Events

Sun 07
  • Belly Dance Night at Ahlein
    Belly Dance Night at Ahlein
    Feb 07 9:00 pm to Feb 08 3:00 am - Ahlein
    JW Marriott Hotel Cairo's Ahlein welcomes one and all for quintessential Oriental night. For reservations, call 02-24115588.
  • Made in Bamboo at Bamboo
    Made in Bamboo at Bamboo
    Feb 07 10:00 pm to Feb 08 4:00 am - Bamboo
    Every Sunday, DJs 3bkarino, Kiko and Bob will be playing some of the hottest house tunes 'til the early hours at Bamboo - the club that never...
  • Soraya at Bab El Nil
    Soraya at Bab El Nil
    Feb 07 10:00 pm to Feb 14 2:00 am - Bab El Nil
    Catch belly dancing queen, Soraya, every night this week at Fairmont Nile City's Bab El Nil. For more information and reservations, call 02...
  • Zawya Short Film Festival at Cinema Karim
    Zawya Short Film Festival at Cinema Karim
    Feb 04 6:30 pm to Feb 07 9:00 pm - Cinema Karim, Emad El Din St., Downtown Cairo
    The inaugural edition of Zawya's new short film festival is set to screen 24 different pieces of work over a four day event, that will also...
  • Ice Age Live! at Cairo Stadium
    Ice Age Live! at Cairo Stadium
    Feb 03 7:00 pm to Feb 10 9:00 pm - Cairo International Stadium
    A hit all across the world, Ice Age Live! comes to Egypt, as the characters from the popular movie come to life for an eight-day run. For more...
Mon 08
  • Monday Night Salsa at Cheers
    Monday Night Salsa at Cheers
    Feb 08 9:00 pm to Feb 09 2:00 am - Cheers
    Maadi bar, Cheers, welcomes Salsa lovers for an evening of drinking and dancing, with Salsa instructor, Haitham El Hashemy, giving lessons...
  • Open Mic & Jam Night at the Tap
    Open Mic & Jam Night at the Tap
    Feb 08 10:00 pm to Feb 09 2:00 am - The Tap
    Musicians from across Cairo assemble once more for the Tap's Open Mic & Jam Night. For more information and reservations, call 0101 600...
  • Drum Circle at ROOM Art Space
    Drum Circle at ROOM Art Space
    Feb 08 9:00 pm to Feb 08 11:00 pm - ROOM Art Space
    Garden City's ROOM Art Space welcomes one and all for another drum circle where all attendees are encouraged to roll up their sleeves and get...
  • Karaoke Night at Overtime Bar & Restaurant
    Karaoke Night at Overtime Bar & Restaurant
    Feb 08 10:30 pm to Feb 09 2:00 am - Overtime Bar & Restaurant
    Mohandessin's Overtime Bar & Restaurant welcomes one and all for night of karaoke. For reservations, call 0122-0277-686 or...
  • Soraya at Bab El Nil
    Soraya at Bab El Nil
    Feb 07 10:00 pm to Feb 14 2:00 am - Bab El Nil
    Catch belly dancing queen, Soraya, every night this week at Fairmont Nile City's Bab El Nil. For more information and reservations, call 02...
Tue 09
  • 1901 Karaoke Street at Johnny's West
    1901 Karaoke Street at Johnny's West
    Feb 09 9:00 pm to Feb 10 2:00 am - Johnny
    Le Pacha 1901 West at Arkan Mall welcomes one and all for a night of karaoke at Johnny's. For reservations, call 01122208883.
  • Games Night at the Tap
    Games Night at the Tap
    Feb 09 9:00 pm to Feb 10 2:00 am - The Tap
    Fastest finger wins tonight at Maadi bar, the Tap, with table football, arcade game and F1 simulator tournaments! For reservations, call...
  • DJ Dina at After Eight
    DJ Dina at After Eight
    Feb 09 9:00 pm to Feb 10 3:00 am - After Eight
    Armed with an eclectic and diverse arsenal of music, DJ Dina takes her place behind the decks at Downtown Cairo's After Eight. For...
  • Jazz Extravaganza at Vintage Bar & Lounge
    Jazz Extravaganza at Vintage Bar & Lounge
    Feb 09 9:00 pm to Feb 10 12:00 am - Vintage Bar & Lounge
    The Rami Atallah Jazz Group and Noha Fekry provide the evening's entertainment at Vintage Bar & Lounge's weekly Jazz Extravaganza. For...
  • Diva's Night at Stage One
    Diva's Night at Stage One
    Feb 09 5:00 pm to Feb 10 2:00 am - Stage One
    Conrad Cairo's enduring bar, Stage One, welcomes the city's femme fatales for Diva's Night, where ladies get free cocktails between...
Wed 10
  • Ladies Night at Vintage Bar & Lounge
    Ladies Night at Vintage Bar & Lounge
    Feb 10 9:00 pm to Feb 11 2:00 am - Vintage Bar & Lounge
    Renaissance Cairo Mirage City Hotel's Vintage Bar & Lounge welcomes Cairo's femme fatales to let their hair down with Ladies Night....
  • Mafeesh Sa7ib Fe Bamboo at Bamboo
    Mafeesh Sa7ib Fe Bamboo at Bamboo
    Feb 10 10:00 pm to Feb 11 5:00 am - Bamboo
    Resident DJs 3abkarino, Kiko and Bob lead the charge with some Oriental music at Bamboo with Mafeesh Sa7ib Fe Bamboo. For reservations,...
  • Soraya at Bab El Nil
    Soraya at Bab El Nil
    Feb 07 10:00 pm to Feb 14 2:00 am - Bab El Nil
    Catch belly dancing queen, Soraya, every night this week at Fairmont Nile City's Bab El Nil. For more information and reservations, call 02...
  • Ice Age Live! at Cairo Stadium
    Ice Age Live! at Cairo Stadium
    Feb 03 7:00 pm to Feb 10 9:00 pm - Cairo International Stadium
    A hit all across the world, Ice Age Live! comes to Egypt, as the characters from the popular movie come to life for an eight-day run. For more...
  • 'Abstract Practices' at Al Masar Gallery
    'Abstract Practices' at Al Masar Gallery
    Jan 24 11:00 am to Feb 21 9:00 pm - Al Masar Gallery
    Zamalek's Al Masar Gallery hosts group exhibition, 'Abstract Practices', which has been curated with a view to shed a light on the...
Thu 11
  • Music Square at Le Passage Cairo Hotel
    Music Square at Le Passage Cairo Hotel
    Feb 11 5:00 pm to Feb 12 12:00 am - Le Passage Cairo Hotel & Casino, Cairo International Airport Rd, Heliopolis
    The likes Disco Misr, Abou Samra, ADRY & OMR, Rony Rex and Ahmet Kilic are set to strut their stuff at Tripventa's outdoor Music Square -...
  • The Fisherman's Hook at the State
    The Fisherman's Hook at the State
    Feb 11 7:00 pm to Feb 11 11:00 pm - The State
    Royal Maxim Palace Kempinski kicks off the weekend with a lavish seafood buffet at the State. 480LE+++ per person. For reservations, call...
  • Seafood Festival at Napa Grill
    Seafood Festival at Napa Grill
    Feb 11 7:00 pm to Feb 11 11:00 pm - Napa Grill
    Fairmont Nile City invite Cairo's seafood fans for an open buffet and live music in popular restaurant, Napa Grill. Entry is 250LE++ per...
  • Bamboo Night at Bamboo
    Bamboo Night at Bamboo
    Feb 11 10:00 pm to Feb 12 4:00 am - Bamboo
    Every Tuesday and Thursday, DJs 3bkarino, Kiko and Bob will be playing some of the hottest house tunes 'til the early hours at Bamboo - the...
  • Belly Dance Night at Ahlein
    Belly Dance Night at Ahlein
    Feb 11 9:00 pm to Feb 12 3:00 am - Ahlein
    JW Marriott Hotel Cairo's Ahlein welcomes one and all for quintessential Oriental night. For reservations, call 02-24115588.
Fri 12
  • The Big Friday Brunch at Night & Day
    The Big Friday Brunch at Night & Day
    Feb 12 1:00 pm to Feb 12 5:00 pm - Night & Day
    InterContinental Semiramis' Night & Day welcomes on and all for a lavish brunch buffet covering everything from Lebanese to Asian cuisine....
  • Karaoke Night at Vintage Bar & Lounge
    Karaoke Night at Vintage Bar & Lounge
    Feb 12 9:00 pm to Feb 13 3:00 am - Vintage Bar & Lounge
    Renaissance Cairo Mirage City Hotel's nightlife hotspot, Vintage, welcomes karaoke lovers for a night of unabashed fun. For reservations,...
  • Secret Friday at Bamboo
    Secret Friday at Bamboo
    Feb 12 10:00 pm to Feb 13 5:00 am - Bamboo
    Every Friday, DJs 3abkarino, Kiko and Bob spin on the decks of the after-dark hotspot, Bamboo, for a night of secretive fun. We won't say...
  • Soraya at Bab El Nil
    Soraya at Bab El Nil
    Feb 07 10:00 pm to Feb 14 2:00 am - Bab El Nil
    Catch belly dancing queen, Soraya, every night this week at Fairmont Nile City's Bab El Nil. For more information and reservations, call 02...
  • 'Abstract Practices' at Al Masar Gallery
    'Abstract Practices' at Al Masar Gallery
    Jan 24 11:00 am to Feb 21 9:00 pm - Al Masar Gallery
    Zamalek's Al Masar Gallery hosts group exhibition, 'Abstract Practices', which has been curated with a view to shed a light on the...
Sat 13
  • Saturday Karaoke at Cheers
    Saturday Karaoke at Cheers
    Feb 13 8:00 pm to Feb 14 2:00 am - Cheers
    Bring your friends (and maybe earplugs) to Cheers for the Maadi bar's weekly karaoke night. For reservations, call 01152228116.
  • Ladies Night at Graffiti
    Ladies Night at Graffiti
    Feb 13 9:00 pm to Feb 14 2:00 am - Graffiti
    Four Seasons Nile Plaza's Graffiti welcomes femme fatales of Cairo for its Ladies Night, with resident DJ, Roro, providing the music. For...
  • Soraya at Bab El Nil
    Soraya at Bab El Nil
    Feb 07 10:00 pm to Feb 14 2:00 am - Bab El Nil
    Catch belly dancing queen, Soraya, every night this week at Fairmont Nile City's Bab El Nil. For more information and reservations, call 02...
  • 'Abstract Practices' at Al Masar Gallery
    'Abstract Practices' at Al Masar Gallery
    Jan 24 11:00 am to Feb 21 9:00 pm - Al Masar Gallery
    Zamalek's Al Masar Gallery hosts group exhibition, 'Abstract Practices', which has been curated with a view to shed a light on the...
  • 'Life Notes' Exhibition at Picasso Gallery
    'Life Notes' Exhibition at Picasso Gallery
    Feb 03 10:30 am to Feb 18 9:00 pm - Picasso Gallery
    Acclaimed Egyptian artist, George Bahgoury, gives Cairo a glimpse of his illustrious career with his latest exhibition, Life Notes, at...

Highlights

Restaurants

Ravish: Cairo's Newest Burger Restaurant Lands in Heliopolis

Ravish: Cairo's Newest Burger Restaurant Lands in Heliopolis

Located in Korba, Heliopolis Ravish is the latest contestant to join the endless battle between gourmet burger restaurants in Cairo. From the chains and the empty bottles hanging on the wall to the small buckets placed on the tables, Ravish has an interior that has become typical of many burger places, with an unremarkable atmosphere, but the open kitchen gave it a different ambiance. With competition high, one would expect a variety of burgers on the menu, but what we found was some very basic options; out of 9 burgers, there are 3 mushroom burgers, the Signature Mushroom (55LE), Signature Mushroom and Bacon (63LE), and Provolone Cheese with Mushroom Saute (55LE). We decided to go with the Chicken burger (45LE) and the Spicy Mexican (55LE), but neither were available so we instead began with one of the more creative options, the Salmon Burger (68LE). Boasting a perfectly cooked piece of salmon, topped with lettuce, 'wasenasa' sauce which was very similar to wasabi mayo, and sliced avocado and mango cubes, the burger had something of the fried sushi about it and gave the burger exotic flavours. The only element of the combination was the tempura onion rings, which didn't meld with the other flavours. In addition, it was very oily and the batter didn't hold together. Moving to our second burger, the (160gm) Provolone Cheese and Mushroom Sauté burger (55LE) is possibly the best representation of what Ravish is all about. The beef patty was super juicy and seasoned well, but the melted Italian provolone cheese stole the show with its mouth-watering, gooey texture, which in turn complimented the sweetness of the onions and the earthy flavour of the sautéed mushrooms. The mayonnaise was a particular highlight, meanwhile; it tasted homemade and fresh and was free of artificial flavours. It gave the burger richness, which worked well with the fresh shredded lettuce. You can't eat burgers without fries, so tried the restaurant's Skin on Fries (15LE) which were unfortunately oily and were unremarkable, while the Green Mayo Dip (8LE) we ordered was just wasabi flavoured mayonnaise. The Sweet Potato Fries (18LE), however, were really tasty, but, again, it was super oily and lacked seasoning. The Bacon and Blue Cheese Dip (8LE) we ordered wasn't much of a dip, turning out to be bacon bits mixed with blue cheese and oil – but against all logic, it was a delicious combo that could work great on a burger. Due to the small size of the burger, we ordered another one and we went with the (160gm) Signature Mushroom and Bacon burger (63LE). It tasted exactly the same as the provolone cheese and mushroom, but instead of cheese we got bacon. We finished our meal with Torrjas with Vanilla Ice Cream, Bananas and Nuts (50LE), which is a burger bun soaked in milk and eggs then fried, not unlike French toast. The exterior of the bun had a beautiful colour to it and the cinnamon and sugar coat worked incredibly well with the fresh bananas, the creaminess of the ice cream and the nuts, which gave it a crunch. However, the center was very soggy and lacked any real flavour. This was further compounded by the fact that the promised drizzled caramel was missing because it was out of stock. Overall, our visit to Ravish proved to be a very pricey one, with average results. Had Ravish opened two years ago, it might have impressed, but with today's competition, it fails to bring anything new to an already very crowded table.

Health & Fitness

Staying Fit in Cairo: 10 Alternative Workouts & Exercise Routines You Should Know About

Staying Fit in Cairo: 10 Alternative Workouts & Exercise Routines You Should Know About

Contrary to popular belief, exercising doesn't have to be a grueling chore – even in Cairo. For many, the biggest barrier to exercising regularly is commitment, but when a workout has an element of fun to it, exercising crosses the threshold and becomes a hobby. There's another barrier, though, that have lead many to believe that the increasing number of unconventional and creative workouts aren't as effective as more traditional ones – which is just plain nonsense as these ten alternative workouts prove. 1. Pole Dancing Combining both cardio and strength training in one, pole dancing not only builds the upper body strength but beginners can burn between 250 and 400 calories in one 60 monute session, in addition to improving flexibility through moves like splits and backbends. You can attend pole dancing fitness classes in Pole Fit Studio, which, as you'd expect, is for ladies only. 2. Piloxing It might sound made-up, but mixing boxing with pilates and dancing, Piloxing is a full-package exercise that burns plenty of calories, helps the body build leaner muscle and increases stamina. Piloxing classes are available at Powerhouse Gym, Gold's Gym and Fight & Fitness Factory. 3. Cheerobics Cheerleading to burn calories? We know what you're thinking; only cheerobics is so much more than just a dancing class. Combining cardio and aerobics alongside cheerleading techniques, Cheerobics is a fitness-focused workout designed to help you burn fats and increasing your muscle strength. Attend Cheerobics classes at Cheerobics Egypt or at Fly Fit Fitness Center. 4. Jumping Fitness 'Jumping-off' excess weight is apparently the new thing in town, as the trampoline-based exercise provides a full body workout on the beats of bouncy music. Jumping fitness is increasing in popularity in Cairo and it can burn up to 800 calories per hour. Try jumping fitness exercises at Gold's Gym or at BeFit Egypt. 5. Jazzercise One of the more established workouts on this list, Jazzercise combines dancing, pilates, kickboxing and even yoga in one fun, energetic and surprisingly thorough workout. Jazzercise can be found at Titans Gym and Gold's Gym and has become a standard workout offered by most gyms in Cairo. 6- Air Yoga / Aerial Flow Yoga Also known as the anti-gravity yoga, Air Yoga combines conventional yoga poses and postures alongside a dose of dancing and pilates – but we haven't even got to the good part yet; you perform all of your moves while hanging entangled in a yoga swing. Aerial yoga is a full physical activity that not only engages all your muscles but also allows you to experience, well the joy of flying – kind of. Air Yoga classes are available at On the Mat Studio. 7. Kick Boxing Ignoring the competitive sport aspect of it, kick boxing provides a full body workout that not only helps burn almost 10 to 15 calories per minute, but also provides total toning for the body – because that's just what kicking and punching does. Kickboxing classes are available at Fight Club, Fitbox and Body Shapers Egypt. 8. Brazilian Hip Workout An intense workout for the gluteus and the hip areas, Brazilian Hip Workout helps you develop a toned, stronger shape. The Brazilian Hip Workout routine includes wall-sit, glute-bridge and bodyweight squats that trim the entire lower body part for a fiercer derriere. Brazilian Hip Workouts are available at Body Shapers Egypt. 9. Salsa & Zumba Dancing your way to fitness is no longer news. For years, people who shied away from generic gym workouts resorted to Latin dance classes –the likes of salsa, rumba and samba- or joined the Zumba craz. Latin and Zumba workouts combine dynamic aerobics workouts with Latin and Indian dance moves. Toned body, stronger muscles and increased stamina are the benefits of these fun and energetic workouts. You can attend Salsa and Zumba workouts at Ladies' only fitness facility, Hers, Fit My Way or check out Zumba Instructors in Egypt for classes' schedule and locations. 10. Yogalates Also known as Hatha Yoga, Yogalates combines a number of yoga poses alongside challenging standing and floor workouts. Yogalates is a total body toner exercise that helps with weight loss as well as toning and shaping the body while maintaining satisfying that yoga experience that acts as a natural detox for the body. Yogalates classes are available at Fit My Way.

Cafés

Sun Shadow: A Dissapointing Visit to Manial's Blue Blue Bay

Sun Shadow: A Dissapointing Visit to Manial's Blue Blue Bay

When visiting one of the many restaurants or cafes in Cairo, we're taught by the Cairo 360 editors to never enter with personal expectations – to take something for what it is and judge it on what it promises and how well it delivers. Sometimes, however, you can't help but be effected by a first impression, especially if that first impression is a negative one – something that we couldn't get away from when stepping foot in Manial-located cafe, Sun Shadow. As part of the bay-shaped, Nile-side mall, Blue Blue Bay – so blue they named it twice, clearly – Sun Shadow benefits from a nice view and its large outdoor seating area. The décor and general aesthetic of Sun Shadow tries to replicate that of a Parisian café, but beyond its Eiffel tower-shaped logo, it's a pretty standard, though pleasant, Cairo café set-up – think wicker chairs, wood flooring and dim lighting. The same can be said of the menu; everything from coffees, juices and (virgin) cocktails, to pizzas, sandwiches and desserts and it's the unusual cocktails that caught our eye first, with the café offering peculiar drinks such as mango lemonade and mint & peach (24LE each) – we plumped for a pina colada (24LE), which took an eternity to arrive. When it did arrive it was nothing more than a banana milkshake, which was sent swiftly back, only to return with pineapple and coconut in the banana-milk mixture – still very much not a pina colada. We tried our luck with a lemon and mint smoothie (24LE) but it too wasn't quite up to standard, with the distinct flavours of the two main components being rather faint. Hoping the food would fare better, we ordered a hotdog tortilla sandwich (24LE) which is exactly what it sounds like. Unfortunately the whole thing seems to have been left on the fire for too long; in addition to the slices of bell peppers inside the sandwich being burnt – not charred, but burnt – the whole thing was very heavy and greasy. The chicken pasta (32LE) disappointed, too; served in a white sauce, the chicken was overcooked and very much under-seasoned, leaving the whole dish pretty flat in taste. Meanwhile, a poor chicken pizza (32LE) rounded off an all-round frustrating experience; there was next to know tomato sauce or cheese on what was a very thick base. With a location that many cafes and restaurants owners would die for, we were hoping for more from Sun Shadow; but then the fact that we were privy to infighting between the staff and the fact that the floor was covered in a fine layer of dust, our visit seems to have been doomed from the start.

Arts & Culture

Al Masar Gallery: 'Abstract Practices' Group Exhibition

Al Masar Gallery: 'Abstract Practices' Group Exhibition

Located in the beautiful Baehler's mansion in Zamalek, Al Masar Gallery is currently hosting Abstract Practices; a group exhibition bringing together the work of a selection pioneering contemporary Egyptian Artists. Abstract art came to be 1910 and 1920, with the artwork of Piet Mondrian and Kazimir Malevich setting the motion for a movement that has come to be one of the most divisive elements in contemporary art. It's a form of art that has often been misunderstood and therefore challenged by society for involving unconventional styles and for focusing more on shape, colour, form and line rather than portraying an image recognisable to the human-eye – something that it still faces to a certain degree in Egypt. Portraying a segment of artists' life in Egypt, Abstract Practices is a welcomingly eclectic collection, featuring abstract paintings, sculptures and silk screen graphic art. 'Escaping The Light' is one particularly intriguing painting which takes form on a large canvas (80x120) and is completely immersed in thick layers of oil paint, which appears to have been applied using a palette knife. Looking closely at the layers, the colours don't mix into one another, meaning that each layer of oil paint might have taken months to dry before the next one was applied. Made from polished chrome bronze, Essam Darwich's sculpture is another interesting piece which seems like a large slab of chocolate, for lack of a more explicit description, with its shiny exterior and subtle wave form. Further into the gallery, Fouad Kamel –who uses oil on canvas- demonstrates his approach to abstract art through a shattered glass effect, using shades of blue mixed with white and black creating a shimmering impression. Perhaps the most colourful and aesthetically pleasing piece, however, is an oil painting by Said El Adawi, which shows a series of abstract bizarre alien shapes amplified by their vivid colours and evoking various interpretations from the audience. Al Masar Gallery is a fantastic space for displaying art due to its spacious complex and authentic design; a venue that's notorious for putting on a grand exhibition of Egypt's ground-breaking artists. 'Abstract Practices' might not be the most prolific exhibition, yet it is a true portrayal of how far Egypt's contemporary artists have come. 

Shopping

Africano Gallery: Accessories & Gifts from India, Thailand & More at Zamalek Shop

Africano Gallery: Accessories & Gifts from India, Thailand & More at Zamalek Shop

Cairo has its faults, but there are few capital cities in the regions that are as eclectic and unpredictable – the good kind of predictable, of course. Well, most of the time. It's something that has carried over to the city's shopping scene; these days, across local and international retailers, you can find almost everything and anything in Egypt's capital – in fact, everything and anything describes Africano Gallery fairly aptly. Located on Zamalek's El Gezirah El Wosta Street, the shop is rather hidden, located at the top of a set of side-stairs in its building. Once you see it, though, it hits you; Africano Gallery sports a big front window displaying what look like African, Indian and classic-style antiquities. The interior is simple, with its range of products spread out over its two-floor space, the first of which primarily houses accessories and gifts for men and women. The first thing that stood out was a table in the corner with a colourful display of handmade Indian beaded necklaces for 110LE each – and yes, they were actually made in India. Same goes for the Indian bracelets which go for 85LE – which is staggering when you consider that the same brand and model of bracelet for up to 350LE at a certain Zamalek shop on Ismail Mohamed Street. Men aren't as lucky with the shop's collection, however; some of the stock including metallic chains (15LE) and others made of a kind of faux-ivory (10LE). These things in particular look as cheap as they are and stood out like a sore-thumb amongst the other more tasteful accessories in the shop. The second floor is considerably grander, holding the more antiquated pieces as well as home accessories. Some of the items that caught our eye include decorative Indian pieces that look something akin to a cross between a dreamcatcher and an oversized pendant which shows a scene of a chain of elephants (65LE). Some Thai-made wooden wind chimes, in several sizes, also tickled our fancy, with the smallest selling for 125LE. Also on the list of must-checkout items at Africano Gallery are the shop's lamps, the best of which are made either of wood or copper; of the latter material, a Thai lamp in the form of a carved elephant head stood out (275LE) for its intricacy and detail, as well as its natural wooden finish. The copper ones, meanwhile, take on a more classic in appearance, with one of the standout ones including a pair shaped like classic torches (350LE for the pair). As much as we were impressed and initially struck by the quirkiness of Africano Gallery, we can't help the fact that the worst stuck in our heads more than the best did and that you'd find much of the shop's stock in other similar stores. Despite this, there were a few outstanding pieces.

Sights & Travel

6 Local Travel Groups That Will Help You Fall in Love with Egypt Again

6 Local Travel Groups That Will Help You Fall in Love with Egypt Again

Whichever side of the divisive #ThisIsEgypt campaign, there's no doubt that Egypt is filled with culturally rich landmarks and captivating attractions, not to mention marvellous hidden spots from the Eastern tip with all its underwater Red Sea wonders – Marsa Alam, Dahab and Sinai to name a few – to the Western end, which is home the incredibly peaceful and primitive Oasis that is Siwa. Outside of international tourism, though, we are guilty of not truly appreciating and embracing Egypt's lesser mainstream locations. If you're eager to discover Egypt through a different lens, though there are travel initiatives and companies that can kick-start your local tourism adventures. 1- Astrotrips: Founded in 2014, Astrotrips is Egypt's first astronomy initiative organising astronomy and exploratory trips. Founded by a team of travellers passionate about astronomy and discovering the untapped marvels in Egypt, Astrotrips combine cosmological flair with travelling to some of the more remote areas of the country. Astrotrips Upcoming Trips: Astrotrips' end of the year program includes hiking and observing constellations at Egypt's biggest summit, Saint Catherine Mountain on the 17th of December or camping at Wadi Baa'baa in Sinai on Christmas Eve; only make sure you book early as their trips sell out quickly. For more information about Astrotrips, click here. 2- Amaken Trips Amaken is another up-and-coming travel group, promising to provide travellers with exciting vacations alongside some cultural and natural education across Egypt. Amaken have taken their travellers across the Red Sea to Marsa Alam, Nuweiba, Dahab and many other destinations. Upcoming Trips: Join Amaken Trips' on the 17th of December, for a soothing meditation retreat to Nubia or sign up at their eventful trip to Siwa Oasis taking off on December 23rd. For more information about Amaken trips, click here. 3- Desert Adventures Egypt A travel group specialising in desert excursions from the east to west, Desert Adventures organises camping trips and safaris for travellers looking for a safe, exciting and relaxing desert expeditions across Egypt. Desert Adventures holds camping trips at Samuel Dunes in the Western desert, Safari trips in Sinai, Bedouin dinners at Cairo's Wadi Degla protectorate and many others. Upcoming Trips: Join Desert Adventures this New Year's on their 5 day trip to Siwa, taking off on December 29th. Follow Desert Adventures' upcoming trips right here. 4- Wild Guanabana Founded by Omar Samra, Egypt's most popular adventurer and travelling guru and the first Arab to reach Mount Everest summit, Wild Guanabana has been one of the top go-to travel initiatives if you're looking for a perfect unforgettable travelling journeys in Egypt and around the world. From climbing Kilimanjaro, experiencing the Berber life in Marrakech or a yoga retreat in Nepal, sightseeing in Cambodia and Thailand or mountain biking on Zaafarana road, Wild Guanabana's trips in and outside the borders will please every type of adventurer. Upcoming Trips: Join Wild Guanabana's Kayaking trip to Fayoum on December 24th and stay updated with their busy schedule of travels right here. 5- Kites From camping in the beautiful picturesque Wadi El Rayan, chilling in Nuweiba, or exciting safari trips in the desert, Kites is another local travelling initiative catering to all types of travellers. Upcoming trips: Kites December trips calendar includes a Nile cruise to Luxor and Aswan on December 18th, a camping trip to Wadi El Hitan on the 25th, whereas their end-of-the-year expedition begins on December 29th with their new year's trip to Siwa. For more information about Kites, click here. 6- Tourisma Another go-to local travel group if you're passionate about nature and adventure. Tourisma promises its travellers exciting safari trips exploring Egypt's deserts, diving into their mystical caves and admiring their nature. Within each trip, Tourisma organises fun games and activities to keep their travelers entertained at all times. Upcoming trips: Join Tourisma on their sandboarding trip to Wadi El Rayan on December 25th or on their New Year's trip to Ras Shetan and Saint Catherine on December 30th. For more information about Tourisma, click here. (Photo: Wild Guanabana/Facebook)

City Life

Rise of Her: All-Day Event to Bring Together Egypt's Most Inspiring Entrepreneurs

Rise of Her: All-Day Event to Bring Together Egypt's Most Inspiring Entrepreneurs

From juggling a professional life with motherhood, to combating gender stereotypes and the 'glass ceiling', women in the workplace have always faced countless obstacles – none more so than in Egypt. With the aim of empowering and inspiring Egyptian women to prosper in the professional life, Rise of Her is a woman-centred event, bringing together successful female entrepreneurs from different fields under one roof. Taking place on Saturday 6th of February at the Greater Cairo Library in Zamalek Palace, Rise of Her is an all-day extravaganza of sorts, featuring workshops, roundtable discussions, case studies and presentations, with some of the country's most professionally successful and daring sharing their stories with attendees. Ahead of what is shaping up to be a day that is as important as it is eventful, we sat down with a few of the featured Rise of Her speakers, whose inspiring stories are vital to the event. Believing that one can achieve anything they want at any point and that age is never a constraint, Omneya Habaka is one such figure, having taken a leap of faith at the age of 48 when she left her secure job at the Embassy of South Africa to pursue her passion in human development. Inspired by what she came to know about the role of women in South Africa, Habaka studied psychology, human resources and life coaching as she embarked on a new chapter of her life. "It is never too late to do something new as long as you are still breathing," Habaka told us enthusiastically. After becoming certified in the fields of life coaching, career development and career training, Habaka started her own company, Persona Career Development and Coaching, to support both individuals and businesses in achieving their own vision of success. Ex-banker and mother of two, Yasmine Ebeid, took a similar, though arguably bolder, step in quitting her corporate job to pursue her passion of becoming a professional make-up artist. After earning a makeup diploma from the UK, Ebeid came back with the hope of establishing her own makeup business; only with this particular field already prospering in Cairo, the road wasn't all easy. Ebeid was not daunted by the competition, nevertheless. For her, the diversity of the field is what makes the challenge worthwhile. "Every make-up artist has her own unique way. Professional makeup artists should work with whatever budget they have without jeopardizing the final look or lessening the quality of the materials used," Ebeid told us. Former child speech therapist, Reham Hegazy, went against the tide, too, when she decided to follow photography as a profession. After studying photography, Hegazy launched PROPS photography , where she photographs children, pregnant women and women of different shapes and sizes. "My work aims to project the real beauty of women that lies within and far beyond the looks," Hegazy said, adding that she is determined to show that all women are beautiful in their own way. Among the other examples, Heba Adel's new career choice is possibly one of the most abstract – but that didn't stop her. Convinced that adults need to channel their stress in something that is beneficial which can also increase their mental clarity, Adel founded Color Land, which, as the name suggests, produces colouring books for adults, with two books, Color Me Calm and Color Me Happy, doing remarkably well. "Colouring has proved to be a great stress reliever," she explained. "We offer clients the chance to take the pattern they coloured and transform it to a wooden tableau to hang on their walls." Yasmine Al Marakby is another who left a secure job, as she chose to follow a career as a wedding photographer. Working with self-taught techniques several courses and classes, Al Marakby started her own business two years ago for weddings and fashion photography. Capitalizing on the experience and stories of women in the workforce, Rise of Her is one of Cairo's most anticipated events; one that promises to inspire. For more information on Rise of Her, click here.

Film

The Boy: Occasionally Scary, Often Creepy, Mostly Silly

The Boy: Occasionally Scary, Often Creepy, Mostly Silly

From Chucky in Child's Play to the Clown doll in Poltergeist, there's nothing there's nothing quite as creepy as silent doll coming to life as a sort of a blood-thirsty monster. Sadly, the The Boy is not as scary as you its premise promises and, although relatively high on the creep-front, it doesn't fully realise its ambitious ideas and get to the end without stumbling over. The plot tells of Greta Evans (The Walking Dead's Lauren Cohan), who in escaping an abusive relationship decides to leave her home in Montana, U.S.A, heads to rural England, where she's to work as a nanny for elderly couple, Mr. Heelshires (Norton) and Mrs. Heelshires (Hardcastle) at their country house to care for their eight-year-old son, Brahms. However, when she gets there, Greta is shocked to learn that Brahms is no ordinary boy, but in fact a life-size porcelain doll. At first, Greta is taken back by the discovery and thinks that she's part of some sort of prank, but she quickly realises that the pained-looking couple treat the doll as their son and even provide Greta with a strict set of rules that she must follow if she is to care for him well. Naturally, it doesn't take long before a series of strange events begin to occur around the house when the Heelshires leave her to go on their well-deserved break, forcing Greta – along with the help of potential love interest, Malcom (Evans) – to look into Brahms' troubled and shady past. While there are a couple of genuinely creepy moments of terror to recall, The Boy mostly relies on its mood – impressively restrained at first and unsurprisingly threadbare towards the end – and the predictable jump-scares to indeed make you jump nonetheless. Turning what is often a refreshingly subdued and an atmospheric film into a dreadfully insipid story of a creepy life-size porcelain doll and its predictably helpless nanny – Cohan is not as terrible as one might think - the suspense surrounding Brahms is conveyed in a relatively convincing way. However, the sheer ridiculousness that unravels within some of the scenes takes the shine off the film, so to speak, even inciting an unintentional laugh or two. This is no more apparent than with an equally ridiculous third-act twist, which seems motivated only by setting up a sequel.
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