The Times Online has launched a new travel clinic, and yesterday's query was "How to get from Cairo to Alexandria?". This was answered by Sunday Times travel expert Richard Green:
The 136 miles between the capital and Alexandria is one of the busiest routes in the country, plied by buses, trains and despite the relatively short distance - and flights too.
However, the most sensible and comfortable way to enjoy the journey is by train. There are more than a dozen trains per day in each direction, but you should plumb for one of the three Turbini services. These French built trains are reliable and take just over two hours. A ticket costs just £5 each way in first class air-conditioned carriages.
The Espani (Spanish) trains cost the same as the Turbini, but stop at three stations en route, or there are the slower Francese (French) services, which are suburban-type trains that make a lot of stops. For the extra punishment on the slower trains, you'll save about £1 on the fare.
See the above page for more. My own personal experience of travelling by train in Egypt (from Cairo to Ismalia) was very enjoyable, but I wouldn't have wanted to tackle purchasing tickets in Ramesses Station in Cairo without my travelling companion, who actually knew what he was doing.