Christmas in Egypt and New Year are the most important holidays for most people. They are celebrated in many ways worldwide, but each country has special celebrations. For example, Americans celebrate Christmas with their families, exchanging gifts and eating a big turkey dinner on December 25. In Egypt, however, many different traditions make this holiday special.
Egypt is a popular vacation location, with many tourists arriving over the holiday season. In addition to its rich history and culture, Egypt is an excellent destination for Christmas and New Year’s festivities.
The origins of Christmas date back to AD 250 when it was celebrated on December 25 by early Christians who believed Jesus Christ was born on that day. Nowadays, individuals celebrate Christmas in various ways. However, they often share traditions such as Christmas trees (seen across Egypt), gifts for children, and family feasts with friends or relatives.
Here is everything you need to know about enjoying Christmas and New Year in this beautiful country!
Top Egypt Christmas Tours:
Didn’t you find your favorite tour? Design it now within 2 minutes.
History and Significance of Christmas and New Year in Egypt
Egypt celebrates Christmas and the New Year distinctively as a nation with a rich history and culture.
When you visit Egypt around this time of year, you will see many Christmas and New Year’s Eve (or “New Year’s Day”) decorations. You’ll also notice a lot of lights on buildings across the city and “Christmas trees” inside stores, which have nothing to do with Religion. Lailat al Mirriam (“Miriam’s Night”) is an old Egyptian festival in which people lit candles inside jars filled with water so that everyone might rejoice together even if they could not afford additional decorations.
Christmas and New Year festivities are pretty popular in Egypt. These celebrations are observed on December 25, Jesus Christ’s birthday, and Christmas Eve (December 24), sometimes called the Nativity or Birth of Christ.
Today, people celebrate by attending church and listening to stories about how Jesus was born. They give each other gifts such as toys and clothes or food like cakes or cookies with icing sugar on top! Some families have fun together playing games like hide-and-go-seek, where one person hides while everyone else tries to find them by calling out their name until he comes back out again!
Step into history with our Classical Egypt Tours. Secure your booking now for an unforgettable journey through time!
Unique Egyptian traditions during Christmas and New Year
The unique Egyptian Christmas and New Year traditions reflect the country’s rich cultural heritage and religious diversity. These celebrations offer a chance for Egyptians to come together, share meals, and exchange gifts while celebrating the joy and hope these holidays bring.
Egypt, a country rich in history and culture, has some unique and fascinating traditions during Christmas and New Year. Despite being a predominantly Muslim country, these holidays are celebrated with great enthusiasm and spirit.
On New Year’s Eve, Egyptians decorate their homes and streets with lights, ornaments, and fireworks. One unique tradition is the “Sham el-Nessim” festival, celebrated the day after the Coptic Orthodox Easter. It is a time to celebrate the arrival of spring and enjoy picnics with family and friends. Children receive gifts from Baba Noel (Santa Claus).
The celebrations are also celebrated in churches and mosques, where people gather to pray for peace on earth during this holiday season. In addition, Egyptians have unique traditions, such as lighting candles at home on Christmas Eve or decorating palm trees with colorful lights during the holiday season, which lasts until January 6!
Popular places to visit in Egypt during the holiday season
Egypt is a popular tourist destination all year, but the country’s tourist spots get even more exciting and magical during the holidays. Here are some of Egypt’s most popular holiday destinations:
- Cairo: During the holiday season, you have to go to Cairo. The city is decorated with lights and ornaments, and the famous Tahrir Square is turned into a holiday wonderland. You can see the city’s decorations and lights from the Cairo Tower.
- Luxor: The Valley of the Kings, Karnak Temple, and Luxor Temple are three of Egypt’s most well-known ancient sites, all of which are in Luxor. These places are lit with Christmas lights during the holidays, making the atmosphere even more impressive.
- Sharm El Sheikh: is a beach town on the coast of the Red Sea. Visitors can enjoy the warm weather, clear water, and white sand beaches while taking in the holiday decorations around town.
- Alexandria: During the holiday season, the city is full of lights and decorations that make it feel like a party.
- St. Catherine’s Monastery: is one of the oldest working Christian monasteries in the world, and it is at the foot of Mount Sinai. People can attend the midnight mass during the holiday season, which adds to the spiritual and cultural experience.
Traditional Egyptian food and drinks during Christmas and New Year
Egyptian Christmas and New Year’s food and beverages show the country’s unique cultural history and culinary traditions. These foods and drinks are not only delicious, but they also have a special place in the hearts of Egyptians when they get together to celebrate the joy and spirit of the holiday season.
“Fata,” made with rice, bread, lamb, and garlic sauce, is one of the most popular dishes around Christmas. It is a hearty and tasty meal often served at the Holy Nativity Feast. Molokhia, a green leafy vegetable soup served with rice and chicken, is another popular dish.
Egyptians like to eat “Kahk,” a shortbread cookie filled with dates or nuts and dusted with powdered sugar. It is a traditional Christmas and New Year’s Eve treat; family and friends often share it.
Egyptians love to drink “Sobia,” a sweet, creamy drink from coconut milk often served during the holidays. “Karkadeh” is a popular hibiscus tea often served hot or cold.
Embark on an affordable adventure with our Cheap Holidays to Egypt. Reserve your budget-friendly getaway today!
How is the weather in Egypt at Christmas (Egypt’s weather in December)?
Egypt and cold weather don’t seem to go together. But be careful because, in January, it can get as complicated as -10°F. But only when it’s dark. You should bring a warm sweater or jacket for the evenings in December, January, and February.
Even in the winter, the Sea is warmer than 20 degrees, so you can swim. Even in the shade, the sun can warm the air to at least 23 degrees.
This means that in the sun, it can be over 30 degrees, but the wind is cold. But the hotel building primarily blocks the wind on the beach and around the pools.
Tips for excursions at Christmas time in Egypt
- Especially around Christmas, it’s a good idea to go on trips to see how the Coptic Christians lived.
- Another great thing about Cairo is the rock church, which you can only get to by driving through the “garbage district.” People from Egypt live here and sort trash to make a living.
- Since Luxor is always a little warmer, the calmer times are the best times to go there. Now that the weather is nice, you can see the Valley of the Kings, which has no shade.
- In the winter, a trip into the desert by quad or jeep is much more fun than in the summer.
- Winter is also an excellent time to dive, of course. You can dive and snorkel without worrying about anything. The wind looks lovely as soon as you get out of the water. So bring an extra set of clothes with you.
Activities and events during Christmas and New Year in Egypt
Christmas and New Year are a time for friends and family to get together. You can choose from many cultural events, entertainment, and shopping activities. Here are some of the things that are going on in Egypt at this time:
- Attend a Coptic Christmas Service: If you happen to be in Egypt on January 7, attending a Coptic Christmas service is necessary. The Coptic Church is known for its beautiful liturgies, and the following service is a great way to experience this unique cultural tradition.
- Visit the Pyramids: Visiting the pyramids during this time is a magical experience, with the cool winter air and the holiday spirit adding an extra special touch.
- Watch the Cairo Opera House Christmas Show: The Cairo Opera House puts on an annual Christmas show featuring music and dance performances from local and international artists.
- Attend a New Year’s Eve Party: Many hotels and resorts in Egypt host New Year’s Eve parties featuring live music, dancing, and of course, fireworks. If you want to ring in the new year with festive cheer, this is a perfect way.
Gift ideas for Christmas and New Year in Egypt
Egypt Christmas and New Year gift ideas:
- Egyptian Cotton Bedding: Egyptian cotton is renowned for its softness and durability.
- Traditional Handicrafts: Egypt is famous for its traditional handicrafts, such as ceramics, glassware, and textiles.
- Perfumes and Oils: Egypt has a long tradition of perfume-making, and marketplaces and specialist businesses provide high-quality fragrances and essential oils. Luxury lovers will like these scents.
- Jewelry: Egypt is famous for its precious metal and gemstone jewelry.
- Food and Drink: Egypt’s cuisine is diverse and makes fantastic presents.
- Egyptian-themed souvenirs: A pyramid-shaped paperweight, pharaoh-themed cup, or Sphinx statue are fun gifts
Whatever you choose, the most important thing is to show your loved ones that you care and are thinking of them during the holiday season.
Safety tips for celebrating Christmas and New Year in Egypt
Although Christmas and New Year’s celebrations in Egypt are primarily peaceful, visitors should exercise care. Several essential safety considerations are listed below.
- Keep your eyes open and your ears open.
- Stay away from protests in the streets.
- Use safe means of travel.
- Dress decently
- Do as the locals do
You may have a happy and secure vacation in Egypt if you keep your guard up, respect local traditions, and use good general judgment.
Accommodation options for the holiday season in Egypt
There is a wide variety of places to stay in Egypt, from five-star hotels to cheap dorms. While planning your vacation to Egypt, consider these popular hotel choices:
- Hotels: From affordable options to five-star resorts, Egypt offers it all.
- Egypt has several world-class resorts, including Sharm El-Sheikh, Hurghada, and Marsa Alam.
- Vacation rentals provide a more authentic experience, letting you relax in the comforts of home while being close to all the action.
- Guesthouses: A guesthouse may be your best alternative for a more private and relaxed stay. They tend to be managed by families in the area, creating a warm and welcoming ambiance.
To conclude, I would like to say that Egypt is a great place for celebrating both Christmas and New Year. The weather is nice, the people are friendly, and you can do many activities during those two holidays. You should consider visiting Egypt to have fun while celebrating these two holidays!
Do not miss the opportunity to book your holiday to Egypt and send your request to spend a different and unique Christmas with us!