Most of the great tourist places these days are crowded during the day or peak time and it sucks. I never like to take tourist tours instead if it’s a historic place I go for the private tour. Picking a time to visit is most important. Maya Bay is the best example here. I went for camping at Maya Bay (did you watch a movie, "The Beach" of DiCaprio?). During the day, you can see thousands of tourist on a small beach of the beautiful island. You just cannot enjoy that and so I did some research and booked Sleep-aboard tour that takes you there during the evening and you spend a night there. Same goes for my trip to Abu Simbel (a small village but hot tourist spot). Generally, tourists visit it during the day with tours and could never enjoy it. Instead, I stayed there for the night and enjoyed it when I was the only one in the entire complex. In a nutshell, timing is important.
I planned my Bir Tawil trip accordingly; picked a long clear-sky day with a full-moon night. The area surrounding Bir Tawil is miliary guarded and have terrorist activities and so we have to return before it is too dark. We could not turn on head lights of our car as it can be seen from miles so picking full-moon night is the best option.4. Veggie? Well... good luck with that!
Being a veggie is a big issue in a meat-loving country like Egypt but if you talk to locals they’ll help you everything. My local friend Esraa prepared a note for me in Arabic roughly translates to, “I cannot speak Arabic and I am on the fast. I am a veggie so no meat, beef, chicken or fish”
انا مبعرفش اتكلم عربي
شورلي علي الاكل الصيامي لو فيه
مش عايز اى حاجه فيها لحمه او فراخ او بيض او سمك
خضار و بس اكل صيامى من الاخر
My other friend Rifai took me to a local restaurant and made me eat almost all the veggie dishes he could find on the menu. I clicked pictures of all of them and jotted down the names. I used that Arabic note above and these pictures for my rest of the trip in Egypt.5. Insurance
ALWAYS travel with insurance. Trust me, I know what I am saying! When you are in the middle of the desert with no living things in miles, you start recalling your insurance policies. There are always some risks when you travel and I have a friend who does my insurance on the phone. I like to think it as just some money I wasted in a shopping mall. I look back and think I shouldn't have taken that much risk with my trip but I am glad it ended well. Get your gears insured too. I left all my valuables behind when I got in the car to Bir Tawil.6. Always share your location details with someone (even if it is a secret trip)