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What People Are Saying About Us

Odysseys does everything with style, but without pretension. Beautiful meals and hotels. Excellent guides.

Barbara Schoetzau
New York, NY
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6-time honoree Travel + Leisure's World's Best Tour Operators awards

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Small Group Tour Highlights
  • Cairo’s intriguing ancient sites, including the Great Pyramids, Sphinx, Memphis, Sakkara
  • Old Cairo touring
  • Renowned Egyptian Museum
  • Abu Simbel’s dramatic temples
  • Sound & Light show at Abu Simbel
  • Lake Nasser cruise through ancient Nubian homeland
  • Aswan’s temples at Kalabsha
  • Nile felucca sail
  • Nile River cruise
  • Aswan Dam visit
  • Ancient temple complexes at Karnak and Luxor
  • Valley of the Kings and Valley of the Queens
  • Egypt’s inestimable historic atmosphere
Day-by-Day Itinerary

Day 1: Depart U.S. for Cairo, Egypt

Day 2: Arrive Cairo We arrive in the Egyptian capital and transfer to our hotel. As guests’ arrival times may vary greatly, we have no group activities or meals planned.

Day 3: Cairo After a morning briefing, our full-day tour begins at the acclaimed Egyptian Museum, the world’s greatest repository of ancient relics. Then we tour the Citadel of Saladin housing the alabaster Mosque of Mohamed Ali. Tonight we enjoy a welcome dinner at a local restaurant. B,L,D

Day 4: Cairo Today’s tour starts at the open-air museum at Memphis, Egypt’s first capital (3100 BCE). We continue on to the necropolis at Sakkara then to the astounding Pyramids of Giza, the wonders of antiquity that have drawn visitors for millennia. Here, too, we encounter the enigmatic Sphinx, whose leonine body and human face were carved from a single piece of limestone. B,L

Day 5: Cairo/Aswan/Embark Lake Nasser Cruise Early this morning we fly to Aswan. Upon arrival we visit the Aswan High Dam, considered a marvel of engineering when completed in 1965. Then we visit the Nubia Museum, an acclaimed showcase of Nubian art and architecture with more than 3,000 ancient relics and 90 monumental pieces. From here we board our Lake Nasser ship in time for lunch then disembark to explore the ruins of the acclaimed Temple of Philae. Tonight we dine on board as we overnight in Aswan. B,L,D

Day 6: Lake Nasser Cruising – Kalabsha Temples/Wadi el-Seboua Today we see some sights of ancient Nubia, Egypt’s neighbor in antiquity but with a distinct culture and traditions. We stop first at “new” Kalabsha, the largest freestanding temple of them all that was moved and reconstructed on higher ground after the construction of the Aswan High Dam (and the subsequent flooding that created Lake Nasser). Then we sail on to Wadi el-Seboua, where we dock for the night. B,L,D

Day 7: Lake Nasser Cruising – Wadi el-Seboua This morning we see two important New Kingdom temples that, like Kalabsha, were dismantled and relocated to make way for Lake Nasser. We explore Wadi el-Seboua, the next largest of all the pharaonic temples after Abu Simbel, and see the Temple of Dakka, with its huge, well-preserved pylon. Returning to M/S Prince Abbas, we sail on to Amada, where we encounter the oldest of Nubia’s Egyptian temples, the 18th-dynasty Temple of Amada. B,L,D

Day 8: Lake Nasser Cruising – Amada/Kasr Ibrim/Abu Simbel We sail this morning to Kasr Ibrim, the last remaining Nubian settlement in its original location. As it is forbidden to go ashore here, we learn about this ancient site while overlooking it from the ship’s sun deck. Then we continue on to Abu Simbel’s massive complex of temples guarded by statues of Ramses II and his wife Nefertari, with well-preserved murals inside. B,L,D

Day 9: Disembark/Abu Simbel/Aswan/Embark Nile Cruise Ship We disembark then travel by coach to Aswan, where we board our Nile ship. This afternoon we take an afternoon sail aboard small feluccas, replicas of ancient Nile sailboats. B,L,D

Day 10: Nile Cruising – Aswan/Kom Ombo/Edfu We cruise today to the site of the ancient trading town at Kom Ombo, with its unusual double temple and outstanding Nile views. Then we sail on to Edfu, where tonight we attend a shipboard party. B,L,D

Day 11: Nile Cruising – Edfu/Luxor/East Bank This morning we visit Edfu’s Temple of Horus, Egypt’s best-preserved ancient temple. Then we cruise to Luxor, the world’s “greatest open-air museum,” whose vast temple complexes, tombs, and statues dating from 2755 BCE represent the pinnacle of Egyptian architecture. Today we explore the East Bank, home of Karnak, the greatest temple complex of them all, whose ruins stretch for more than a mile. We also visit Luxor Temple, whose builders included both Tutankhamun and Alexander the Great. Back on board, tonight we enjoy a show of Middle Eastern belly dancing. B,L,D

Day 12: Disembark/Luxor/West Bank We have the choice to rise very early to see the West Bank from above on an optional hot air balloon ride. After we disembark our ship later this morning, we tour the haunting Valley of the Kings, where 34 royal tombs feature magnificent paintings; the Valley of the Queens; and the dramatic Temple of Hatshepsut honoring one of the few female pharaohs. We also see the massive Colossi of Memnon, two 64-foot-high statues of Amenhotep III that once guarded the gates of his own tomb. B,L

Day 13: Luxor/Cairo We fly to Cairo today, where this afternoon we visit Khan el-Khalili bazaar. B

Day 14: Cairo This morning we encounter Old Cairo, the district where early capital cities once stood. We visit 5th-century St. Sergius Church, the Coptic church of el-Muallaga, and Ben Ezra Synagogue, built in 882. Mid-day we return to our hotel where tonight we enjoy a farewell dinner. B,D

Day 15: Depart for U.S. Very early this morning we transfer to the airport for our return flight to the U.S. B

Please note: This trip involves considerable walking on uneven terrain and at sites of ancient ruins. You should be in good physical condition to enjoy the tour to its fullest.

B = Breakfast included L = Lunch included D = Dinner included

Tour Price Includes
  • Round-trip air transportation from listed cities; all flights within Egypt
  • 13 nights’ accommodations: 6 nights in Deluxe and Superior First Class hotels; 7 nights aboard Deluxe and Superior First Class ships
  • 32 meals: 13 breakfasts, 10 lunches, 9 dinners
  • Extensive sightseeing as described, including all entrance fees
  • Services of an Odysseys Unlimited Tour Director
  • Private motorcoach transportation throughout your trip, including shore excursions
  • Luggage handling for one bag per person
  • Gratuities for local guides, dining room servers, airport and hotel porters, and all drivers
  • $100 frequent traveler credit towards your next Odysseys Unlimited tour ($200 after 3 tours; $300 after 10 tours)
Tour Dates & Prices

2019 Tour Dates & Prices
including international airfare and all taxes, surcharges, and fees

Sep 30*
Oct 3
Oct 10, 14*
Nov 14
Nov 18*
Nov 21
Nov 28
Oct 17
Oct 24
Oct 31
Dec 5
Boston, New York$4,297 $4,497
Chicago, Houston,
Los Ang, Wash, DC
$4,597 $4,797
Atlanta, Baltimore,
Char, Cinc, Cleve,
Dallas, Detroit,
Miami, Phil
$4,697$4,897
Den, Minneapolis,
Orlando, Phoenix,
Port (OR), San Fran,
Seattle, Tampa
$4,797 $4,997

Limited Spring space still available – please call for details.

Please call if your city is not listed or for land only prices. Prices are per person based on double occupancy in an outside cabin on both cruises and include airline taxes, surcharges, and fees of $602, which are subject to change until final payment is made.

Single travelers please add $1,195. Your $375 deposit is fully refundable up to 95 days before departure. All 2019 tour prices above (excluding airline taxes, surcharges, and fees) are guaranteed.

Itinerary/accommodations: *3 nts Cairo, 3 nts Lake Nasser cruise, 4 nts Nile cruise (M/S Sunray), 1 nt Luxor, 2 nights Cairo

Business Class upgrade (subject to availability) on round-trip Trans-Atlantic flight: $3,195 per person

A visa is required for this tour. Odysseys Unlimited will provide information about visa requirements upon reservation.

Accommodations
    Fairmont Nile City, Cairo / Days 2-4, 13-14 / Deluxe

    Set near the Nile River, this hotel is 2 miles from both Cairo Ramses train station and the Egyptian Museum. The hotel’s amenities includes eight restaurants and snack bars, a bar, fitness center, spa, and rooftop pool.  The 548 air-conditioned guest rooms include a private bath with hair dryer, TV, phone, coffee and tea maker, and complimentary Wi-Fi internet access. 

    M/S Prince Abbas, Aswan/Lake Nasser cruise / Days 5-8 / Superior First Class

    Launched in 1998, the M/S Prince Abbas offers travelers a unique vantage point from which to experience treasures of antiquity in the comfort of contemporary amenities. With just 69 cabins, this 120-passenger ship offers a level of personal service well suited to small group travel. The ship features an observation room/library with panoramic windows, dining room, lounge, and bar, billiard room, and gym. There is no elevator on board. On the canopied sun deck, a plunge pool beckons, as does a relaxing Jacuzzi and informal bar. Your air-conditioned outside cabin has a private bath with hair dryer, TV, music channel, service telephone, and window. Please note that the ship docks at regular docking facilities in Abu Simbel and Aswan; at other stops you will take small launches or motorboats from the ship to shore.

    Length:280 feet
    Width:50 feet
    Draft:7 feet

    Please also note that M/S Prince Abbas will not have phone reception on weekends from approximately 11:00 a.m. on Saturday to 7:00 p.m. on Sunday.

    M/S Royal Lily, Nile cruise / Days 9-11 / Deluxe

    Launched in 2007, this 56-cabin river ship offers such amenities as a dining room, bar, lounge, Sun Deck with outdoor pool, heated whirlpool, sauna, massage treatments, fitness center, Wi-Fi internet access (for a fee), and gift shop.  Air-conditioned cabins have private bath with hair dryer, safe deposit box, mini-bar, TV, and phone.

    Length:244 feet
    Width:46 feet

     

    Steigenberger Nile Palace, Luxor / Day 12 / Superior First Class

    The Steigenberger Nile Palace sits on the banks of the Nile, in the heart of the city’s historic center and a short drive from the Temple of Luxor. The 285-room hotel features four restaurants and three bars; fitness center; spa with sauna, steam bath, and massage treatments; heated outdoor pool; rooftop tennis court; on-site doctor; internet access; bookstore; gift shops; hairdresser; and laundry and dry cleaning services. Air-conditioned guest rooms each have private bath with hair dryer, in-room safe, mini-bar, TV, and phone. 

Ratings are based on the Hotel & Travel Index, the travel industry standard reference.
Post-Tour Extension

Jordan: Petra & Amman

5 days/4 nights for $1,595 total price
Single Supplement: $395

Discover the fabled “rose-red city, half as old as time” on this exciting exploration. Plus: ancient Jerash and the capital of Amman.

 

Your Tour Price Includes
  • Air transportation Cairo/Amman
  • 4 nights’ accommodations: 2 nights in Petra at Movenpick Resort Petra (Superior First Class); 2 nights in Amman at Kempinski Hotel Amman (Superior First Class)
  • 9 meals: 4 breakfasts, 3 lunches, 2 dinners
  • Extensive included sightseeing: Madaba (City of Mosaics); Mt. Nebo pilgrimage site; full day at Petra; Amman’s Roman theatre and Citadel; Roman ruins of Jerash
  • Services of an Odysseys Unlimited Tour Director
  • Private motorcoach transportation
  • Gratuities for dining room servers, airport and hotel porters, and all drivers

Please see the Accommodations tab for hotel information.

A visa is required for this extension. Odysseys Unlimited will provide information about visa requirements upon reservation.

 

Tour Directors for this Journey
Doaa Fouad

“Doaa Fouad was excellent in all ways. Knows history and how to convey this information, thoughtful, very well organized, and a pleasure to travel with.”
Jill Theis
McHenry, IL

Ali Harb

Tour Director – Jordan Extension
“Ali is a treasure (like Petra).”
James Stoughton
San Francisco, CA

Ahmad al Khaldi

Tour Director – Jordan Extension
“Ahmad was in the Top 5 tour directors that we have ever had on a tour – we have been to 75 countries so we have a lot of experience with tour guides.”
Debbie & Jim Zug
Bryn Mawr, PA

Hassan Latif

“I simply cannot imagine anyone who could have done a better job of creating the atmosphere of welcome, knowledge, fun, security, and richness of experience than Hassan.”
Kathryn Hare
Newton, MA

Tarek Morsy

“Tarek Morsy was an exceptional tour director. He was knowledgeable and able to communicate information in an interesting and memorable way. The logistics were outstanding; we never wondered what was next. … Tarek always saw that we got to the sites at the best, least crowded times. … Completely outstanding performance.”
Ruth Erkkila
St. Paul, MN

Mahmoud Nawar

“Mahmoud is first and foremost among the best tour leaders we have encountered during our travels abroad. In addition to being exceptionally passionate about his country and its tourism, he really excels when it comes to Nubia, for which he has a real and genuine passion.”
Ellery & Lesley Kuhn
Roseville, CA

Sufian Nawash

Tour Director – Jordan Extension
“One of the best in my experience over the past 12 years. A great asset to your company.”
Dana Fitzgerald
Amelia Island, FL

Destination Insight

Suggested Reading

Bill Manley
The Penguin Historical Atlas of Ancient Egypt
Ingenious color maps, site plans, photographs and accompanying essays trace Egyptian civilization from the founding of Memphis through the sacking of Thebes and the invasion by Alexander the Great in 332 BC.

Michael Haag
Luxor Illustrated, With Aswan, Abu Simbel and the Nile
The ideal companion to a Nile cruise, Haag introduces all the famous monuments and temples of Upper Egypt from Luxor, Karnak, Valley of the Kings and the tomb of Tutankhamun to the marvels of Aswan and Abu Simbel in full color.

Eyewitness Guides
Eyewitness Guide Egypt
This visually rich guide to the history, culture and monuments of Egypt includes 1,000 color photographs, maps and 3-D site diagrams.

Nelles
Egypt Map
This easy-fold map, featuring insets of Luxor, Valley of the Kings, Giza, the Nile River Valley, Cairo and other sites, also covers Petra, Jerusalem and most of Israel.

Cartographia
Cairo Map
A colorful, folded map of Cairo on thick paper. Insets of Luxor, Alexandria and Heliopolis. Scale 1:13,000.

Jailan Zayan
Culture Smart! Egypt
A handy pocket guide to understanding local customs and etiquette.

Bill Manley
Egyptian Hieroglyphs for Complete Beginners
Museum-goers and armchair travelers alike can gain a basic knowledge of the language and culture of ancient Egypt with this excellent step-by-step guide to decoding tomb scenes and inscriptions. With illustrations, photographs, a handy list of kings and gods and vocabulary.

Farouk El-Baz
Say It in Arabic (Egyptian)
A guide to common words and phrases in the widely spoken Cairo dialect.

William J. Murnane
The Ancient Egypt Guide
With sections on history, individual sites and practical details, this new edition of the classic Penguin Guide to Ancient Egypt has been thoroughly updated by Aidan Dodson.

Bruce Feiler
Generation Freedom, The Middle East Uprisings and the Remaking of the Modern World
As engaged and thoughtful as ever, Feiler brings texture and insight to these thrilling tales of youthful revolt across the Arab world, weaving on-the-spot reports from Tahir Square and elsewhere with history and commentary.

Max Rodenbeck
Cairo, The City Victorious
Rodenbeck presents his hometown in all its chaotic, marvelous glory, combining a lively history of the 5,000-year-old metropolis with description, anecdote and political commentary

Tim Jeal
Explorers of the Nile
Tim Jeal widens his scope in this spirited new history of the great 19th-century quest for the origins of the Nile, covering the many expeditions and complex rivalries of Burton and Speke, Livingstone and Stanley and other Victorian adventurers with panache.

Geraldine Brooks
Nine Parts of Desire, The Hidden World of Islamic Women
A highly readable overview of the role of women in Islamic society, drawn from the author’s many interviews with women throughout the Arab World.

Robert Twigger
Red Nile, A Biography of the World’s Greatest River
This biography of the Nile River overflows with stories of the human history that has played out on the great river’s banks. Twigger meanders along the Nile, bringing to the surface fascinating tales of crocodiles and caliphs, 19th-century adventurers and 20th-century novelists, biblical prophets and classical lovers.

Toby Wilkinson
The Nile
Renowned Egyptologist Toby Wilkinson guides readers through Egyptian history on a Nile River journey. Readers are swept from the river’s mythical sources to famous historical and cultural sites all the way to Cairo.

Alan Moorehead
The Blue Nile
In this grand history of exploration and events on the great river from 1798 to 1869, Moorehead follows the course of the Blue Nile from the Ethiopian highlands through Sudan and Egypt to the Mediterranean.

Robert L. Tignor
Egypt, A Short History
Princeton historian Tignor distills five decades of study and travel for this vivid account of the sweep and tumult of Egyptian history from the settlement of the Nile to the present.

John Romer
The Great Pyramid
Sweeping away centuries of myth and legend, archaeologist John Romer documents in meticulous detail how the Great Pyramid of Khufu at Giza was designed and built, revealing along the way much about life in ancient Egypt.

Jenny Jobbins
The Nile Cruise
Weaving classic travelers’ accounts with essays and 150 color photographs, this compact book beautifully illuminates the history and allure of the towns, temples and tombs of the Nile from Abydos to Abu Simbel.

Rosemary Mahoney
Down the Nile, Alone in a Fisherman’s Skiff
Mahoney weaves the tale of her quest to row the Nile with deft portraits of the people she meets in this marvelously engaging chronicle.

Agatha Christie
Death on the Nile
How could we resist? Christie wrote Egypt’s most famous murder mystery on the terrace of the Old Cataract Hotel in Aswan.

Naguib Mahfouz
Palace Walk
The first volume in the monumental Cairo Trilogy, a family saga set in post-WWI Egypt. Nobel Prize-winning Mahfouz provides insight into life in Egypt and the revolution against the British.

Alaa Al Aswany
The Yacoubian Building
The politics, repressed desires, hopes and dreams of Cairo are reflected through the lives of the inhabitants of a once grand apartment house in this deft novel of contemporary Egypt.

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