Upon arrival at Cairo airport, we will be met by our ground staff who will assist with visa formalities and collecting your luggage. You’ll then transfer across Cairo to your hotel, located close to the pyramids. The rest of the day is free for you to rest and recover from the flight. An optional evening dinner cruise on the Nile or sound and light show are available to be booked locally this evening for those interested (subject to your flight arrival time).
Your tour of Egypt begins with a visit to the Giza Plateau, the site of Egypt’s world-famous Great Pyramids, one of the Seven Wonders of the ancient world. We visit the great Pyramids of Giza and the ever enigmatic Sphinx, Memphis-first capital of the ancient kingdom to see the statue of Ramses II. Following on from the Pyramids we then head to the Egyptian Museum in central Cairo. Home to the fantastic Tutankhamun exhibit the museum hosts a huge number of other ancient Egyptian artifacts. This evening we transfer to the station for the overnight sleeper train to Aswan (approx. 12 hours).
In the morning we arrive in Aswan, you will be met and assisted by our representative who will take you to embark on your Nile cruise for the next 4 days, 3 nights. Later you will go on an exciting tour of the world-famous High Dam, an engineering miracle built in the 1960s. Thereafter, you will to the island of Egilka on a motorboat to visit the majestic Philae temple dedicated to the Goddesses Isis. Overnight stay on board your cruise. The Nile is at its most picturesque in Aswan, with beautiful cascading rapids, dotted with green islands, and felucca sailboats. Aswan itself is best experienced by wandering through the busy markets and we allow some free time for just this, and to stroll along the Corniche on the banks of the river or maybe visit the Nubian Museum with its interesting collection dedicated to the Nubian people in the region. Our organized tour in Aswan starts later in the afternoon with a visit to the island temple of Philae, you will stop at the massive Aswan High Dam en route. The Philae temple is one of Egypt’s most romantic and beautiful sites having been completely deconstructed and relocated after the building of the Dam. The rest of the day is free for you to explore the colorful souks and markets or enjoy the sunset over the River Nile, which is at its most picturesque around Asw
Early this morning there is an option to drive to the World Heritage Site of Abu Simbel to view the fabulous temples of Ramses II, which, like Philae Temple, were dismantled, moved, and reconstructed when Lake Nasser was flooded. For anyone not visiting Abu Simbel, there is free time this morning to explore Aswan, including the markets, Corniche, and Nubian Museum. In the afternoon we cruise along the Nile towards the temple at Kom Ombo. A Nile cruise is a magical experience and you’ll be able to see the local rural Egyptian life pass you by on the banks of the river. sailing to Kom Ombo. You will be escorted by your Egyptology speaking guide to visit Kom Ombo temple, the crocodile-headed God of fertility and creator of the world, then you will take your lunch aboard your cruise with free time at leisure while sailing to Edfu to explore Edfu’s Temple of Horus, Continue the cruise down to Luxor. Afternoon tea is served on the sun –deck with dinner and overnight stay onboard cruise
After breakfast on our cruise, we visit Luxor. Luxor has built up around the ancient pharaonic site of Thebes and has the largest concentration of ancient ruins in the Nile Valley, and probably the world. On the west bank of the Nile lies the Valley of the Kings & Queens, with its mortuary temples and rock-hewn tombs, and on the east bank of the Nile sits the Temples of Luxor and Karnak. After lunch, we visit the massive temple complex at Karnak, once the religious heart of Thebes and Upper Egypt. It was connected to Luxor by a sphinx-lined avenue, and the entire complex was in turn connected to the Nile via a canal, through which moved the sacred boats of the god Amun. Entering through a smaller sphinx-lined avenue, built by Ramesses II, you enter through the enormous pylon entrance. Inside the huge Courtyard are three chapels dedicated to the gods Amun, Khous, and Mut. The Hypostyle Hall boasts 134 immense columns, carved with scenes of gods and pharaohs, and bold hieroglyphs cover the walls. Later in the evening, we’ll enjoy a walking tour of the smaller Luxor Temple, which is closer to the center of Luxor and beautifully lit up at night
This morning, you will cross the Nile to start our tour of Luxor’s West Bank. Here we visit the Valley of the Kings, one of the most important archaeological sites in the world, where the hidden tombs in this ancient burial site are still revealing their secrets today. Our tour includes several important Pharaonic tombs, along with the temples of Queen Hatchepsut and Medinat Habu, and the huge Colossi of Memnon. A spectacular early morning hot air balloon flight over the west bank of the Nile is available this morning to catch the sunrise. In the afternoon we leave the Nile Valley behind and drive to our 5-star resort at the Red Sea resort of Hurghada. Your stay here is on a ‘soft all inclusive’ basis, with food and drink included, but not alcoholic beverages.
Today is a free day to relax and unwind by the Red Sea. Hurghada is the perfect place to enjoy some scuba diving and snorkeling, and the excellent Red Sea marine life attracts divers from around the world. Other activities available include quad biking, camel rides, windsurfing, sea fishing trips, kite surfing, and glass-bottomed submarines. Our local rep based in Hurghada is available to help you make any arrangements. For those wishing for a little gentler time, Hurghada itself has an interesting marina and old town to explore. We can also book extra nights in the resort in Hurghada for you to extend your time here – just ask us for details and prices.
This morning we fly back to Cairo where you have a choice of either a free day to explore or relax at your hotel, or to enjoy one of our optional tours. Our city tour, which visits the narrow winding streets of Coptic Cairo, the impressive Citadel and Mohamed Ali Mosque as well as the bustling market streets of Khan El Khalili bazaar, is always popular. Alternatively, you can take a trip out to Saqqara and Dashour, part of the ancient city of Memphis, to learn more about the early history of pyramid building.
Today is free for more last-minute sightseeing or shopping until we transfer you to the airport for your departure flight. You can also extend the tour to take a day trip to the coastal city of Alexandria or head into the desert to the World Heritage Site of the Valley of the Whales.
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