A new country to uncover is always exciting – but when that new country is, in fact, an ancient one with a history that reaches back thousands of years? You can guarantee we’ll be there in a heartbeat. Egypt is that country for us right now. It’s been on the map for centuries but has always been shrouded in a mystery that has always been difficult to shake off. Our travel experts have been spending a lot of time recently getting under Egypt’s skin as they cross every inch of its lands. Now, we want to share with you exactly what we’ve found. Ottoman Palaces transformed into grand luxurious hotels; days spent onboard traditional feluccas sailing down the Nile; exclusive access to some of the world’s most famous temples, tombs and museums; and an unheard of music scene that brings this vibrant culture to life. Come discover Egypt with us.
The Pearl of the Nile
Flying into Cairo, you’ll then fly straight back out again (don’t worry, you’ll be back later) as you head down to one of Egypt’s southernmost cities; Aswan. Following the flow of The Nile as it snakes down to Lake Nasser, Aswan is Egypt’s natural wonder with a virginal beauty surrounded by fascinating Nubian culture. Check in at the country’s most glamorous hotel, the Sofitel Legend Old Cataract, where past guests have included Agatha Christie and Princess Di, and let the discovery begin.
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In the morning, you’ll join an expert Nubian Egyptologist guide to get a first-hand perspective on the city. Sailing down the Nile, you’ll start at Philae Temple – or ‘the Pearl of the Nile’ as it’s known, before continuing onto the Aswan High Dam for panoramic views over the city. Finish up on the small island of Elephantine, immersed in Nubian culture as you meet a local man to visit the museum he has built within his house. Head back to the hotel in the only way we could imagine how; a sunset camel ride past the cerulean Nubian houses of the West Bank. Where the sand dunes fall away into the Nile and the ruins of St Simeon’s Monastery can be seen in the background, it’s a magical perspective on Aswan.
Temple Run in Luxor
From Aswan, venture north through the desert to Luxor, checking in at Al Moudira, a beautiful palace hotel with authentic Egyptian charm. Take a stroll through the buzzing downtown market to a local family’s home where they’ll prepare an Egyptian feast for you before leading you onto a private felucca boat to enjoy it drifting along the Nile. Pull up at a remote island for a few drinks in the sun and a refreshing dip in the river before rejoining your Egyptologist guide tomorrow and venturing into the heartland of Egyptian intrigue; the Valley of the Kings. The burial place of the legendary Tutankhamun and 62 other great Egyptian Kings, it will leave you speechless. Reserve the real wonder for the Valley of the Queens though, as you step inside Nefertari’s intricately decorated Tomb, seldom visited by others. Add in a sunset bike tour, the ethereal glow of visiting Luxor Temple at night and a rooftop dinner at a local restaurant and you can truly say you’ve seen the best of Luxor.
Behind the Scenes in Cairo
From Luxor, it’s onto your final stop in Cairo. Get to know the city’s ancient culture with a private tour of Karnak Temple before meeting some of its master craftsmen at the downtown Khan al Khalili market. We can even arrange for you to have a piece of handmade jewellery designed. Having taken in the culture of Aswan and the temples of Luxor, tonight is the perfect night to put it all into context with an after-hours visit to the Egyptian Museum. With just a few others having access to this vast museum, you’ll have it seemingly to yourselves.
Ancient World Wonder
Your final day in Egypt calls for a conclusion of unfathomable proportions – and what could do that better than the pyramids? Feats of incomprehensible engineering, start at Saqqara with the famous stepped pyramid of Djoser before heading into the ancient wonder of Giza. Here, we can arrange for you to be guided by a world-renowned archaeologist as you take in the staggering sight that is the Great Pyramids and gain special permission to enter into the base of the Sphinx. For your final evening, we’ve arranged an under-the-radar evening watching a music performance by the Mazaher. Singing Nubian, Zir and Sufi music, this is an experience few others know about and the perfect way to throw back the covers on Egypt’s mystique once and for all.