(Arab Republic of Egypt)
جمهورية مصر العربية
Ǧumhūriyyat Maṣr al-ʿArabiyyah
- Location: Northeastern Africa
- Capital: Cairo
- Language: Arabic
- Population: 80,076,884
- Total Area: 1,002,448 sq km
- Currency: Egyptian Pound
- Curious Alcohol Fact: Although beers and wines are sold in shops and bars, coffee is the most popular drink in this Muslim nation.
- Annual Average Liquor Consumption Per Capita: 0.35 liters
- Most Popular Drink: Coffee (ahwa)
When I was preparing to visit Egypt, I was really ecstatic and you will soon know why. Ancient Egypt is regarded as the very origin of all civilizations in the world. For more than three thousand years, the ancient kings (called Pharaohs) ruled the region and their legacies are still very visible until this day. Egypt is a unique country; geographically, it belongs to Africa but politically, it is the heart of the Middle East. The capital is Cairo and is not only the largest city in the Middle East, but in Africa as well. Egypt is in the middle of the searing Sahara Desert but the good thing is that the River Nile serves the people. There is a common saying in the country: No Nile, No Egypt. That is very true.
I discovered an interesting thing about the population. Unlike many other African countries, Egypt can be described as very homogenous like Japan. Instead of the hundreds of ethnic groups in other African countries, over 90% of the citizens are full-blooded ethnic Egyptians, and there is a tiny population of Nubians (who came from Sudan), Greeks, Armenians and Italians. Most Egyptians settle along the banks of the Nile and the deserts are sparsely populated. Some Egyptian citizens like Boutros Boutros-Ghali (former United Nations Secretary General) and Naguib Mahfouz (the first Arab to receive the Nobel Prize for Literature) are known and respected all over the globe. I find the Egyptians to be very patriotic, warm and compassionate.
It is often said that Egypt is where it all began. If you visit certain sites in this fabulous country, you will surely agree with this. For anyone with a sense of history, the first place to visit is the breath-taking Great Pyramid at Giza. The majesty and grandeur of this ancient landmark cannot be fully described in writing. You need to see it yourself; for thousands of years, this Pyramid was the tallest manmade structure in the world and until today, scientists and archaeologists are still baffled as to how it was constructed. From the Pyramids and the Sphinx, you can take a trip to the Red Sea where you can enjoy typical Egyptian hospitality at the Sharm el-Sheikh Resort. Other places of outstanding beauty waiting for you include the Ancient Temple of Abu Simbel, Bibliotheca Alexandria, Cairo International Stadium, Cairo Opera House and the Valley of Kings.
All over Africa, the Egyptian national soccer team (named the Pharaohs) are both feared and respected for their superb performance on the field of play. The national team is one of the most successful on the continent and is consistently ranked high by FIFA. In many areas of the country, soccer is quite popular and local teams like Zamalek, El-Ahly and Ismaily command widespread admiration and support, especially from the youths.
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Special thanks to our contributors:
Adebayo Ahmed Adebola (Ilorin, Nigeria).
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