Egypt: Alexandria to Aswan

13 days
from
1 779 €
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Suitable for:
Age 16+
Activity level:
Leisurely
Activity Level: Leisurely
Trip code: 
AED
Ways to Travel:
Guided Group, Tailor Made Adventures
Activity:
Culture
Group size:
4–20
Min age:
16

Travel the length of Egypt and explore its history, food and landscapes.

Few countries can rival Egypt’s wealth of magnificent archaeological sites, with the Pyramids and Great Sphinx of Giza ranking as two of the most recognisable in the world. It is a place like no other and on this two-week itinerary we explore its treasures across the length of the country. In the north there is the Mediterranean port city of Alexandria and El Alamein, the site of the famous Second World War battle. Cairo’s attractions are world famous but on this itinerary we also experience the bazaars and culinary delights on a food tour. Journeying south by sleeper train we reach the Nubian city of Aswan where we board our Nile cruise boat and discover the monuments and temples all the way to Luxor.

Highlights

Visit tombs in the Valley of the Kings

The Mediterranean port city of Alexandria

Sightseeing on a Nile River cruise

Guided food tour in Cairo

Key information

  • 8 nights in 4 and 5-star hotels, 3 nights on a cruise boat and 1 night sleeper train
  • Travel by private minibus, cruise boat and sleeper train
  • Abu Simbel Sun Festival departure
  • Countries visited: Egypt

What's included

  • All breakfasts, 6 lunches,  5 dinners
  • All accommodation (see accommodation section)
  • All transport and listed activities
  • Flights from London (if booking incl. flights)

What's not included

  • Travel insurance
  • Single accommodation (available on request)
  • Visas or vaccinations
Call for general departures:
015 407 558
Call for tailor made trips:
+44 (0)20 8772 3874
Trip Notes

Click on the button below for detailed Trip Notes containing all the particulars about this trip, including kit lists and practical information.

Note: these can vary by departure; you can check out the specific Trip Notes for your chosen adventure on the dates & prices page.

At Exodus we believe in the power of Responsible Travel.

Every time we travel, we are part of a global movement that creates jobs, builds more sustainable societies, encourages cultural understanding and safeguards common natural and cultural heritage. To learn more about what Responsible Travel means to Exodus click here

 

Nubian Village
When the Aswan High Dam was built in the 1960s the rise in water and the creation of Lake Nasser resulted in the displacement of some 120,000 Nubian people. Today they live in towns and villages along the Nile, below the dam. Nubian culture is different that of many Egyptians but, due to the relatively small number of Nubians (across southern Egypt and northern Sudan) it is at risk of disappearing. Visiting a Nubian village can be a fascinating and enriching experience and benefits Nubian people both financially and through encouraging the protection of their culture.
There is one aspect of Nubian culture today which Exodus Travels does not support however, and that is keeping crocodiles as pets in small pits or cages. Nubians have a long tradition of keeping crocodiles in their homes, though today there are only a few which still keep the animals. These crocodiles are eventually released back into the Nile, above the High Dam, but until then, their living conditions are poor.
Whilst we believe that visiting the Nubian Village is, overall, a worthwhile experience both for our clients and for the local Nubian community, Exodus Travels does not support the practice of picking up the animals to have a photo taken, as whilst living within the home they are not domestic and are wild creatures so this can be stressful for the animals.

A.C.E (Animal Care in Egypt)
A.C.E. is a charity dedicated to stopping the suffering of animals in the most deprived communities in Luxor by providing free veterinary care and education. There is now a walk-in clinic, a hospital for crucial surgery and 25 stables which allow animals to recover from injury and pressure of working life. This is not just an amazing cause for the animals, but by teaching over 150 children a week, plus owners and veterinary students, communities gain a lot of valuable training. There should be an opportunity to visit the facility on Day 12.

Itinerary

Cairo
to
Luxor
  • Day 1

    Start Cairo.

    The group flight usually arrives in Cairo this evening. The welcome briefing will either take place this evening or tomorrow morning.

    Pyramids Park Resort Hotel or similar

  • Day 2

    Pyramids and Great Sphinx of Giza.

    We begin our day with a visit to the Pyramids at Giza. Home to the Great Pyramids of Cheops, Chephren and Mycerinus and the enduring and mysterious Great Sphinx, these great monuments to the afterlife defy the imagination. Only the throng of sightseers, Egyptian and foreign, milling around their huge foundations, keep the viewer in the 21st century. The afternoon is free to relax at our hotel, explore Cairo or join an optional excursion to Saqqara, Memphis, and Dahshur.

    Pyramids Park Resort Hotel or similar

    Meals included: Breakfast
  • Day 3

    Cairo tour.

    After breakfast we enjoy a full day tour of Cairo. We begin with a visit to the Egyptian Museum – home to the world’s largest collection of ancient Egyptian artefacts including the incredible golden riches of Tutankhamun’s tomb. Following this piece of history, we experience modern Cairo with a tour of the El Darb El Ahmar School for Arts and a walk along the bustling El Moaz Street. We also explore Al Azhar mosque which dates back to AD970 and is Cairo’s oldest. The mosque is still frequently visited by locals to this day and we will need to cover up (long sleeves and trousers) to enter - as when entering all mosques. Women will also need to cover their hair with a scarf.

    Pyramids Park Resort Hotel or similar

    Meals included: Breakfast
  • Day 4

    Transfer to Alexandria, city tour.

    Today we have a journey of 3-4hrs to Alexandria. Founded by Alexander the Great in 331BC, the city was home to the Lighthouse of Alexandria, one of the Seven Wonders of the Ancient World, and it’s Great Library was the largest of its time. Unfortunately, these parts of Egypt’s glorious history did not survive up to modern times but there is still much to see in this Mediterranean port city. Our tour begins with a visit of the city’s catacombs followed by the impressive Qaidbay Fortress and the Bibliotheca Alexandrina – Alexandria’s revival of the Great Library.

    Mediterranean Azur Hotel or similar

    Meals included: Breakfast
  • Day 5

    Visit El Alamein and El Anba Bishoy Monastery; return to Cairo.

    We have an early morning drive to El Alamein, the site of the famed allied victory during World War Two, where we will visit the War Cemetery and Military Museum. More than 80,000 soldiers were killed or wounded in the two battles. It was a decisive win for the Allies with Winston Churchill saying, "Before Alamein we never had a victory. After Alamein we never had a defeat". After lunch we stop by El Anba Bishoy Monastery on our return to Cairo.

    Pyramids Park Resort Hotel or similar

    Meals included: Breakfast Lunch
  • Day 6

    Food tour of Cairo; transfer to sleeper train.

    Today we embark on a tour of Cairo’s best food spots and discover some of the fantastic local cuisine available across the city – highlights are Mulukhiyah (soup), Ful Medames (beans) and Kushari (rice and macaroni). The tour also includes the bazaars of Khan el-Khalili located in the historic centre of Islamic Cairo. This evening we transfer to the railway station and board our sleeper train to Aswan (which takes approximately 12 hours).

    Sleeper train.

    Meals included: Breakfast Lunch Dinner
  • Day 7

    Arrive Aswan; Nubian tour and Felucca ride.

    Arriving in Aswan during the morning, we spend the rest of the day exploring the Nubian way of life. We begin with a visit to the Nubian Museum, which chronologically charts the history and culture of the people, before enjoying Nubian lunch onboard a felucca while we explore the Nile. In the afternoon we have a tour of the Monastery of St. Simeon by camel and visit the nearby village of Gharb Sohil (please see Responsible Travel section). We finish our day with a barbeque on the shores of an island in the Nile.

    Basma Hotel or similar

  • Day 8

    Optional visit to Abu Simbel; board cruise boat.

    This morning we transfer to our cruise boat and have some time to relax before enjoying lunch on board. For the rest of the day there is the option to explore the Aswan market or attend the Sound and Light Show at Philae Temple.

    For those who want to do the optional visit to Abu Simbel, the tour starts at approximately 3.30am when we get picked up from the hotel. A breakfast box is provided. Around 8am we will arrive at the destination, where we are given around three hours to visit the temples. Built by Ramses II, the temples of Abu Simbel rank amongst the most impressive in the country and well worth the journey south across the Nubian Desert. We will be back in Aswan around 3pm.

    For our Sun Festival departures, the visit to Abu Simbel is included. The festival is a bi-annual event that has been taking place for over 3200 years. During the celebrations the sun perfectly aligns with the usually dark interior and lights up the seated statues of Ramses II, the sun god, Ra and the king of the gods, Amun. Only the statue of Ptah, the god of darkness, remains in the shadows. There are traditional Nubian dances being performed, street food everywhere (save stomach space for some fresh koshari) and live music outside the temple.

    M/S Crown Empress or similar

    Meals included: Breakfast Lunch Dinner
  • Day 9

    Visit Philae Temple and Aswan High Dam; sail to Edfu.

    We begin today with a visit to the Philae Temple and Aswan High Dam. In the 1970s the temple was relocated by UNESCO to Aglika Island after it became evident that the original site of Philae would submerge on completion of the dam. This morning represents a magnificent and enduring testament to both ancient and modern engineering. After lunch we sail to Kom Ombo and visit the temple there before continuing our journey to Edfu which is where we will spend the night.

    M/S Crown Empress or similar

    Meals included: Breakfast Lunch Dinner
  • Day 10

    Tour Edfu; sail to Luxor.

    Waking in Edfu, we start our day exploring the city and its temples before sailing further north along the Nile. After crossing the Esna lock we reach our destination, Luxor, where we will have our final dinner on board and hopefully witness a stunning sunset over the river.

    M/S Crown Empress or similar

    Meals included: Breakfast Lunch Dinner
  • Day 11

    Disembark in Luxor; explore the Valley of the Kings.

    After breakfast on board we disembark in Luxor and explore the Valley of the Kings. For nearly 500 years this was the site of royal burials and it contains the tombs of over 62 pharaohs, including Tutankhamun, Seti I, Ramses III and IV. One ticket allows us to see three tombs. The ticket usually allows entry into what are regarded as the most impressive tombs, but if you have time a visit to the tomb of Ramses VI is also highly recommended. Visits to tombs are now strictly controlled to halt further deterioration of wall paintings - each tomb is periodically closed for a number of weeks. Afterwards we visit the massive stone statues of the Colossi of Memnon before transferring to our hotel.  The rest of the day is free to relax or wander around the streets of Luxor.

    Iberotel Luxor or similar

    Meals included: Breakfast
  • Day 12

    Luxor tour including Karnak and Luxor temples.

    For our penultimate day we have a half day tour of Luxor’s east bank. Luxor is commonly called the world's greatest open-air museum and this morning we visit the extraordinary Karnak and Luxor temples which both stand within the modern city. There should also be an opportunity to visit the A.C.E animal hospital to learn about the efforts taken to improve animal welfare in Egypt. After a leisurely afternoon we enjoy our final dinner together at one of this historic city’s restaurants.

    Iberotel Luxor or similar

    Meals included: Breakfast
  • Day 13

    End Luxor.

    Our trip ends today. Those on the group flights will be taken to airport for the flight to London.

    Meals included: Breakfast
Trip Notes

Click on the button below for detailed Trip Notes containing all the particulars about this trip, including kit lists and practical information.

Note: these can vary by departure; you can check out the specific Trip Notes for your chosen adventure on the dates & prices page.

Essential Info

Visas

Egypt

Visas are required by all non-Arab nationalities and currently cost approximately GBP20. It is recommended that you obtain your visa before you travel (although it’s still possible to get a tourist visa on arrival). You can get a visa online at Visa2Egypt or alternatively, the address of the Egyptian Embassy in London is 2 Lowndes Street, SW1. Tel: 020 7235 9777. Visas are now generally available for same day collection, although this should NOT be relied upon. Opening hours are 09.30 to 12.30 for applications, 14.15 to 16.00 for collection of passports after the visa has been issued. Postal applications direct to the embassy for visas are not recommended as the service takes 15 to 20 days.

You will need to provide your host’s information on the application – please use the following details:

South Sinai Travel
79 Merghany Street
Cairo
Egypt
Tel: +20 22418 7310
www.southsinai.com

Please note that recently Egyptian officials have requested tourists carry a copy of their passport with them whilst in the country.

Vaccinations

Egypt

There are no mandatory vaccination requirements. Recommended vaccinations are: Tetanus, Typhoid, Hepatitis A. Although not usually advised, other vaccinations to consider include rabies and Hepatitis B.

Eating and Drinking

All breakfasts , 6 lunches and 5 dinners included.

In the itinerary we state which meals are included on which day.  We suggest you allow GBP60-90 (approx. USD100-140) for meals not included. Food in Egypt involves such things as kebabs, chicken, stews, pitta-bread, felafel, beans, aubergine and other vegetables, pickles, salads. Dishes tend to be simple and wholesome and vegetarians can be catered for if they accept that the options may be somewhat limited.

Meals on the cruise are open buffets that include Western and Egyptian dishes.

The Cairo food tour gives us the chance to try a number of Egyptian dishes such Ful Medames (which is a mixture of beans and tehini) and Kushari (a dish made of rice, macaroni and lentils mixed with garlic, tomato, chickpeas and crispy fried onions).

Weather

Rain is very rare in all parts of Egypt and most days are sunny and clear. Summer temperatures often reach the upper 30's but this is particularly true for the period between June and September. The winter months can be surprisingly cold, especially on the Nile or at night. The average daytime maximum in Cairo in January is 20ºC, night time minimum is 8ºC. In the summer these temperatures are 35ºC and 22ºC respectively. Daytime temperatures are on average 3 or 4 degrees higher in Aswan.

Is this trip for you?

This trip has been graded as grade 1 (leisurely.) Leisurely grade trips are suitable for all clients with average health and fitness. No experience of any activity involved is necessary.

Some days involve early starts but this allows us to get the most from our time in Egypt and avoid the worst of the heat.

Egypt can be hot, especially during our summer, which can cause discomfort whilst travelling. Care should be taken to keep hydrated. The hottest months tend to be June to September when temperatures can reach as high as 38 to 40ºC in the south of the country.

The hotels and cruise boat that we use on this trip are of a high standard, providing excellent levels of comfort. The night on the sleeper train is in first-class cabins with shared bathroom facilities.

Following a review of all our trips we have categorised this trip as generally not suitable for persons of reduced mobility. However if you are a regular traveller on such trips, please contact customer services to discuss the trip and your personal condition.

Call for general departures:
015 407 558
Call for tailor made trips:
+44 (0)20 8772 3874
Trip Notes

Click on the button below for detailed Trip Notes containing all the particulars about this trip, including kit lists and practical information.

Note: these can vary by departure; you can check out the specific Trip Notes for your chosen adventure on the dates & prices page.

Accommodation

Cruise Boat, Sleeper Train & Hotels

We use comfortable 4/5 star hotels (Egyptian Classification) on a twin-share basis.
The Basma Hotel in Aswan is located on the East Bank on Aswan's highest hill, directly opposite the famous Nubian museum. All the rooms have balconies with views of the Nile or the surrounding desert. The facilities in the rooms and in the hotel itself are excellent, including a choice of bars and restaurants, a huge swimming pool and all set amid well-maintained gardens.
In Cairo we typically use the Pyramids Park Hotel which is located close to the Great Pyramids of Giza and the Sphinx. The hotel has 25 acres of lush gardens as well as a gym and swimming pool. All rooms are en suite.
Cruise boat
We sail the Nile on the M/S Crown Empress or on a similar cruise boat. It offers impressive service and great facilities including a swimming pool, a sun deck, gift shop, sauna, restaurant and two bars. It stretches 109.8m in length and 14.8m in width, each of the 128 en suite cabins is fully air-conditioned and has a TV and mini bar. Wi-Fi is also available.
Sleeper Train
We use first-class cabins with shared bathroom facilities.


Single rooms are available on request.

Call for general departures:
015 407 558
Call for tailor made trips:
+44 (0)20 8772 3874
Trip Notes

Click on the button below for detailed Trip Notes containing all the particulars about this trip, including kit lists and practical information.

Note: these can vary by departure; you can check out the specific Trip Notes for your chosen adventure on the dates & prices page.

Expert Blog Entries

  • Reviewed November 2019
    Phillip Pomeroy

    Egypt Ancient and Modern

    A fascinating, informative, and very enjoyable tour with the chance to dress up thrown in for good measure! As with all Exodus trips we had some early starts and long days with now wasted time in between. If you want to see a lot of Egypt and experience its history from ancient times through to the modern day then this is the trip to take.

    What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?

    Seeing the pyramids without crowds (not at Giza, for this head out to Saqqarah). Being inside the tomb of Ramses VI in the Valley of the Kings and admiring 3000 year old carvings and paintings everywhere you look, again without crowds (extra payment needed - not a lot and well worth it!). Wouldn't describe them as inspiring but certainly unforgettable and at times jaw dropping in their grandeur.

    What did you think of your group leader?

    Ahmed must rate as one of the best group leaders. He is knowledgeable on all aspects of his countries history and had the ability to tell a story and hold his audience throughout. His knack of bringing out members of the group to play the roles of the characters in the story (no acting ability needed) brought the tales to life. I was pleased to play the part of Pharaoh Thutmose III Egypt's most successful ruler. As well as being a font of information he looked after the needs of the group when they suffered from "Pharaoh's Curse" and ensured that we all knew where to be and when. If you read this and are fortunate enough to have him as a group leader you will not be disappointed.

    Do you have any advice for potential travellers?

    Take the usual health precautions, stick to bottled water and avoid salads except in hotels and restaurants recommended by your group leader. Have some small notes / coins for toilets. Cash is better than credit card as you avoid the 3% service charge. Changing money is easy but all traders and shops will take sterling, euros or dollars and give you a fair exchange rate. Optional tours will add up (£450 ish for two) but they are all worthwhile. We did everything on the trip note lists apart from the sound and light show. Abu Simbel is an expensive trip but is worth every penny. Go by road, have the excitement(?) of a pre-dawn start and see the sunrise over the Sahara desert on the way. As a bonus you will be able to admire genuine desert mirages on the trip back. You will miss so much if you fly (and pay a lot more). Go inside the pyramids for the experience. The Red Pyramid at Saqqara is far less crowded that the Great Pyramid at Giza.

    Is there anything else you would like to add?

    Egypt is a poor country, though you wouldn't think it with some of the prices they ask for souvenirs!. The locals need you to spend money, but haggling is expected and can be very intense. Sellers will look broken hearted as you knock the price down but don't be fooled they want to make a sale and, as with everything, some you win and some you will lose. Be prepared to be spoken to as if you are a long lost friend but beware all acts of kindness (except directions) have a price. If some one offers to take a picture for you it costs, if they offer to carry your bags it costs. Be wary of the item offered for "one dollar", that is the price to look at it not buy! Expect a friendly welcome wherever you visit and have a great time. Thanks to everyone in our group for making this such a memorable tour.
  • Reviewed November 2019
    derek crosbee

    Successful holiday

    Egypt is a fascinating country and we covered so much of it and some 4,000 years of its history most of which was new to me. A land of many contrasts from the great cities of Cairo and Alexandria to the great Pyramids to the El Alamein battlefields down to beautiful Aswan the Nubian desert to Abu Simbel and to the treasures of Luxor everything bound together by the Nile river - Egypts lifeblood. The different modes of transport we used helped to bring out the contrasts.

    What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?

    Quite an hard question probably Abu Simbel not only for its beauty but also for the incredible efforts of the Egyptian people in moving it from its original site and re-building it in its current surroundings

    What did you think of your group leader?

    Ahmed was a fine guide with an exceptional depth of knowledge - he always described himself as an Eygptologist rather than a tour leader.

    Do you have any advice for potential travellers?

    Prepare yourself for taking onboard an amazing amount of information. Take plenty of deet - flies everywhere
  • Reviewed November 2019
    Maggie Murfitt

    Hurry Up and go to Egypt!

    This was one of the best trips I have done. The guide Ahmed is fantastic, he knows EVERYTHING about his country He explained everything really well with just enough detail. He was also great fun, a really nice man. The trip is physically easy, however, there are some very early starts but Ahmed organised wake up calls for us. The monuments will take your breath away, I can’t pic a favourite place. The hotels are good and the level of service is excellent. The first and last hotels are really good and the cruise ship was stunning. I stayed an extra couple of nights and I’m glad I did. What a fantastic experience!

    What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?

    Probably the Valley of the Kings, or the Museum in Cairo, or Abu Simbel, or the Temple at Karnak, or the Coptic monastery..........

    What did you think of your group leader?

    One of the best tour guides I have ever had, Ahmed was enthusiastic and inspirational.

    Do you have any advice for potential travellers?

    There was only one Temple that we had to cover up but they give you stuff to put on over your clothes. The rest of the time scrappy t shirts and shorts are fine.

    Is there anything else you would like to add?

    Just book it and go. Don’t be afraid, security is very high, there are X-ray scanners at the entrance of almost every building you go in. Security guards are everywhere and the security at Luxor airport is massive. The people are really lovely and friendly and they don’t even have pick pockets in the markets. Also, there is a fixed exchange rate which applies everywhere including hotels and ATMs. Just go!
  • Reviewed November 2019
    Sue Clark

    Amazing, inspiring trip!

    This trip is not for those who are looking for a quiet, relaxing holiday. Lots of early starts made the most of the opportunities we had to get under the skin of this brilliant country. There is a lot to see and while some of the trips are optional, it's worth trying to add several to your itinery, so budget accordingly! We had a great group of travellers and a brilliant tour guide who was funny, patient (I had lots of questions) and always kind - thank you Ahmed! When you make short stops, particularly early on on the tour, leave everything except your camera (and maybe a small amount of money) in the tour bus - there are often crowds and there are hawkers everywhere - there's always an opportunity to buy souvenirs in Egypt! The vegetarian food is adequate, but not always super interesting - the food tour of Cairo, the Nile boat and the Nubian fellucca ride were hi-lights! Take the tour leader's advice - he was usually right!

    What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?

    The fellucca ride on the Nile, together with lunch on the boat - the food was amazing and the boat ride was magical! I was very keen to see inside the tombs in the Valley of the Kings - King Ramses VI tomb was brilliant! Hatshepsut's temple was just as impressive as it looked on TV - definitely a must! The sleeper train ride was great fun! The one that surprised me (in a good way) was the war cemetry at El-Alamein: it's beautiful, peaceful and quiet.

    What did you think of your group leader?

    Ahmed was great! He was kind, helpful, knowledgeable and funny! He kept us going, looked after everyone (we had a group from 23 to 76!) and tried to answer our numerous questions!

    Do you have any advice for potential travellers?

    Take lots of £ or $ (make sure it's all notes - particularly small values) you will get good exchange rates with the local traders! Take an extra bag - there's a lot you can buy and will want to buy! Go with an open mind and a willingness to learn. If you are blond and female you will get lots of attention!

    Is there anything else you would like to add?

    The people are friendly, the traders are pushy but will give up if you make it clear that you are not interested. Be prepared to barter - it's part of the fun! There's so much to see and do - you might need a holiday at the end to recover (in a good way!).
  • Reviewed November 2019
    Tanya Howes

    Great trip but tough country to enjoy

    I've done alot of travel in my time, mostly on my own, as I dislike the tour group mentality. This trip had the good, the bad, and the ugly. I picked it because Egypt isn't a country that I feel safe travelling in and can be a logistical nightmare. For this, I am so grateful to our tour leader Nadia, who had to manage tough logistics, an action packed list of activities and a group of people that spanned the spectrum of seasoned, adaptable traveller, to completely dependent and self absorbed holiday seeker. For the most part the tour was good value, but beware the amount of extra money needed for tips, people shaking you down for more money, and truly aggressive and unpleasant taxi drivers, horse carriage drivers and market merchants. The hotel in Cairo was very bad but all other accomodations were great. My take away is that while I am so grateful that I saw the sites I had dreamed about and researched for years, for me and they were everything I ever imagined, Egypt is a tough country to navigate. It's really hard to just wander down a street or go shopping. You will be accosted by people wanting to take you to their shop, get in their cab or horse carriage. They will pester you for blocks. And negotiations are hard core, not light hearted. Don't lose your cool.

    What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?

    Seeing the sun set on the Nile. Having a beautiful lunch on one of the sailboats, again on the Nile. Having an early morning Turkish coffee in Luxor before the market opened and watching the world wake up. Getting a kiss on the cheek from a little girl who was fixated with my earrings and her mother and I laughing about how focussed the little one was. Seeing the new library in Alexandria, and seeing an amazing dedication to learning and hope for the future.

    What did you think of your group leader?

    As mentioned above, I found our group leader to be very informed, adaptable to the group's requests, patient with all the different attitudes, caring and solicitous even when tour participants were ungracious. She managed it all with grace and professionalism. I saw amazing sites and got explanations I never would have on my own. She went above and beyond to create an interesting experience and provide fulsome explanations of what we were seeing. I found Nadia to be extremely knowledgeable about heiroglyphics and Egyptian history and generally a joy to be with.

    Do you have any advice for potential travellers?

    Bring lots of Egyptian pounds in small denominations (10s and 20s). Recognize that while you may agree to pricing when shopping or taking a cab, you will likely be asked aggressively for more. Stand your ground and get out of the cab/shop quickly. Be aware that air and ground pollution is extreme and bring wipes. Be aware that climbing in and out of pyramids is for people in shape and if you attempt it, the space is very small and you will be holding up hundreds of people if you can't move quickly. And please respect the culture. Look around you. Neither men nor women are wearing shorts or skimpy tops. Cover up.

    Is there anything else you would like to add?

    Trip was great. Here are some suggestions to make it better: - save the pyramids of Giza to the end. Doing them the first day is hard for people who arrived the night before - don't put people into hotels that are in the middle of nothing and nowhere and force us to use cabs to get anywhere. That first hotel (pyramid park in Cairo) is far past it's peak. It is tired, has failing facilities, rude and ill informed staff, spotty wifi, a thing for serving everything in plastic and uninspiring, poorly prepared food. Keep up with the cruise line for the Nile Cruise. Rooms, facilities, service and food were exceptional. This is also true for the hotel in Alexandria. Such a pleasure to stay there.
  • Reviewed March 2019
    Bob Christie

    Seeing more of Egypt

    I had visited Egypt before, but wanted the opportunity to see Alexandria, more of Cairo, and aspects of Aswan which I had missed due to gut problems. Plus Luxor is always worth seeing. So the trip worked well for me.

    What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?

    Old Cairo, Al Moaz street and Al Azhar park are a welcome contrast to the vast and dusty city. The food tour is fun, and gives a chance to walk the downtown streets. And the people really are genuinely friendly and welcoming. The (old) Egyptian and (new) Nubian museums are excellent. The Nile cruise is a great experience, seeing landscapes and lifestyles which seem not to have changed for thousands of years. The tombs in the Valley of the Kings now have much better lighting and footing than before, making them more interesting and revealing to visit. The temples of Luxor and Karnak are awe inspiring sites. And the hotels in Cairo, Aswan and Luxor are good, with great swimming pools!

    What did you think of your group leader?

    Sayed is knowledgeable, professional and very helpful. He is as informative about modern Egypt as he is about ancient Egypt, while constantly fixing things for us behind the scenes.

    Do you have any advice for potential travellers?

    Days 6 and 7 are very (maybe too) full, with no chance to shower or change until after dinner on Day 7, before a very early start on day 8. The sleeper train has 2 berth compartments and is a better experience than in most countries. Take food and hand hygiene seriously and you'll be fine - none of our group had any real stomach problems. Alcohol is rarely available outside the hotels and boat. Wifi is usually unavailable, and unreliable even when paid for. Upgrade in Luxor - for $24 you can get a balcony and views over the Nile to the Valley of the Kings, plus watching the hot air balloons rising in the dawn. Even in March you may need warm clothes for Egypt!

    Is there anything else you would like to add?

    This trip is an opportunity to see more of Egypt, as well as the incredible highlights. Day 7 needs a rethink though, especially the mass tourism experience of joining other groups being processed through the Nubian 'village' and souvenir stalls. Maybe more time on the felucca and time at the hotel for people to refresh and maybe swim?
  • Reviewed March 2019
    Ivan and Sue Godfrey

    A totally memorable experience

    We normally organise our own visits but for a destination such as Egypt we felt it important to put our trust in professionals ... and our faith In Exodus was well-rewarded. The itinerary was full-on but packed with such variety and richness that it left us quite overwhelmed. By the end we felt we had not only visited a huge number of outstanding sites of world importance but also come to know and understand a country that has played and continues to play a major role within the world.

    What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?

    Impossible to choose one but amongst them - experiencing the thrill of witnessing the rising sun shining on the innermost statues at Abu Simbel just as ancient Egyptians had thousands of years ago ... a sense of shared experience across millennia - cruising down the Nile and watching ordinary lives unfold in the timeless riverside scenery - being overwhelmed by the scale and magnitude of the temples and their art

    What did you think of your group leader?

    Outstanding. Not only did Sayed demonstrate a huge depth of knowledge based on his study of Egyptology but he gave us daily insight into the lives of ordinary Egyptians and the culture of the country of which he was so rightly proud. In today's often divided world he gave us all an example of how meaningful communication can lead to a far greater understanding of different cultures and religions and promote world harmony. He also tended to individual needs, was patient and empathetic and made us all feel valued within the group. . A wonderful ambassador for his country, his culture and his religion.

    Do you have any advice for potential travellers?

    When applying for a visa make sure you use the correct website (Visa2Egypt) as there are numerous other ones that look authentic but charge a huge commission (about 300%!!). Check arrangements for obtaining money carefully. We would suggest budgeting for at least £250 - £300 per person to cover cost of general tips / tip to leader, optional visits (irresistible!), additional meals and purchases. Egyptian currency can be obtained from ATMs (with a charge) or you can take £s and exchange them in banks. When in banks try to get small coins to avoid embarrassment in loos (when you have nothing for the person handing out the paper!!). Be very clear about what is covered by the tipping kitty proposed by Exodus and when additional tips might be necessary.

    Is there anything else you would like to add?

    We would not hesitate to recommend this trip to others and, in fact, have already done so! We are already considering our next trip with Exodus as a result of our good experiences.
  • Reviewed March 2019
    Diana Carter

    Monumental Egyptian Odyssey

    Another excellent Exodus adventure. I was pleasantly surprised that we were fully occupied every day with tours and activities. Temples, tombs, mosques, monastery, local baths, perfumery, pottery, animal sanctuary, papyrus institute, museums, war graves and souqs. We used all forms of transport (luxury coach, horse and carriage, felucca, cruise boat, sleeper train, camel, power boat, plane). Truly a memorable trip, so much fascinating history, colossal architecture and lovely weather too!

    What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?

    We had the privilege of enjoying the moment when the sunrise reaches far inside the temple at Abu Simbel and lights up the statues of Ramses II (pharaoh), Ra (sun god) and Amun (king of the gods). Only the statue of Ptah (god of darkness), remains in shadow. This only happens twice each year. We had to wild-camp (many thanks to our tour guide for organising blankets, pillows and breakfast boxes for us all) just outside the temple for 4 hours to wait for the moment but it was well worth the wait.

    What did you think of your group leader?

    Sayed Mansour is a true legend, Egyptologist, organiser, friend of many and has the patience of a saint.

    Do you have any advice for potential travellers?

    Be prepared for full days, never a dull moment and a surprise round every corner. If you are travelling in February then take warm clothes for the north and lighter clothes for the south. Be firm but polite with street vendors. Eat like a local, their food is amazing. Take a Steripen and your own water bottle so you can sterilise tap water instead of buying plastic bottles of water.
  • Reviewed March 2019
    Gitta Small

    Sun festival at Abu Simbel

    The tour was very well thought out and organised. We had a full programme of seeing temples, tombs and the way Egyptian people lived. There was never a spare moment.

    What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?

    The sunrise at Abu Simbel.

    What did you think of your group leader?

    Our group leader, Sayed Matour, was excellent. We could not have asked for more. He spoke excellent English, had an amazing knowledge of Ancient Egypt, was charming and coped with every situation in the nicest, calm manor. He organised everything brilliantly even procuring thick blankets for everybody who was queuing for hours to be the first to see the sunrise in the temple of Abu Simbel. And we were there in time to see it.

    Do you have any advice for potential travellers?

    Make sure you are fit enough to climb into and out of all the tombs .

    Is there anything else you would like to add?

    I would have liked a meal waiting for us at the first hotel, the Pyramid Parks resort, when we arrived at 11 pm, not having had anything to eat since the flight. And the restaurant itself was closed by now.

Dates & Prices

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An overview of flight options

Exodus is committed to making joining our tours as easy as possible, wherever you live. We generally only block book seats from London, but this certainly does not mean that you need to fly from there. Depending on the route and airlines available, there will usually be various options available for those who want to fly from their local airport.

This page aims to provide a useful overview of the options available to our clients. However, the best flight arrangements should be tailored to your personal requirements, so please contact our Sales team for expert advice.

 

What kind of options do I have ?

1. We can book for you: Flights from anywhere in the world - not via London  

Depending on the route, this may be direct or via an overseas hub like Amsterdam, the Middle East or elsewhere. On short haul routes there may be direct flights with low cost airlines, charter flights or scheduled airlines. Exodus can book most, but not all, of these for you. The most appropriate airline may be different to that which we use for the group flight from London, but many people now travel on different airlines and meet up with their fellow passengers at the destination.

Pros Cons
  • May be the most direct route
  • Often the extra fare compared to the London flight is minimal.
  • As you will be in the hands a single airline for your entire journey, the airline will be responsible for your bags and your connections.
  • You may not be able to join the group transfers. However, we can usually arrange private transfers, or book your flights to try and coincide with the group transfers. See notes on transfer arrangements below.

 

2. We can book for you: Connecting flights from your local airport to London

Exodus can book connecting flights to London so you can join the group flight there. Connecting times will be followed according to airline advice, or as requested by clients. There are two types of fares we can use for this option: a 'through-fare' or a 'published fare'.
 
a) A 'through-fare' is where you will be in the main airline's care throughout. You change planes, but your bags are checked all the way through to your final destination. 

b) A 'published fare' ticket is completely seperate from your onward ticket from London. It is usually cheaper than a through-fare but will need to be paid for and issued as soon as it is booked. This can be a problem if your tour has not yet reached minimum numbers. On 'published fares' neither airline is aware that you have connecting flights, so Exodus is responsible for timing your connection, not the airlines involved. The tickets are also usually non changeable and non refundable.

Pros Cons
  • Depending on the fare type, Exodus or the airline is responsible for flight connections.
  • Through fare tickets can be expensive.
  • On a published fare, tickets must be issued immediately; tickets on published fares can be very difficult to change if onward flight times change; bags are not checked though to your final destination.
  • Published fares are non-refundable.

 

3. Booking some or all of the flights yourself

You can also book connecting air travel yourself, either to London, or all the way to the start point. There may be certain airlines or routes we don't have access to, so this is always an option. However, if you make your own travel arrangements you become liable for any delays, cancellations or missed connections, and Exodus is not required to offer refunds if you have trouble reaching the start of your trip.

Pros Cons
  • You might find cheaper fares, or routes not available to Exodus.
  • You are responsible for any delays or missed connections, and the cost of the tour is not protected should you miss your flight be cancelled.

 

 Notes on transfer arrangements

Sometimes it is possible to travel on a different airline to the group flight from London. Where this is the case, we need to think about ensuring you meet up with the group with minimum extra cost and hassle.

  • On certain trips, it is easy to arrive on a different flight and still meet the group at the hotel with time in hand. We can usually arrange private transfers (at extra cost) or offer advice on taking a taxi to the start hotel.
  • On other trips (especially in Europe), the transfer meets the group flight and then travels some distance to the first night's accommodation. Where this is the case, our Sales team will try to arrange flights that arrive before (and depart after) the group. However, we do have to make it clear in your final documentation that if your flights are delayed, the transfer cannot wait for you. While Exodus or our local operators will do what we can to help you reach the start point of the tour, any additional costs must be paid by the client. 

 

Next steps? 

Call our Sales team on: 0203 733 0698

Email your query: [email protected]

Private Adventures 

Not found the date you’re looking for? We can organise this itinerary as a Private Adventure – just click on the tab above the list of dates and prices, let us know your preferred dates of travel and how many people are travelling, and we’ll do the rest!

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