FROM: USD $1,545

Abu Simbel Sun Festival Feb 2019 - 10 Days

Witness the extraordinary Sun Festival at Abu Simbel, visit the vast Valley of the Kings, the iconic Sphinx and legendary Pyramids of Giza, on this 10 day tour offering the best of ancient Egypt.

Inclusions
Itinerary
Prices & Dates
Hotels
Reviews

Trip Highlights

Abu Simbel - visit this awe-inspiring temple at sunrise to witness the incredible phenomenon of the Abu Simbel Sun Festival
Luxor West Bank - discover exquisite tombs in the Valley of the Kings, the towering Colossi of Memnon and the beautiful Temple of Queen Hatshepsut
Aswan - take leisurely boat trip to Agilika Island to explore the romantic Philae Temple and wander around the colourful souqs
Kom Ombo - visit the Nile side Temple of Kom Ombo
Cairo - marvel at the legendary Pyramids of Giza, explore the Necropolis of Saqqara and see King Tut's treasures at the Egyptian Museum
Luxor - roam around the colossal Temple of Karnak and take an optional tour of the beautifully illuminated Luxor Temple at night
Nile felucca cruising - sail the River Nile on board a traditional felucca and spend two nights sleeping under a blanket of stars

Included

Guided visit to Abu Simbel at sunrise for the Sun Festival of King Ramses II including Abu Simbel and Sun Festival entrance fee
4 nights 4 - 5 star hotels
2 nights aboard felucca (open deck)
Airport arrival and departure transfers on day 1 and day 10
Egyptian tour guide degree qualified in Egyptology
Breakfast daily, 2 lunches and 2 dinners
1/2 night 4-5 star Aswan hotel prior to overnight bus journey (3.5 hrs) to Abu Simbel
2 overnight trains: Cairo - Aswan and Luxor - Cairo (Private 2 berth sleeper cabin)
Touring of Cairo, Giza, Saqqara, Aswan, Abu Simbel, Kom Ombo & Luxor
All relevant transfer and transportation in private modern air-conditioned vehicles

Not Included

Tip for your tour guide. We recommend you allow USD$5 - 7 per day, per traveller. Tipping your tour guide is an entirely personal gesture
Entrance Fees: USD$70-90, paid in local currency
International flights and visa
Tipping Kitty: USD$50-70, paid in local currency

Itinerary

Day 1

Cairo

Sunday 17 February 2019. Welcome to Egypt and the start of your holiday. Arrive Cairo airport and included transfer to your hotel.
Overnight: Cairo

Day 2

Pyramids & Saqqara

Cairo - Aswan. Today we visit the stunning pyramids and the iconic Sphinx at Giza Plateau. Sole survivors from the ancient Greek-listed Seven Wonders of the World, the pyramids are the planet’s oldest tourist attraction. Leaving the pyramids behind, we visit a government supervised papyrus emporium where you can buy genuine papyrus at quite reasonable prices.

Continuing to the necropolis of Saqqara, we can explore the myriad tombs and temples at this site and see Zhoser’s step pyramid - constructed by Imhotep, the pharaoh’s chief architect in 2700 BC.
Overnight: Cairo  |  Breakfast

Day 3

Treasures of the Egyptian Museum

This morning is free for you to further explore Cairo. After check out we depart for our guided tour of the Egyptian Museum. See the famous Tutankhamen Gallery and opt to see the Royal Mummies. Later there is a chance to relax, freshen up and have dinner before boarding the overnight sleeper train to Aswan.
Overnight: Sleeper Train  |  Breakfast

Day 4

Aswan - Egypt's southernmost city

Arrive Aswan and transfer to our hotel. Spend the day at leisure, enjoying the facilities of the hotel. Later, free time to explore Egypt's southern most city on your own. This evening we'll head to the colourful local souq (market) for a little bargain hunting. The lively night market offers comic entertainment as the sellers go about the business of hocking their wares. The market also offers an extensive array of cotton products, spices, wooden and copper ornaments, alabaster statues, beaded jewellery and mother of pearl trinkets at some of the best prices in the country.
Overnight: Aswan  |  Breakfast

Day 5

Philae Temple

Aswan - Abu Simbel. Today we enjoy a short boat trip to Agilika Island where we visit the picturesque Philae Temple, dedicated to the goddess Isis.

Back at the hotel there will be time to rest and recuperate before departing in the early hours of the morning on our coach journey toward the Temples of Abu Simbel. Here we will await the first rays of sunlight to touch the temple gate signifying the start of the Sun Festival of the mighty King Ramses II.
Overnight: Overnight – hotel/coach journey to Abu Simbel   |  Breakfast

Day 6

Sun Festival at Abu Simbel

22 February. Abu Simbel - Aswan - Nile Felucca Sailing. Possibly the most awe-inspiring temple in all ancient Egypt, the great Sun Temple of King Ramses II at Abu Simbel was constructed between 1290 and 1224 BC to revere the mighty pharaonic ruler himself. Ramses the Bold, Ramses the Great, Ramses the Narcissist are perhaps all apt titles for one of ancient Egypt’s most powerful rulers.

Built by Ramses II to demonstrate his political clout and divine backing to the ancient Nubians, Abu Simbel is an incredible self-tribute. Guarding the entrance to the temple, hewn into the side of a mountain, are four colossal statues of the pharaoh himself. Over the centuries, the desert sands imperceptibly shifted until the temple was all but lost to humanity. It was rediscovered by chance in 1813 by a Swiss explorer called John Lewis Burkhardt. Only one of the heads of the pharaohs was showing and a small part of the rest of the temple peeked above the desert sands. It wasn’t until the British happened upon the temple and started excavating that the full glory of Abu Simbel was revealed to the modern world. The other rock cut temple at Abu Simbel is the Temple of Hathor, which is fronted by six massive standing statues. Four of them represent King Ramses II, whilst the other two are of his beloved wife, Queen Nefertari.

In a fit of precision and architectural egotism, Ramses II had the Great Temple carefully angled and oriented in order that the sun’s rays would align twice a year on the date of his ascension to the throne (21 February) and on his birthday (21 October) to illuminate the inner sanctum of the temple. This incredible phenomenon provides for a most spectacular sight, which has come to be referred to as the Sun Festival of King Ramses II. Crowds assemble in to the temple before sunrise and watch the shafts of light slowly creep through the inner Hypostyle Hall and through to the Sanctuary. Significantly, the sun illuminates statues of Amun-Re, Re-Herakhte and Ramses the god, whilst the statue of Ptah - the god of darkness, remains in the shadows.

Famously, the temple was re-located in a multi-million dollar operation in 1972, further up from the shoreline of Lake Nasser, which had threatened to erode the foundations of this monolithic temple complex. For this reason, the sun now strikes a day later than Ramses had originally planned, though the event this morning itself is no less stunning.

After watching this incredible event unfold we return to Aswan, and this afternoon we board our wind-powered Nile felucca for a 2-night voyage on the River Nile downstream to Kom Ombo. Felucca’s are simple sailboats based on a unique design and have plied the mighty Nile since ancient times.

If sailing by felucca is not your style, consider upgrading to a 5 star Nile Cruise with our Nile Cruise Upgrade. Our Nile cruise upgrade is offered from day 5 (prior to travelling to Abu Simbel) and ends on day 8.
Overnight: Felucca  |  Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Day 7

Felucca Sailing & Kom Ombo Temple

Nile Felucca Sailing - Kom Ombo. Relax, go for a swim or just chill out in the sun on deck. Let your troubles melt away, as the felucca plies its route. In the afternoon we dock near Kom Ombo and take a motorboat to visit the temple before returning to the felucca for the night.
Overnight: Felucca  |  Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Day 8

Luxor

Kom Ombo - Luxor. This morning we disembark and drive to Luxor. Home of the legendary Valley of the Kings and Temple of Karnak, 4000 year-old Luxor is ancient Egypt at its best. Enjoy some rest and relaxation. Tonight, an optional visit to the Temple of Luxor is available, alternatively enjoy the facilities of our hotel.
Overnight: Luxor  |  Breakfast

Day 9

Valley of the Kings

Luxor - Cairo. This morning we set out to explore the West Bank of the Nile and the legendary Valley of the Kings. Marvel at Colossi of Memnon, the massive stone remains of the temple of Amenophis III, and explore the Temple of Queen Hatshepsut and surrounding tombs.

After lunch we visit the Temple of Karnak, a spectacular religious complex built on a gigantic scale, where you get lost wandering around the stone papyrus columns. Tonight, we return by overnight train to Cairo.
Overnight: Sleeper Train  |  Breakfast

Day 10

Cairo

Tuesday 26 Feb 2019. Arrival Cairo and transfer through to our hotel for breakfast. Morning use of rooms to freshen up and free time to further explore Cairo before hotel check out and onward departure transfer to the airport.

Please note: Departure flights need to be arranged to depart Cairo after 2pm today.
Breakfast

Upgrade to a 5 star Sun Festival tour!

Ramses Sunrise - 10 days | Staying in some of Egypt's smartest hotels and cruising aboard a luxury 5 star Nile cruiser, you'll see the best of legendary Egypt and witness the grand Sun Festival of King Ramses II at Abu Simbel!

Prices & Dates

Departure dates noted with a 'G' are guaranteed to operate. All other departure dates are guaranteed with a minimum of 2 persons.

Read More
Guaranteed Departure
Available
Contact us to book
Sold out
2019
Price /
Person
Single
Supp.
USD $1,545
USD $770

Extra Prices

Price /
Person
Single
Supp.
Pre Tour Accommodation - Cairo
USD $80
USD $10
Post Tour Accommodation - Cairo
USD $100
USD $15

Hotels

The hotels listed below are ones which we frequently use on this tour. We reserve the right to substitute these hotels to ones of a similar standard when necessary.

Holiday Inn Cairo Maadi*, Cairo

Our Category: Deluxe   |   Regional Category: 5 Star Hotel

Offering spectacular views over the Great Pyramids of Giza, this Holiday Inn provides the perfect location for your stay in Cairo. Each guestroom features a balcony and is well-equipped with modern amenities including free WiFi. Spend your evenings enjoying international, Venetian or French cuisine and unwinding with a cocktail at one of the hotel’s four bars. Thanks to the fantastic team of friendly staff, you’ll soon feel at home. And with a rooftop pool overlooking the River Nile, there’s no better place to base yourself for exploring Egypt’s ancient wonders.

Steigenberger Cairo Pyramids Hotel, Cairo

Our Category: Deluxe   |   Regional Category: 5 Star Hotel

Just footsteps away from the Great Pyramids of Giza is the Cairo Pyramids Hotel. Combining ancient history with world-class hospitality, the hotel is the perfect base for sightseeing. Guestrooms are spacious and comfortable, with friendly staff offering 24-hour room service. You’re spoilt for choice when it comes to food, with four restaurants offering international and local specialities. Enjoy stunning views of the pyramids from the lush gardens and end your day with a refreshing dip in the pool.

Radisson Blu Hotel, Cairo

Our Category: Deluxe   |   Regional Category: 5 Star Hotel

Radisson Blu is in the Heliopolis area of Cairo, just 3 kms from Cairo International Airport and 18 kms from the city centre. Providing spacious, well appointed guest rooms with amenities such as a daily newspaper and turndown service, the hotel is the perfect oasis for guests visiting the city. Its two restaurants, lobby lounge, and gourmet bakery offer a range of culinary choices. To top it all off, the hotel boasts a rooftop spa and pool with panoramic Cairo views.

Helnan Aswan*, Aswan

Our Category: Superior   |   Regional Category: 5 Star Hotel

Set in manicured gardens, the Helnan Aswan is an elegant hotel with impressive views of the Nile. Guest rooms are spacious with modern interiors and located next to the beautiful pool. Wi-fi is available in the lobby and by the pool. There are also two restaurants and bars, a bowling alley, a swimming pool and a cinema. Why not relax by the pool before exploring the rest of Aswan.

Felucca Cruise, Felucca Cruise

Our Category: Simple   |   Regional Category: 3 star cruise boat

Feluccas are simple, traditional Egyptian sailboats that have plied the Nile since ancient times. Feluccas carry between 8 - 12 passengers comfortably. The boat’s deck is draped with soft colourful cushions that serve as your lounging area during the day and as your sleeping area at night. A support boat travels alongside your felucca and is on hand if you need to use the toilet or wash. It is also where your meals are prepared and eaten. You'll need to bring a sleeping bag/sheet and a towel with you. The crew, as well as being experienced sailors, are responsible for the preparation of the included meals.

Sonesta St. George Hotel*, Luxor

Our Category: Deluxe   |   Regional Category: 5 Star Deluxe Hotel

An elegant and luxurious classical hotel, the Sonesta's sophistication will ensure you a comfortable stay. The hotel has a sweeping terrace with fantastic views of the Nile, a grand entrance of polished marble and handsomely appointed furnishings with exquisite detail and a beautiful health spa. All its rooms offer views of the city or the river, complemented by a wide range of restaurants and cafes. Just minutes away you will find the temples at Luxor and Karnak, home to two of ancient Egypt's most famed sanctuaries.

Steigenberger Nile Palace*, Luxor

Our Category: Deluxe   |   Regional Category: 5 Star Deluxe Hotel

The Steigenburger Nile Palace is a grand hotel and stylishly furnished, with many rooms overlooking the Nile River. The hotel has a health club with massage rooms, sauna, steam room and fitness room, and a tennis court on the roof, not to mention a riverside pool. Its four restaurants offer a choice between Nubian, Lebanese, Italian, and Thai cuisine.

Reviews

Travellers have rated this tour as 5 out of 5 based on 2 recent reviews

The tour over all your was fantastic with all involved. What I’m wondering is, we want to plan another trip but are wondering if we can spend more time on the Felucca Boat. The Captain we had Mohamed Badry was absolutely amazing. We had such fun the 2 days on board. We are wondering if we can spend more time and go further down the nile perhaps skipping the train ride for more time on the boats with Mr. Badry and his crew?

The personal touch and pleasant demeanour of him and his crew drew all 17 of us together like a big family. It was truly wonderful. I’ve been telling all our friends and family about relaxing on the nile, no stress, no problems.

• Submitted 22 May 2018
Tour
Guide
Country

Not enough space here. Dino was a fantastic guide.Answered all of my questions, (yes lots of them) satisfactorily. His humor is an added bonus. Fun. Very well spoken. Picked up on our Aussie lingo easily and actually understood it. Very entertaining and informative. The tour was well organised. I got to live a dream.

• Submitted 07 Feb 2015
Tour
Guide
Country

Thanks for this note and all of your work which went towards my two children and myself having probably the best holiday that we have ever had.

I would especially like to mention Said who was amazing with his knowledge and enthusiasm, but the whole trip was brilliantly organised.

I will be writing to the Egyptian Consulate and Tourist board to tell them how much I enjoyed their fabulous country and the way that your firm opened it up for us. I am also telling everyone that I know about you all.

All the very best,

Terry Elwell • Submitted 19 Aug 2009

In Brief

Range
Trip Type
Starts
Cairo
Ends
Cairo
Departs
17 Feb 2019
Hotel Rating
4 - 5 star
Local Payment
None
Tour Guide
Yes, escorted by a tour guide
Meals
Breakfast: 9, Lunch: 2, Dinner: 2
Visiting
Countries

Tour Add-ons

Enhance your trip with these amazing added extras and add-ons

Extra Tour Info

Abu Simbel Sun Festival FAQ
All you need to know about the bi-annual event
Nile Felucca Sailing
Feluccas have plied the Nile since ancient times
Updated
9th November 2018

The tour over all your was fantastic with all involved. What I’m wondering is, we want to plan another trip but are wondering if we can spend more time on the Felucca Boat. The Captain we had Mohamed Badry was absolutely amazing. We had such fun the 2 days on board. We are wondering if we can spend more time and go further down the nile perhaps skipping the train ride for more time on the boats with Mr. Badry and his crew?

The personal touch and pleasant demeanour of him and his crew drew all 17 of us together like a big family. It was truly wonderful. I’ve been telling all our friends and family about relaxing on the nile, no stress, no problems.

Robert Joyce
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