The oldest tourist destination on earth, Egypt attracted ancient Greeks and Romans to ogle at the magnitude of the Pyramids.
Egypt enchants visitors with its mighty Nile and ancient monuments, the beguiling desert, and lush delta. An ancient civilization that carved its face into stone for the world to ponder. Most travellers are drawn to Egypt’s mysteries: the ancient face of a Sphinx, the erection of the largest stone monuments on earth, and mummies wrapped and carefully preserved. Even with all, there is to see, it is the Egyptians themselves that leave the most lasting impression.
Explore Cairo, Luxor, Aswan, and Abu Simbel on the Classic Egypt Tour. You’ll also witness the majesty of the Nile Valley as we cruise along the Nile witnessing rural life along its banks.
Contact us for a custom Egypt Tour.
USD per Person
THIS IS A CUSTOMIZABLE ITINERARY FOR GROUPS OF ALL SIZES.
DATES ARE AVAILABLE UPON REQUEST.
DAY 1: WELCOME TO CAIRO, EGYPT
Welcome to Egypt! Although the modern city was founded in 968 by the Fatimid dynasty, Cairo has been a strategic capital for thousands of years as the ancient city of Memphis. Today, it is a bewildering mix of scents, sights, and traffic. Situated near some of the world’s grandest monuments, it is the largest city in the Muslim world and the sixteenth largest city on earth.
Upon arrival to Cairo International Airport, travellers will be met by the Tour Representative and will be transferred by private vehicle to the hotel.
DAY 2: THE PYRAMIDS OF GIZA
After breakfast at your garden-ensconced hotel, you depart with your local guide to explore the Pyramids of the Giza. The complex is composed of the Great Pyramid or the Pyramid of Cheops, the somewhat smaller Pyramid of Khafre, and the smaller Pyramid of Menkaure.
The Great Pyramid is the oldest of the three, completed around 2570 BC, and the one remaining “Seven Wonders of the Ancient World.” Facing east and to the east of the pyramids lies the Sphinx, thought to be a likeness of the Pharaoh Khafre. Also part of the itinerary is the Funeral Barque Museum, which holds the “barques” or boats that ferried the mummies of the dead pharaohs across the Nile to the pyramid tombs. Your Egyptologist guide provides a thorough explanation of the monuments’ history and construction, as well as the many theories on their spiritual significance and astronomical alignment. From the Great Pyramid, you walk past the Pyramid of Menkaure, and continue on to a comprehensive viewpoint on all three.
We finish our epic day gazing at the face of the mysterious Sphinx. As the world’s largest and oldest monolithic statue, it remains a mystery as to who was the model, what the statue’s purpose was, and when exactly it was carved. Lunch is a short drive away at a favourite local restaurant, which specializes in perfectly roasted chicken, salads, hummus, and clay-oven baked bread.
This afternoon is yours to design with an array of choices to enjoy at your own pace. A perfect spot for relaxation, your hotel’s amenities include an inviting pool set in luxuriant jasmine gardens overlooking the Pyramids, tennis courts, a golf course, horse and camel stables, and a fitness centre and jogging track (massage, tennis, golf, and riding not included in the tour cost). You can take advantage of these facilities, and perhaps combine them with a return trip to the Pyramids, at your own pace, in order to further take advantage of your proximity to these magnificent monuments.
Overnight: Giza Hotel
DAY 3: CAIRO CITY EXPLORATIONS
The day is devoted to an exploration of Cairo-historic monuments, cultural facets, and antique treasures. After breakfast, you transfer to one of Cairo’s most important sites, the Citadel of Saladin, a sprawling fortified complex of palaces and mosques set on an escarpment on the city’s eastern edge. Construction by the ruler Saladin started in 1176 as a defense against the Crusaders, and expanded over the centuries by the subsequent ruling Mamluks and Ottomans. At the summit of the Citadel you enter the Mosque of Mohammed Ali, built in the mid-19th century, which dominates the city’s skyline.
Descending from the Citadel, you proceed to the Northern Cemetery, known as the City of the Dead, a vast necropolis area with fascinating architecture dating from the 14th
century, which is also an urban neighbourhood. The cemetery is at the edge of Islamic Cairo, the district at the city’s heart where bustling contemporary life unfolds effortlessly against a backdrop of historic mosques, medieval facades, and the thriving Khan el Khalili market. Your local guide leads you expertly through the narrow streets and the colourful bazaar where herbs and spices, tempting fruits, and overflowing market stalls selling everything imaginable are shared by pedestrians, laden donkeys, and delivery vans. While the market is frequented by tourists, it is an authentic part of Cairo life and has been in operation since the 14th century.
After lunch, a short drive brings you to the Egyptian Museum, home to the greatest collection—more than 120,000 objects—of Egyptian antiquities. Designed at the turn of the century by a French architect, the building’s exhibitions are distributed over two floors, and include the treasures of Tutankhamen (or King Tut) with its infamous Gold Mask as well as the royal mummy collection. Your knowledgeable guides are at hand to navigate you through the seemingly limitless rooms until the museum’s closing time. About an hour’s drive returns you to your hotel retreat.
Overnight: Giza Hotel
DAY 4: TRAVEL TO LUXOR
This morning we bid farewell to our home in Cairo and fly for one hour to the southern city of Luxor, arriving in time for lunch. Afterward, we head to our hotel for check-in and rest for a few hours before exploring the attractions of Luxor.
In the late afternoon, we head towards the Temple of Luxor, a very well-lit temple at night. This magnificent structure was erected by several Pharaohs celebrating the glory of Thebes, the ancient name of Luxor, the capital of an empire back in the age.
From Luxor Temple, we cross the street to join the locals of the city in a busy café for pre-dinner drinks. Alcohol is not served in local cafes, so we will enjoy the local hot and cold drinks available. Dinner comes soon after we finish our mingling time in a nearby local restaurant.
Finally, we call it a day and drive back to our hotel overlooking the Nile.
Overnight : Luxor Hotel
DAY 5: VALLEY OF THE KINGS
This morning you head to the West Bank of Luxor for some impressive visits. We commence the journey at the Valley of the Kings, the burial ground of the Empire Era. The Valley of the Kings was the burial place of choice for Egypt’s Pharaohs for over 500 years. A UNESCO World Heritage Site since 1979, the valley is home to many rock-cut tombs that were once filled with treasures. However, the tombs still preserve the colours decorating their walls from 3500 years ago. Your Egyptologist will explain in great detail what these pieces of art mean and how the Ancient Egyptians had imagined the underworld. It was all represented by carvings on the walls.
In the late morning, you drive the short distance to the Temple of Queen Hatshepsut, ancient Egypt’s only female pharaoh who ruled for 15 years from 1473 to 1458. A series of terraces rise and blends with limestone cliffs to create one of the most striking monuments in the country. After a brief exploration, you continue on to Dier El Madina, the burial site and the village of the workmen who cut the tombs thousands of years ago. The site has so many stories about their lives and the well-preserved colourful scenes on their tombs are amazing to look at. After a walking tour around the site, you make your way along quiet streets to the Colossi of Memnon, a gigantic pair of statues that rise about 50 feet over the West Bank’s plain built by Amenhotep III as a funerary temple.
A favourite restaurant along the Nile is a perfect lunch and rest stop. Returning to the hotel in the late afternoon, the remainder of the day and evening are yours to enjoy on your own.
Overnight : Luxor Hotel
DAY 6: KARNAK TEMPLE – NILE CRUISE
Check out after breakfast and drive to Karnak Temple, the most grand of Egyptian temples and once the largest colonnaded space on the planet. The home of the god Amun-Ra, Karnak was built by over 30 pharaohs as the premier Egyptian temple. It contains a myriad of decaying temples and sculptures with the highlight being the Hypostyle Hall consisting of 134 massive columns over 10 metres high (33 ft) and 3 (10ft) meters wide. The temple is also home to a massive obelisk, standing 29 metres tall (96ft) and weighing 138 tones. This amazing structure was built over the span of 2000 years. On this tour, you will know more about the genius methods of Ancient Egyptian builders and architects, pylons & obelisks stand witness to the ancients genius.
Afterward, we bid farewell to Luxor as we drive south for an hour to join our home for the next 5 days, The Dahabiya, an imitation of a traditional 19th-century sailboat.
Just before we board the boat, we will stop by the nearby Esna Temple dating back to 200 BCE. This little temple had been covered by sand over the centuries that it stands sunken in the middle of the town center. A long stairway takes you down to the temple ground where your Egyptologist will narrate for you the history of Esna Temple.
At the conclusion of this tour, we cross the street to join our boat.
Upon boarding the boat, lunch will be served on deck. This is a memorable moment as you sail on the calm waters of the Nile gazing at cultivated fields and an amazing unspoiled landscape.
We will have the chance to view some aspects of rural life along the Nile.
Overnight: Nile Cruise
DAY 7: CRUISING THE NILE – EDFU TEMPLE & KOM OMBO
A relaxed morning while sailing south towards the town of Edfu. This morning you will enjoy breakfast while gazing at the Nile scenery.
Today you will visit the well-preserved temple of Edfu, dedicated to the Falcon God, Horus. It stands as the most in-tact ancient temple in Egypt, and many of its columns and roofs still bear the original paint that once covered the entire monument. This magnificent structure dates back to 200 BCE and we reach the temple by using the local transportation of the town, horse-drawn carriages.
In the afternoon, there’s a chance to visit Kom Ombo Temple dedicated to the Crocodile God Sobek & the Falcon God Horus. In this location, we will also see mummified crocodiles.
Overnight: Nile Cruise
DAY 8: ASWAN
We bid farewell to our ship as we disembark in beautiful Aswan to explore some of the city’s amazing sites including the site of the Unfinished Obelisk we ogle at the monumental obelisk that would have been the world’s largest single stone statue had it been completed. We end our afternoon of sightseeing with a relaxing tour of the city by felucca which is a flat bottomed single mast sailing vessel still in use today.
Tonight we travel to have dinner in a Nubian village. Nubians originate from the area now encompassed by Southern Egypt and Northern Sudan. Much of their original homeland was covered when the Aswan High Dam was constructed. They tend to be darker than Egyptians, and speak their own language in addition to Arabic. We have the privilege of visiting our friend’s house to have dinner in his family’s home where you can learn more about the Nubians and their role in Egypt.
Overnight: Aswan Hotel
DAY 9: ABU SIMBEL TOUR
We rise early this morning to take a bus trip to Abu Simbel. Situated just north of the Sudanese border, Abu Simbel is an impressive site comprised of two giant rock cut temples. Carved into the hillside in the 13th century BCE by Ramesses the Great, the temples depict the pharaoh and his famed wife, Nefertari, as gods. The temples served to mark the southern boundaries of the Egyptian empire under Ramesses.
In 1973, following the construction of the High Dam, the temples were threatened by the rising waters of Lake Aswan. Over a painstaking 4 year process, the temples were cut into large blocks and moved 200 metres (660ft) before being reconstructed.
Relax this afternoon at the hotel. In the evening, enjoy the best Sound & Light show in Egypt.
Overnight: Abu Simbel
DAY 13: DEPARTURE DAY
Check out after breakfast and we drive back to the city of Aswan to catch your flight to Cairo.
Option to extend to Alexandria or Dahab & St. Catherine’s or Jordan!
Thanks for travelling with Finisterra!
PLEASE NOTE: This itinerary is subject to change. Although we always do our best to stick to the itinerary, due to the ever-changing nature of Mother Nature, activities, hotels, and visits are subject to change due to forces beyond our control.
FLIGHTS: Please do not purchase your flights until this tour is confirmed.
PASSPORTS: Must be valid for at least 6 months upon return date to your home country. Proper documentation is the responsibility of each traveller.
VISAS & VACCINATIONS: Responsibility of the traveller.
Date: Custom Departure available upon request
Prices from: $3295 USD per participant based on Double / Twin accommodation
*Please note, the hotels and routing of this tour can be altered to best suit your needs. Prices may vary.
Cancellation, Travel, Flight, and Health insurance are required and are the responsibility of the participant to research and secure the appropriate coverage. Click HERE for a Travel Insurance Quote or please email [email protected] for a quote.
Check with your local travel agent /insurance provider/health plan for advice about traveling overseas.
Please note that these are just sample hotels and all accommodation is subject to change. We can upgrade hotels for an additional fee.
Cairo – Le Meridein
Abu Simbel – Abu Simbel Eco Lodge or Seti I Hotel
Aswan – Movenpick
Please Note that these are just sample hotels and can be upgraded or changed to best suit your needs.
Ultimately, we want you to have peace of mind when you come with us and we’ll do everything we can to secure that. Please note that you can make a risk-free deposit with us that is fully refundable in most cases (minus the transaction fee of 5%) up to 60 days before departure or postpone at any time for free.
Since most of our trips are custom designed, we’re assessing the options and taking into account where we need to leave things open, remain flexible, or perhaps put two solutions in place. Our partners around the globe are incredible and our business relationships are built on trust really works for all sides.
Please contact us with any questions or concerns regarding our Covid-19 policies.
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