Duration: 10 DaysAn inquisitive journey for those with a hunger for knowledge, adventure through the land of pharaohs. Cruise your way through Egypt and along the mighty Nile, as you delve into the highlights of ancient Egypt.
Elegance of the Pharaohs – Cairo Deck, Summer 2020
Cairo at leisure.
Your complimentary, private transfer takes you to your local departure airport. Welcome to Egypt - a mystical and timeless land, where the ancient and modern world live side by side. On arrival in Cairo, you will be met at the airport and transferred to the Mena House Hotel, your luxury five-star accommodation for the next two nights. Having welcomed numerous heads of state over the years, you’ll be treated to the same luxuries, including an optional rejuvenating spa experience and striking views of the pyramids from the private balcony of your room.
In the morning, join your Travelling Concierge, a knowledgeable Egyptologist, who will guide you as you delve into the country’s fascinating history. Head for one of the seven wonders of the ancient world, the great Pyramids of Giza. Venture inside the Pyramids and visit their guardian Sphinx. Built for Pharaoh Khufu between 2560 and 2540 BCE, the Great Pyramid was the tallest man-made structure in the world until 1311. Your exploration of Cairo with an Egyptologist inside one of the Pyramids. Afterwards, visit the Egyptian Museum, to witness the priceless treasures recovered from the Tomb of Tutankhamun. Continue to Sakkara, to see the Step Pyramid of King Zoser, the oldest in the world, dating back to 2700 B.C. Nearby lies Memphis, the famous capital of ancient Egypt. See the colossal statue of Ramses II and the great Alabaster Sphinx. Later, return to Giza as night falls to attend a mesmerising Sound & Light Show at the world-famous Pyramids.(Breakfast)
Join your cruise in Luxor.
Wake early and transfer to the airport for your flight to Luxor. Famed for its ancient treasures and the grandeur of its monuments, this beautiful city is a treasure trove for those looking to delve further into Egypt’s grand history. On arrival, have lunch on your luxury cruise ship and unwind before heading to Karnak. The largest temple complex built by man, this striking complex was constructed over a period of 1500 years. Walk through the avenue of ram-headed sphinxes, past the statue of Rameses II, to stand in awe among the huge columns of the vast Hypostyle Hall. Later, return to your cruise ship, one of the most stylish and spacious in Egypt. The all-suite River Tosca provides a relaxing and comfortable setting as you cruise the legendary Nile River. Featuring a stylishly adorned lounge, with full-service bar, a cosy library, restaurant, fitness rooms and swimming pool, you’ll take in the sights in the utmost luxury. In the evening, enjoy an onboard gala reception and dinner.(Breakfast / Lunch / Dinner with Wine)
The Temple of Hathor and Luxor.
In the morning, visit the Temple of Hathor. Built in the 1st century B.C., it remains one of the best-preserved temples in all of Egypt and contains a rare depiction of Cleopatra VII and Caesarian, the son of Julius Caesar. Return to Luxor for some leisure time before visiting the UNESCO World Heritage Site of the Temple of Luxor for a VIP, after-hours visit. Founded in 1400 B.C. during the Golden Age of Thebes, the temple complex blends in seamlessly with surrounding city.(Breakfast / Lunch / Dinner with Wine)
The West Bank and Valley of the Kings.
Travel to the West Bank of the Nile. Stop for photos at the Colossi of Memnon – these gigantic twin stone statues of Amenhotep III once guarded his mortuary temple. Venture on to the amazing Temple of Hatshepsut, Egypt's first female pharaoh who ruled from 1479 to 1458 B.C. Next, head to the Valley of the Kings, one of the most famous archaeological sites in the world and visit the burial place of Tutankhamun, whose mummified remains are still on display. Later, experience a warm welcome as you meet a local family and take a tour of their village. As you stroll through the streets, hear stories of local life and the importance of family contribution, ensuring all members of the village are looked after. Part of this is the baking of traditional sun bread, where each group of families in the village will have their own bakery oven. A member from each group is chosen to be the assigned baker to provide bread to the community. Watch as the family demonstrates the bread-making process and enjoy a taste of the delicious bread, paired perfectly with a cup of Egyptian tea. In the evening, join in the fun at an Egyptian dinner and a lively galabeya party.(Breakfast / Lunch / Dinner with Wine)
A Felucca around Kitchener’s Island.
Stretch out on a traditional Nile felucca (sailboat) for a peaceful ride around Kitchener's Island. Known for the Aswan Botanical Garden and its tropical plants and palm trees, this petite island is less than a kilometre long. Sightseeing continues with a visit to the modern Aswan High Dam and the ancient granite quarries, where one of Queen Hatshepsut's obelisks lies abandoned in the bedrock. Cross the Nile by motorboat to the well-preserved Philae temple complex. Revered by locals, it was moved stone-by-stone to its current location to avoid being ruined by rising water levels, following the construction of the High Dam. Relax and enjoy a visual feast as you cruise along the Nile to Aswan. In the evening, you will indulge in dinner on the ship, before you are treated to an Egyptian belly dancing performance.(Breakfast / Lunch / Dinner with Wine)
Aswan and High Dam.
Take a small boat along the banks of the Nile with the birdman of Aswan. Keep a look out for colourful native birds as you travel to his small Nubian village. Visit the traditional dwelling of a local family and enjoy Nubian-style hospitality as you learn more about the area's unique culture. In the late afternoon, join the likes of Winston Churchill and Agatha Christie before you, with a colonial-style high tea at the Old Cataract Hotel. Sit back and relax as you enjoy delicious food, great company and a breathtaking sunset.(Breakfast / Afternoon Tea)
Back to Cairo
In the morning, your luxurious cruise experience comes to an end as you board your flight back to Cairo. In the evening, check into your famous hotel built to attract the nobility of Europe, the Four Seasons at the First Residence. Over the years it has been home to Howard Carter, Jane Fonda, King Farouk as well as many crown princes and princesses.(Breakfast)
After breakfast, enjoy a city tour where you will visit the towering Alabaster Mosque, commissioned by Muhammad Ali Pasha between 1830 and 1848. Enjoy incredible hilltop views over the city from the imposing Citadel of Salah El Din. This massive 12th century compound was home to Egypt's rulers for more than seven hundred years. Next, head to Khan el-Khalili, a major souk in the historic centre of Islamic Cairo, stock up on local goods and put your bargaining skills to test.(Breakfast)
It’s time to say goodbye to your fellow travellers, as you wake early for your transfer to Cairo airport. On arrival at your home airport, your driver will greet and escort you to your waiting car for your private transfer home.(Breakfast)
- Nile Cruise: Enjoy an onboard gala reception and dinner.
- Luxor: Visit a family home and witness the making authentic Egyptian sun bread.
- Nile Cruise: Join the fun at an Egyptian dinner and galabeya party.
- Nile Cruise: Enjoy an evening of dinner and traditional Egyptian belly dancing.
- Aswan: Like Winston Churchill and Agatha Christie before you, enjoy the sunset and high tea in colonial English-style at Aswan's famous Old Cataract Hotel.
- Nile Cruise: Enjoy dinner accompanied by a Nubian folklore show.
- Dining Summary: 11 Breakfasts (B), 7 Lunches (L), 1 Afternoon Tea (AT), 7 Dinners (D) all with bottled water, tea or coffee. Festive Highlight Dinners: 21 Dec includes an additional New Year's Eve Highlight Dinner in Cairo and 28 Dec includes a New Year's Eve Highlight Dinner onboard the Nile Cruise.
- Giza: With your Egyptologist, meet the enigmatic Sphinx and venture deep inside one of the pyramids, to the chambers where the pharaohs went to meet their Gods in the afterlife.
- Sakkara: Witness the Step Pyramid of King Zoser that dates back over 4,700 years.
- Memphis: Led by your Travelling Concierge, explore this ancient capital and see the magnificent statue of Ramses II and the Alabaster Sphinx.
- Giza: If only these walls could talk! Oh, but they do at the audio visual Sound & Light Show at the Great Pyramids.
- Cairo: Board your included flight to reach Luxor.
- Karnak: Stand amid a vast forest of columns in the largest temple complex known to man.
- Dendera: Visit the Temple of Hathor and see the rare depiction of Cleopatra VII and Caesarian.
- Luxor: Visit the Temple of Luxor, a UNESCO World Heritage Site.
- West Bank: See the might Colossi of Memnon, guarded by two giant seated figures of Amenhotep III.
- Valley of the Kings: Embark on an experience with an Egyptologist as you venture to the Necropolis where many pharaohs were laid to rest. See the royal tombs and visit the Temple of Hatshepsut.
- Kitchener's Island: On a traditional Nile felucca, meet a sailor and learn the art of sailing this ancient Nile craft as you cruise around Kitchener's Island.
- Aswan: During your visit to Aswan High Dam and the granite quarries, witness one of Queen Hatshepsut's unfinished obelisk.
- Philae Island: Travel by motorboat to the island of Philae and visit the Temple of Isis which appears to rise from the waters.
- Aswan: Travel to a small Nubian village, visit a traditional dwelling of a local family and enjoy Nubian-style hospitality.
- Luxor: Catch your final glimpse of the Nile onboard your included flight back to Cairo.
- Cairo: Sightseeing with your Travelling Concierge includes a visit to the Citadel along with Mohammed Ali's Alabaster Mosque and a visit to the Khan El Halili bazaar.
- Cairo: During your visit to the Egyptian Museum with your Egyptologist, gaze upon the most recognisable symbols of ancient Egypt: the full-faced funeral mask, gold coffin, gilded throne and precious jewellery - Tutankhamun’s treasure.
- Luxury Cruising: For the ultimate in luxury and refinement, set sail on the deluxe, all-suite River Tosca. Experience old world elegance, blended with modern amenities and comfort. The spacious suites are tastefully designed with marble bathrooms. Outside on the sun deck, the pool and shaded cabanas offer an oasis of calm to relax and enjoy the ever-changing scenery.
- Aswan: Perfectly placed on the banks of the River Nile, the Old Cataract Aswan is a 5-star luxury hotel in a 19th-century Victorian palace that contrasts sophisticated interiors against a Nubian Desert backdrop. Enjoy luxurious amenities like the revitalising spa or an infinity pool that appears to cascade into the river.
- Luxor: Visit the UNESCO World Heritage site of the temple of Luxor after it has been closed to the public and marvel at this ancient monument.
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