Icons of Egypt
Egypt has more ancient history packed into every square inch than any other country in the world. On this journey through the 'Land of the Pharaohs' from Cairo through the fascinating cities of Alexandria, Aswan and Luxor you will see and experience the many mysterious layers of Egyptian history laid bare. For an adventure that doesn't stray too far out of the comfort zone, this is the perfect introduction to Egypt's many treasures.
Why we love it:
- Egypt has more ancient history packed into every square inch than any other country in the world.
- On this journey through the 'Land of the Pharaohs' from Cairo through the fascinating cities of Alexandria, Aswan and Luxor you will see and experience the many mysterious layers of Egyptian history laid bare.
- For an adventure that doesn't stray too far out of the comfort zone, this is the perfect introduction to Egypt's many treasures.
Day to Day Itinerary
Day 1-2: Cairo
Meals included: 1 breakfast
Accommodation: Barcelo Hotel or similar
- Upon arrival in Cairo, you will be met and transferred to your hotel.
- There will be a welcome meeting at 6pm, where you will have the opportunity to meet your tour leader and fellow travel companions. Check with the hotel reception for details about this meeting, and remember to bring your insurance details with you.
- Until the meeting, you will be free to explore Cairo, the chaotic and colourful capital of Egypt. This city is one of contrasts, in some ways the height of modernity and in others, steeped in ancient history.
- Spend your free time negotiating the bustling markets, travelling along the river on a felucca, or spending some quiet time in the Coptic Christian sector, the oldest part of the city and a maze or narrow cobbled streets and ancient churches.
- You will visit the Pyramids on Day 2, including the Pyramid of Khufu (The Great Pyramid of Cheops), the Pyramid of Khafre (Chephren) and the Pyramid of Menkaure (Mycerinus). Initially the Pyramids were covered with luminous white limestone. Today the casing stones have largely been removed, but these structures are no less impressive. Keep in mind that you will be walking around the pyramids, which can be hot work with little respite. Ensure that you have plenty of water and are prepared for the heat.
- You will have the opportunity to enter the Pyramids if you wish to (optional), please ask your tour leader for assistance. The thoroughfares inside the Pyramids are tiny and quite hot – this is not an activity for those who suffer from claustrophobia.
- The Great Sphinx is another wondrous monument, and one that has perplexed scholars, scientists and tourists for thousands of years. This great structure has been buried, excavated and repaired a number of times, and the original builder remains a mystery.
- You will be taken back to Cairo from here, where you will visit the Egyptian Museum. While there are a myriad of fascinating antiquities to see here, the Tutankhamun rooms are not to be missed.
Day 3-4: Alexandria
Meals included: 2 breakfasts, 1 dinner
Accommodation: Mediterranean Azur Hotel or simialr
- You will travel on to Alexandria by van today (approximately 4 hours) – the second largest city in Egypt and the main port.
- The city is named for Alexander the Great, who ordered its construction is 331BC. It was built by Dinocrates, a Greek architect, and became a flourishing cultural, economic, intellectual and political centre.
- Spend some time at the catacombs of Kom ash-Shuqqafa, it is the most prominent Roman burial site in Egypt and home to the modern Bibliotheca Alexandrina. You will also have the opportunity to wander along the Corniche and around Fort Qaitbey.
- You will visit the Al Montazah Palace and Gardens next. There are two royal palaces here from two different eras (the 19th and 20th century), as well as beautiful sprawling gardens. After this return to Cairo in your private van.
- Board a sleeper train to Aswan in the evening (approximately 13 hours). The cabins on board have two berths and are comfortable, with fold out beds. Bedding will be provided for you, as well as breakfast and dinner. There aren’t many options as far as food is concerned, so you may wish to bring some extra food on board (this is especially recommended if you are vegetarian). The configuration of berth sharing will depend on the numbers in your group. There is a chance that you will end up sharing with someone of the opposite sex or from another group.
Day 5: Aswan
Meals included: 1 breakfast, 1 dinner
Accommodation: Philae Hotel or similar
- You will arrive in Aswan this morning, Egypt’s southern gateway to Africa. Aswan has an abundance of excellent bazaars, some of the best in the country; it is also home to Elephantine Island, the Nile and white-sailed feluccas.
- While you’re here you’ll visit the Temple of Philae, dedicated to the goddess Isis, as well as the Nubian Museum (optional) – the perfect place to gain further insight into Nubian art, culture and history.
- You will travel to a nearby village in the afternoon, where you will enjoy dinner with a local family. This is a rare and memorable experience, allowing you become fully immersed in the local culture.
Day 6-8: Nile Cruise
Meals included: 3 breakfasts, 3 lunches, 3 dinners
- You will fly to Abu Simbel today (approximately 45 minutes.
- You’ll spend time exploring the incredible temples of Abu Simbel – once the defining gateway between Southern Africa and the Pharaoh’s land of Egypt.
- Returning to Abu Simbel from the temples, you’ll be taken to a cruise boat on the Nile for the next leg of your trip. The relaxing cruise will take you down the Nile to Luxor via some wonderful sightseeing. The cruise boat will be large, sleeping around 150 people. You will have a private room, and all meals on board will be included. Keep in mind that while the boats are five star, the standard isn’t quite as high as you may usually expect from five star. None the less, they are very comfortable, and relaxing on the top deck by the pool and watching the incredible scenery slip by is the perfect way to wile away your time on board.
- You will have the opportunity to spend some time on a felucca today, a traditional sailboat.
- You’ll see the Kom Ombo Temple, which is just north of Aswan. It dates back to the 2nd century BC. Also visit Edfu and the temple dedicated to Horus - the falcon-headed god which has been excellently preserved
Day 9-10: Luxor
Meals included: 2 breakfasts
Accommodation: El Luxor Hotel or similar, Luxor
- Upon arrival in Luxor, you will explore the Karnak Temple – arguably the most remarkable of the Ancient Pharaohs’ works.
- A private minivan will take you on an exploration of the ancient wonders of Thebes.
- You will also visit the Colossi of Memnon and the royal burial site of the Valley of the Kings. Your tour leader will take you to the three most interesting tombs and regale you with the history and legends that surround the people that lie within.
- An optional visit to King Tutankhamen's tomb is not included and can be arranged if you give your tour leader plenty of notice. Visit the Hatshepsut temple after the Valley of the Kings.
- You will have the afternoon free to explore further. The markets are an excellent option, as is the Mummification Museum.
Day 11-12: Cairo
Meals included: 2 breakfasts
Accommodation: Barcelo Hotel or similar
- Fly to Cairo (approximately 1.5 hours) and head out to visit Khan al-Khalili, a famous and colourful bazaar.
- Your trip will come to an end after breakfast on Day 12.
What to know
It can get pretty hot at the height of summer from June to August, where temperatures in the 40's day after day is not unusual.
- Peregrine tour leader
- Arrival transfer
- Sightseeing and entrance fees
- Overnight train
- Private aircon bus
- Private vehicle
Some meals are included on your trip (except for North America trips - please refer to your day-to-day itinerary). However, sometimes we think you'll benefit from getting out and discovering the local cuisine. So when a meal is not included, it's a great opportunity to try something new. For group trips, ask your leader for tips on where to get the best meal, or you might decide to dine out as a group and experience the fun together.
- International flights
- Airport departure transfer
- Departure taxes
- Insurance (compulsory on all trips)
- Meals not listed (lunches and dinners)
- Any optional tours or activities during free time
- Camera fees
- Excess baggage charges
- Items of a personal nature
- Daily budget
We have chosen a selection of some great optional activities to enhance your travel experience. You will need to cover any additional costs yourself. The below list is not exhaustive and should be used as a guide only. Prices are approximate and 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 it may not be possible to do all the activities listed in the time available at each destination.
Where activities are considered medium or high risk, we work with operators whose safety and credentials we have sighted and assessed. This means that it is possible that you may find the same activity cheaper with another operator on the ground, however we cannot vouch for the safety or quality of that operator. Activities not listed below have not been assessed by us and as such our staff and leaders are unable to assist you with booking these activities. The decision to partake in any activity not listed is at your own discretion and risk.
- Alexandria - Pompey's Pillar entrance fee
- Aswan - Nubian Museum
Approx EGP50 pp
- Aswan - Unfinished Obelisk entrance fee
- Aswan -Philae Temple sound and light show.
EGP175 (based on 4 people)
- Cairo - Camel ride at the Pyramids (15 mins)
Approx EGP60 pp but prices may vary locally
- Cairo - Chephren or Mycerinus Entrance Fees
Approx EGP40 pp
- Cairo- Pyramids Sound and light show tour
Approx EGP165 (based on 4 people)
- Luxor - entrance to Karnak Sound & Light Show
Approx EGP155 pp (minimum 4 people)
- Luxor - Luxor Temple entrance fee
Approx EGP60 pp
- Luxor - Tomb of Tutankhamun (entrance fee)
Approx EGP100 pp
What to know
A basic level of fitness is required to enjoy this trip to the fullest.
Vaccinations may be required for this trip. Please talk to your doctor about the up-to-date information for this region. We're travel experts, not doctors and defer to the medicos when it comes to inoculations.
Visas and Permits
Please ensure that you have all required visas for your trip – this is your responsibility. Rules and regulations governing the issuance of visas are constantly changing, and vary for different nationalities and you should check visa requirements with your travel agent or relevant consular authority well before travel.
Australians, New Zealanders, Americans, British and Canadians require a visa for Egypt. All other nationalities should check with the Egyptian Embassy or Consulate in their country for up-to-date visa information. If you require a double entry visa for Egypt you will need to obtain this from an overseas embassy prior to arrival. Single entry visas for most nationalities can be obtained on arrival at Cairo Airport. The current cost for most nationalities is US$25. You must pay in cash in US dollars, UK pounds, euros, Japanese yen or any other convertible currency to a bank located next to immigration.
If you are arriving in Egypt by land from Israel you must obtain your visa beforehand.
If you are arriving in Egypt by ferry from Aqaba, Jordan, a single entry visa can be obtained upon arrival and costs approximately US$25.
All travellers departing Egypt at the Port of Nuweiba must pay a 50 Egyptian pound departure tax (subject to change). Your tour leader will collect this amount from you to pay at immigration control.
You are required to have travel insurance before heading off on a Peregrine trip. Insurance can be organised by your Peregrine representative or your travel agent.
Our Responsible Travel ethos is at the heart of everything we do, from getting the basics right like respecting local cultures and the environment, to initiating projects that make positive contributions to communities, to our staff’s fundraising efforts and offsetting our carbon emissions.
Customs and Culture
Please visit our Responsible Travel (http://www.peregrineadventures.com/rt) page for more information.
Our Pre Departure Information or Travel Dossier (provided upon booking a trip) provides tips on how you can show respect for the local customs and culture in the country you are travelling in. Your leader will also help steer you though the complexities of local cultural norms.
Pre Departure Information
The information listed above is a brief description of some things you may need to consider when booking a trip. Once a tour is booked you will be provided with a link to your Travel Dossier which will contain detailed Pre Departure information.
In an Antique Land-Amitav Ghosh Islands of the Blest-Cassandra Vivian Death on the Nile-Agatha Christie The English Patient-Michael Ondaatje
In the case of an on ground issue or problem, Peregrine's Cairo Office can be reached on: +254 733 523 813.
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 (eg at 0500). Please be prepared for this: we try to make things as comfortable for you as possible. Your tour leader will keep you fully informed. Note also, that in the winter months (Oct-Mar) it can become quite cold on the river at night, so please bring warm (thermal) clothing at this time.
About this Information
The information provided here is given in good faith and has been compiled with all reasonable care. However, things change and some of the information may become out of date. Please keep this in mind when you read it and check with us if you want to be sure about something. The document was correct at time of printing, but you can check online for the most up to date version. If you have any queries, please contact your travel agent or our staff in Australia. We are here to help you!
24 June 2014
General Contact Details
Web: Visit Peregrine