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Egypt: Alexandria to Aswan with George Kourounis

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13 Day Egypt: Alexandria to Aswan with George Kourounis Itinerary (Exodus)
Countries Explored: Egypt
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Book online and enjoy exclusive savings on Exodus 13 Day Egypt: Alexandria to Aswan with George Kourounis. Ancient temples and tombs around every bend, unrivaled legacy and mind-blowing history await on this Exodus Classic with exclusive 5* property upgrades for the RCGS. Spend a magical 13 days making your way through Egypt from top to bottom led by renowned explorer, filmmaker, photographer and RCGS Explorer-in-Residence, George Kourounis.

Whether it’s swapping travel and expedition stories from across the globe, learning about Kourounis’ work with National Geographic in the region,...read more or providing tips and training on photography techniques this epic adventurer will be there every step of the journey to share his expertise.The adventure begins in Cairo with a visit to the Pyramids of Giza and the mysterious Great Sphinx; great monuments to the afterlife defy the imagination.

Spend a night in Alexandria where you’ll dine of fresh seafood, visit the Library of Alexandria, explore the catacombs, and visit the famed World War II site, El Alamein. Watch the sunrise over the vast desert on your way to Abu Simbel, widely regarded as one of the most impressive temples in the country, before boarding your river cruise ship for a 3-night journey down the Nile. Along the way, you’ll stop at Philae Temple, Aswan High Dam, Kom Ombo, Edfu, ending in Luxor with a trip to the Valley of the Kings.


Welcome to Cairo! This evening there will be a welcome briefing with your leader and rest of the group. Stay: Steigenberger Pyramids Hotel or similar.

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. Stay: Steigenberger Pyramids Hotel or similar.

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. Stay: Steigenberger Pyramids Hotel or similar.

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. Stay: Hilton Corniche Hotel or similar.

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. Stay: Steigenberger Pyramids Hotel or similar.

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.

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. Stay: Movenpick Resort Aswan or similar.

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. Stay: M/S Esmeralda or similar.

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. Stay: M/S Esmeralda or similar.

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. Stay: M/S Esmeralda or similar.

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. Stay: Steigenberger Resort Achti or similar.

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. Stay: Steigenberger Resort Achti or similar.

Our trip ends today after breakfast.

Trip Inclusions

  • Marvel at the engineering wonders that are the Pyramids of Giza and the Great Sphinx.
  • Step back in time with a visit to the ancient tombs in the Valley of the Kings.
  • Cruise through Aswan on a Felucca ride, stopping to visit a Nubian village to soak up the Nubian way of life.
  • Journey by camel up to the Monastery of St Simeon and enjoy a BBQ on the shores of an island in the Nile.
  • Discover Egypt's sites with renowned explorer, filmmaker, photographer and RCGS Explorer-in-Residence, George Kourounis.

  • 8 nights in 5-star hotels, 3 nights on a cruise boat and 1 night sleeper train
  • Travel by private minibus, cruise boat and sleeper train
  • Group normally 10 to 20, including RCGS guide plus local leader.
  • All breakfasts, 6 lunches & 5 dinners
  • All accommodation
  • All transport and listed activities
  • RCGS Guide & Local Tour leader throughout

Prices & Dates

There are currently no departures available on this trip. Either it's the end of the season and new departures will be released shortly, or this itinerary has been changed and will no longer continue. Feel free to contact us for information about when next seasons dates will be released or click here to view the general release dates for all destinations.

Tour & cruises prices are per person. Prices shown have savings applied, are subject to availability and may be withdrawn at any time without notice. Prices and trip information are correct at the time at this point in time, however are subject to confirmation at the time of booking and are subject to change by Exodus.

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