EGYPT RIVER CRUISES Getting up close and very personal with ancient history!
No other country needs so little introduction as Egypt. A view of Egypt from space would depict a narrow strip of green running north to south surrounded on both sides by a dry, unforgiving landscape. This is Egypt, the “gift of the Nile”, an apt description of a civilization already ancient, labeled by the Greek scholar and historian Herodotus over 2,400 years ago. There is just no getting around it; Egypt begins and ends with the Nile River, and there’s no easier or better way to experience Egypt’s history and culture than on a safe and luxurious river cruise trip along the Nile River. View all Egypt cruises in the cruisGENIE™Cruise Chart below.
We all know that Egypt is the land of the Pharaohs, the pyramids, incredible temples decorated with hieroglyphics, and possessed of more archeological treasures than most continents, let alone other countries! Thanks to the magic of movies and television we have been inundated with lurid tales of lost tombs and hidden treasures. Who hasn’t heard of the fantastic riches found in the almost perfectly preserved and intact tomb of King Tut — including the infamous curse that supposedly caused the deaths of several of those who first entered into his burial chamber? I’m sure most of us are familiar with the biblical portrayal of Egypt, especially concerning the events leading up to the flight of the Hebrews from Egypt to the Middle East during the time of the Pharaoh Ramses II. And please, by all means enjoy the Disney movie, but don’t take it as gospel!
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Egypt is much more than the sum of its parts. It is a land with a history that is over 5,000 years old. When you think about it, compared to say the barely 500 year history of North America from the time of its discovery that is just astounding! For the first 3,000 years of its existence it was probably the richest and most powerful culture of the day and its influence was felt in Europe, the Middle East, and other African countries.
Egypt today plays a dominant role in the Middle East. Famous for being the first Arab country to establish diplomatic relations with Israel, it exerts enormous political influence among its neighbors. Its capital city, Cairo, comprises the largest urban metropolis in Africa, and it is perhaps one of the most influential cities, if not the most influential, in the Arab World today, a leader for centuries in the political, cultural, and social life of the region.
A river cruise is the best way for a first time visitor to explore Egypt. We’re pretty confident in our recommendation because we know that a Nile River cruise offers a very different perspective of Egypt and her people, and because almost all of her important tourist landmarks are in cities along the Nile. So, why then would you travel by plane or on a bus along dusty roads, pack and unpack each night when you can choose a deluxe, fully air-conditioned river cruise ship to base your exploration from. That’s true if you are here for the history, culture and of course — the pyramids. If you’re here for lounging on the Red Sea, that’s a different story. Unlike a European river cruise, cruising on the Nile operates year-round. As you can imagine, the best time to visit Egypt is during our winter months when the climate is still hot but very tolerable. May–June are the least demanded with late fall (Nov–Dec) commanding the most demand. Of course, that does mean there are great deals during the summer months! And, by all means do take advantage of them as long as you can also take the heat!
Recently we had a client return from Egypt using words life “mind-altering,” “awe-inspiring,” “I never imagined.” While her agent was surprised, it is not uncommon for returning Egypt travelers to describe their Nile experience with such these words are uttered more frequently than you can believe by those who are able to stand before and touch Egypt’s ancient history and spiritual wonders. Imagine reaching out and touching one of Giza’s 4500 year old pyramids, meandering along the street stalls of Cairo’s Medieval Grand Bazaar, or staying late in Luxor to view the light show at the Temple of Karnak.
A visit to the land of Cleopatra and Ramses should be on your “bucket list.” First, and foremost as you start to plan your Nile river cruise, don’t worry about any language issues as your rivership features an English-speaking only crew and you’ll also enjoy the services of your own very knowledgeable Egyptologist who’ll whisk you ahead of the lines and unravel the historical myths versus the truth, just for you.
Also, very importantly, your ship acts as an intimate, floating boutique hotel and is most certainly the best way to visit this incredible land. Not all lines operate Nile River cruises, but some of our favorites including: AmaWaterways, Avalon Waterways, Scenic, Uniworld, and Viking do. Speaking of Uniworld, their intimate all-suite ship, River Tosca has a maximum capacity for just 82 lucky, pampered guests. She’s a ‘beaut’ and the onboard service and delightful all-balcony suites will provide you an extraordinary experience.
If this is your first visit to Egypt we encourage you not to consider a short river cruise (3, 4 or 5 day) because you'll be disappointed on two fronts; first you will never really get into the flow aboard your elegant river ship and more importantly, you’ll spend way too much time visiting hotels, buses and planes — something you don’t do on a river cruise ships. We suggest you will get the best of both worlds — several nights in Cairo, usually a couple of nights before and after your selected river cruise on the Nile.