It’s hard not to be in awe of this country shrouded in mystery – where ancient sites serve as reminders of another world, endless auburn-hued dunes call for adventure and a sublime, sun-kissed coastline is hugged by the Red Sea.
Upon arrival it seems impossible to do it or all or to even know where to begin.
Our thoughtfully curated Egypt tours take this into account and make every effort to ensure that you tick everything off.
The Pyramids of Giza
Of course, these striking icons are at the top of any travellers list – and we will help you get well acquainted with the three Great Pyramids. Built solely for the purpose of housing the bodies of deceased pharaohs, the pyramids are now synonymous with Egypt. An experienced Egyptologist guide will share with you his local knowledge, leaving you even more impressed by these mighty monuments. Those wanting to look a little bit closer can even climb down right inside one of them, if you wish. As night falls, we recommend making a booking to witness the spectacular sound and light show – complete with flashing lasers, illuminating the pyramids and the surrounding desert.
This magnificent statue rests on its haunches adjacent to the pyramids and is equally as enigmatic. Based on a mythical creature, this statue has a head of a human and the body of a lion. The purpose of the Sphinx is still unknown, but evidence points to the fact that it was built for the Egyptian pharaoh Khafre during his reign. Carved from the bedrock of the Giza Plateau, this single-stone structure is one of the few constructions in ancient Egypt without any inscriptions or symbols on its surface. Our guide will be on hand to show you around and tell you more fascinating facts.
If you love a good gallery, then prepare yourself for endless gazing at the Museum of Egyptian Antiquities. This extensive space houses a vast collection of Egyptian artifacts – 120, 000 items to be exact. Not to worry though as your guide will walk you through the floors and point out the highlights. The star of the show, however, is the intact tomb of Tutankhamen – an Egyptian pharaoh of the 18th dynasty. His body was discovered in 1922, surrounded by precious grave goods, in a sparkling golden coffin that you can view today.
The next stop on many of our Egypt tours is the beautiful city of Aswan, in the south. Overlooking the Nile River, this ancient frontier is a most scenic spot, encircled by verdant islands and lines of palm trees. This city is also part of the region of Nubia and many descendants of the Nubian people still live in the area. During your experience, you can enjoy a traditional lunch in the nearby Nubian village, filled with brightly coloured houses. Many archeological sites are in the city including the Temple of Isis dating back to the 4th century B.C. and Temple Khum, which is from the Third Dynasty.
Philae Temple Complex
The Philae Temple complex on Agilkia Island is one of the most significant archeological sites in Aswan. Located in the reservoir of Aswan Dam, the shrine is dedicated to the goddess of Isis and was originally an ancient pilgrimage centre. When wondering where the best places to visit in Egypt are, this is definitely one of the most impressive. With tall structures rising out of the water and surrounded by leafy green trees, the island is a sight to behold. The original complex was on Philae Island, but due to rising water it was transferred to the safety of Agilkia Island. Access to the temple complex is only possible by boat and our tours will also pay a visit to the Aswan Dam.
The Nile River
Spending sometime floating along the longest river in Africa is highly recommended. Many of our Egypt tours offer this experience as part of the package – and for good reason. Travelling on the river is the perfect way to see many sights of Egypt that you otherwise might have missed. We prefer to travel via a traditional felucca boat – a wooden craft with two large sails. Although the boat is a slower means of transport, it promises a quiet and calm journey, allowing you to watch the local rural Egyptian life pass you by. The Nubian crew will keep you entertained and fed with delectable meals. On some of our tours you can even sleep on the deck of the boat (mattresses, blankets and mosquito nets are provided).
Temples of Edfu and Kom Ombo
If you want to continue on the temple trail, these ancient shrines are worth a visit. The Kom Ombo Temple consists of two smaller temples and is located on a high dune overlooking the Nile. The temple on the right is dedicated to the crocodile god, while the temple on the left was built to honour the god Haroeris. The two temples each have a separate entrance, halls and courts. Further along, you can see the Edfu Temple that is made from sandstone and dedicated to the falcon-headed god, Horus. This striking sanctuary is the best preserved temple in Egypt and due to its impressive structure allows the sun to illuminate its internal spaces.
As part of our tour, you can choose the option to visit the temples built by Ramses II at the incredible UNESCO World Heritage Site of Abu Simbel. This excursion takes place very early in the morning so that you can see the sun rising over the temples. Abu Simbel features two enormous rock temples originally cut into a solid rock cliff. Four colossal statues guard this remarkable monument while the walls are covered in detailed artwork and carvings. Another extraordinary fact is that during the 1960s, a team of international engineers carefully moved these temples from their original location – saving them from the rising waters of the Nile.
See this tour where you can experience the Abu Simbel Sun Festival.
Set on the east bank of the Nile, this city is also on the itinerary of our tours. It was built on the site of ancient Thebes – the pharaohs’ capital during the 16th-11th centuries B.C. To date, this area is said to have the greatest concentration of ancient ruins in the Nile Valley, if not the world. The first stop is the Karnak Temple – this vast complex was once the religious centre of Thebes and upper Egypt. It was connected to Luxor by an avenue, lined with sphinxes and to the Nile via a canal. The tour will explore the smaller Luxor Temple in the evening, which is located in the middle of town and lit up at night.
Valley of the Kings
On the west bank of the Nile, lie the royal tombs of the Valley of the Kings. Your guide will share with you the secrets of these Pharaonic royal burial sites. Within these tombs you can see evidence of the extravagant preparations the Egyptians believed were needed for the afterlife. The underground spaces were filled with clothes, furniture and even food and drink. The temples of Queen Hatchepsut, Medinat Habu, and the stone statues of Colossi of Memnon will also be viewed on the tour. For those wanting to see this historical landmark from a different perspective, our tours offer the option of a hot air balloon ride.
This manic metropolis is where our tours begin and conclude – giving you enough time to take it all in. Cairo’s metropolitan area is one of the largest in Africa and the largest in the Middle East. The vastness of the city is at times overwhelming, but our guides will have you at ease with informative walking tours. You will be taken through the snaking backstreets and visit the lively bazaars. A classic Egyptian lunch can also be experienced featuring the country’s unofficial national dish, Kushari – a delicious mix of rice, macaroni and lentils, topped with spicy tomato sauce and crispy fried onions. The evening comes to a close with an Al Guri Sufi show (a display of local dance and music) at Wikalat al Ghuri – a 16th century marketplace.
The Red Sea – Hurghada
Beyond the museums, temples and ancient sites, there is a side to Egypt that is often overlooked – the golden stretch of coast along the country’s Red Sea. To take full advantage of the sunny seaside, our tour visits Hurghada. Formerly a small fishing village, this beach resort town is now a go-to spot for all water-based activities. This part of the coastline is renowned for snorkeling and scuba diving thanks to its rich marine life – you can also try your hand at wind surfing and fishing. Further inland, quad biking and camel rides draw the crowds and those who prefer to relax are welcome to do so. If you would like to spend some extra time in Hurghada to soak up some more of the year-round sunshine, this can be arranged.