From the Great Pyramids of Giza to the ancient temples of Abu Simbel, every corner of Egypt is drenched in the myths and legends of the Pharaohs. A favourite of travellers for countless generations, the legendary country has made a triumphant comeback as the ultimate bucket-list destination for adventurous dreamers.
Bask in the majesty of the ancients on an immersive journey with Abercrombie & Kent (A&K) taking in all the major highlights on their guest favourite: Luxury Small Group Journey: Egypt & the Nile. Explore the nation’s greatest archaeological treasures for 10 days, with your own Egyptologist, including an all-inclusive four-night cruise along the Nile aboard the stylish Sanctuary Sun Boat IV.
Step into your very own time-machine with the following list of essential experiences to whet your appetite. All are included in A&K’s Egypt & the Nile.
1. Take in the Wonders of the Ancient Capital of Cairo
Cairo is a whirlpool of influences from all the lords of conquest. The Persians arrived in 525 BC with their camels in tow, followed by the Greeks, Byzantines, Arabs, Mamluks, Turks, French and British, and with each arrival came a new layer of history to add to the intricate tapestry. Today Cairo is a fascinating place to get a taste of modern Egyptian culture and street life, with glitzy shopping malls, fascinating museums, vibrant neighbourhoods, and some truly captivating people watching.
2. Witness the Great Pyramids of Giza & the Sphinx
There is no other experience on Earth akin to resting your eyes on the enormity and grandeur of the Great Pyramids of Giza and the Sphinx. The sheer manpower that was employed to build these mysterious structures defies belief. Made by tens of thousands of workers pulling 2.5-16 tonne stones through the dunes, the magnitude of the engineering remains one of science’s biggest mysteries. Giza allows us to explore a long-vanished world with some of the largest and oldest monolithic statues ever created.
3. Unearth the Ancient Temples of Abu Simbel
The ginormous rock-cut temples of Abu Simbel have earnt their place among some of the planet’s most amazing archaeological marvels. Carved into the west bank of the Nile, the colossal monuments – 18-metres tall and 56 metres deep – were built so that on October 22 and February 22 the sun would shine into the inner sanctuary to commemorate King Ramses’ coronation and birth. The halls within display some of the most well-preserved hieroglyphics ever discovered.
4. Discover the Temple of Luxor & Valley of the Kings
There are so many highlights in Luxor that it’s hard to know where to begin. Sitting on the banks of the Nile, and aptly named ‘the world’s greatest open-air museum’, the setting is achingly beautiful. Step back 3000 years in time to the former city of Thebes, home to awe-inspiring temples, funerary complexes and ruins. In ancient times, Luxor’s East Bank was the land of the living, where the sun rose and people thrived, and the West Bank was the land of the dead, where the sun set, and people journeyed into the afterlife.
5. Sail Along the Nile Absorbing Life on the Water
Cruising the world’s longest river is one of Egypt’s most iconic experiences. Sailing along the Nile is a journey into Egypt’s epic human history, the riverbanks scattered with vast temples and painted tombs. It’s also a taste of Egypt at its most lush and tranquil, and an up-close experience of the country’s rural scenery. On A&K’s Egypt & the Nile, you’ll glide in comfort through stirring desert landscapes, going ashore with your own Egyptologist to see the most awe-inspiring sites.
6. A&K’s Egyptologist Pick: Explore the Crumbling Coffins of Sakkara
Thirty-two kilometres south of Cairo, where the Nile’s crop fields give way to burnt-orange dunes, the ancient site of Sakkara and its crumbling pyramids emerge from the sand like dragon’s teeth. Sakkara is currently hot property in the archaeology world, its most recent find yielding 250 painted coffins dating back 2500 years. This is a lesser-known site but a favourite of our resident Egyptologists, particularly the striking Pyramid of Djoser built in the 27th century BC.
7. A&K’s Egyptologist Pick: Hear Ancient Myths at the Temple of Isis
Another favourite of A&K’s resident Egyptologists is a visit to the Temple of Isis at Philae on the banks of Lake Nassar. This is the birthplace of the cult of Isis, which continued here until at least AD 550. The Temple of Isis is arguably the last pagan site to be built in Egypt and home to the most romantic story in Egyptian mythology. The pagan cult later became particularly popular among the lower classes of the Roman city of Pompeii, with fans enamoured with the hope it offered for life after death. This temple is one of the most beautiful in the entire country. Don’t miss the sound and light show at night.
8. See it all Come to Life at the Grand Egyptian Museum
When the Grand Egyptian Museum (GEM) opens in early 2023, it will not only be the crown jewel of Egypt, but one of the largest, most modern, and renowned museums in the entire world. With A&K you will enjoy a special pre-open visit, which puts the whole of the ancient world into extraordinary context. The museum will house about 100,000 ancient artifacts from pre-historic times and all of Egypt’s ages – Predynastic, Ancient Egyptian, Graeco-Roman, Coptic, Islamic periods, through to modern times.
A&K have been taking travellers to Egypt for more than four decades. With seven wholly owned offices throughout the country, and a staff of over 350 on the ground, including their own resident Egyptologists – A&K set the benchmark for both Luxury Small Group Journeys and Tailor-Made bespoke travel to this alluring destination.
A&K have just announced extra departures of Luxury Small Group Journey: Egypt & the Nile with a four-night cruise aboard the ‘Sanctuary Nile Adventurer’ to meet increased demand. With departures booking quickly, it’s not too early to start planning now. Visit their website or contact your travel agent today.
This is a sponsored article produced in partnership with Abercrombie & Kent