One of the most iconic and mysterious Seven Wonders of the Ancient World (and the only one still standing), the Pyramids of Giza—the Great Pyramid of Khufu, Pyramid of Khafre, and Pyramid of Menkaure—still live up to more than 4,000 years of hype. Seeing these three fourth-dynasty pyramids and their guardian Great Sphinx rising from the Giza Plateau is a must on any trip to Cairo (and the reason many travelers find themselves in Egypt).
Few structures on the planet are as immediately recognizable as the Giza Pyramids, and travelers have several options for visiting these wonders of ancient Egypt. Most see them on a full-day tour from Giza or Cairo; these tours often also include a Nile River cruise or stops at other sights such as Memphis, the Egyptian Museum, and the Khan El Khalili Bazaar. Once at the pyramid site, explore the pyramid complex on foot, or choose to take in the view from afar with a camel ride (a great photo opportunity). Those who visit on their own should keep in mind that there are separate entrance fees for the complex and each individual pyramid.
Remember to wear closed-toe shoes and modest clothing at the pyramids.Be prepared for plenty of sun; bring along a hat, sunscreen, and water to stay comfortable.Choosing a private tour will allow you to customize your experience.Leave yourself plenty of free time to explore.
How to Get There
While a guided tour from Cairo or Giza is the easiest and most convenient way to see the pyramids, it’s also possible to visit independently by taking a taxi or public bus from downtown Cairo or the Giza metro station along Pyramids Road.
When to Get There
The winter months (late November to early February) tend to bring optimal weather; in summer, expect temperatures in the 90s F. Keep in mind how traveling during Ramadan could impact your plans, and note that Fridays, a traditional day of rest in Egypt, tend to be a bit quieter at the Great Pyramids of Giza.
How to Avoid Scams and Touts at the Giza Pyramids
The main entrance to the pyramids is often crowded with pushy souvenir vendors, touts, and taxi drivers looking for a fare. To gain the assistance of a professional guide and avoid looking for vendors on the spot, it’s best to book your tour in advance, but if arriving by taxi, ask your driver to take you to the vehicle entrance, where there are fewer touts but still opportunities to book horse riding, camel riding, or carriage tours. You may also come across unofficial guides who claim you must tour the complex with them; this is not true.