Egypt proves popular for Eid

According to the latest regional travel data, Egypt is becoming an increasingly popular travel destination among travellers from Bahrain for the Eid Al Fitr break. ‘Egypt has become an increasingly attractive destination offering a striking change of pace for Bahraini travellers,’ said Ahmed El Khadem, Chairman of the Egyptian Tourist Authority.

Egypt features the most sublime and unmissable antiquities on earth as well as spectacular resort destinations with some of the world’s most spectacular scuba diving spots. For Bahraini nationals and Arab expats Cairo has a rich Eid Al Fitr offering of popular music and theatre, the latest Egyptian cinema releases and cosmopolitan dining.

El Khadem underscored that the common language and religion, shared values and tastes, the close proximity and Egypt’s relaxed, vibrant atmosphere have made Egypt the perennial favourite for short break holidays for Bahrainis and Arabs living and working in the Bahrain. According figures from the Egyptian Tourism Authority 15,000 Bahrainis visited Egypt last year with expectations that this figure will increase for 2006.

According to the United Nation’s World Tourism Organization (UNWTO) 2005 Index, Egypt is one of only two Arab countries (along with Saudi Arabia) to rank in the world’s top 25 tourism destinations during 2004. The UNWTO’s Global Tourism Highlights 2005 stated that within the Middle East, Egypt recorded the biggest increase in the region, with visitor arrivals increasing by more than 2 million arrivals (+34%) to over 8 million (including some 5% of same-day visitors).

Long considered the entertainment capital of the Arab world, Egypt has undertaken an extensive tourism development program aimed at expanding and upgrading its already rich offering with a special focus on short break holidays for GCC visitors. While Cairo, with its rich mix of nightlife, shopping and leisure activities, has always been the traditional stopping place for Bahraini visitors, the spectacular tourism developments of Sharm El Sheikh and Hurghada and the planned development of the Mediterranean coast, have become increasingly attractive getaways.

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Over the last year, tourism to Egypt has increased sharply, particularly around major holiday seasons, with Cairo and Sharm El Sheikh ranking as the top two travel destinations.

Gulf Air and Egypt Air offer daily non-stop flights to Cairo as well as non-stop flights to Alexandria.

- The Egyptian Tourism Authority has an ambitious strategic programme which aims to double visitor numbers from 8 million in 2004, to 16 million in 2014.

- In 2005, International Tourist Arrivals (ITAs) reached a record high of over 8.6 million, an increase of 6% on 2004.

- Archive press releases, fact sheets and free to download images can be found on www.press.egypt.travel
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