Get the most out of your visit to Egypt by encompassing culture with fun in the sun! Journey from the ancient Pyramids of Giza to Dahab in the East where 4 days of relaxation on the Red Sea awaits you! Add this to a visit to the Valley of the Kings and the Egyptian Museum and this tour really is an action packed adventure but at the same time a very laid back and chilled out experience as well.
Day 1: Cairo. Welcome to Egypt! Once you have got your visa and met our representative, you will be transferred from the airport to our joining hotel in central Cairo. If you have arrived early or a day or two previously, you are free today to explore the bustling heart of this fantastic city. If you’re not sure where to start, ask our representative who will be able to advise you on how to make the most of your time. Overnight Cairo.
Day 2: Overnight Train (Cairo-Luxor). In the morning you will meet your tour leader, who will complete a few formalities and brief you on the tour. The tour entrance fees and tipping kitty (which excludes the optional tip for your Tour Leader and driver) will be collected at this point before heading out for a day of sightseeing. Now it’s off to the Pyramids and famous Sphinx at Giza! One of the Seven Wonders of the Ancient World, the Pyramid of Cheops stood as the tallest, man-made structure for over 3800 years.
That’s an impressive feat, especially when you consider that in order to have built it in the twenty years it took, 800 tonnes of stone would have to have been laid every day. Most of it was locally quarried but to add to this jaw dropping achievement, the granite in the Kings Chamber came from Aswan which is more than 5000 miles away! Not bad, considering the construction was complete by 2560BC. We leave Giza and maybe visit the Papyrus Emporium where you can pick up some authentic papyrus.
Next we visit Saqqara, the necropolis or burial ground for the Ancient Capital of Memphis which is approximately 10.5 square kilometres. Here we find Djoser’s step pyramid, so called due to its rectangular base. Djoser is a well-known Pharaoh of the Third Dynasty of Egypt and rightly so: his was the first of the Pyramids. Later today, having had dinner, we board an overnight train to Luxor (optional sleeper cabin upgrade is available) (Overnight – train). Includes: (B).
Day 3: Luxor. We arrive in ancient Luxor, home of the Valley of the Kings and the Temple of Karnak, and head to the hotel and the chance to relax and rest up. In the evening there is an optional visit to the Luxor Temple which is payable locally. It is optional in case you would rather rest up or enjoy the bars and entertainment in the various hotels in Luxor. The Luxor Temple, on the East bank of the River Nile, was built by King Amenhotep III who reigned from approximately 1388 – 1350 BC. Walk through the impressive central corridor and marvel at sitting Ramesses ll and the huge granite obelisk made all the more impressive by being lit up in the night time. Explore the chapels and sun court and let your imagination recreate ancient Egypt as you enjoy this historic monument. Overnight Luxor. Includes: (B).
Day 4: Bus (Luxor-Dahab). There is a chance this morning for an optional Balloon flight over the Valley of the Kings. Either way we will be Starting early to avoid the midday sun, we visit the Valley of the Kings on the West Bank. Don’t forget to take some water – we will depart after an early breakfast but the West Bank gets hot quickly. As we approach the West Bank you’ll see the huge Colossi of Memnon towering 18m high. Then it’s on to the World Heritage Site of the Valley of the Kings, home of the tombs of Ramses ll and the famous King Tutankhamen. Set in the barren cliffs of the Valley, the tombs are decorated with religious images and text.
Get transported back in time as you witness the cunning architecture of the ancients that allowed royalty to be buried with their treasures without fear of being plundered by thieves. Explore some of the tombs before heading on to the Temple of Queen Hatshepsut. One of the most successful, long reigning Pharoahs, Hatshepsut (or ‘Foremost of noteable Ladies’) established trade networks, instigated much construction and ordered many expeditions, one of which resulted in the first noted attempts to transplant foreign trees. Her temple is one the most photographed monuments in Egypt. After Lunch we head to Karnak, a complex that is considered to be the largest ancient religious site in the world.
It consists of temples, chapels and other buildings and is set apart from similar sites particularly by the period over which it developed – approximately between 2050 and 30 BC. After the Pyramids at Giza, this is the most visited and arguably impressive site Egypt has to offer. This evening we board a bus that will take us to Dahab. Do remember to stock up on water and snacks for the journey. Overnight Bus. Includes: (B). If you would rather not take the bus, there is an optional flight that is available. There is only one flight per day however and therefore limited spaces.
Do book in advance or expect to pay a surcharge if booking locally since your bus seat will have already been reserved and will not be refundable. The alternative includes the following:
- Economy class flight Luxor - Sharm el Sheikh
- 1 night 4 - 5 star hotel in Luxor or Dahab, (evening of day 7 or morning of day 8, subject to flight availability).
- All relevant transfers (incl. 2hr drive from Sharm el Sheikh - Dahab).
Day 5: Dahab. We arrive in Dahab this morning (for days 5-8) and are provided with various possibilities to explore, get active or just relax. Optional activities available over the next few days include an excursion to the summit of Mount Sinai and Saint Katherine’s Monastery or for those of a more aquatic disposition; why not opt for the optional excursion to the awesome ‘Blue Hole’ for some snorkelling? (book and pay locally) The Mount Sinai excursion leaves early in the morning during the summer months so that you can enjoy a beautiful Egyptian sunrise at the summit of this sacred mountain.
In the winter months (01 Oct - 30 Mar), this activity is offered as a sunset trek where you visit St Katherine’s Monastery en route to a gorgeous sunset at the summit. Alternatively, you can spend the time enjoying the many bars and restaurants that Dahab has to offer and unwind, reflecting on the tour so far and enjoying the views of the Red Sea. If the snorkelling isn’t enough and you would like to spend more time diving, consider the Red Sea Learn to Dive bolt on: it’s a great way to get even more from this tour! (Overnight Dahab). (B4).
Day 9: Cairo. Early this morning (about 6am) we say goodbye to Dahab as we leave to return to Cairo. Once we are there, we visit the Egyptian Museum where you will find treasures abound in one of the most impressive collections in the world. Highlights of the 120, 000 odd pieces include 9 royal mummies (including that of Queen Hatshepsut) and the Gold Mask of King Tutankhamen that he wore upon his burial and is said to actually represent his true identity. As we approach the end of the tour you are free now to relax or hunt down some last minute souvenirs, perhaps at Khan el-Khalili, the local bazaar. Lose yourself in the sights, scents and sounds for the final few hours. (Overnight Cairo). Includes: (B).
Day 10: Cairo. Your tour officially finishes after breakfast when you are free to check out of the hotel and get transferred to the airport. (B) Please note, entrance fees, the tipping kitty and optional activities purchased in Egypt are payable in Egyptian Pounds (EGP) only.
Visa Information: All travellers to Egypt must have at least a single entry Eyptian visa prior to entrance (please also ensure your passport is valid for 6 months after your return date). In some cases it's possible to obtain visas on arrival in Egypt, at a cost of $15USD but to be sure and avoid lengthy ques we advise you organise them in advance of your departure. In addition, all visitors going on to travel in Jordan and then returning to Egypt after must obtain a multi entry visa which, actually has be obtained prior to arrival in Egypt at a cost of $29USD.
This is very important to organise, but if you do forget there is a final option of obtaining 2 single entry visas on arrival in Egpyt instead. You must at least get these as no visas can be obtained in Jordan to get back into Egypt! Once you have obtained your visas simply place them in your passport for your arrival/s. Finally, some passport holders and in particular South African passport holders are actually obliged to obtain an Egyptian visa prior to their departure. Failure to do so will result in them being denied boarding by their carrier. Please also note, visa procurement is the responsibility of the passenger and not Nomadic.
Also see tour packages in:
Africa Egypt History Whiz Archeology/History Sightseeing