The best unusual souvenirs from Egypt: surprise loved ones

The best unusual souvenirs from Egypt: surprise loved ones

Holidays in Egypt are coming to an end, the beaches are trampled, the sights are explored, it's time to take care of souvenirs. What comes to mind first? Of course, all kinds of magnets and mugs with pyramids, T-shirts with camels, papyri of dubious quality and other template tinsel. If you really want to, you can, but it’s clearly not worth limiting yourself to such a set: in the markets, in shopping centers and souvenir shops there is something much more interesting.

Eye of Ra

Ancient Egyptian culture is a storehouse of symbols, rituals and secrets. Many signs are replicated today, applied to thousands of tourist trinkets, but they are unlikely to lose their original power from this. A vivid example is the eye of Ra, it is also the All-Seeing, staring intently from pendants, rings and bracelets. This is a female entity that subjugates the enemies of the sun god, capable of taking on the face of any of the goddesses, giving life and protection. Legends fade, but the purpose remains: to vigilantly protect the owner from dark forces. Pretty baskets with bunches of dry grass are not a joy for a florist, but “kaf Maryam”, or “Mary's hand”. This plant comes from the desert, dried up and curled up like a fist, but it is worth lowering it into the water, and the “palm” will open and bloom with blue buds, and at the same time will give good luck in business and any undertakings.


The pyramid is the embodiment of higher harmony, an energy converter capable of transforming bad into good, clearing housing and consciousness of unnecessary things. Pyramids are made of crystal, onyx, silver or alabaster: in order not to confuse the latter with gypsum, it is enough to shine a flashlight on it (the material transmits rays and begins to reflect) or purposefully go to the alabaster factory in Luxor. The names of the pharaohs used to be written on oval or square cartouches, but now anyone can order an engraving in a jewelry workshop, watch the process and feel like a bit of an autocrat.

Other mascots

Ankh, or a Coptic cross crowned with a ring, symbolizes inexhaustible vitality, immortality and wisdom: it was not for nothing that he was depicted on temples, monuments and portraits of pharaohs. The scarab beetle personifies the energy of the sun and rebirth, brings good luck and protects from trouble. The main thing is that he should have legs: otherwise, he turns into a funeral symbol. Sphinxes, jackals and sarcophagi are also closely connected with the afterlife, demons called by shamans can live in African masks, and figurines of cats decorated with snakes threaten to bring misfortune to the house. But a properly designed cat goddess Bastet “works” for wealth, health and replenishment of the family.

Ankh, or a Coptic cross crowned with a ring, symbolizes inexhaustible vitality, immortality and wisdom.

Colorful ethnicity: papyri

Papyrus is a classic of the souvenir genre, but people often try to pass it off as dried banana leaves or ordinary rice paper. Cane originals are easily identified by their vertical and horizontal stripes and the thin black lines left by sugar, such as those sold in Cairo University's shop, for example.

Gifts from camels

To make the house cozy and hot even in the harsh Russian winter, as if under the African sun, you can buy a camel blanket: from the wool of an adult animal – heavy, prickly and very warm, from fluff – soft and a little thinner. In Sharm el-Sheikh and other tourist cities, there is a wide selection of camel leather bags, which are combined with arafat shawls – a timeless greeting from the Bedouins of the Sinai Peninsula. An expensive, but very effective gift – a colorful handmade carpet. Woolen, jute, cotton and viscose, they are distinguished by a special density and variety of ornaments – floral, geometric and abstract patterns on red, brown, beige and other “desert” tones.


Natural cotton clothes – T-shirts, T-shirts, dresses, shirts – are more profitable to buy away from hotels: however, this rule is universal for Egyptian shopping. Cotton towels are brought from Hurghada, fur coats and other luxury furs are cheaper in large Turkish stores, shoes – in bazaars (although the assortment is small). High-quality leather goods, gold and silver are presented in specialized stores, but in ordinary shops (especially hotel shops) there is a risk of running into a fake. You need to bargain anywhere and everywhere, and stubbornly and until victory: a bracelet, initially worth 50-80 USD, can be grabbed for 5-10 USD.


A smartly decorated hookah is an excellent interior decoration, but if you plan to use it for its intended purpose, it’s better to look not in souvenir shops where cheap aluminum dummies are “steamed”, but in existing cafes where “shisha” made of stainless steel, brass and copper with leather pipes for 10-40 USD. The kitchen and living room will be transformed by onyx vases and candlesticks, as well as embossing: patterned plates, cups and jugs. And music lovers will like the barbet, a folk Arabic stringed instrument with a meditative sound. sized/f550x700/05/us/05usnghycj6skkcgocsg8wckk.jpg” media=”(max-width: 549px)”>

The best unusual souvenirs from Egypt: surprising loved ones, elena moiseeva

Gourmet delights

Egyptian tea is very tasty and fragrant, and red hibiscus is also healthy: it strengthens blood vessels, relieves spasms and fever, contains citric acid, antioxidants and vitamins. There is also sweetish date tamarind, pomegranate, mango, with guava and lemongrass – and no chemical dyes or flavors. You can taste it right in the shops – over a cup of an invigorating drink and bargaining is more exciting. Egyptian sweets are already a legend: Turkish delight, halva, baklava, coconut rolls, knafe from vermicelli and goat cheese, deep-fried meshabek, tender basbousa with semolina and yogurt, chocolate-covered dates and other delicacies worthy of the royal table from the fairy tales of Scheherazade.

Coffee is also of high quality, with fine grinding and thick foam, but it costs less than in Europe. Spices are incomparable, from sage and rosemary to saffron and lumi, capable of changing dishes beyond recognition. They are even added to coffee – mixtures with cardamom and nutmeg are especially good.

If you go to the market on the eve of departure, you can bring home fresh fruits and berries: guava, strawberries, pomegranates, mangoes. Or replace them with a couple of jars of delicious jam – for example, from figs, quince or dates. And do not forget about black date honey, which normalizes cholesterol and saves you from insomnia. sized/f550x700/9s/0f/9s0fl5uhlhc084oo884o0k0w8.jpg” media=”(max-width: 549px)”>

The best unusual souvenirs from Egypt: surprising loved ones

More to read:

  • “For 10 years I have been living under cover and absolutely happy ”, — the story of a Russian woman who moved to Hurghada;
  • 12 of the most dangerous underwater reptiles of Egypt, meetings with which it is better to avoid;
  • Hurghada vs Sharm el-Sheikh: which resort in Egypt is the best?

Gifts for beauty and health

Cosmetics in Egypt are also natural: since the time of Queen Cleopatra, antimony, almonds, mulberries and other natural ingredients have been used in the ancient beauty industry. Even crocodile droppings were used – fortunately, today it does without extreme sports. At any resort, you can find miraculous tanning products: proven in practice, mixes with rose water, aloe and secret herbs save you from burns and give your skin an even, radiant tone. Fans of a non-trivial niche perfume will like oil perfumes (it is wiser to buy in large stores), essential oils for the home (the best choice is in towns along the Nile), incense sticks for 1 USD per pack. And the skin and hair will be happy to be treated with pharmaceutical oils of aloe, argan, black cumin and jojoba.

A washcloth made from loofah mined in the Red Sea will help you meet the next beach season in perfect shape: it stimulates blood circulation, cleanses, provides peeling and lymphatic drainage, and eliminates unfortunate stretch marks and cellulite. From factory cosmetics, we recommend Nefertari organic creams and scrubs, Miswak toothpaste with arak tree extract (Arabs have been cleaning their teeth with sticks made from it since ancient times), Vatika budget hair products and premium Moroccanoil from neighboring Israel.

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