Key Topics Tourism In Egypt Tourism And Civil Unrest Egyptian History Tourism has been vital to the Egyptian economy for decades. Despite setbacks, the 20 years up to 2011 seem like a golden era in the light of subsequent events. Since the revolution of 2011 and the political and social upheavals that followed, tourism numbers and income have nose-dived. TOURISM: BLESSING OR CURSE? Egypt was one of the earliest Thomas Cook destinations in the mid 19th Century. Tourists were lured by the ancient pyramids - and they're still coming. But these attractions that made Egypt so popular have also made it vulnerable, as terrorists know well. ENVIRONMENT The downturn may be a blessing in disguise -- for the environment. Egypt's waste disposal system is at breaking point: lower tourist numbers will ease the strain. Is there a future in a more sustainable brand of tourism? TOURISM: WHO BENEFITS, WHO SUFFERS? The dramatic slump in tourism has affected the tourism companies, but as ever it's the small traders who have suffered most - just as, in the good times, the large business, often foreign-owned, reap the profits. We go behind the scenes of the Nile cruises business, where workers work long hours for low pay - those who can even get a job. Some critics argue that tourism is a new form of colonialism, trading on "commoditised" myths of ancient Egypt. Features an interview with Hisham Zaazou, Egyptian minister of tourism.