Getting Around, Aswan Travel, Transport and Car Rental

(Aswan, Egypt)

View of the River Nile and adjacent roadThe Egyptian city of Aswan is easily compact enough to travel around on foot, although those wishing to reach leading attractions such as the High Dam, the unfinished obelisk and also the Philae Temple will find a number of alternative transport options available. Tourists visiting Aswan may wish to travel to these attractions by using taxi transport, buses, or even horse-drawn carriages, with taxis being the most popular method to reach the Lake Nasser.

Those wishing to travel to the islands on the River Nile, across the river to the West Bank, or even to the Nubian Village, will often choose to ride on an inexpensive motor boat, or even use a traditional Egyptian felucca (sailing boat), which can transport small groups of passengers from Aswan. It is even possible to enjoy a scenic cruise all the way up the Nile to Luxor or further.

Skyline photograph

Aswan International Airport (ISW) / Arriving by Air

Visitors flying into the city will arrive at the nearby Aswan International Airport (ISW), which also goes by the name of Daraw Airport. Regular daily flights to and from Cairo are operated by a number of different airlines and these include both Egyptair and Lotus Air. International airlines link the city with Madrid (Spain), Paris (France) and London (England). Aswan Airport is a busy facility and handles passenger numbers of more than one million each year.

Photo of main road leading into the city

Car Rental

Although many tourists staying in Aswan are happy to use local taxis to get around, a small number do prefer to hire their own car and collect it from Aswan Airport when they arrive. Whilst car rental does give you the added freedom of being able to travel when and where you want, and is useful for reaching some attractions around Lake Nasser, such as the High Dam, roads are usually of a poor quality and driving here is not recommended and not for the faint hearted.

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Image of buses and cars, travelling next to the Nile

Buses and Coaches

Buses are a very popular way to travel outside of Aswan and night buses to Hurghada are especially popular. However, buses aren't always the most reliable form of transport and the journey to Hurghada can take anywhere between five hours to nine hours. You can expect your journey to be very memorable, but not necessarily that comfortable. Buses and minibuses also travel to Cairo, but these are often restricted to locals only.


Egypt boast an excellent railway network, with regular train running alongside the River Nile and reaching Aswan. Tourists will find that Egyptian train transport is a fast, scenic and very comfortable way to travel, especially when air-conditioned. Trains run from Cairo, travelling all the way to the High Dam. Many tourists use rail transport to reach destinations such as the Island Temple of Philae and also Kalabsha. Night trains to Cairo are extremely popular and come complete with sleeper cabins, with the journey generally lasting ten hours or more.

Photo of boats cruising along the Nile

Boats and Ferries

The are countless cruise ships travelling to and from Aswan each day, transporting passengers to Egyptian destinations such as Luxor. These cruises are a wonderful way to relax and enjoy the scenery along the River Nile. Visitors can purchase their cruise ticket through various ticket agencies around the city, or directly from the actual cruise ships. There are also a number of ferries which operate on Lake Nasser and travel to a number of islands and lakeside villages.