Egypt itinerary for households: what to see in 10 days

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Standing on the foot of Rameses II’s 20 metre colossal statues you’d be forgiven for pondering you’d been solid as an additional in Loss of life on the Nile. This was the southern most level on our Egypt itinerary and considered one of dozens of surreal moments throughout our full on 10 days experiencing the traditional wonders of the world. 

I’ve at all times been fascinated by historical Egypt and visited, all too briefly, once I was a teen. That journey was restricted to Cairo and the pyramids at Giza. However there’s a lot extra to Egypt!

So after we have been in search of locations to go to for our Easter break from Oman I shortly jumped on the chance to go again to the land of the pharaohs for a greater look.

If seeing the wonders of Egypt has at all times been in your bucket listing, however you’re not sure whether or not it’s too busy, too sizzling and even protected for households, let me share our expertise of visiting Egypt with children.

*Publish accommodates affiliate hyperlinks*

Planning a ten day Egypt itinerary

Tin Box family pose for a sunset selfie beside the Nile at Luxor. There are felucca sailing down the river behind them. The sky is pink and orange

First issues first, right here’s just a few issues we learnt whereas planning our Egypt vacation and whereas we have been there:

Is Egypt protected to go to?

That is one thing I used to be requested most on Fb and Instagram earlier than, throughout and after our journey.

It’s a good query. Egypt ranks within the high 20 nations on this planet affected by terrorism. And the UK authorities advises in opposition to travelling to some areas

The battle in Sudan to the south may additionally make folks suppose twice about how protected it’s to go to Egypt.

Our expertise was that we felt very protected.

We didn’t contact on any of the locations the UK authorities advises to not go and we knew our journey agent would react to the newest journey steerage.

There’s no getting away from the very fact safety is tight.

You’ll journey via numerous police verify factors the place armed officers ask drivers who they’ve of their car. And there are armed guards in any respect vacationer websites.

Every of our lodges had safety folks on the entrance gate and bag scanners within the foyer.

We discovered this all reassuring reasonably than worrying.

We had a information with us nearly on a regular basis however on the few events we did step exterior our resort or wander across the historic websites on our personal we didn’t really feel unsafe.

Similar to it is best to each time you go on vacation, be sure to have journey insurance coverage coverage* that adequately covers the nation you might be visiting and the entire actions you could do.

Egypt visas

Every particular person in your loved ones should have a vacationer visa except you might be solely visiting the Sharm el Sheikh, Dahab, Nuweiba or Taba resorts and staying not more than 15 days.

Visas to journey all over the place else in Egypt price $25 per particular person and might be purchased on-line on the Egyptian Authorities’s official visa web site. Ours took 24 hours to return via.

The web site is a little bit clunky, so be affected person.

You may also purchase visas on the airport earlier than you undergo immigration however I choose to get this sort of element sorted nicely earlier than we land.

Flights to Egypt

Ten year old girl about to board a fight with Egypt Air. The tail of the plane is behind her. She is holding her ticket

We booked our personal flights to Egypt. There are many direct flights to Cairo Worldwide Airport from the UK.

If you wish to skip Cairo and hop on to Luxor, Aswan or the Crimson Sea you’ll must get a connection. Egypt Air is the primary airline for inside flights.

We discovered their web site to be a bit ropey and their customer support was actually poor after we needed to vary our flight time.

The flight itself – an inside journey from Hurghada to Cairo – was way more nice than the pre-travel admin.

If you happen to e-book your Egypt journey itinerary via a tour operator they’ll organise all of your flights as a part of your package deal.

Foreign money

Money is king in Egypt. And with lower than 3p per Egyptian Pound (EGP) you have to a wedge of it.

We picked up our forex at Cairo Airport, and at money machines inside and outdoors our lodges. It was simple to get our arms on the bigger notes this manner however it’s helpful to have one, 5 and 10 EGP notes for tipping, and for the bathrooms on the historic websites and street aspect lavatory breaks. 

You’ll must make a purchase order to pay money for these or ask in case your resort reception can swap huge notes for small ones.

Loads of locations, partiality souq merchants, will even settle for US {dollars} and Euros. 

Journey instances

Girl sat in mini bus next to her ruck sack. The empty seat next to her has a cover that says 'VIP' on it

If you wish to see proportion of Egypt’s historical wonders you’ll be doing loads of journey. Because of this I’m glad we did this journey when the ladies have been 10 and practically eight. It was tiring.

They spent loads of time in our mini bus napping or on their tablets. 

I’d introduced a bag filled with cereal bars, nuts and sweets with us and we topped this up in the course of the journey.

Our longest journey day – other than our 16 hour journey house – was a 9 hour spherical journey to Abu Simbel. Seven hours of this was on the street.

There have been additionally some very early mornings and late nights.

Once we first checked out Egypt as a doable vacation spot we knew we wanted so as to add some downtime to the top of our journey for everybody’s sanity. On leisure, if we’d had extra time, I’d have added an additional time off sightseeing within the center.

Arranging your Egypt journey itinerary

We booked our journey six weeks earlier than we departed. Shifting to Oman has modified the locations we’re exploring however not essentially our potential to plan forward long run!

So, to maintain issues easy, we determined to make use of a journey agent to make all of the preparations for us. 

This isn’t one thing we had completed earlier than, half from reserving cruise excursions and the odd metropolis tour. We often plan our personal day journeys and locations to remain whereas on vacation. However with a lot to cowl we determined to make use of the specialists.

This took all the effort out of planning our Egypt itinerary, but in addition left us feeling extra relaxed whereas we have been there. We didn’t must e-book or haggle with a number of guides or drivers as we went alongside.

Having mentioned that, it might have been doable to DIY it cheaper.

If you wish to plan your individual Egypt itinerary then skip to the subsequent part for some inspiration in regards to the should see locations to incorporate.

If you happen to’re involved in an sincere advice for a journey agent, learn on.

Egypt itineraries with Households Worldwide

Statues of Queen Hatshepsut outside her temple in Luxor. They are cross armed and wear beards.

We booked our Egypt itinerary with Households Worldwide who’re primarily based within the UK. I don’t have a relationship with this firm so I don’t have to say it, however I wish to as a result of we had an awesome expertise.

The one factor we organised was our flights as a result of we have been travelling from exterior the UK.

Our vacation was for 10 days and was put collectively for our household primarily based on a advised itinerary.

Households Worldwide additionally provide seven day itineraries throughout which you’ll be able to be part of a small group of households or have your individual private information, like we did. The selection is yours relying on what works greatest for your loved ones.

A abstract of our Egypt journey itinerary

Clearly you possibly can see much more in 10 days and that’s why we went for this feature. Right here’s a fast overview of our Egypt journey itinerary:

  • Day 1 to 2: arrive in Cairo, and see Nice Egyptian Museum and the Pyramids of Giza
  • Day 3: hop to Alexandria on Egypt’s Mediterranean coast to see the catacombs, Pompey’s Pillar and Qaitbey Fort
  • Day 3 to 4: the sleeper prepare to Aswan
  • Day 4 to six: exploring the temples at Philae and Abu Simbel
  • Days 6 to eight: exploring Luxor’s temples and the Valley of the Kings
  • Days 8 to 10: enjoyable at an all-inclusive resort on the Crimson Sea earlier than flying again to Cairo for a world flight house.

Our Egyptian information

Adel, our tour information, with us for the entire 10 days. He has a Masters in Egyptology from Cairo College and a complete bunch of riddles and grotesque info to maintain children entertained.

Adel was with us from daybreak till nightfall some days. He was our information, fixer, translator and he took us to some pretty native eating places (included within the value of our vacation), so we weren’t restricted to resort meals each night time.

The advised minimal age for this tour is seven. Our women have been 10 and practically eight and we have been completely happy that the whole lot we did was with their capabilities.

Household lodging in Egypt

One thing to keep in mind is that Egypt’s lodges hardly ever do household rooms.

We had interconnecting rooms at three out of 4 lodges and on the sleeper prepare.

Two of our lodges additionally had balconies. So, it’s essential to bear in mind and completely happy about this if the lodging goes to give you the results you want.

If you wish to discover out extra about Households Worldwide’s Egypt holidays check out their web site.

Karnak temples illuminated at night

10 days in Egypt with children

Our vacation was filled with locations children find out about at school, places the place historical past and mythology collide, and extra bucket listing experiences than you possibly can shake a camels tail at. 

A household vacation in Egypt actually is an academic journey and one which I don’t suppose we’ll neglect in a rush.

Right here’s what we packed into every day as we coated practically 1,800 miles round Egypt by street, prepare and airplane.

Egypt journey itinerary day 1: arriving in Cairo

Wing of an Oman Air plane with view of a smoggy Cairo city and the Nile below
Cairo actually is a smoggy as folks say.

It’s Africa’s largest metropolis with a inhabitants of 26 million folks (unofficial estimates say 35 million). It’s solely while you drive via it that you would be able to start to grasp its scale.

The roads are the stage for a symphony of honking horns and all method of automobiles – two, three and four-wheeled – weaving a busy dance.

The air is thick with exhaust fumes and sandstone structure butts up in opposition to tower blocks which were sliced in half to make manner for larger, much more bustling highways.

The tips of tower block we passed along the main highways that are raised above the streets. There are satellite dishes on top of haphazardly constructed brick buildings

There may be a lot life. From the small companies at floor degree to the picket pigeon coups perched on house block roofs. Egyptians eat pigeons like Brits eat chickens.

We obtained a small style of Egypt’s capital after touchdown at Cairo Worldwide Airport late within the afternoon.

We have been met by our Households Worldwide rep who guided us via immigration and arrivals faster than I feel I’ve ever skilled.

Inside half an hour of leaving the airplane we have been out the door and in our personal mini bus.

Apparently touchdown simply earlier than sundown throughout Ramadan labored in our favour. Everybody was eager to interrupt their quick, so the airport and roads have been quieter than they may often be.

We have been whisked via Cairo and throughout the Nile into Giza and our base for the subsequent two nights, the Cairo Pyramids Resort*.

Night time had fallen by the point we arrived. We checked in, dropped our luggage in our rooms and grabbed a meal within the resort restaurant earlier than an early night time, prepared to start out exploring.

Day 2: Cairo and Giza

This morning we met our information, Adel, who was to journey with us all through the remainder of our time in Egypt.

He lives in Cairo so was capable of give us nice insights into town together with explaining the language of the honking we’d heard the night time earlier than.

Every honk has a that means primarily based on its size and repetition. ‘I’m right here’, ‘I’m coming via’ and ‘you fool’ (to place it properly) can all be distinguished from the rumpus you probably have the best ear.

This was the primary of so many info we have been to be taught from Adel about Egypt’s right here and now, in addition to its historical historical past.

Grand Egyptian Museum

Hundreds of people milling around in the entrance lobby of the Egyptian Museum in Cairo

We have been picked up at 8am for our first day of sightseeing. And what higher place to start out than the Egyptian Museum in Cairo. This was a forty five minute drive away via the Cairo visitors.

In its heyday the museum was house to greater than 150,000 artefacts.

All however the Rosetta Stone are authentic. This treasure, which helped unravel the secrets and techniques of historical Egyptian texts, is now in The British Museum in London.

The museum’s displays are slowly being transferred to the brand new Grand Egyptian Museum in Giza. This was slated to open just a few years in the past however ought to be open later in 2023. When it does it will likely be the most important museum on this planet.

We drove previous the skin and that alone is sort of a spectacle. 

The destiny of the outdated Egyptian Museum constructing remains to be unknown.

Girl looking at a glass case containing the sarcophagus in the Egyptian Museum

Within the meantime, it’s displaying its age and there are just a few empty show instances. It’s nonetheless filled with unimaginable items together with the haul from Tutankhamen’s tomb – the final and most well-known burial website to be unearthed. 

The boy king’s loss of life masks and Russian doll like sarcophagus stand out among the many others that you simply see across the halls. And whereas it may be a little bit of a crush to get into this particular exhibition it’s a one thing you must see. 

Why go to the Egyptian Museum?

The museum lays the foundations for the remainder of your time in Egypt.

Adel used the shows right here to show us methods to distinguish between statues carved for pharaohs who have been useless or alive, those that dominated the south, north or each, and the place they might have been made.

He additionally taught us the fundamentals for studying heiroglithics; in regards to the historical Egyptian’s beliefs across the afterlife; and that being wrapped within the pores and skin of a goat – an ill-favoured animal right here – reasonably than linen bandages was reserved for society’s outcasts.

Girl kneeling next to a jackets statue impersonating it with one raised arm and the other across her body

In a single morning my information of historical Egypt was expanded 100 fold.

And it actually introduced the journey alive for the children. In so most of the snaps our eight-year-old requested me to take you’ll discover her posing as a useless or alive pharaoh.

The Pyramids of Giza

Tin Box family at Giza with one of the pyramids in the background

After a lunch of falafel and hummus at a Cairo restaurant we headed again to Giza.

My distant reminiscence of visiting the pyramids once I was a teen was telling me to not be disenchanted after they weren’t as giant as they appear in footage.

Nicely, I’d completely mis-remembered. They’re simply as spectacular as you count on, even with the city sprawl of Giza and Cairo proper on their doorstep.

Claire and her daughters stand at the bottom of the Great Pyramid in Giza. Stretching above them are thousands of sandstone blocks

Till the Empire State Constructing was inbuilt New York, the Grand Pyramid was the tallest construction on this planet.

The operation to construct the pyramids – at a time when farming had solely simply been launched in Britain – should have been superior. Adel instructed us if you happen to used the stones from the most important pyramid to make a 5 metre excessive wall it could be lengthy sufficient to encompass France.

Prime tip: don’t queue and pay to enter the Nice Pyramid constructed for King Khufu. We walked previous this to the tomb of his mom, Queen Hetepheres, which is among the three smaller pyramids beside it.

Mr Tin Box climbing down to the burial chamber in Queen Hetepheres' pyramid at Giza

Entry to that is included in the usual pyramid advanced ticket. And after we went there was no queue.

The climb all the way down to the burial chamber is steep and slender, and there’s nothing as such to see while you attain it, which is seemingly a just like its a lot bigger neighbour. However you possibly can say you could have been inside a pyramid.

Camel rides on the pyramids

Girl stood with two kneeling camels. She is stroking the head of one of them. In the background you can see the pyramids of Giza

One thing we ummed and ahhed about earlier than visiting the pyramids at Giza was whether or not we’d do a camel journey. We needed to ensure they have been nicely taken care of earlier than subjecting them to carrying our sweaty our bodies.

A number of the first camels we noticed as we entered the pyramid advanced didn’t look that good. 

We spoke to Adel about our considerations and he took us to the view level on the plateau above the pyramids the place there have been extra camels.

They regarded in significantly better nick and, as our eight-year-old was actually eager, we determined to take a brief journey.

Our 10-year-old mentioned she didn’t fancy it and walked alongside us. After just a few failed touristy pictures we returned to our mini bus for the drive to the final cease of the day.

The Sphinx

Mr Tin Box and his daughters pose for a picture in front of the sphinx at Giza

That is the place my teen reminiscence ought to have kicked in. The Sphinx, also referred to as ‘Ra’ to the traditional Egyptians and ‘Father of Terror’ to Arabians, is smaller than you would possibly count on.

It’s nonetheless price a go to, particularly to see the temple in entrance of it the place the pyramids’ royal households have been mummified among the many arrow straight sandstone columns.

It was right here that Adel gave us the complete grotesque lowdown on the mummy-making course of, from scrambling the brains to transferring the organs to urns and wrapping the physique from head to toe 3 times. 

And that’s if your loved ones favored you!

If you happen to weren’t in favour, due to some misdemeanour in life, you’d be wrapped in goat skins. 

By this level we’d been exploring for six hours and the children have been determined to get again to our resort and funky off within the pool.

Our resort in Giza

Chalet style hotel rooms with terrance and pink flowering climbing plants outside

We stayed at Cairo Pyramids Resort* which is a part of the Steinburger Resort group. I’ll admit this wasn’t our favorite lodging of our journey however it was useful.

There are rooms with views of the pyramids, however we stayed in a pair of the backyard view chalet rooms. These have been subsequent to one another however not related.

They have been very drained however clear.

One of many largest downsides was there was no double glazing, so we couldn’t get away from the roar of Cairo’s visitors. By our second night time it was virtually white noise. It didn’t disturb our women in any respect who slept like pharaohs each nights.  

On the plus aspect, the resort pool was deliciously cool after a day of seeing the websites.

Hotel swimming pool at dusk

The resort’s Il Gardino restaurant additionally had a sensible choice of moderately priced pasta, pizza and Arab dishes. We ate right here each nights.

There was additionally loads of alternative on the breakfast buffet with cooks available to prepare dinner eggs and make pancakes. The restaurant employees have been very pleasant and environment friendly. 

Verify charges for lodges in Giza*

Day 2: Alexandria

A sphinx and the Pillar of Pompey at Serapeum in Alexandria. There are modern tower blocks behind
The ruins of Serapeum in Alexandria

This morning we completed packing our luggage, grabbed an early breakfast and met Adel at 7am for the three hour drive to Alexandria – house to wonders of the traditional and medieval worlds.

The North of Egypt could be very flat and the primary street plots a straight course to the coast. Alongside the way in which we noticed fruit bushes, palms and vines from our mini bus home windows.

We additionally noticed many white washed brick cones. It quickly turned clear these have been the countryside’s equal of the pigeon coups we’d seen on high of all of the house blocks in Cairo.

Our vacation spot, Alexandria, sits on Egypt’s Mediterranean coast and is known as after after Alexander the Nice who introduced within the nation’s Graeco-Roman period.

However reasonably than being a reluctantly acquired conquerer, the Egyptian’s welcomed the Macedonian warrior. He constructed temples to their gods and worshipped in them too. They even made him the one non-Egyptian born pharaoh.

As a consequence Alexandria feels half African, half European. The sandstone buildings lining its seafront are within the Graeco-Roman type and trams rumble via the ornate streets of the Alpha district the place poorer residents as soon as wanted visas to enterprise.

Additional again from the ocean the slender streets are lined with retailers that spill out onto the pavement. That is the place we have been reminded of the busyness of Cairo.

Catacombs of Kom el Shoqafa

Our first cease in Alexandria was the spotlight for me. The Catacombes of Kom el Shoqafa are not like wherever else we have been to see throughout our Egypt itinerary. Certainly, they’re distinctive within the nation and rank among the many seven wonders of the Medieval world.

This maze of tunnels carved into the sandstone 11 metres under floor degree was initially constructed within the poorest a part of town as a tomb for a blacksmith and his household.

Graeco-Roman styles statues carved into sandstone in catacombs
A statue of the Blacksmith

Over time different households carved out much more tunnels and niches to bury family and in addition prized horses.

Arches and niches cut into the sandstone of the underground tombs in Alexandria

Mourners would come and go to the catacombs, bringing picnics with them to eat in a subterranean eating room earlier than returning to the floor.

Their left overs and damaged pottery containers are what gave the catacombs their identify after they have been rediscovered. ‘Kom el Shoqafa’ means ‘mound of shards’, which is what was discovered after the doorway was stumbled upon in the beginning of the twentieth Century.

Girl looking through a small window in the entrance shaft of the catacombs

Prime reality for teenagers: a donkey might be credited with rediscovering the catacombs after it slipped and fell into the entry shaft. Watch your step in Egypt!

Serapeum of Alexandria and the Pillar of Pompeii

Our subsequent cease was the ruins of what was as soon as an enormous Greek temple overlooking town.

Serapeum was constructed within the third Century BC in honour of Serapis – a god invented to suit Egyptian and Greek beliefs. The temple would have boasted 400 pillars and a fancy of tunnels underground.

In the present day just one granite pillar stands right here together with a pair of sphinx.

The family walk beside the a sphinx and the Pillar of Pompey at Serapeum in Alexandria. There are modern tower blocks to the right

The one pillar is was named ‘Pompeii’s pillar’ by the Crusaders who began the parable that Emperor Pompeii’s ashes have been left in a jar on the high.

In the present day the pillar is surrounded by tower blocks, making it tough to visualise the outdated temple’s grandeur.

 Mr Tin Box and one of our girls walking down steps within the tunnels under Serapeum

It’s price discovering the doorway to the tunnels. These used to accommodate a library the place many papyrus manuscripts, and mummified cats and baboons have been discovered.

Fort Qaitbey

A sandstone fort with an entrance lined with cannons. The Egyptian flag flies from the top

Our ultimate cease earlier than lunch was Alexandria’s harbour – the positioning of one other of Egypt’s historical wonders, Alexander the Nice’s lighthouse.

This well-known lighthouse was constructed within the third century BC and was thought to have been greater than 110 metres in top. The info are unclear because it was destroyed by an earthquake within the twelfth Century.

Within the fifteenth Century, the lighthouse’s sandstone blocks have been used to create close by Fort Qaitbey, which now oversees Egypt’s deep blue Mediterranean coast.

Its partitions are a mere 11 metres excessive, however it nonetheless housed 500 troopers in struggle time and had its personal reservoir and mosque.

Fort Qaitbey has loads of home windows to look out, and battlements and tunnels making this a enjoyable place for teenagers to roam round.

Day 2 to three: Sleeper prepare to Aswan

After 4 hours exploring Alexandria we hit the street again to Cairo for the subsequent thrilling section of our Egypt itinerary – the journey to Aswan and the temples of Southern Egypt.

We arrived again in Cairo within the thick of the pre-Iftar visitors.

It wasn’t simply the locals who have been intent on meals. We additionally wanted to select up some snacks and water for our in a single day journey on the Cairo to Aswan sleeper prepare.

Family wheeling luggage onto the station platform at El Giza station. Walking in front of them there are security guards
Arriving on the station at Giza

We have been actually wanting ahead to this expertise as none of us had ever by no means taken a sleeper prepare earlier than, not to mention with children in tow. So we anticipated it to be a memorable expertise – and we weren’t incorrect!

Have a learn of my account of what it’s prefer to journey the sleeper prepare from Cairo to Aswan for the complete low down.

Two girls sat on on the seat in their sleeper train cabin. They are smiling. Above them the top bunk is made.

However in abstract and to be brutally sincere, it’s a very uncooked journey expertise. Consider the Orient Specific. And now think about its grubbier, extra fidgety three-year-old sibling.

At instances it’s exhausting and it could positively profit from a radical scrub. However it’s additionally has its endearing aspect.

For instance, the views within the morning. And realizing you’ve traveled 879km alongside aspect one of many world’s most well-known rivers.

Picture of a Nile river cruise ship sailing down the Nile. Take from the moving train with river side reeds in the foreground

Am I glad we did it? Sure. Would we do it once more? Most likely not in Egypt.

If you happen to’re questioning if it’s for you please do learn my full weblog put up about it for ideas and extra data.

Day 3: Aswan and the Temple of Philae

Once we woke the subsequent morning we have been nicely on our technique to Aswan – Egypt’s smallest and most southern metropolis.

It’s bodily and characteristically a world away from Cairo regardless of sitting alongside the identical nice river. The low rise cityscape on the east aspect of the Nile overlooks plantations backed by sand dunes speckled with tombs on the west.

And there’s a comparative sense of calm with fewer automobiles on the roads and far much less honking. The river is sort of busier than the roads.

Aswan was my favorite of all of the Egyptian cities we visited.

It comes with its justifiable share of historical past and artifical marvels. At 10.30am we rolled straight off the prepare and into one other personal mini bus to start sightseeing.

Aswan’s dams

Fortunately we didn’t have an excessive amount of driving to do after our in a single day prepare expertise. Our first cease was Aswan’s Larger Dam, which we reached by crossing the Decrease Dam.

Aswan is the purpose on the Nile the place the Egyptians constructed a dam in 1897. Its job was to control the movement of the river and cease the land to the north flooding. This allowed for crops to be grown all 12 months spherical.

In 1970, the Larger Dam was accomplished up river. This generates all of Egypt’s electrical energy.

Whereas that sounds good, the dam and the creation of Lake Nasser behind it displaced greater than 50,000 folks whose villages have been consumed by what’s now one of many world’s largest synthetic lakes.

Seven historical temples between the Larger and Decrease Dam fared higher and have been moved stone by stone to greater floor.

After a short cease on high of the curved embankment, with an estimated 2,000 crocodiles on the lake aspect and a 111 metre drop on the opposite, we set off to see one of many saved temples.

Temple of Philae

The front of the Temple of Philae which has high walls covered in hieroglyphs

Philae is a Graeco-Roman temple constructed for the Goddess Isis within the third Century BC. As you stroll between the columns and marvel at its hieroglyphics it’s unimaginable to suppose it used to face 500m away.

Earlier than the Larger Dam was constructed this temple was dismantled and recreated stone by stone on the Island of Agilkia.

This was our first likelihood to rise up shut with hieroglyphs of their authentic setting.

Child looking at hieroglyphs outside at the Temple of Philae. She points to a feature that interests her
Mr Tin Box and daughter stand looking at a wall of hieroglyphs inside the Temple of Philae

One of many highlights for the children was how we reached Philae – by boat.

It’s only a quick journey throughout the reservoir between the dams however it means that you can see this glorious place from all angles.

Mr Tin Box and daughter sat on ferry boat with view of the Nile behind them

And the sunshine breeze and contact of spray as we whizzed throughout the water was the right refresher. The temperature had elevated significantly between Cairo and Aswan.

The boats ferrying guests to the island are run by Nubians whose households as soon as lived within the Nile Valley that’s now Lake Nasser. You’ll see loads of their crafts and handmade souvenirs on the jetty.

After our go to we returned ashore and it was a brief drive to our subsequent resort, the Toilp Aswan*.

We grabbed a late lunch and relaxed by the pool, which is correct beside the Nile.

Tin Box family photo at sun set on the Nile in Aswan

Come night, Adel whisked us off for dinner on the Nile-side Salah El Din Restaurant the place we had piping sizzling rooster and vegetable tagine with rice whereas the sundown.

We had the choice of exploring Aswan by night time however determined we higher get an early night time. There was one other lengthy day of journey forward of us.

Day 4: Abu Simbel

Mr Tin Box and daughter stand on steps of hotel looking at the moon in the night sky. They wear backpacks and the girl is holding a paper bag containing her breakfast

3.45am. It’s not a time I see usually now we’re past the newborn years. However while you’re in your technique to meet Rameses II he calls for an early begin.

Forty-five minutes after our alarms went off we have been up and within the foyer to satisfy Adel who was weighed down with 4 packed breakfasts ready by our resort.

Day journey to Abu Simbel

Claire with her daughters outside Rameses II's temple at Abu Simbel

Adel has been a tour information for greater than 20 years, so has completed this journey numerous instances. He instructed us that three convoys of vacationer buses used to set off from Aswan between 4am and 5am every day. Miss the convoy and also you couldn’t go.

Now the foundations for travelling alongside the desert street to Abu Simbel are extra relaxed. Excursions can set off when they’re prepared however they’ll solely journey alongside the street between 5am and 5pm when the verify factors open.

Abu Simbel is simply 12 miles from the Sudan border, so safety is tight.

The three and a half hour, 175 mile journey is on a tarmac street that runs via the desert. As soon as you permit Aswan it’s a quick street with few pace bumps and tough sections, so we have been capable of seize a bit of additional sleep.

Alongside the way in which the tour buses and vehicles play leap frog as they jostle for the earliest arrival spot.

Inevitably everybody day tripping from Aswan arrives at round 8.30am and leaves by 10am. We stayed an additional half hour and seen this completely surreal place quietening down.

What’s Abu Simbel?

View of the two temples at Abu Simple dedicated to Rameses II and his favourite wife

Abu Simbel was constructed by Rameses II or simply ‘Rameses’ as he was essentially the most vital Egyptian ruler to make use of this identify.

He lived into his 90s and reigned for 33 years – no imply feat when most atypical Egyptians could be completely happy to make it to 30.

This meant he had loads of time on his arms to cement his place as Egypt’s supreme ruler and as a god.

It’s thought that the temples of Abu Simbel have been constructed right here within the far south not as a result of he visited usually however as a present of his energy.

Child stood in front of the giant statues of the temple of Rameses II

Inside there are big hieroglyphs depicting Rameses’ triumphs in struggle and displaying him as equally highly effective because the gods.

Hieroglyph of Rameses II at war

Alongside the grand temple devoted to Rameses is a smaller one in honour of his favorite spouse Nefertari. He had 44 wives and it’s her alone who’s represented as an equal.

Colourful hieroglyphs in Queen Nefertari's temple at Abu Simbel

Like a lot of Egypt’s architectural treasures, these temples have been misplaced for hundreds of years to the desert sands.

They have been rediscovered within the 1800s when a boy referred to as Abu Simbel guided an archaeologist to the place the baboons on the high of the big temple may very well be seen peeping out of the sand. 

A century later the temples have been moved 200 metres from their authentic location earlier than Lake Nasser flooded the land. This laborious process took eight years. 

Learn how to keep away from the crowds at Abu Simbel

People mill around in front of the temple of Rameses II's at Abu Simbel. It is outlined against the blue sky

Our tour to Abu Simbel was constructed into our Egypt itinerary, so we took our journey agent and information’s recommendation on when to go to.

We knew going proper originally of the day could be essentially the most comfy time when it comes to the warmth, regardless of it being a pink eye begin.

This labored out nicely for us as we have been capable of relaxation in our mini bus on the drive out and again.

Nonetheless, if you would like a greater likelihood of getting Abu Simbel to yourselves (lots of people do that to get the most effective footage), you want a unique tactic.

Setting off from Aswan later within the day will provide help to keep away from the crowds. Simply be ready for the intense warmth of the day. As a household this wasn’t possibility for us.

In fact, if you happen to did determine to set off from Aswan later you continue to want to start out heading again simply after lunch earlier than the street closes once more.

Setting off at 4.30am and spending two hours on the temples allowed us to get again to our resort by 1.30pm.

Afternoon felucca journey on the Nile

A traditional felucca sailing boat on the River Nile at sun set. It reflects on the water

We’d been undecided in regards to the afternoon exercise in our Egypt itinerary after such an early begin.

Nonetheless, we determined to push on via for our felucca journey and I’m glad we did.

After getting the children a fast high up snack from the resort buffet we discovered our pre-booked felucca ready simply in entrance of our resort.

A felucca is a conventional African/Mediterranean open deck crusing boat with a canvas shade and cushioned seats down the edges.

All we needed to do was sit again and benefit from the journey.

Amusingly there was little or no breeze, so our Nubian captain put in a name his brother to tow us up river together with his motorboat. He had sense of humour, enjoying Adele’s Howdy on his bluetooth speaker to wind up our information Adel.

As soon as we have been sufficiently within the movement of the Nile we slowly tacked again watching animals graze alongside the river financial institution, and getting a greater have a look at tombs on the west financial institution and outdated Aswan on the hills behind the trendy metropolis.

Mr Tin Box and daughter watch the Nike flow by from a traditional felucca sailing boat

We completed the day with an compulsory dip within the pool at solar set and dinner at a restaurant a brief stroll from our resort. By now we trusted Adel to pick someplace good for us to strive native meals. All of us loved plates filled with shawarma, kebab and kofta.

Our resort in Aswan

The view from out balcony at the Tolip Aswan hotel. Across the front of the hotel is the River Nile and the desert beyond

Whereas primarily based in Aswan we spent two nights on the Tolip Resort overlooking the River Nile. I might have spent many a night ingesting within the view from our balcony.

Regardless of our tight sightseeing schedule the children have been eager to slot in two journeys to the riverside pool advanced which you entry from the primary resort through a tunnel that takes you below the street.

This was the most effective place to understand the comings and goings of felucca and cruise ships.

The Tolip was the grandest resort we stayed in with an enormous atrium, glass raise and foyer fountain. The meals and employees have been additionally nice. The recent mango and chocolate milkshakes have been price a little bit wait.

We have been allotted inter-connecting rooms with balconies. The ladies’ room had been arrange with twin beds and ours was a correct tremendous king.

The decor was a little bit drained however the whole lot was very clear and we had loads of room to sit down indoors and out.

It could have been a hangover from our sleeper prepare expertise and the in a single day noise of Cairo however all of us slept extremely nicely right here.

Evaluate charges for lodges in Aswan*

Day 5: temples on the street to Luxor

It was a reduction to set off for the subsequent stage of our Egypt itinerary at a extra civilised 9am.

In the present day we travelled 150 miles again alongside the identical route because the sleeper prepare to Luxor with stops to see extra of Egypt’s unimaginable temples.

We drove beside date palms, mango bushes and tethered mules. Males sporting linen robes and turbans crouched within the shade, whereas youngsters jumped into canals operating parallel to the river.

Children stand on the bank of a canal and swim in its waters. This is a rural scene in modern Egypt.

We handed three wheeled vans, tuk tuks, donkey drawn carts, and lorries carrying sugar cane. 

These genuine sights of contemporary Egypt have been a welcome distraction from the state of the street. It was a gradual and bumpy 4 hour journey.

Fortunately we had some reasonably spectacular pit stops.

Kom Ombo Temple and Crocodile Museum

The front of Kom Ombo temple with a decorated column in the foreground

After an hour we arrived on the temple advanced of Kom Ombo beside the Nile. That is the one temple in Egypt devoted to 2 gods: Sobek and Horus.

The Graeco-Romans constructed it to appease the 2 warring gods, giving them equal shares within the temple from the doorway to the sanctuary.

A view up the decorated ceiling of Kom Ombo temple

It’s not simply its dedication that makes this temple distinctive.

Kom Ombo Temple the one historical website in Egypt the place you possibly can see an outline of a mom giving delivery and breast feeding.

Hieroglyph of a woman giving birth to a baby. The carving is dark with finger prints of visitors who have touched it for luck

From the chic to the absurd, it’s additionally the place 300 mummified crocodiles have been found.

A row of blackened mummified crocodiles in a glass case

In fact, there’s a legend about them – as at all times, Adel was able to share this with the ladies – however you may also see a few of them in a museum subsequent to the temple.

The youngsters had been wanting ahead to this and marvelled on the shrivelled reptiles of their glass instances. It was one other instance of how this Egypt itinerary works for youngsters in addition to us adults.

After 40 minutes, we have been again on the rutted street to Luxor.


Girl with scarf around her arms stood in front of the walls of Edfu temple

An hour and a half later our bums thanked us for giving them one other break at Edfu – 60 miles south of Luxor.

Most guests to Egypt’s second largest temple arrive from Nile cruses early within the morning. So it was very quiet after we pulled up at lunch time.

Edfu just isn’t solely big. It’s additionally essentially the most intact temple within the nation. A lot of it appears to be like like a movie set! Its preservation is once more due to being buried in sand for lots of of years.

Mr Tin Box and daughter walk through the sandstone columns of Edfu temple which are decorated with hieroglyphs

That is one other temple from the Graeco-Roman period and was solely rediscovered 200 years in the past. The Greeks constructed it to honour the Egyptian god Horus which they aligned with their very own god Apollo.

All through the temple there are pictures of Horus with different gods. A number of the hieroglyphs nonetheless sport their authentic colors whereas others have been defaced within the 4th Century AD when non-Christian worship was outlawed.

Probably the most spectacular options of Edfu are the massive columns. However they have been nothing in comparison with the subsequent temple we have been to see.

A shot looking up at the tops of the columns in Edfu temple. They are decorated with hieroglyphs and have flower bud-like tops supporting a blackened ceiling

The ultimate stage of our switch to Luxor continued alongside the railway line. We handed mud brick villages constructed under hills peppered with tombs lengthy since raided for his or her treasures. 

The extra hilly nature of this area is among the the explanation why the pharaohs selected it as their gateway to the subsequent life after the pyramids did not preserve them and their valuables protected.


Luxor is house to a few of Egypt’s most well-known websites after the pyramids. You possibly can go to the Valley of the Kings, Karnak Temples and Queen Hatshepsut’s temple all in a day.

We had two days right here and loved our first correct little bit of down time alongside seeing the historic websites.

Our lodging, the Pavilon Winter Luxor Resort*, was set in shady gardens simply throughout the street from the Nile. We didn’t have river views this time however we might see the resident flamingos roaming across the palm bushes within the morning.

Our girls in the swimming pool at Pavilion Winter Luxor Hotel. There is a bar area behind them and palm trees line the pool area

We had time to unpack and lounge by the pool earlier than our night tour.

Karnak Temples Gentle & Sound Present

This was the one exercise we added to our 10 day Egypt itinerary for an additional £40 per particular person. Once more, I’d questioned whether or not we must always do it as a result of it was creeping into a lot wanted downtime on the finish of the day.

Nonetheless, it was our one alternative to see a night present at a temple. And when in Egypt…

Eating with views of Luxor Temple

Earlier than heading to Karnak Adel took us to Aboudi Espresso Break – a restaurant with a balcony the place we ate in view of Luxor Temple.

View of the Temple of Luxor at night

Adel labored his native contacts e-book to get us a desk on the entrance from the place we obtained a spectacular view of the temple.

The meals was additionally glorious with loads of alternative together with kid-friendly meals like nuggets and burgers. The ladies have been craving a little bit of lavatory normal grub after 5 days of making an attempt plenty of new meals.

Once we completed it was time for the primary occasion. Adel referred to as our mini bus and we drove to Karnak.

Karnak Temples

The temples right here have been constructed by successive pharaohs over a interval of 1,800 years. Unsurprisingly it’s the most important advanced of historical buildings in Egypt.

Even the columns are big. You may stand 50 folks on the highest of a few of the largest ones. They make a formidable backdrop for the late night time gentle and sound present.

The huge columns of Karnak temple against a deep blue night sky

Regardless of watching The Spy Who Beloved Me a number of instances as a child I wasn’t actually positive what to anticipate.

We arrived simply earlier than 9pm – pushing the children to their limits once more – and waited on the entrance to the temples. Fairly a crowd gathered earlier than a disembodied voice signalled the beginning of the present, inviting us to step inside.

The illuminated entrance of Karnak temples at night. There are two rows of lion statues and a crowd of people in front of them
Karnak Temples entrance

The primary a part of the present is a walk-through expertise.

Pictures are projected onto the temple partitions and statues because the voices proceed to speak about Egypt’s historical rulers. It recapped and consolidated loads of the knowledge we’d learnt to this point throughout our Egypt vacation.

A projection of a pharaoh onto the wall of a temple at Karnak. In the foreground one of the girls is sat on Mr Tin Box's shoulders to get a better view. It is night time

There are a number of stops at vital statues and buildings.

After half an hour you sit down overlooking the sacred lake. The story continues with lights highlighting vital buildings throughout the temples in entrance of you. This half lasted for one more half hour.

Karnak temples illuminated at night

Regardless of the lateness of the present we’re glad we did it. Karnak wasn’t included in our Egypt itinerary as normal. We might have fitted it in reasonably than a visit to the pool however I do know that wouldn’t have gone down nicely with the children.

The temperature was additionally much more comfy at night time and there was an awesome environment.

Day 7 – Luxor and Valley of the Kings

The excellent news the subsequent morning was that we have been simply over half an hour from the day’s sightseeing spots, so our begin time was 8am.

This nonetheless felt like a lay in after Abu Simbel just a few days earlier than. By now you’re in all probability pondering that an Egypt journey itinerary is continuous. Sure, however bear with me…days eight to 10 have been way more relaxed.

On the Winter Pavilon Luxor you’re really very near the Valley of the Kings because the crow flies. However we wanted to cross the Nile and Luxor Bridge is a 20 minute drive within the incorrect course.

Colossi of Memnon and temple of Amenhoteb III

Giant sandstone statue - one of two called the Colossi of Memnon

As soon as on the East financial institution we made a rapid cease on the Colossi of Memnon – the second largest statues in Egypt.

The pair are just about all that’s left of the temple of Amenhoteb III which was destroyed by two earthquakes. It’s nonetheless being excavated.

Adel referred to as this a ‘Kodak’ second. It was someplace to pause to let earlier guests filter via the day’s fundamental points of interest forward of us.

It actually says one thing about how wonderful Egypt’s historical past is when 18 meter excessive statues are a aspect present.

Temple of Hatshepsut – Deir Al-Bahari

Visitors walk towards Deir Al-Bahari - the temple built by Hatshepsut in the vide of a sandstone cliff. The table has three tiers held up with columns

We arrived at Deir Al-Bahari simply after 9am and it was already heaving with folks.

Golf buggies take guests up a protracted drive to the primary set of steps (for an additional cost). Adel picked up our buggy tickets concurrently our entrance tickets. Though it was early we have been grateful to not must stroll within the warmth.

A picture taken from the middle tier of Deir Al-Bahari temple looking up towards the columns under the top tier and the cliffs above

Hatshepsut was a captivating determine in Egypt’s historical past. She dominated Egypt alongside her brother, Tutmose III, and constructed this temple for Amun. Regardless of being a peaceable pharaoh below whom Egypt prospered she needed to rule by herself and sidelined Tutmose.

Girl posing with cross arms in front of a statue of Queen Hatshepsut at Deir Al-Bahari temple in Luxor

When she died he reclaimed his thrown and erased her, which accounts for the harm to the temple’s hieroglyphs and statues.

The severed head of a statue of Hatshepsut on a pillar

There are nonetheless some extremely nicely preserved colors and paintings within the much less uncovered areas.

Hieroglyphs showing a row of ancient Egyptians in Deir Al-Bahari temple. The ochre and yellow colours have been preserved

The temple appears to be like lengthy and skinny from a distance however the truth is it’s made up of three rectangular ranges with their very own rooms containing vibrant murals.

It’s in an unimaginable location, backing onto the Valley of the Kings and overlooking Luxor and the Nile.

A view from the second level of Deir Al-Bahari towards Luxor and the Nile. People are walking up the ramps and milling about on the platform below

This was my favorite temple in Egypt due to its distinctive design. We spent an hour wandering across the totally different ranges and admiring Hatshepsut’s statues earlier than our ultimate cease of the morning.

Valley of the Kings

Mr Tin Box and daughter walk along a path through the Valley of the Kings. there are sandstone cliffs all around them and the sky is bright blue

The Valley is simply on the other aspect of the cliff to Deir Al-Bahari.

On the drive round you move Howard Carter’s home. He lived and labored in it for 15 years whereas excavating within the Valley.

It’s now a museum the place you possibly can see Carter’s replica of Tutankhamun’s tomb. 

The Valley of the Kings has a customer centre at its entrance. There’s a scale mannequin of the valley displaying you the place you’ll discover every of the 63 tombs which were found.

Tin Box family stand in front of a scale model of the Valley of the Kings in the visitor centre

It is a good place to pause and recognize how tough it should have been for a few of the later pharaohs to seek out an unused plot. As we have been to seek out out, some needed to make detours after they by accident unearthed one other king’s burial website.

On the opposite aspect of the customer centre you possibly can take one other buggy journey (it’s essential to purchase an additional ticket once more) alongside a street to the Valley.

If you happen to’ve seen the Valley of the Kings in documentaries you’ll discover it appears to be like very acquainted. A central path has offshoots to gated tomb entrances the place guards sit able to punch holes in your tickets.

Commonplace entry into to Valley contains entry to 3 tombs of your alternative. If you wish to go to Tutankhamun’s tomb you need to purchase a separate ticket.

On Adel’s recommendation we didn’t. There are way more spectacular tombs within the valley.

These are those we visited:

KV2 – the tomb of Rameses IV

We have been blown away by this primary tomb. It as splendidly preserved colors within the intricate hieroglyphs.

Girl stood in front of colourful Colourful hieroglyphs in in the entrance to the tomb of Rameses IV. They show treasures he took with him to the after life

There’s a gradual slope all the way down to the sarcophagus so it’s simple to do with youngsters.

The sarcophagus of Rameses VI in the middle of a brightly decorated burial room

KV8 – the tomb of Merenptah

This one is deep and steep, so not nice if you happen to’re visiting with younger youngsters.

The family walk down the entrance tunnel of the tomb of Merenptah. There are hieroglyphs on the walls on either side. The entrance is steep and there are hand rails to help people descend

However this tomb demonstrates the unimaginable architectural expertise and craftsmanship of the traditional Egyptians.

It wasn’t completed when Merenptah died so the domed mortuary on the backside just isn’t adorned.

The burial chamber of King Merenptah with a sarcophagus in a vaulted room

KV11 – the tomb of Rameses III

This one is fascinating for teenagers who like grotesque particulars. This Rameses was buried with a screaming mummy.

There are tales of an tried coup in his household and several other relations are thought to have been executed and buried with him.

Family walk down a wide tunnel decorated with hieroglyphs

The tunnel all the way down to the burial chamber additionally has a kink in it half manner. It’s because the employees ran into one other tomb after they have been digging.

You want at the least an hour and a half to discover the Valley of the Kings. Take loads of water. Though you might be out of the solar if you find yourself exploring the tombs they’re extremely popular and stuffy. There’s additionally little or no shade on the floor of the valley.

Lunch on the East Financial institution of the Nile

On our manner again to our resort we stopped for lunch at an area household’s four-storey house. Three generations lived right here.

Because it was Ramadan they didn’t be part of us of their entertaining room however they delivered plate after plate of scrumptious house cooked meals – greater than we might eat.

Traditional Egyptian dishes on a brightly coloured table cloth The food includes a salad, hummus taggine and Orzo soup

The orzo soup was the most effective we tasted throughout our 10 days in Egypt. We additionally tried a conventional bread that’s made with out yeast and baked within the solar. This was adopted by meat balls, rooster, rice, vegetable tagine and a freshly picked banana for dessert.

Moderately than drive again to our resort from right here Adel advised we take a ferry boat throughout the Nile.

We walked down the aspect streets, previous homes adorned to indicate the occupants had accomplished the pilgrimage to Mecca, till we reached the pontoon.

The outside of a house in Luxor that has been painted with pictures of a mosque and palm trees

That is clearly a well-liked technique to full a morning touring the Valley of the Kings as there have been plenty of different vacationers boarding motorboats. Adel secured one only for us and we set off throughout the river.

Luxor is a really busy part of the waterway as it’s the place Nile river cruises begin.

Mr Tin Box and daughter on a ferry boat crossing the River Nile at Luxor. There are lots of other boats in the river behind them

As we weaved between felucca and different small boats we additionally needed to dodge the house block-esque cruise ships.

A cruise ship sails down the River Nile at Luxor. It's a windy day and the water is choppy

The size of a Nile river cruise ship is nothing like ocean going cruise liners, however if you happen to’re on a small boat their wake will make you bob round like a cork. The youngsters thought this was hilarious.

After one ship had handed our boat driver invited Mr Tin Field to take the helm.

Mr Tin Box at the helm of our ferry across the nile. He sits beside the young driver. The boat has a canvas canopy and there is a view of the Nike behind

Afternoon and night in Luxor

The traditional sightseeing ingredient of our Egypt itinerary had now come to an finish. I used to be a little bit unhappy however all of us benefitted from a soothing afternoon beside the pool. And we nonetheless had one other three days in Egypt!

Within the night we took a advice from Adel and had dinner at El Sahaby Lane, which was a brief stroll from our resort. We arrived at 7pm and this was clearly a busy time because the service was gradual. Nonetheless, when the meals did arrive it was superb.

Facet be aware: this was the primary fundamental meal we’d purchased ourselves, other than snacks, since Cairo. We have been actually impressed with what was included in our 10 day tour package deal.

Luxor souq

El Sahaby Lane is beside Luxor’s fundamental souq so we additionally went there to seek out some souvenirs.

Our eyes had been caught by the free harem pants we’d seen on plenty of markets on the historic sights, so we determined to get just a few pairs. 

We paid about £9 a pair for the trousers, which was cheap.

Then we obtained persuaded to purchase a handcrafted scarab the scale of a giant plum. This price us £18, which I’m positive was a good value however we hadn’t been in search of it. What we had needed was fridge magnet so as to add to our assortment, however we gave in to the exhausting promote.

The souq isn’t someplace I like to recommend looking with children. There was loads of hassling, which made it a much less nice expertise than we’d hoped for.

The merchants are very eager so that you can go to their buddies’ retailers and as soon as inside it’s tougher to cease them urgent small items into youngsters’s arms.

If you happen to do go, have a mission and stick with it in any other case you may come away with all types of belongings you don’t need or want. We made a rapid exit after shopping for our off mission scarab, which is a disgrace as I’d favored to have regarded round some extra.

Unsurprisingly I took zero footage as a result of we have been so distracted.

As I discussed earlier, lots of people have requested me if we felt protected in Egypt and we completely did. However did we really feel harassed?

This was the one time we felt actually hassled in Egypt. It was our one night out with out Adel so I believe that may have shielded us from over-zealous gross sales pitches elsewhere.

Our resort in Luxor

A view of the Pavilion Winter Luxor Hotel from the gardens. The ochre coloured hotel is obscured b tall palm trees

We stayed within the Pavilon Winter Luxor Resort*, to not be confused with the Sofitel Winter Palace* simply in entrance of it.

We thought the Pavilon Winter Luxor was a improbable resort however a few of the service let it down.

It’s set in tropical gardens with a looped pool for lounging and an oblong one for severe swimming. Alongside aspect this there was a bar and kitchen that we used to purchase drinks and snacks throughout our afternoons.

View from the balcony of a room at the Pavilion Winter Luxor Hotel. The tropical gardens below have palm trees that are taller than the five-storey hotel

The rooms have been nicely adorned and really comfy. We had interconnecting rooms with twin beds and balconies overlooking the gardens. The ladies loved waking up and seeing the resident flamingos roaming the grounds under.

A small flock of flamingos walks in the tropical gardens of Pavilion Winter Luxor hotel

A peculiarity for a 5 star resort was that there was no kettle in our rooms. The bathe head had additionally been fitted on the incorrect finish of the tub so there was no bathe display. 

The employees cleansing our rooms and serving beside the pool have been pleasant and environment friendly. Nonetheless, the restaurant employees have been disorganised.

At breakfast the tables weren’t cleared, sizzling drinks needed to be chased and the buffet regarded prefer it had been visited by locusts by 7.15am.

Evaluate costs of lodges in Luxor*

Days 8 to 9 – Hurghada 

On our eighth morning we have been picked up at 8am for the ultimate street journey of our 10 day Egypt itinerary. We drove via Luxor and the villages to its west earlier than becoming a member of the freeway in the direction of the Crimson Sea.

It was a protracted 4 hour drive however we have been all excited in regards to the change of tempo and an opportunity to soak up the whole lot we’d seen over the previous week.

We checked into our all-inclusive resort, the Mercure Hurghada, grabbed lunch from the buffet and had a little bit discover earlier than our rooms turned accessible.

After which we hit the calm down button.

Our resort in Hurghada

Palm trees in front of swimming pool complex. In the distance you can see the sea. It is a sunny day with a bright blue sky

The Mercure Hurghada* is a sea entrance resort aimed on the European market with three free-form swimming swimming pools, solar beds on the easterly going through seaside and water sports activities centre. There’s additionally a children membership, retailers, and daytime and night leisure.

The rooms have an unmistakeable Accor type with purple seating and plum cushions. 

We had connecting rooms on the bottom ground with small personal terraces overlooking one of many grassed areas. We have been a couple of minutes stroll from all of the amenities.

A view of the white washed low rise accommodation at Mercure Hurghada. The three-storey villas are arranged around grassy areas

The all-inclusive foods and drinks included the buffet, ice cream by the pool, native lager and spirits within the bar and wine with meals.

You may additionally purchase sizzling snacks by the primary pool and each visitor can go to two of the al a carte eating places throughout their keep. Nonetheless, these must be booked nicely prematurely. All of the tables had already been reserved throughout our two night time keep.

This was a little bit of a disappointment as we had hoped to strive the Asian restaurant. Nonetheless we loved the meals within the buffet. There was number of worldwide dishes and the whole lot was nicely stocked. It by no means felt over busy.

The Mercure* is an effective household resort in Hurghada.

The one factor lacking that we had noticed at different resorts shut by was a water park with slides. Our women quickly forgot about these and made essentially the most of limitless pool time.

Take a look at different lodges in Hurghada*

Mr Tin Box in the pool at Mercure Hurghada with his daughters. He is throwing one of them over his head.

Actions on the Crimson Sea

Sadly our snorkelling tour deliberate for day 9 was cancelled as a result of windy climate, so we determined to do some actions on the resort. 

Mr Tin Field had been promising the ladies and I a visit to a spa if we discovered one and the Mercure Hurghada was the primary of our Egypt lodges to ship.

We booked a manicure and pedicure, and Mr Tin Field was persuaded to have a facial. I obtained upsold a facial, wax and tinted eye brows and spent an expensive three hours being pampered. Oops! 

The remainder of the afternoon was spent hopping between the pool and youngsters membership the place the ladies did crafts and performed video games.

At 5pm we took a sundown horse journey alongside the seaside. The El Rancho stables are proper subsequent to the resort and Mr Tin Field went over to verify them out earlier than we booked to make it possible for the horses regarded completely happy and wholesome.

Girls at horse stables wearing riding helmets

The employees at El Rancho have been nice. They sized us all up for driving helmets and half chaps, and recognised when some riders have been feeling nervous.

Our women have been each so excited in regards to the journey but in addition a little bit edgy as they’re very a lot novices. All of us have been!

The horses know the place they’re going so that you don’t have to be a reliable rider. However they did at instances get distracted by one another and attractive wanting hedges.

This made our 10-year-old a little bit uneasy, so one of many steady workforce stayed along with her for the entire journey. 

We did a loop across the resort alongside the seaside and again to the stables with just a few picture alternatives alongside the way in which. Our journey lasted an hour and was a beautiful technique to end our final full day in Egypt.

Mr Tin Box and daughter riding horses on the beach at Hurghada on the Red Sea. It is sunset

Within the night we went to the mini disco within the resort’s coated amphitheatre. The youngsters cherished this and regardless of being shattered requested to remain on and see the night present which was a father/daughter acrobatic and juggling act.

Children follow entertainer in a train across a stage in the Mercure Hotel ampitheatre

Day 10Departing for Cairo

The final day of any vacation is usually a little bit of a downer however we began this one realizing we didn’t have to depart the resort till 3pm.

Every week earlier than we flew to Egypt our airline cancelled and rescheduled our return flights. It was a little bit of a faff as we’d be taking a pink eye flight house however we regarded on the brilliant aspect that we’d have some additional time in Egypt.

As quickly as we discovered I contacted Households Worldwide and so they organized for us to have a later take a look at on our final day. This was good as we obtained a morning beside the pool reasonably than sat in departures at Cairo Worldwide Airport.

We nonetheless obtained up early to say goodbye to Adel who had remained on the resort and involved ought to we’ve got wanted something. He was flying again to Cairo for a few nights earlier than assembly his subsequent tour.

We had a superb time with Adel and would positively search him out once more if we re-visit Egypt.

After breakfast, the ladies have been eager to return to the children membership whereas we sat by the pool.

The climate had turned cooler so we luxuriated on this realizing we have been going again to temperatures 10 levels greater in Oman.

Not less than we didn’t have the climate guilty for our post-Egypt blues!

Summing up our 10 day Egypt itinerary

Tin Box family pose with statues of Queen Hatshepsut outside her temple in Luxor

What an unimaginable expertise. In case you are a lover of historical past Egypt needs to be in your want listing. The dates coated by the traditional websites blew my thoughts.

As I discussed earlier, we haven’t completed a completely guided vacation earlier than, often favouring a slower tempo and immersing ourselves in surroundings.

However Egypt just isn’t a spot the place you revel within the landscapes, though the River Nile is undeniably romantic. You’ll not neglect seeing the solar set whereas feluccas slip via the reed edged blue water. 

Egypt is extra about folks – previous and current – and their unimaginable tales.

It feels very particular to set foot in locations that have been misplaced for hundreds of years and nonetheless have a lot to disclose.

Columns decorated with hieroglyphs in the outdoor courtyard of Edfu temple

So as to take up all of this historical past and take advantage of our 10 days we needed to have a strict Egypt journey itinerary. And that’s why a structured tour made sense.

Would we do one once more? Sure, if the vacation spot was as steeped in historical past as Egypt.

Would we go to Egypt once more? Completely. Though we ticked off a few of the largest points of interest, there’s nonetheless a lot to see and do.

I’d return to expertise the night time life in Aswan, go to Luxor Temple and Karnak by day, to see the brand new museum in Giza, expertise a Nile cruise and do this snorkelling journey we missed within the Crimson Sea.

I believe it wouldn’t take a lot to fill a complete new 10 day itinerary!

See extra from our journey in my Egypt Instagram Tales – there are two – or by looking out #TinBoxEgypt.

Disclosure: this put up accommodates affiliate hyperlinks. If you happen to click on on considered one of these hyperlinks and make a purchase order I’ll earn some fee. This doesn’t have an effect on the value you pay.

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