- Explore Egypt on a Nile cruise and marvel at sights including the Great Pyramids, Tutankhamun’s mask and the towering statues at Abu Simbel
- Discover the rich history and beauty of the Nile, and try new experiences such as sailing on a traditional felucca
- Relax and unwind as you gently cruise the Nile onboard a luxurious cruise ship
Whether you’re a hieroglyphics expert or just curious to learn more about the mysterious world of pharaohs, you can easily immerse yourself in all things Egyptian aboard a Nile river cruise. Setting sail from Cairo to either Luxor or Aswan, a trip down the Nile is an enthralling voyage of discovery. Here are 10 reasons why you should choose a Nile river cruise.
A Nile cruise brings history alive
You’ve read the history books and been fascinated by TV documentaries – now it’s time to experience Egypt for yourself. There’s nothing quite like a trip down the Nile river to transport you back to the time of the pharaohs or to the year when archaeologist Howard Carter made one of the world’s greatest discoveries or even to the momentous day when the world-renowned Aswan High Dam was completed. On Nile river cruises, you can call upon the services of a professional tour manager throughout – their insight makes holidays in Egypt all the more engaging.
You can tick the Pyramids off your bucket list
Everyone has a bucket list of destinations they yearn to visit and iconic landmarks they long to see, and if you’ve ever considered holidays to Egypt, no doubt you’ll have scribbled down ‘Take a photo of the Pyramids’. Setting eyes on the three Great Pyramids for the first time is indeed a dream come true. A trip to Giza is on the itinerary of most Nile cruises that depart from Cairo, allowing you to gaze in awe at the magnificent royal mausoleums that were constructed some 4,500 years ago.
You can marvel at Tutankhamun’s golden mask
Finding out more about King Tutankhamun is a highlight of any Nile cruise, and when you catch glimpse of the Pharaoh’s solid gold funeral mask – on display at Cairo’s Egyptian Museum – it takes your breath away. The mask, inlaid with lapis lazuli and quartz, along with the king’s impressive gold inner coffin are just two of thousands of exhibits at the museum. An astonishing 5,398 treasures were found in Tutankhamun’s tomb – and it took 10 years for them all to be examined, photographed and catalogued.
A Nile cruise is a voyage of discovery
If you’re intrigued by Howard Carter’s find of the century and want to see where the archaeologist was digging back in 1922, a visit to the Valley of the Kings on Luxor’s West Bank is a must. Considered to be a highlight of cruises down the Nile in Egypt, this underground pharaoh burial site is truly remarkable. So much artistic beauty can be found here. Discover vivid paintings, observe glorious hieroglyphics and try to comprehend the historical importance of these tombs, where rulers lay with treasures, furniture, food and even pets, waiting to enter the next world.
You can look up to royal rulers
Whether it’s Queen Hatshepsut, the longest-reigning female ruler of Egypt, or Ramses II and his wife Nefertari, your knowledge of Egyptian kings and queens will significantly improve while on a Nile cruise. Standing beside dazzling colonnaded temples and the towering statues at Abu Simbel, these majestic monuments are a testament to an ancient civilisation that held their pharaohs in the greatest esteem. The ingenious design of Abu Simbel’s main temple means it’s only lit by the sun’s rays twice a year – on the birthday of Ramses II and the day of his coronation.
Follow in the footsteps of Agatha Christie
Ever read Murder on the Nile by Agatha Christie? If not, being on your own Nile cruise is a great opportunity to engross yourself in this classic page-turner. As excursions ashore are often in the morning – to avoid the heat of the Egyptian sun and the crowds – leisurely afternoons can be spent relaxing and reading on board a comfortable five-star ship, either on the sun deck, lounge bar or in your spacious cabin or suite. Will you be able to solve the crime and work out whodunnit?
A Nile cruise is a tranquil way to travel
Although there is much to see and do on Nile river cruises – and excursions to the cities of Amarna and Aswan as well as the Kom Ombo temple will be forever etched in your memory – being onboard a luxurious cruise ship is a tranquil, easy and pleasant way to travel in Egypt. If not flicking through the pages of a book, simply unwind, enjoy a cool river breeze from the comfort of a Balinese-style canopied daybed and watch local farmers tend to plantations of date palms. Traditional farming methods have been passed down through countless generations.
You can study hieroglyphics
If you’re fascinated by hieroglyphics – the formal writing system in Ancient Egypt often referred to as the language of gods – a Nile cruise will enable you to see the world’s best-preserved examples. There are some fascinating wall paintings to be found at the Valley of the Kings and Abydos, but it’s your arrival at the temple of Karnak that will leave you dumbfounded. The Hypostyle Hall, said to be the largest religious centre of the ancient world, is home to 134 gigantic columns, some over 24 metres tall and each is intricately covered in hieroglyphics. It’s a lot to take in.
You can avoid single supplements
Solo travellers often feel they get a poor deal when they book holidays, having to pay over the odds for accommodation, but this isn’t the case on all Nile river cruises. Book a Wonders of the Nile cruise to Luxor or to Aswan and there are a limited number of lower deck cabins where no single supplement applies. Exploring destinations with other like-minded people who are also passionate about travel and culture is one of the many benefits of solo holidays, and a Nile river cruise is an exciting voyage that’s fun to share. If you would like a departure exclusive to solo travellers, The Spectacular Nile Cruise is right for you. With no supplements to pay for a sole occupancy cabin, there is so much choice across the lower, main, upper and top decks of the four-star MS Mövenpick Hamees.
Enjoy unforgettable adventures on a Nile cruise
Nile cruises are not just about seeing iconic sights and amazing landmarks, though you’ll undoubtedly have plenty of tales to tell family and friends. New experiences will be unforgettable too. There’s nowhere better in the world to sail on a traditional felucca, watch some belly dancing (or even partake yourself) or eat hummus and falafel on hot flatbread straight from the oven. Back home you’ll recall friendly Middle Eastern hospitality, welcoming smiles and a wonderful Nile river cruise.
Plan your Nile cruise adventure
If these 10 reasons have sparked an interest in Nile cruises, 2019 may be the year you travel to Egypt to see the iconic sights for yourself. Choose from a Wonders of the Nile cruise, the Spectacular Nile plus Abu Simbel or an exclusive Nile cruise where art historian and architectural consultant Dan Cruickshank joins the voyage.
If you have any questions, please do not hesitate to contact us.