Follow the path of the pharaohs and get cruisy on the Nile.

Travel to Egypt and follow the path of the river Nile as you revel in a taste of Egypt's history, beauty and colour on this short but action-packed trip along the longest river in the world. Cruise one of the world’s most iconic rivers on a traditional felucca, discover the largest and most impressive pharaonic temples, chat and dine with interesting locals and live it up in this country of deserts, bazaars, monuments and unmatched experiences. This eight-day Cairo round trip will get you feeling desert vibes, ancient wonders and local secrets at every stop.

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Terms & Conditions

Start
Cairo, Egypt
Finish
Cairo, Egypt
Destination
Egypt
Style
Original
Theme
Explorer
Code
XESB
Physical rating
Ages
Min 15
Group size
Min 1, Max 12

Why you'll love this trip

  • Get an on-site ancient history lesson when visiting some of the world's premier historic sites – the Pyramids, Sphinx and the Valley of the Kings – with an expert local guide.

  • There are so many chances to interact with the locals and experience their culture. Lose yourself in Cairo's colourful Khan al-Khalili bazaar and dine with village folk along your way.

  • Your felucca sailing trip not only lets you experience some excellent Nubian hospitality, but is perhaps the perfect way to see the Nile and its gorgeous surrounds at any time of day.

  • Admire Karnak Temple – the Cult temple dedicated to Amun, Mut and Khonsu with your small group, and feel the ancient royalty when discovering the mighty Valley of the Kings.

  • With plenty of free time to choose your own Egyptian adventure, you’ll have the power to possibly fit in an Abu Simbel escapade, head on a camel ride, or just chill out at a local teahouse.

Is this trip right for you?

  • Before booking on this trip we recommend that you read the ‘Safety’ section in the Essential Trip Information regarding special safety considerations for Egypt trips.

  • Travelling on a felucca (traditional wooden boat) is awesome, but it's not for everyone. You will be sharing a sleeping area with your fellow group members for the night and a shared bathroom facility. You'll sleep outside under the stars on a simple mattress, with some bedding provided. If you do feel the cold, you should consider bringing a sleeping bag.

  • The walkways around many Egyptian ruins can be uneven, dusty and rocky, so be sure to bring comfortable walking shoes. At large sites such as Valley of the Kings, you can also expect to be walking in the elements for most of the day, so sun adequate sun protection is essential.

  • Some hotels in Egypt may not have lifts. You may need to climb stairs with your luggage to reach your hotel room for the night.

  • Temperatures in the Egypt can be extreme, ranging from very hot to very cold, depending on the season – it can even snow in some places! Layers will come in handy for sun protection as well as warmth.

  • Overnight train journeys are a fast way to cross long distances, allowing you to avoid traffic jams and arrive right into the city centre. You will share two-berth air-conditioned cabins, with all bedding provided. Western-style toilets are located in each carriage, but we recommend bringing additional toilet paper. Keep in mind train cleanliness may not be to the same standards you are accustomed to. An included dinner and breakfast are served on board. You may want to purchase something extra to eat, particularly if you're a vegetarian as only a single type of meal is served for dinner, which always includes meat. In rare circumstances you may be paired in your cabin with a group member of the opposite sex, depending on the group configuration. On other rare occasions, you might be sharing with another traveller of the same sex who may not be part of our group.

Itinerary

This itinerary is valid for departures from 01 Jan 2020 to 31 Dec 2020.
View the 2019 itinerary
Welcome to Egypt! Your adventure begins with a welcome meeting at 4 pm this afternoon. For those arriving early, why not take a walk to get your bearings of the neighbourhood, or escape the hustle and bustle and explore the Christian Coptic sector. After your important meeting, head out with your new travel buddies and discover Khan al-Khalili Bazaar, located in Cairo's Islamic centre. This traditional souk is a labyrinth of narrow alleys lined with local merchants; a perfect place to get introduced to daily Egyptian life.
Accommodation
  • Hotel (1 night)
Included Activities
  • Cairo - Khan al-Khalili bazaar visit
Optional Activities
  • Cairo - The Citadel - EGP400
  • Cairo - Coptic Museum (Entry, Transport, Guiding) - EGP350
  • Cairo - Islamic Art Museum (Entry, Transport, Guiding) - EGP350
  • Cairo - Sufi dance performance at Khan al-Khalili - EGP50
  • Urban Adventures - Downtown Cairo Tour - USD45
  • Urban Adventures -Half Day Pyramids Adventure - USD67
  • Urban Adventures - Islamic Cairo in Depth Tour - USD45
  • Urban Adventures - Alexandria City Discovery - USD133
  • Urban Adventures - Saqqara and Memphis - USD73
  • Urban Adventures - Treasures and Tut Tour - USD65
Meals Included
There are no meals included on this day.
Special Information
It’s very important that you attend the welcome meeting as we will be collecting insurance details and next of kin information at this time. If you are going to be late please let your travel agent or hotel reception know. Ask reception or look for a note in the lobby for more information on where the meeting will take place. If you can't arrange a flight that will arrive in time, you may wish to arrive a day early so you're able to attend. We'll be happy to book additional accommodation for you (subject to availability).
This morning, head to Giza –home to some of the world’s most iconic sights. Approach the Pyramids of Giza and the Sphinx by camel, with panoramic views across the dunes. Explore these structures that have stood tall for 4500 years, and for an additional charge you may be able to go inside the Great Pyramid of Khufu, although occasionally it may be closed to visitors. Afterwards, make your way to the Egyptian Museum – home to one of the world's great collections of antiquities. Wander the treasure-filled halls of the museum, and make sure to check out the optional Mummies Hall for a close encounter with some of the country’s most important queens and pharaohs. Later in the evening, meet your leader and travel to the nearby train station, where you will board an overnight sleeper train bound for Aswan (approximately 13 hours).
Accommodation
  • Overnight sleeper train (1 night)
Included Activities
  • Cairo - Pyramids and Sphinx
  • Cairo - Camel ride at the Pyramids
  • Cairo - The Egyptian Museum
  • Cairo - The Egyptian Museum headset
Optional Activities
  • Cairo - The Great Pyramid of Cheops (entry fee) - EGP300
  • Cairo - The 2nd Pyramid of Khafre (entry fee) - EGP60
  • Cairo - Pyramid of Saqqara (Entry) - EGP150
  • Cairo - Sound & Light Show at the Pyramids (entry fee) - EGP1100
  • Cairo -The Royal Mummy Room - EGP180
  • Cairo - Solar Boat Museum (Entry) - EGP80
Meals Included
  • Breakfast
  • Dinner
Special Information
The inside thoroughfares of the Pyramids of Giza are very small and very warm, so for those suffering from claustrophobia it is not recommended. Please note that you'll be required to walk around the Pyramids complex. It can be very hot in the summer months, so be prepared for little shade and pack appropriate clothing, sun protection, and carry lots of water. Please note that there is an additional EGP 50 fee to take photos in the museum.
The Nile, Elephantine Island and white-sailed feluccas. Welcome to Aswan – Egypt's southernmost city. Its easy-going charm is due in no small part to its large Nubian population. Today is a free day so take the opportunity to see such Aswan sites as the unfinished obelisk or the High Dam. The Nubian Bazaar is a must, while the excellent Nubian Museum is top of many visitors’ lists. Highly recommended is the beautiful Temple of Isis (the Goddess of health, marriage and wisdom) that was rescued from the rising waters of the Nile and relocated on Philae Island. The waterfront promenade, or Aswan's Corniche, runs alongside one of Nile's most appealing stretches and is the perfect place to stop for a mint tea. This evening you’ll experience modern Nubian culture first-hand with a visit to a nearby village. You’ll join a local Nubian family for a memorable dinner and get an unforgettable insight into the daily life of the local people.
Accommodation
  • Hotel (1 night)
Included Activities
  • Aswan - Nubian Village Visit and Dinner
Optional Activities
  • Aswan - Sound & Light Show at Philae Temple (entry fee) - EGP200
  • Aswan - Unfinished Obelisk (entrance only) - EGP80
  • Aswan - Philae Temple - EGP140
  • Aswan - High Dam - EGP30
Meals Included
  • Breakfast
  • Dinner
Special Information
Optional Activities mentioned today are for entry only. Your group leader may suggest group activities to visit some of the local sites which include transport and guiding in the past we have found that this suits most of our travellers. If you prefer to do your own thing, transport to sites are available and your leader can assist with organising this.
Today perhaps head out of Aswan and book in to visit stunning Abu Simbel this morning. With the four gargantuan statues of Ramses guarding the Great Temple, carved directly out of the mountain on the west bank of the Nile, this is one of Egypt's most memorable sights. Please note this optional activity has a very early start (but it’s totally worth it). There’s two ways to get there – a 40-minute flight, or renting a minivan with your group and leaving very early. The journey by land is 3 hours each way, with an early departure from Aswan at 5–6 am. Instead, you could take a sailboat ride around the islands in a traditional felucca, stopping off at the botanical gardens on Kitchener's Island. Or, take a camel ride to the Monastery of St Simeon, an abandoned seventh-century fortress monastery located in the desert on the Nile's west bank. Your tour leader will be on hand to help you arrange any excursions. Otherwise, simply relax and take in the beauty of the Nile or do some shopping in the local bazaar.
Accommodation
  • Hotel (1 night)
Optional Activities
  • Aswan to Abu Simbel: return transport by bus & entrance fee (price from per person - minimum 4 passengers) - USD110
Meals Included
  • Breakfast
Special Information
Your group leader will offer to organise the optional excursion to Abu Simbel by minivan for your group. This excursion will be limited to your group members only. If you would like to fly to Abu Simbel or join an alternative excursion, please discuss options with your leader. Flights can be booked online through EgyptAir, and prices vary throughout the season, depending on the day of the week you fly and how far in advance you book, but expect to pay between USD 250-300. Due to the southerly location, it's recommended to book the earliest flight possible and visit Abu Simbel as close to sunrise to avoid the heat.
With some free time this morning, perhaps head down and grab a felucca out to the Tomb of the Nobles or stock up on snacks for your evening on the Nile. Board your included felucca journey just before lunch and spend the afternoon out on the river, watching Egyptian daily life play out on the banks, then spend a night under the stars. Your Nubian sailing crew provides all the meals which are hearty and delicious. Being a traditional wooden boat with broad canvas sails, your felucca offers some shade and protection from the elements. However, there is no cabin or enclosed section. Nonetheless, watching the sun setting across the Nile in the evening is a sight you won't forget. This is the absolute highlight of the trip for many, especially with some local Nubian entertainment from your crew.
Accommodation
  • Felucca (1 night)
Optional Activities
  • Aswan - Tomb of the Nobles - EGP80
Meals Included
  • Breakfast
  • Lunch
  • Dinner
Special Information
Conditions will be basic during your felucca trip. If you are prepared for this, you’re sure to have a memorable adventure. You'll sleep outside on the deck of the felucca on a mattress. While blankets are provided, a sleeping sheet or sleeping bag is recommended. During the colder months (October to March) temperatures can get as low as 5°C at night. Slight alterations may have to be made to the Nile itinerary throughout the year, depending on winds and currents. As the felucca is a sailing craft without any outboard engine, if there's no wind you won't travel very far. The felucca does have a shared bathroom facility onboard. While feluccas do have mosquito nets when required, we do recommend insect repellent for your day on the Nile.
This morning, say goodbye to your Nubian friends and take a private van to the ‘open-air museum’ of Luxor (approximately 3.5 hours travel time). From the spectacular temple complex of Karnak to the Valley of the Kings, Luxor is full of wonderfully preserved reminders of the Pharaohs. On the way, there's the option to visit either the unique mirror-image design of the Temple of Kom Ombo, or the beautifully preserved Temple of Edfu. This afternoon you will explore the magnificent Karnak Temple, which is perhaps the most impressive of all the ancient Pharaohs' monumental works. One of the world's most celebrated temple complexes, Karnak is a house of the gods built over a period of some 200 years. The rest of the day will be free to relax, shop in the bazaar, which is open until quite late, or perhaps experience the atmosphere of a local teahouse.
Accommodation
  • Hotel (1 night)
Included Activities
  • Luxor - Karnak Temple
Optional Activities
  • Edfu - Edfu Temple - EGP100
  • Luxor - Luxor Temple (entry fee) - EGP100
  • Luxor - Luxor Museum (Entry) - EGP120
  • Luxor - Mummification Museum - EGP80
  • Luxor - Sound and Light Show at Karnak (Entry) - EGP250
  • Luxor - Bicycle Hire - EGP100
  • Kom Ombo - Kom Ombo Temple - EGP80
Meals Included
  • Breakfast
Today you’ll hop in a private minivan and discover some of the wonder of ancient Thebes. Your first stop is the Colossi of Memnon – two 17-metre-high statues on Luxor's west bank. Carved from granite blocks, they represent the Pharaoh Amenhotep III and were once part of an impressive colonnade. Continue on to the spectacular royal burial site of the Valley of the Kings. Buried under the arid hills here are over 60 richly decorated tombs of pharaohs. With your leader, explore this sprawling and spectacular place, where the pharaohs of the New Kingdom (16th to 11th century BC) were secretly interred for all eternity, and where discoveries are still being made. Your group leader will explain the history and legends of these remarkable people, and the significance of the many paintings and hieroglyphics. Afterwards, join a local family for lunch to try some traditional home cooking. The rest of your afternoon is free to explore – with the Luxor Museum a great place to visit. Keep in mind that tonight you’ll board an overnight sleeper train from Luxor back to Cairo (approximately 10 hours).
Accommodation
  • Overnight sleeper train (1 night)
Included Activities
  • Luxor - Colossi of Memnon
  • Luxor - Valley of the Kings (3 tombs)
Optional Activities
  • Luxor - Tomb of Tutankhamun (Entry) - EGP250
  • Luxor - Hatshepsut Temple - EGP82
  • Luxor - Valley of the Queens (entry fee) - EGP80
  • Luxor - Medinat Habu Temple - EGP60
  • Luxor - Deir el Madina - EGP80
Meals Included
  • Breakfast
  • Lunch
  • Dinner
Special Information
Please note, there is an additional EGP 300 fee to take photos in the Valley of the Kings.
This morning, arrive in Cairo and share breakfast with your group leader and travel crew. After this, there are no activities planned, so you are free to leave at any time. For your comfort and convenience, day rooms are provided on this day until midday (12 pm), for luggage storage and an opportunity to have a shower and freshen up. If you wish to book an onward connection for today, please arrange a flight after 3 pm in case of any delays.
Meals Included
  • Breakfast

Meals

7 breakfasts, 2 lunches, 4 dinners

Transport

Private vehicle, Felucca, Overnight sleeper train

Accommodation

Hotel (4 nights), Felucca (1 night), Overnight sleeper train (2 nights)

Included activities

  • Cairo - Khan al-Khalili bazaar visit
  • Cairo - Pyramids and Sphinx
  • Cairo - Camel ride at the Pyramids
  • Cairo - The Egyptian Museum
  • Cairo - The Egyptian Museum headset
  • Aswan - Nubian Village Visit and Dinner
  • Luxor - Karnak Temple
  • Luxor - Colossi of Memnon
  • Luxor - Valley of the Kings (3 tombs)

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Important notes

GROUP MEETING 
This trip starts in Cairo on Day 1 at 4.00pm. This allows time to explore Khan al-Khalili bazaar with your Leader after the meeting.

SINGLE SUPPLEMENT
A single supplement is available if you’d prefer not to share a room on this trip. The single supplement excludes Day 5 (Nile Felucca) where you will be in shared accommodation, and is subject to availability. Please speak to your booking agent for further information.

IMPORTANT ITINERARY INFORMATION 
This trip finishes upon arrival in Cairo on Day 8. Please do not book any flights until after 3.00pm this evening in case there are delays 

SAFETY 
We recommend that you check your government's advice for their latest information on travelling in Egypt before your departure and ensure that your travel insurance covers you for all areas of your itinerary. We have links to prominent government travel advisories and regular updates on issues affecting this trip on our Travel Alerts page - www.intrepidtravel.com/au/travel-alerts

Essential trip information

Want an in-depth insight into this trip? Essential Trip Information provides a detailed itinerary, visa info, how to get to your hotel, what's included - pretty much everything you need to know about this adventure and more.

View Essential Trip Information

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