With all the unrest in the Middle East over the last couple of years (well, the last few decades, but the last couple of years in particular) you may be inclined to think twice before visiting some of that regions many marvelous tourist sites. That includes the far-famed pyramids of Giza, one of the most recognizable relics of ancient history in the world. According to the U.S. State Department, your caution would be well warranted.
The embassy in Cairo issued a warning to American tourists earlier this week to exercised increased caution when visiting, due to a severely diminished police and security presence at the site. Specifically, the warning cited groups of people swarming tourists’ vehicles, pounding on windows and, in some cases, attempting to open doors.
The Egyptian government, however, called the warning “baseless” and insisted that the site is completely secure, and that in fact the situation has improved for tourists in recent months.
As in many other Middle Eastern countries (most notably Israel), tourism is a major industry in Egypt. During the uprising that threw off former ruler Hosni Mubarak in 2011, though, tourism in the country declined sharply. Though the Egyptian government insists that the pyramid site is safe, many tourists remain wary of visiting the region.