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Abu Simbel (Sun Festival)

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 Trip Length
11 Days
 Trip Starts
 Trip Finishes
11 Day Abu Simbel (Sun Festival) Itinerary (On The Go Tours)
Countries Explored: Egypt
3 - 4 Star
Max. Group Size
Guide Level
Fully Guided, Locally Guided
Trip Code


Book online and enjoy exclusive savings on On The Go Tours 11 Day Abu Simbel (Sun Festival). Discover the ancient wonders of Egypt and experience the incredible Abu Simbel Sun Festival in February 2023, on this exciting 11 day tour. Marvel at the Pyramids of Giza and sail the Nile, explore Luxor's tomb-strewn Valley of the Kings and visit Aswan's beautiful Philae Temple. Topped off with an excursion to the incredible rock cut temple of Abu Simbel at sunrise.


Welcome to Cairo! You will be met upon arrival and transferred to your hotel. Spend the rest of the day at leisure or those arriving early can opt to join our optional Backstreets of Cairo tour which departs the hotel at 10am. Tonight your Welcome Meeting will be held at 7pm.

Our Egyptian adventure begins with a tour of the legendary pyramids and the Sphinx at Giza Plateau. Sole survivors from the ancient Greek-listed Seven Wonders of the World, the pyramids are the planet's oldest tourist attraction. Gaze in awe at Cheops (Khufu) - the largest of the three great pyramids , constructed from over 2.5 million limestone blocks it is thought to have taken more than 20 years to construct. Travelling on to Saqqara we explore the many tombs and temples at this site and see Zhoser's step pyramid - constructed by Imhotep, the pharaoh's chief architect in 2700 BC. (B)

Cairo - Aswan. Today we tour the new Grand Egyptian Museum, which houses a giant exhibition containing the treasures of King Tutankhamun. In this incredible 490,000 sq.m complex many of the exhibits are being displayed for the first time and artefacts have been brought together from across Egypt and the world. Then we head over to the National Museum of Egyptian Civilization to visit the fascinating Royal Mummies' Hall, where the mummies of ancient Egyptian kings and queens are on display. This incredible hall contains 20 mummies in total and some are so well preserved that they still have thick locks of hair, visible finger nails and smooth blackened skin.

Returning to the hotel, there's time to relax by the pool before we board the overnight train to Aswan this evening. (B)

Aswan - Abu Simbel. Arriving into Aswan this morning we enjoy a short boat trip to Agilika Island for a guided tour of the beautiful Philae Temple - dedicated to the goddess Isis. After the temple we visit a perfume oil emporium before spending the rest of the day at leisure.

Day 5 is free for you to shop in the colourful souqs, stroll around the town or simply kick back and relax by the hotel pool. At around midnight we depart for our coach journey to the Temples of Abu Simbel. (Bx2)

Abu Simbel - Aswan - Nile Felucca Cruise. Arriving at Abu Simbel we await the first rays of sunlight to touch the temple gate signifying the start of the Sun Festival of the mighty King Ramses II. With its gargantuan rock-cut façade, the great Sun Temple of King Ramses II at Abu Simbel is simply spectacular. The temple was built to revere the mighty pharaonic ruler King Ramses II and guarding the entrance to the temple (built between 1290 and 1224 BC) hewn into the side of a mountain are four famous colossal statues of the pharaoh himself.

Ramses II had the entire temple precisely positioned in order for the sun's rays to align just twice a year, on the date of his ascension to the throne (21 February) and on his birthday (21 October) to illuminate the inner sanctum of the temple. This incredible natural phenomenon provides for a most spectacular sight, which has come to be referred to as the Sun Festival of King Ramses II. The temple was re-located further up from the shoreline of Lake Nasser in 1972 in order to avoid erosion and due to the move the sun now strikes a day later than Ramses had originally planned.

We gather in the temple before sunrise watch the shafts of light slowly creeping through the rock hewn inner Hypostyle Hall (replete with further statues of the King) and through to the Sanctuary. As we are lead through the temple there will be time to pause for a moment to watch the sun illuminating the statues of Amun-Re, Re-Herakhte and Ramses the god, whilst the statute of Ptah - the god of darkness - remains in the shadows. After the event, there will be plenty of time to explore the Sun Temple of King Ramses II, the Temple of Hathor and take plenty of pictures.

Returning to Aswan around noon we board a traditional Nile felucca for our 2 night voyage downstream on the River Nile. (B/L/D)

Nile Felucca Sailing. Relax, go for a swim or just chill out in the sun on deck. Let your troubles melt away, as the felucca plies its route and Egyptian life carries on all around you. In the afternoon, we dock near Kom Ombo and take a motorboat to visit the temple before returning to the felucca for the night. (B/L/D)

We disembark this morning and drive a few hours north too Luxor, home of the legendary Valley of the Kings and Temple of Karnak, 4000 year-old Luxor is ancient Egypt at its best. Enjoy some rest and relaxation. Tonight, an optional visit to the Temple of Luxor beautifully illuminated at night, alternatively enjoy the facilities of our hotel. (B)

Luxor - Cairo. This morning we travel over to the West Bank of the Nile to explore the famous Valley of the Kings. Marvel at Colossi of Memnon, the massive stone remains of the Temple of Amenophis III, and explore the Temple of Queen Hatshepsut and surrounding tombs. After lunch, we visit the Temple of Karnak, a spectacular religious complex built on a gigantic scale, where you get lost wandering around the stone papyrus columns. Tonight, we return by overnight train to Cairo. (B)

This morning we arrive back into Cairo and transfer to our hotel. Today is free for you to independently explore Cairo, or you could book locally our optional visit to the bustling Khan el Khalili Bazaar where you shop for souvenirs. (B)

Our Egyptian adventure comes to an end today. Included departure transfer to the airport later today in time for your international flight. (B)

Trip Inclusions

  • Abu Simbel - Visit this awe-inspiring temple at sunrise to witness the incredible phenomenon of the Abu Simbel Sun Festival
  • Cairo - Marvel at the legendary Pyramids of Giza, explore the Necropolis of Saqqara and see King Tut's treasures at the Grand Egyptian Museum
  • Luxor West Bank - Discover exquisite tombs at the Valley of the Kings, see the towering Colossi of Memnon and explore the beautiful Temple of Queen Hatshepsut
  • Luxor - Roam around the colossal Temple of Karnak and take an optional tour of the beautifully illuminated Luxor Temple at night
  • Aswan - Take a leisurely boat trip to Agilika Island to explore romantic Philae Temple and wander around the colourful souqs
  • Nile felucca cruising - Sail the River Nile on board a traditional felucca and spend two nights sleeping under a blanket of stars
  • Kom Ombo - Visit the Nile side Temple of Kom Ombo

  • Airport arrival and departure transfers on day 1 and day 11
  • Touring - Cairo, Giza, Saqqara, Aswan and Luxor
  • Guided visit to Abu Simbel at sunrise for the Sun Festival of King Ramses II including Abu Simbel and Sun Festival entrance fee
  • Escorted by an Egyptian tour guide degree qualified in Egyptology
  • All relevant transfer and transportation in private modern air-conditioned vehicles

  • Breakfast daily, 2 lunches and 2 dinners

  • 6 nights 4-5 star hotels and 2 nights aboard felucca (open deck)
  • Overnight bus journey from Aswan - Abu Simbel (3.5 hrs)
  • 2 overnight trains from Cairo to Aswan and Luxor and Cairo (Private 2 berth sleeper cabin)
  • Holiday Inn Cairo Maadi (Cairo)
  • Sleeper Train (Cairo)
  • Tolip Hotel (Aswan)
  • Felucca Sailboat (Felucca Cruise)
  • Sonesta St. George Hotel (Luxor)
  • Sonesta Hotel Cairo (Cairo)

  • Excludes International flights and visa
  • Excludes Tip for your tour guide. We recommend you allow USD$5-7 per day, per traveller. Tipping your guide is an entirely personal gesture
  • Excludes Entrance Fees: USD$100–120pp, paid in local currency
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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 On The Go Tours.

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