a top trip: discover egypt

nubian family in egyptIntrepid is very excited to resume trips in a country where women, such as Queen Shajar al-Durr and Hatshepsut, have shaped history with their wisdom and nerve. Today times may be different, but meeting the women and families who call this ancient land home is what Casey Wallen enjoyed most on Discover Egypt

“On our Intrepid trip we spent a wonderful night at a homestay in a Nubian village on the banks of the Nile. To get there we set out from Aswan in our felucca, a very popular sailing boat on this river. As we cruised we could view the mud brick houses, almost camouflaged in the sandy landscape, and received cheery waves from farmers tending to their buffalo in the lush fields along the river banks. After a short ride we disembarked on the other side of the river and were greeted by kids who couldn’t wait to show us their clever acrobatics in the refreshing river water.

On the slopes leading down to the river was our Nubian village. Here the villagers like to paint their mud brick homes bright blue and add colourful patterns on the walls. We walked through our village, stopping to meet some of the locals. We met one man as he waited to get a lift to the next village from a passing car. Very few people have their own cars, so there is an obligation for those driving past to stop and pick up hitchhikers. It’s ok, because it seemed like they all knew each other.

Our homestay was set behind a brightly-coloured wall, where once you stepped inside you were greeted by the smiling faces of the extended family. The wall surrounded a central courtyard full of sand, which was immaculately swept to appear perfectly flat and clean. After our meet-and-greet we moved to our simple rooms and became acquainted with our home for the night.

The women of the family were happy to show us how they were preparing our dinner. We learned about the local school for the Nubian kids, and a little more about their way of life. Fortunately our local guide was a fantastic translator. One of the women even took the ladies to a separate room and showed us how they prepared their head scarf.

Dinner was superb with so much food of delicious, fresh, local cuisine. Most travellers would sail past these villages without even stopping to explore, but on our trip we were invited to look around these villages, meet their gorgeous children, be hosted by a wonderful family in their home and learn about this remarkable culture.”

Tour Egypt with Intrepid on trips like this great small group adventure:
Discover Egypt – 15 days

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* photo by Casey Wallen

About the author

Sue Elliot - Like many of us, Sue contracted a serious travel bug at an early age. She's visited over 90 countries in search of a cure, but her wanderlust just seems to get worse. Thankfully at Intrepid Travel she's amongst people who understand the affliction and since 1998 Sue has enjoyed being our blog and newsletter editor. Here you'll find helpful travel advice and inspiring tales from Sue and other Intrepid travellers.

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Our first groups have been in Cairo over the weekend and we haven’t experienced any problems. We are avoiding some areas of Cairo as a precaution, but Intrepid travellers are able to visit the Egyptian museum first thing in the morning before heading out to the Pyramids and all the major sites are able to be viewed.
Thanks and best wishes,
Sue, Intrepid Express Editor

How was the situation in Egypt? Did you manage to go to places in and around Cairo, eg The Sphinx, museum?

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