arrive, or arrange a transfer in advance with your hotel.
If you’re already in Cairo, Line 1 and Line 2 of the Cairo Metro get you from downtown Cairo to Giza.
With Line 1, exit at El-Malek El-Saleh and walk west across the bridges. If you take Line 2 (the first subway to tunnel under the Nile), exit at Faisal.
Most visitors prefer taxis; just be certain to negotiate the fare before you get in the cab.
If you’re heading out from your hotel, be sure to ask your doorman to arrange a ride that will actually get you where you want to go (and not just close to where you want to go).
In Giza, both Dokki and Mohandessin are considered affluent areas, but as in any part of Cairo (especially with the current unrest) remain alert and aware of your surroundings.
If your instincts say “dodgy,” it’s probably best to bypass that street or shop. Women should not walk alone anywhere after dark.
Expats and visiting foreigners are common sights in Giza, but that doesn’t mean a respite from the touts and other scam artists. Ignore would-be tour guides (especially around the pyramids) and walk the streets with purpose.
If somebody prompts you with a question, just smile, say “nothing” and keep walking.
Don’t forget, Egypt is a Muslim country and modest dress is appropriate, which translates to no shorts for men or women, and nothing sleeveless or low-cut.
Finally, to avoid the odd chance that you get lost, be sure to take a business card from your hotel with its name and address written in Arabic to smooth the return trip.