Pharaohs & Pyramids

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Pharaohs & Pyramids

Tour Description:

Cruise for seven nights along the Nile on an A&K-exclusive
charter of ‘Sanctuary Sun Boat IIl,’ delving
deeply into the majesty of ancient Egypt at a leisurely
pace, following a comprehensive itinerary that features
sites found off the beaten path as well as special private
openings, the convenience of privately chartered air
and a stay at a top luxury hotel.

Map for Pharaohs & Pyramids
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Dates & Pricing

Wednesday 01 Feb 23 — Monday 13 Feb 23Starting at $14,995 Get a Quote
Thursday 02 Mar 23 — Tuesday 14 Mar 23Starting at $14,995 Get a Quote
Wednesday 30 Aug 23 — Monday 11 Sep 23Starting at $13,295 Get a Quote
Sunday 10 Sep 23 — Friday 22 Sep 23Starting at $13,295 Get a Quote
Friday 01 Dec 23 — Wednesday 13 Dec 23Starting at $14,995 Get a Quote


Day 1 - Arrive Cairo, Egypt
Arrive in Cairo, Egypt’s “Mother of All Cities,” an age-old crossroads of Asia, Africa, and Europe, where you are met and privately transferred to your riverside hotel.

Day 2 - Cairo
Explore the Egyptian Museum of Antiquities (or the Grand Egyptian Museum, upon its opening), home to over 120,000 relics, some dating back to 4000 BC. After lunch, return to your hotel for an afternoon at leisure. This evening, join your fellow travelers for a welcome dinner.

Day 3 - Cairo
Set out for the Giza Plateau on a full-day excursion. Observe the great pyramids of Khufu, Khafre and Menkaure as well as other historical sites. Enter the Great Pyramid of Cheops — oldest of the Seven Wonders of the Ancient World — stepping back in time some 4,000 years. Ride Like a Local on a camel, and then enjoy special private access to the nearby Great Sphinx, seizing the rare opportunity to lay your hands on its massive paws. Dine tonight in a local Cairo restaurant.

Day 4 - Luxor
Fly south to Luxor, formerly known as Thebes. Upon arrival visit the Temple of Karnak, featuring 134 great columns that once supported an enormous roof. Board ‘Sanctuary Sun Boat III,’ your luxurious home on the Nile for the next seven nights, in time for lunch. This afternoon, explore the Temple of Luxor, built by Amenhotep III (1405-1367 BC). This evening, gather for a complimentary cocktail and canapés, followed by dinner.

Day 5 - Cruising the Nile
Rise early this morning for an exhilarating hot air balloon ride over the Nile and the temples that line its shores. Proceed to the West Bank, starting at the fabled Colossi of Memnon, two enormous seated statues of Amenhotep III. Then, in the Valley of the Queens, explore the tomb of Queen Nefertari, said to be the finest tomb in Egypt. The day’s explorations also include Deir el-Medina, an excavated village of craftsmen and artisans, founded by Amenhotep I, who contributed to the creation of tombs in the nearby valleys of the Kings and Queens. Return to ‘Sanctuary Sun Boat III’ for lunch and sail to Esna.

Day 6 - Cruising the Nile
This morning at Esna, explore the Greco-Roman Temple of Khnum with your Egyptologist guide. Its Great Hypostyle Hall was built during the reign of the Roman Emperor Claudius. Then, cruise upstream to Edfu, where you visit the well-preserved Temple of Horus (the falcon god). This afternoon, learn to prepare local dishes during a Chef ’s Table experience with an onboard chef. Join the party tonight and dress up in traditional Egyptian galabeyyas. Sit down to a lavish buffet of Egyptian specialties, followed by Arabic music and dancing.

Day 7 - Cruising the Nile
Disembark in Aswan to visit the granite quarries that supplied stone for many of Egypt’s pyramids and temples. View the 1,200-ton ‘Unfinished Obelisk,’ which exemplifies the technique used to create such enormous monoliths. Then, boat to the island of Agilika to view the exquisite Temple of Philae, dedicated to the goddess Isis. Later this afternoon, sail by felucca (traditional sailing vessel), weather permitting, around Elephantine Island and view the splendid Aga Khan Mausoleum, which overlooks the river.

Day 8 - Abu Simbel
Fly to Abu Simbel, site of the magnificent temple of Ramses II, and marvel at the four enormous statues of the pharaoh that grace its façade, each over 60 feet high. Amazingly, the site was raised up the hillside to avoid floodwaters caused by the Aswan High Dam project. Then, enjoy lunch at a local restaurant before boarding your privately chartered aircraft back to Aswan, to return to your ship.

Day 9 - Cruising the Nile
Relax on board or explore a local Aswan spice market this morning. Have lunch while you cruise to Kom Ombo. Disembark for a walking visit to this lovely Greco-Roman temple dedicated to Haroeris (the sun god) and Sobek (the crocodile god), whom some ancient Egyptians considered the creator of the world. View the mummified remains of several crocodiles that once basked along the ancient Nile shore, just as their descendants do today. Partake in a Scenic Sundowner as you cruise toward Esna.

Day 10 - Cruising the Nile
Return to the west bank of the Nile this morning. Begin at the terraced funerary temple of Queen Hatshepsut, Egypt’s first female pharaoh. Continue on to the famous Valley of the Kings. Enter the iconic tomb of Tutankhamun (King Tut) before visiting the former home of the legendary archaeologist who unearthed it, Howard Carter, to see the original tools he used for the excavation. Gain entry to the lesser-visited, well-preserved tomb of Seti I, father of Ramses II. Go off the beaten path to one of Luxor’s lesserknown sites, the New Kingdom necropolis Dra Abu Naga. After lunch and afternoon tea aboard ship, visit the Luxor Museum, browsing its fascinating collections. Your final dinner on board is a gala affair.

Day 11 - Luxor/Cairo
Disembark ‘Sanctuary Sun Boat III’ and return to Cairo in time for lunch. This afternoon, enjoy one of these Design Your Day activities. Discover Coptic Cairo, visiting a church built where the Holy Family stayed and other Christian sites. Tour Islamic Cairo, including the lively Khan el-Khalili Bazaar and Sultan Hassan mosque. Sail on a Felucca, experiencing Cairo from a different perspective. The remainder of your day is at leisure.

Day 12 - Cairo
Today, venture just outside the city to Sakkara, the vast necropolis of ancient Memphis, site of the famous Step Pyramid. Built by Zoser I in 2700 BC, it is the world’s oldest stone structure. Enjoy a special private opening of the 4,400-year-old tomb of Wahtye. Unearthed in 2018, it is considered one of the biggest discoveries of the decade, completely untouched and filled with painted hieroglyphics, sculptures, and inscriptions. Also visit the Mereruka Tomb, one of the most exquisitely decorated tombs of the Old Kingdom. Tonight, enjoy a memorable farewell dinner.

Day 13 - Depart Cairo
After breakfast, transfer to the airport and depart.