Premium Egypt in Depth
from $6385
Duration: 15 Days
Discover the contrasts of modern and ancient Egypt on a 15-day Premium adventure. Beginning and ending in Egypt’s capital, Cairo, gaze up at the magnificent Pyramids of Giza, take a four-day cruise down the legendary Nile and explore the grand temples of Abu Simbel. Uncover the secrets of the Valley of the Kings, Karnak Temple and the city of Alexandria. Visit the tombs of ancient pharaohs, share meals with local families and stand in awe of gigantic, rock-cut statues. Accompanied by a local Egyptologist leader, learn about the mystery and beauty of these ancient lands.
  • Discover the Pyramids of Giza, Valley of the Kings, Kom Ombo Temple, Philae Island, Karnak Temple complex, the ancient city of Alexandria, battle site of El Alamein and the many sides of Cairo.
  • Travel with a local Egyptologist leader, learn about Nubian life during an evening at a family home, stop in for a traditional dinner with a local family in Cairo and take in a snapshot of local life at a buzzing cafe in Cairo.
  • Take your time exploring Abu Simbel with an overnight stay, discovering this magnificent monument carved out of the mountainside with less crowds, followed by an incredible sound and light show.
  • Relax with four nights on a premium Nile riverboat, allowing you to cruise up the river in comfort, past ancient temples, watching local life unfolding on the riverbank as you get to the heart of each destination.
  • Experience the best of Egyptian cuisine during a welcome dinner in Cairo, high tea at the Old Cataract Hotel in Aswan, traditional meals in two family homes and a visit to Cairo’s oldest cafe.
  • Complimentary Airport Arrival Transfer
  • Cairo - Welcome Dinner
  • Cairo - Pyramids of Giza and the Sphinx
  • Cairo - Grand Egyptian Museum
  • Alexandria - Wadi El Natron monasteries
  • Alexandria - Anba Bishoy Monastery
  • Alexandria - Catacombs of Kom el Shoqafa
  • Alexandria - Bibliotheca Alexandrina
  • Alexandria - Al Montazah Palace & Gardens
  • El Alamein - War cemeteries and museum
  • Luxor - Karnak Temple
  • Luxor - Valley of the Kings (entrance to 3 tombs)
  • Luxor - Tomb of Tut Ankh Amun
  • Luxor - Hatshepsut Temple
  • Luxor - Colossi of Memnon
  • Izbat Al Bayyarah - Kom Ombo Temple
  • Aswan - Philae Temple
  • Aswan - Sharia el Souk
  • Abu Simbel - Abu Simbel temples
  • Abu Simbel - Abu Simbel Sound and Light Show (entrance fee)
  • Day 1 Location: Cairo
    Welcome to Egypt! Your adventure begins in Cairo – a city just as captivating as it is chaotic. You will be met on arrival at Cairo International Airport and transferred to your hotel. An important welcome meeting will take place here at 6pm with your local leader and fellow travellers. If you arrive with time to spare, you can take in an incredible first glimpse of the pyramids from your hotel’s pool and bar area. After your welcome meeting, get your first taste of Egyptian cuisine during a welcome dinner with your leader and small group. Head to a fantastic local restaurant and try out some classic dishes like fatta, a dish made with rice, bread and meat in a garlic and vinegar sauce, and kushari, a delicious mix of pasta, rice, lentils and fried onions.
    Day 2 Location: Cairo
    This morning after breakfast, travel to arguably the most recognisable structures in the world – the Great Pyramids of Giza and the Sphinx. Your leader is a trained Egyptologist and will share the fascinating history of these incredible feats of engineering. For an additional charge, you may be able to step inside the Great Pyramid of Khufu (or Cheops). After spending some time here, continue to the Grand Egyptian Museum, the largest archaeological museum in the world. Home to an unseen collection of Tutankhamen’s antiquities and almost 100,000 artefacts, there’s no better place to uncover the country’s rich history. Gain special insight by touring with a guide and enjoy time to explore independently. Spend an evening at leisure – you may like to take a taxi into town to explore Cairo further, or for something special, book in for a dinner cruise on the Nile.
    Day 3 Location: Alexandria
    Take to the road for your journey to Alexandria after breakfast, stopping in Wadi El Natron along the way. Your leader will explain how this area became a sanctuary for Christians after Saint Macarius the Great retreated here in AD360. There were once some 60-odd monasteries in the Wadi, though now only four remain. One of these is Anba Bishoy Monastery, named for Saint Bishoi who came to the site to live in solitude. Take a wander around the gardens and observe the resident monks as they go about their daily lives, then visit the church for expansive views over the desert. Continue this afternoon to the city of Alexandria, founded by Alexander the Great and often referred to as the Pearl of the Mediterranean.
    Day 4 Location: Alexandria
    Enjoy a full day uncovering the secrets of Alexandria with the guidance of your knowledgeable leader. Visit Pompey’s Pillar and the Catacombs of Kom El Shoqafa, a Roman burial site dating back to the second century that wasn’t discovered until 1900. The fascinating tombs were created during a transitional period in Alexandria’s history and interestingly feature Greek, Egyptian and Roman elements. Continue to the Bibliotheca Alexandrina (once the Great Library of Alexandra), which is found where the Library of Ptolemies once stood some 1700 years ago. Finish up with a stop at the Montazah Palace and Royal Gardens, a complex featuring beautifully maintained gardens and two royal palaces built during the 19th and 20th centuries. Spend the evening by the water wandering along the corniche or relax back at your hotel.
    Day 5 Location: Cairo
    Today, travel south of Alexandria for a more sombre experience at the historic battle site of El Alamein. It was here that British and Commonwealth soldiers fought a decisive Allied victory against the German Afrika Korps that defined the North African campaign. Both sides suffered heavy losses and the memorial commemorates nearly 12,000 Commonwealth servicemen who died in the Western Desert campaigns during the Second World War. Stop to enjoy your lunch, brought with you from Alexandria; a delicious feteer meshaltet. This layered pastry is an iconic Egyptian dish and can be filled with a range of sweet or savoury ingredients. Return to Cairo in the afternoon and enjoy an evening at leisure.
    Day 6 Location: Nile Cruise - Luxor
    Transfer to Cairo Airport after breakfast and board a short flight to Luxor. Luxor was the pharaohs' capital during the height of their power and is now perhaps the world’s greatest open-air museum. Upon arriving in Luxor, transfer to your feature stay Nile riverboat where you’ll unpack and settle in for the next four nights. There’s no better way to soak in the ancient history of the Nile and the incredible sights along its banks. Enjoy all the comforts of a world-class hotel, including a swimming pool, sundeck, restaurant and cabins with panoramic windows to watch riverside life stream by. Travelling by riverboat allows you to get to the heart of each destination while ensuring the journeys in between are every bit as interesting. This afternoon, visit Karnak – one of the world’s most celebrated temple complexes built over a period of approximately 200 years. Some parts date back to 2055 BC and your guided tour will take you to its finest sections. The rest of the afternoon and evening is free for you to relax, take a shopping trip through the bazaar or perhaps kick back in a local teahouse.
    Day 7 Location: Nile Cruise - Edfu
    Rise early this morning to journey into the Valley of the Kings. There are over 60 pharaoh tombs buried under the hills here, many of which are richly decorated, and your guide will take you through this spectacular place where discoveries are still being made. Learn about the funerary rites of the ancient Egyptians and the significance of the paintings and hieroglyphics, and visit the final resting place of Tutankhamun. The discovery of the young Pharaoh’s tomb is undoubtedly one of the greatest archaeologic finds of all time, and here you will have the opportunity to enter it yourself, exploring the painted chamber and admiring his famous gold sarcophagus. Visit another three royal tombs and continue to the Temple of Queen Hatshepsut, which is set in a spectacular natural amphitheatre. Your final stop is the Colossi of Memnon – giant statues that once formed part of an impressive colonnade – before returning to the boat for a leisurely lunch. Enjoy some time relaxing either on deck or in your cabin before setting sail upstream to Edfu, where you’ll arrive in the evening.
    Day 8 Location: Nile Cruise - Aswan
    This morning, you will be moored near Edfu and may have the option to venture independently into town to see the nearby temple. Continue along the river, relaxing in the sun on deck and taking in the desert hills forming a backdrop over the lush riverbanks. This afternoon, arrive at Kom Ombo Temple, sitting spectacularly on the river’s edge. Learn from your leader how this temple was built in approximately 181 BC and is dedicated to two gods – Horus (god of protection) and Sobek (god of fertility, linked to the Nile’s water). Each god has a dedicated section – north or south – and there have been recent discoveries of mummified crocodiles in the Sobek section. Afterwards, board your boat and continue to Aswan, arriving in the late evening.
    Day 9 Location: Nile Cruise - Aswan
    Spend the morning visiting the temple complex of Philae, including the stunning Temple of Isis, located on Agilkia Island. The temple was reassembled in this location after being saved from rising waters and is a true architectural gem featuring some of Egypt’s finest carvings. Some Egyptologists believe that Philae was the last active site of the ancient Egyptian religion and where the last Egyptian hieroglyph was written. Afterwards, get to know the city of Aswan by foot during a walking tour with your leader. Explore the Sharia el Souk, a sprawling and bustling marketplace. Your leader will guide you through a colourful array of stalls selling everything from baked goods to Nubian crafts. Return to the boat for another evening being rocked to sleep by the calm Nile waters.
    Day 10 Location: Abu Simbel
    Travel by road this morning to Abu Simbel. Your accommodation is located right by Lake Nasser and features lush grounds, two swimming pools and fantastic views over the lake. Spending the night here allows the group a chance to visit the Abu Simbel temples at a more leisurely pace as opposed to a jam-packed half-day trip. Built during the reign of Ramesses II, these mammoth temples took 20 years to complete and feature rock-cut statues of the pharaoh and the queen, some of which are 20 metres in height. Tour the complex with your leader who will provide historical context on these grand structures. This evening, head back to the temples for an impressive sound and light show.
    Day 11 Location: Aswan
    Return to Aswan, arriving in time for lunch. Enjoy some downtime to relax at your hotel or explore more of the city, then regroup with your fellow travellers later in the afternoon. Take a step back in time during a visit to the Old Cataract Hotel for afternoon tea. Built in 1899 by Thomas Cook, the hotel has played host to an illustrious roster of guests, including Princess Diana, Winston Churchill and Agatha Christie, who lived here while writing her novel Death on the Nile. Soak up old-world glamour while enjoying tiered trays of finger food and a delightful selection of tea. The setting is up there with the best of them, with gorgeous grounds overlooking the Nile. Make the most of a free evening to find a local gem for dinner – your leader can help with recommendations.
    Day 12 Location: Aswan
    This morning, visit a modern example of Egyptian engineering – the Aswan High Dam. Located 13 kilometres south of Aswan, its controversial history that required the relocation of many ancient temples and statues has, in the end, had a mostly positive impact on the region. Afterwards, head to the Unfinished Obelisk – an abandoned structure that would’ve been the largest obelisk ever erected in ancient Egypt, had it been finished. Return to Aswan for some time to relax, then meet your leader in the late afternoon to board a traditional felucca and sail to the settlement of Elephantine Island. This island was once thought to be the home of Khnum – the god who guarded and controlled the Nile’s waters. This evening, enjoy stunning sunset drinks on the river on board your felucca sailing boat. Disembark at a village and join a local family for a traditional Nubian feast. Here you will have the chance to see a different side of Egyptian life, try out some wonderful Nubian dishes and swap stories with your welcoming hosts.
    Day 13 Location: Cairo
    This morning, transfer to the airport for a flight back to Cairo. Settle into your downtown hotel then meet up with the group in the early afternoon. Head out for a walking tour with your leader to experience a more modern side of Cairo and gain an understanding of how the locals live today. Your leader will take you to sample some of Cairo’s favourite street food, and point out interesting displays of contemporary architecture along the way. Visit Tahrir Square, the site of the political demonstrations that led to the 2011 Egyptian Revolution, and hear the story of the events that took place.
    Day 14 Location: Cairo
    Spend the day discovering yet another layer of Egyptian history – Islamic Cairo. Explore the Khan al-Khalili Bazaar – a labyrinthine area filled with sprawling alleyways packed with shops, cafes and more. This is a quintessential Cairo experience, home to the gold market, perfume street and the spice market. Stop off for an Arabic coffee or mint tea at El Fishawy, Cairo’s oldest café. Run by the same family for seven generations and a favourite with Cairo’s residents, there’s no better snapshot of local life in the city. Continue on to the Mosque of Ibn Tulun and the Gayer-Anderson Museum, home to all manner of curious objects, from antique furniture to Islamic artefacts. To celebrate your Egyptian adventure, share an authentic Egyptian meal with a local family. Be welcomed into their home, chat with the family about life in Egypt and Egyptian cuisine, all while enjoying a delicious feast of traditional dishes.
    Day 15 Location: Cairo
    Your trip comes to an end today after breakfast. If you would like to spend more time in Cairo, we’ll be happy to organise additional accommodation ahead of time (subject to availability).
    Dates
    Prices
    Availability
    Departure Date:
    05MAR2022
    Return Date:
    19MAR2022
    6385NZD
    available
    Departure Date:
    19MAR2022
    Return Date:
    02APR2022
    6385NZD
    available
    Departure Date:
    02APR2022
    Return Date:
    16APR2022
    6895NZD
    available
    Departure Date:
    16APR2022
    Return Date:
    30APR2022
    6895NZD
    available
    Departure Date:
    07MAY2022
    Return Date:
    21MAY2022
    6640NZD
    available
    Departure Date:
    17AUG2022
    Return Date:
    31AUG2022
    6385NZD
    available
    Departure Date:
    10SEP2022
    Return Date:
    24SEP2022
    6640NZD
    available
    Departure Date:
    24SEP2022
    Return Date:
    08OCT2022
    6640NZD
    available
    Departure Date:
    01OCT2022
    Return Date:
    15OCT2022
    6895NZD
    available
    Departure Date:
    08OCT2022
    Return Date:
    22OCT2022
    6895NZD
    available
    Last modified (date)

    08 Sep 2021

    Trip title

    Premium Egypt in Depth

    Trip code

    XEPE

    Validity

    Validity: 01 Jan 2022 to 31 Dec 2022

    Introduction

    Discover the contrasts of modern and ancient Egypt on a 15-day Premium adventure. Beginning and ending in Egypt’s capital, Cairo, gaze up at the magnificent Pyramids of Giza, take a four-day cruise down the legendary Nile and explore the grand temples of Abu Simbel. Uncover the secrets of the Valley of the Kings, Karnak Temple and the city of Alexandria. Visit the tombs of ancient pharaohs, share meals with local families and stand in awe of gigantic, rock-cut statues. Accompanied by a local Egyptologist leader, learn about the mystery and beauty of these ancient lands.

    Style

    Premium

    Themes

    Explorer

    Transport

    Private vehicle,Plane,Riverboat,Felucca

    Physical Rating

    2

    Physical preparation

    A basic level of fitness is required to be able to enjoy this trip to the fullest.

    Joining point

    Steigenberger Cairo Pyramids Hotel

    Alexandria Road, Pyramids Giza

    Cairo

    EGYPT

    Phone: +202 33772555

    Finish point

    Novotel Cairo El Borg

    3 Saraya El Gezira street

    Zamalek

    Cairo

    EGYPT

    Important information

    1. A complimentary airport arrival transfer is included; valid if you are arriving on Day 1 or if you have booked pre-tour accommodation through us. You must provide your flight details to your booking agent at least 14 days prior to travel. 2. A single supplement is available if you’d prefer not to share a room on this trip. The single supplement applies to all nights of your trip and is subject to availability. Please speak to your booking agent for further information.  3. This trip includes domestic flights. The luggage allowance is 23kg for check in luggage and 8kg for carry on.

    Group leader

    All group trips are accompanied by one of our group leaders. The aim of the group leader is to take the hassle out of your travels and to help you have the best trip possible. Premium leaders are Intrepid’s most experienced, with in-depth knowledge and extensive local networks to make it a trip of a lifetime. Your leader will provide information on the places you are travelling through, offer suggestions for things to do and see, recommend great local eating venues and introduce you to our local friends. While not being guides in the traditional sense, you can expect them to have a broad general knowledge of the places visited on the trip, including historical, cultural, religious, and social aspects. At Intrepid we aim to support local guides who have specialised knowledge of the regions we visit. When not already included in your trip, your leader will be able to recommend a local guide service who can share more detailed or specialised information at specific sites should you be interested in delving deeper.

    Safety

    Most national governments provide regularly updated foreign travel advice on safety issues involved with international travel. We recommend that you check your government's advice for their latest travel information before departure and ensure that your travel insurance covers you for all destinations and activities on your trip. Please refer to our website's safety page for links to major travel advisories and updates on safety issues affecting our trips here: https://www.intrepidtravel.com/travel-alerts We strongly recommend the use of a neck wallet or money belt while travelling, for the safe-keeping of your passport, flight tickets, cash and other valuable items. Leave your jewellery at home - you won't need it while travelling. Many of our hotels have safety deposit boxes, which is the most secure way of storing your valuables. A lock is recommended for securing your luggage. Your leader will accompany you on all included activities, however, during your trip you'll have some free time to pursue your own interests or relax and take it easy. While your leader will assist you with the available options in a given location, please note that any optional activities you undertake are not part of your Intrepid itinerary, and Intrepid makes no representations about the safety of the activity or the standard of the operators running them. Please use your own good judgement when selecting an activity in your free time. Please also note that your Leader has the authority to amend or cancel any part of the trip itinerary if it's deemed necessary due to safety concerns. Intrepid's operational safety policies can be viewed on our website at the link below. We recommend that you take a moment to read through this information before travelling, and would appreciate any feedback on how safety is being managed on our trips.

    https://www.intrepidtravel.com/safety-guidelines

    FIRE PRECAUTIONS Please be aware that local laws governing tourism facilities in this region differ from those in your home country and not all the accommodation which we use has a fire exit, fire extinguishers or smoke alarms. BALCONIES Some hotel balconies don't meet western standards in terms of the width of the balcony fence being narrower than 10cm. TRAFFIC AND DRIVING ON THE OTHER SIDE OF THE ROAD Depending on where you come from please note that drivers in this part of the world may drive on the opposite side of the road from what you are used to. Look both ways before crossing any road. Traffic can be a little more chaotic than you might be used to at home. Be aware! SEAT BELTS Please be aware that local laws governing transportation safety may differ from those in your home country and not all the transport which we use is able to provide seat belts. PICK POCKETING & PERSONAL SAFETY While travelling there is always the risk of pick-pocketing and petty theft, particularly in the more touristy cities. We recommend that you exercise caution when walking at night and encourage you to walk in groups and only on main, well-lit thoroughfares. Be particularly vigilant on public transport. Simple measures like carrying your day pack on your front, not hanging your bag over the back of your chair or on the floor and wearing a money belt will reduce any chance that your valuables should go missing. WATER SAFETY Please take care when taking part in any activities in the ocean, river or open water, where waves and currents can be unpredictable. It's expected that anyone taking part in water activities is able to swim and have experience in open water. All swimmers should seek local advice before entering the water. TRAVEL ADVICE & TRAVEL INSURANCE We recommend that you check your government's advice in relation to the areas you will be visiting for their latest travel information before departure and ensure that your travel insurance covers you for all areas your itinerary covers.

    SAFETY IN EGYPT We recommend that you check your government's advice for their latest travel information before your departure and that you ensure that your travel insurance covers you for all areas in your itinerary. We have links to all major travel advisories and regular updates on issues affecting your trip on our travel alerts page.  The safety of our travellers and staff is our first priority. We continue to monitor the situation through official travel advisories and our local operations team, and we’re able to quickly change arrangements if for any reason we become concerned. If there should be any changes to the situation you will be advised immediately. We have also taken the following measures to minimise the potential risk for our travellers in Egypt: *24 to 48hrs prior to each departure our local office are in contact with tourist police to get approval for each itinerary. The tourist police notify our local operator immediately should any advice or information change. *We use private rather than public transport on all our itineraries.

    WOMEN'S SAFETY Women should exercise caution when travelling in the Middle East. While the risk of an incident occurring on your trip is very low, below are some things you can do for your safety and peace of mind when travelling: *As with all travel, it’s important to use common sense and be vigilant. * Respect local dress codes and customs, perhaps dressing more conservatively than you do at home. * Avoid isolated areas when alone at any time of day. * We recommend not accepting invitations from locals to guide you through a temple or show you the local sights. * Consider booking any pre or post tour activities with a reputable tour operator, we do not recommend reserving a local driver with your hotel which often translates to local taxi drivers. We encourage you to call our local team for further advice on additional touring options. * If hotel staff need access to your room for any reason, request that they do this while you are out, or wait at reception while they attend to any cleaning or repairs. For the protection of both our customers and staff, our leaders worldwide are not permitted to be alone in a room with a group member. * Always take a hotel card with you when going out so you know the address and contact numbers. * Should you encounter any inappropriate behavior, inform your leader straight away. * For further information and advice, visit: https://smartraveller.gov.au/guide/pages/female-travellers.aspx www.gov.uk/government/policies/supporting-british-nationals-overseas/sup

    Communications

    Whilst there are Internet facilities throughout your trip in hotels and on the boat, they are often only available in the lobby and can be unreliable.  Acquiring local data by way of pre-paid sim card is a simple process on arrival at Cairo Airport.  When you leave the arrival hall, still in the building, on the left you will find the booths of three mobile phone providers: Vodafone, Etisalat and Orange. Choose the plan that best suits your needs, plans and prices can change but expect to pay between 100-165 EGP for a plan that will provide you 3-4GB of data.  You will require your passport to purchase and register your new sim.

    Visas

    PASSPORT You will need a valid passport to travel internationally. As a general rule, most countries require that your passport has a minimum of 6 months validity remaining. Your passport details are required to complete your booking. Please ensure the name on your passport matches the name on your booking and airline tickets exactly and contact us immediately if there are any errors. We recommend taking copies of the main passport pages and other important documents with you as well as leave copies at home with family or friends. VISAS Visas are the responsibility of the individual traveller. Entry requirements can change at any time. It is important that you check your government's foreign travel advisories along with the consular website of the country or countries you are travelling to for the most up to date information specific to your nationality and circumstances. Please be aware that not all visa information found online from other sources may be valid while COVID-19 restrictions are in place. Visas can take several weeks to process, so make sure you research the requirements as soon as you have booked your trip to allow for obtaining any necessary documents as well as the application and processing time. Your booking consultant can advise on a visa processing service or you can apply yourself directly through a consulate. COVID-19 Entry and Exit Requirements Below you will find general visa advice about the destinations on your trip. Due to constantly evolving COVID-19 requirements and restrictions, please refer to your government's foreign travel advice for the most up to date information.You may also refer to our travel alert page for more info https://www.intrepidtravel.com/en/travel-alerts Make sure you are familiar with the current border measures and entry requirements as these are quite complex and changing frequently without notice. Please also ensure you have a travel insurance policy that covers your travels as well as medical or COVID-19 related expenses within the country. RETURN TRAVEL Please ensure you stay up to date with any current testing or quarantine requirements for returning to your home country or transiting through other destinations after the completion of your tour. We are able to help facilitate taking a COVID-19 test while on trip. Please ensure you have funds available to cover the cost of this test which will be payable directly to the testing site. Your Intrepid Tour Leader will provide more details at the group meeting as well as assist with booking appointments for all travellers who need to be tested. EGYPT Visas are currently attainable on arrival at Cairo airport for most nationalities. The visa costs USD25 and can only be paid in USD cash. On arrival to Cairo airport you buy your visa at any of the banks before proceeding to immigration. You will be given a stamp that you then need to put into your passport yourself. A single entry visa is valid for three months from date of issue and entitles the bearer to one month in Egypt. If you prefer to get your visa before travel, Egypt now has the Egypt Online Visa, or Egypt e-Visa, a new electronic visa authorisation for citizens of eligible countries wishing to travel to Egypt for tourism. An e-Visa for Egypt can be obtained through an online application.  You can check your nationalities eligibility and apply for the e-Visa from this link: https://visa2egypt.gov.eg/eVisa/FAQ?VISTK=UN26-IRWS-H69H-5I6P-LZF5-56RD-42VB-34YV-FI27-G78U-PNJ9-L44Y-M0L9-3I3C-ARKT-XYTP The e-Visa for Egypt is a single or multiple-entry visa, allowing its holder to visit the country for a maximum duration of 30 days. It is valid to use for a period of 3 months. If you require an address for Visa Applications in Egypt, please use our local office: Intrepid Travel Cairo 5 Sphinx Square, 1st floor, Apartment 12 Mohandeseen, Giza, Egypt e: [email protected] m: +20 10 999 29520 – 10 017 40498 t: +20 2 330 210 01 We recommend checking with your travel agent or embassy before departure as this information may change. EGYPT COVID-19 ENTRY & EXIT REQUIREMENTS For the latest update of what is required in order to enter Egypt, please check your government's foreign travel advisory and visit the following website: http://egypt.travel/covid We are able to facilitate taking a COVID-19 test while on trip. Results can be ready in approximately 24 hours. The cost of a test is approximately 3,000 Egyptian pounds (190 USD) per person. Please ensure you have funds available to cover the cost of this test which will be payable directly to the testing site. Your Intrepid leader will provide more details at the group meeting as well as book appointments for all travelers who need to be tested.

    Why we love it

    Discover the Pyramids of Giza, Valley of the Kings, Kom Ombo Temple, Philae Island, Karnak Temple complex, the ancient city of Alexandria, battle site of El Alamein and the many sides of Cairo.

    Travel with a local Egyptologist leader, learn about Nubian life during an evening at a family home, stop in for a traditional dinner with a local family in Cairo and take in a snapshot of local life at a buzzing cafe in Cairo.

    Take your time exploring Abu Simbel with an overnight stay, discovering this magnificent monument carved out of the mountainside with less crowds, followed by an incredible sound and light show.

    Relax with four nights on a premium Nile riverboat, allowing you to cruise up the river in comfort, past ancient temples, watching local life unfolding on the riverbank as you get to the heart of each destination.

    Experience the best of Egyptian cuisine during a welcome dinner in Cairo, high tea at the Old Cataract Hotel in Aswan, traditional meals in two family homes and a visit to Cairo’s oldest cafe.

    Is this trip right for you

    In 2022, Ramadan will take place from 2 April to 1 May. Travelling during this holy month can be a rewarding cultural experience, however some regular services may not be available during the daytime, such as restaurants or coffee bars, and occasionally travel can be disrupted by events. Your leader will adjust the itinerary accordingly, but please consider your travel arrangements carefully before booking travel for this period.

    Health

    GENERAL HEALTH All travellers need to be in good physical health in order to participate fully on this trip. When selecting your trip please make sure you have read through the itinerary carefully and assess your ability to manage and enjoy our style of travel. Please note that if in the opinion of our group leader or local guide any traveller is unable to complete the itinerary without undue risk to themselves and/or the rest of the group, we reserve the right to exclude them from all or part of a trip without refund. You should consult your doctor for up-to-date medical travel information or for any necessary vaccinations before departure. We recommend that you carry a first aid kit as well as any personal medical requirements as they may not easily be obtained while travelling. COVID-19 The safety and wellbeing of our travellers, leaders, crew, staff, and suppliers continues to remain our highest priority as we travel. You can read more about how we will keep you safe on our trips, including our COVID-19 Health & Safety Guidelines here: https://www.intrepidtravel.com/safe-travels HEALTH SCREENING If you are unwell prior to travelling, please stay at home and contact us to make alternative arrangements. At the group meeting, you will be asked to complete a self-screening health form and report any COVID-19 symptoms as well as any close contact with someone who has suspected or confirmed COVID-19. If you are displaying any symptoms or have any health concerns at this time, we will follow the advice of local health authorities to determine whether medical assistance, isolation or further action is required. We ask all travellers to continue to monitor their health throughout their travels and report any relevant symptoms to their tour leader. TESTING & VACCINATION POLICY From 1st May 2021 we introduced new safety measures that apply on all of our trips, except for tours in Australia and New Zealand. On trips departing before 1st September 2021, you will need to show one of the below to your leader at the Group Meeting on Day 1 of your trip: - Proof of COVID-19 vaccination, or - Proof of negative COVID-19 test conducted no more than 72 hours before day 1 of your trip, or - Proof of recovery documentation In addition, if you’re aged 70+ or have an existing health condition that puts you at a higher risk of serious COVID-19 disease, you are also required to provide proof of vaccination before you can join a trip. MANDATORY VACCINATION POLICY From 1st of September 2021 we have introduced enhanced safety measures that apply on all of our trips, except for tours in Australia, New Zealand, and the Cook Islands. You will need to show your leader at the Group Meeting on Day 1 of your trip: - Proof of COVID-19 vaccination This policy is in addition to any specific testing or vaccination requirements for entry or exit to a destination or required by your airline. For more information, including a detailed FAQ about this policy, please visit https://www.intrepidtravel.com/covid19 DRINKING WATER As a rule we recommend you don't drink tap water, even in hotels, as it may contain much higher levels of different minerals than the water you are used to at home. For local people this is not a problem as their bodies are used to this and can cope, but for visitors drinking the tap water can result in illness. Generally this isn't serious, an upset stomach being the only symptom, but it's enough to spoil a day or two of your holiday. Many hotels and lodges provide safe drinking water, while bottled water is another alternative. Water consumption should be about two litres a day. Rehydration salts, motion sickness tablets, and diarrhoea blockers are available from many pharmacies.

    Food and dietary requirements

    While travelling with us you'll experience the vast array of wonderful food available in the world. Your group leader will be able to suggest restaurants to try during your trip. To give you the maximum flexibility in deciding where, what and with whom to eat, generally not all meals are included in the trip price. This also gives you more budgeting flexibility. As a rule our groups tend to eat together to enable you to taste a larger variety of dishes and enjoy each other's company. If you have dietary requirements and/or food allergies, please let your booking agent know prior to departure. Your group leader or representative will endeavor to cater for specific dietary requirements where possible. Please note that Gluten Intolerances and Vegan can be more challenging in some parts of the Middle East, you may wish to speak to your trip leader at the group meeting to alert them of this so they can help you throughout the trip in planning suitable meals. Your group leader or representative will endeavor to disclose to their fullest knowledge the main ingredients in dishes being consumed. It is, however, your personal responsibility to ensure that you do not ingest any foods to which you are allergic.

    Money matters

    TIPPING Tips are included on all Intrepid Premium trips, covering hotel staff, local guides and the people who will take care of you during your travels. This amount does not include a tip for your leader, so you may wish to set aside some funds for this. It is customary to tip your leader for outstanding service provided during your trip. You are free to tip more or less as you see fit, depending on your perception of service quality and the length and involvement of your leader on your trip. Tips are greatly appreciated as a gesture of thanks for their professionalism and leadership during your trip. The amount is entirely a personal preference; however, as a guideline, US$3-6 per person (in a currency relevant for your destination), per day can be used. SPENDING MONEY When it comes to spending money on the trip, every traveller is a little different. You know your spending habits better than we do, so please budget an appropriate amount for things like optional meals, drinks, shopping, optional activities, and laundry. Make sure you have read the itinerary and inclusions thoroughly so you know what is included in the trip price and what you may need to pay for while travelling. CONTINGENCY FUNDS We try to plan for every eventuality, but there are still some things beyond our control. We reserve the right to change an itinerary after departure due to local circumstances or a Force Majeure Event. In such emergency circumstances, the additional cost of any necessary itinerary alterations will be covered by you. Please note we are not responsible for any incidental expenses that may be incurred as a result of the change of itineraries including but not limited to visas, vaccinations or non-refundable flights. Make sure you have access to an extra US$500 for emergencies (e.g. severe weather, natural disasters, civil unrest) or other events that result in unavoidable changes to the itinerary (e.g. transport strikes or cancellations, airport closures). Sometimes these things necessitate last-minute changes to enable our trips to continue to run, and as a result, there may be some extra costs involved. The recommended amount is listed in USD for the relatability of universal travellers, however, local currency may be needed once in the country to cover these costs. CURRENCY- Egypt The Official currency of Egypt is the Egyptian Pound (LE) or (EGP).  Currency Subunits are called Qirsh (Piastre) = 1/100 of a Pound.  Denominations come in Notes:  5, 10, 25, 50 Piastres. 1, 5, 10, 20, 50, 100, 200 Pounds. Coins: 5, 10, 20, 25, 50 Piastres. Whilst the USD is often used we recommend local currency for everyday services.  We also recommend keeping some smaller denominations for tipping.

    What to take

    What you need to bring will vary according to the trip style you have chosen, the countries you are visiting and when you are travelling. We recommend you pack as lightly as possible, ensuring that you are able to carry and lift your own luggage and walk with it for short distances or up or down a flight of stairs. Help will be on hand in most locations, but there may be times you need to handle your own luggage, for example in airports and train stations. A lockable suitcase with wheels is ideal for this trip. It is recommended that you keep your main luggage weight around 15kg and certainly no more than 20kg. A small or medium-sized backpack (45-50 litres) is another good option. You'll also need a day pack/bag to carry water, camera, jacket, etc. when you’re exploring during the day. Below is a link to our ultimate packing list, a guide to get you started:

    https://www.intrepidtravel.com/packing-list

    Climate and seasonal

    SUMMER IN EGYPT As the days get warmer, temperatures can start to soar, particularly in Upper Egypt (Luxor and Aswan). From April to October, to avoid the midday heat, some days start very early (for example - 5am). Please be prepared for this - our schedules are designed to make touring as comfortable for you as possible. RAMADAN The important month of Ramadan will be in progress 02 April - 01 May 2022 and 22 March - 20 April 2023, and the Eid ul-Fitr festival will be held directly at its conclusion for 3-4 days. Ramadan is a festival of sacrifice where the devout refrain from eating or drinking during daylight hours. During Ramadan, business hours are shortened, including opening hours at some tourist attractions. Alcohol is not permitted during daylight hours and many restaurants will be closed. While you should expect some delays and inconveniences during this period, the month is a fantastic opportunity to travel in a Muslim country and witness this unique period, particularly the nightly celebrations when the sun sets and the fast is broken. Please note that although the Eid ul-Fitr festival can also be a fascinating time to travel it's a period of national holiday. Most government offices and businesses will be closed and some tourist site opening hours may be affected.

    A couple of rules

    Everyone has the right to feel safe when they travel. We don’t tolerate any form of violence (verbal or physical) or sexual harassment, either between customers or involving our leaders, partners or local people. Sexual relationships between a tour leader and a customer are strictly forbidden. Use or possession of illegal drugs will not be tolerated on our trips. If you choose to consume alcohol while travelling, we encourage responsible drinking and expect that you’ll abide by the local laws regarding alcohol consumption. The sex tourism industry is known to exploit vulnerable people and have negative consequences on communities, including undermining the development of sustainable tourism. For this reason, patronising sex workers will not be tolerated on our trips. By travelling with us you are agreeing to adhere to these rules. You must at all times comply with the laws, customs, foreign exchange and drug regulations of all countries visited, and you also agree to travel in accordance with our Responsible Travel Guidelines. The decision of the group leader is final on all matters likely to affect the safety or well-being of any traveller or staff member participating in the trip. If you fail to comply with a decision made by a group leader, or interfere with the well-being or mobility of the group, the group leader may direct you to leave the trip immediately, with no right of refund. We may also elect not to carry you on any future trips booked. If you feel that someone is behaving inappropriately while travelling with us, please inform your tour leader or local guide immediately. Alternatively, contact us on the emergency contact number detailed in the Problems and Emergency Contact section of this Essential Trip Information. For additional Conditions of Carriage regarding COVID-19, see here: https://www.intrepidtravel.com/conditions-carriage

    Feedback

    Can’t stop thinking about your adventure? Tell us all about it! We read each piece of feedback carefully and use it to make improvements for travellers like you. Share your experience with us at: http://www.intrepidtravel.com/feedback/

    Emergency contact

    While we always endeavour to provide the best possible holiday experience, due to the nature of travel and the areas we visit sometimes things can and do go wrong. Should any issue occur while you are on your trip, it is imperative that you discuss this with your group leader or our local representative straight away so that they can do their best to rectify the problem and save any potential negative impact on the rest of your trip. We recognise that there may be times when your group leader/local partner may not be able to resolve a situation to your satisfaction - if this is the case, please ask the leader to speak to their direct manager. You may also choose to provide details in your online feedback, which we ask you to complete within 30 days of the end of your trip. Please do be aware that it is very difficult for us to provide any practical help after the trip is completed, so informing us while still travelling will give us the opportunity to resolve the issue in real-time. For general contact details please use the following page: http://www.intrepidtravel.com/ourtrips/contact/ In case of a genuine crisis or emergency, you can reach our local office on the number below: Intrepid's Local Operator: +962 79700 4051

    Responsible travel

    Our Responsible Travel Policy outlines our commitment to preserving the environment, supporting local communities, protecting the vulnerable, and giving back to the places we travel. All our trip leaders, suppliers, and staff are trained on these principles and are core to us delivering sustainable, experience-rich travel. Explore the different parts of our Responsible Travel Policy by visiting: https://www.intrepidtravel.com/responsible-travel When packing, be aware that dress standards are conservative and you should dress accordingly. To respect the local culture and for your own comfort, we strongly recommend modest clothing. As a guideline, shoulders and knees at the minimum (and everything in between including midriff and cleavage) should be covered at all times. Wearing shorts and singlet tops is not appropriate and may well restrict your entry into sites of a religious nature, family homes, and will limit your local interaction opportunities in general. Loose, lightweight, long clothing (3/4 trousers that come to the calf are fine) is both respectful and cool in the predominantly warm climate. As the countries we visit are Islamic nations, women may find a headscarf useful.

    The Intrepid Foundation

    Help us change thousands of lives by creating meaningful work and supporting skills training in communities around the world. The Intrepid Foundation is the not-for-profit for Intrepid Group. We work with local organisations around the world to improve the livelihoods of vulnerable individuals and communities through sustainable travel experiences. With our travellers’ help, we’ve contributed more than AU $6 million to over 100 community organisations since 2002. Did you know that tourism is one of the biggest contributors to the global economy, making up 1 out of every 10 jobs? That’s why we support local projects that create meaningful jobs and give people the skills they need to work in the destinations we take you to. And it’s why we exist – to make it easy for travellers to give back to the communities and places they’ve been in an effective and meaningful way. Intrepid Group covers all administration costs, every cent goes directly to the projects. Donating is simple and secure. Please ask your leader for information about the projects we support through The Intrepid Foundation or visit our website: http://www.theintrepidfoundation.org/

    Accommodation notes

    The style of accommodation indicated in the day-to-day itinerary is a guideline only and may change. On some occasions, alternative arrangements may need to be made due to the lack of availability of rooms in our preferred accommodation. In these cases, we will use a similar standard of accommodation. Throughout the trip, we request that our properties prepare rooms in time for our arrival, especially if we're arriving prior to normal check-in time. However, this isn't always possible which means we won't be able to check-in immediately on arrival at some hotels. Instead, we can store our luggage and explore our new destination or on some trips, have use of shared day rooms until all rooms are available.

    Transport notes

    SECURITY WHILE TRAVELLING Occasionally you may experience a Tourist Police Escort in your vehicle and whilst not common convoys between select towns or regions are possible. This practice has been implemented by local authorities to monitor the safety and security of visitors to Egypt. NILE RIVERBOAT You will be staying on a riverboat for the Nile River section of this itinerary. The company we work with has a large fleet of boats and the actual boat can’t be confirmed until 30 days before departure. However you can expect the following facilities; restaurant, bar & sundeck. Most boats will also have a small swimming pool and in that instance, swimming towels will be available for use. All cabins have ensuites, air conditioning, and windows to enjoy the views of the Nile. Accommodation during the cruise is on a full board basis, often in the form of a buffet. Drinks can be purchased from the bar or restaurant. Bottled drinking water and tea and coffee are available but are not included so please ensure you check prices on board. Internet is mostly charged at an additional fee. We recommend purchasing a local sim card for your data requirements, please refer to the Communications section of this Essential Trip Information document. You will have the opportunity to disembark the boat each day as we explore some of the ancient sites included on the itinerary. The boat will also be anchored at port each evening. Only on the odd occasion would it sail at night depending on the water traffic at Esna Lock. Most often when in port there can be many boats and you may be berthed side by side with another ship. Riverboats have anywhere from 50-70 cabins and you will be sharing the facilities with other travellers not on your tour.

    Travel insurance

    Travel insurance is compulsory on all our trips for those travelling internationally. We require that at a minimum you are covered for medical expenses including emergency repatriation. If you are travelling within your home country or region please confirm before travel that you are entitled to access the public medical system easily should an accident occur. We strongly recommend all travellers have a policy that also covers personal liability, cancellation, curtailment and loss of luggage or personal effects. For international trips, you will not be permitted to join the group until evidence of travel insurance and the insurance company's 24-hour emergency contact number has been sighted by your leader. If you have credit card insurance your group leader will require details of the participating insurer/underwriter, the level of coverage, policy number, and emergency contact number rather than the bank's name and your credit card details. Please contact your bank for these details prior to arriving in-country. Travellers who reside within the European Union or Switzerland receive basic international health insurance, so travel insurance is not mandatory under European Union Law. However, as this does not cover situations such as emergency rescues, private health care, or repatriation to their home country, comprehensive travel insurance is strongly recommended. European Union or Swiss travellers who decline travel insurance when travelling outside of their home region must sign a Travel Insurance Waiver Form at the Group Meeting. For assistance with travel insurance or other services, please visit the link below: https://www.intrepidtravel.com/booking-resources/our-services

    Your fellow travellers

    As you travel on a group trip you will be exposed to all the pleasures and maybe some of the frustrations of travelling in a group. Your fellow travellers will probably come from all corners of the world and likely a range of age groups too. We ask you to be understanding of the various needs and preferences of your group - patience with your fellow travellers is sometimes required for the benefit of everyone's travel experience. Remember too that you have responsibilities to the group. If you are requested to be at a place at a certain time, ensure that you don't keep the rest of the group waiting. We have found time and time again that the very best trips we operate are those where the dynamics within the group work well - this takes just a little effort on your part. Due to privacy reasons, we are unable to provide you with contact details and any personal information about your fellow travellers booked on your trip prior to departure. SOLO TRAVELLERS This is the beauty of our style of travel: many of our travellers join because they are travelling solo and want to meet and share experiences with like-minded people. We pair up solo travellers with another traveller of the same gender as per your passport or the information we have in our booking system, so if you identify differently from the gender marker on your passport, please let us know in advance. We also have a Single Supplement available on most trips for travellers who prefer to have their own room. Please note that this only applies to accommodation during the tour. Pre-trip and post-trip accommodation booked through us will on a single room basis. Some of our itineraries have accommodation booked on an open gender, multi-share basis and where applicable this will be specified in our Essential Trip Information.

    Itinerary disclaimer

    ITINERARY CHANGES Our itineraries are updated regularly throughout the year based on customer feedback and to reflect the current situation in each destination. The information included in this Essential Trip Information may therefore differ from when you first booked your trip. It is important that you review this information prior to travel so that you have the latest updates. Due to weather, local conditions, transport schedules, public holidays, or other factors, further changes may be necessary to your itinerary once in-country. The order and timing of included activities in each location may also vary seasonally to ensure our travellers have the best experience. Your tour leader will keep you up to date with any such changes once on tour. OPTIONAL ACTIVITIES A selection of optional activities that have been popular with past travellers are listed in the day-to-day itinerary. This isn't an exhaustive list and should be used as a guide only for some of what might be available. Prices are approximate, are for entrance only, and don’t include transport to and from the sites or local guides unless indicated. All activities are subject to availability, and maybe on a join-in basis. It may not be possible to do all the activities listed in the time available at each destination, so some pre-planning for what you are most interested in is advised. When it's recommended that travellers pre-book these activities, look for a note in the Special Information section of the day-to-day itinerary. For most, they can either be organised independently on the day, or let your leader know you are interested in the Group Meeting and they can assist. Where activities are considered medium or high risk, we work with operators whose safety and credentials we have sighted and assessed. Although it is possible that you may find the same activity cheaper with another operator on the ground, we cannot vouch for the safety or quality of that operator. Medium and high-risk activities not listed above have not been assessed by us and as such our staff and leaders are unable to assist you with organising these activities. Activities that contravene our Responsible Travel policies are also not listed. Please remember that the decision to partake in any activity not listed is at your own discretion and risk. NILE CRUISE SCHEDULES: Nile cruise boats must negotiate the lock at Esna. As a result, boats arrive and depart Luxor continuously throughout the day. This printed itinerary is therefore only a guide and you may find you have more (or less) time in either Luxor or Aswan. The actual cruising time from Luxor to Aswan (and vice versa) is about a day and a half and this journey is accomplished both during the day and at night.

    Accommodation

    Comfortable hotel (10 nights),Feature Stay (4 nights)

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