This river cruise is perfect for those who are looking for an in-depth exploration of the sights that line the River Nile. You’ll cruise a distance of 410 miles between Aswan and Cairo, including a stretch of the river that’s only been reopened for a few years. Sailing on a beautiful Moroccan-style ship, you’ll also spend two nights onboard in Aswan, Luxor and Cairo for more sightseeing time in each city.
• Tel el Amarna
• Beni Suef
Mövenpick river cruise
Day 1: UK to Aswan
Depart the UK on your flight to Aswan. It will be a late arrival tonight, so you’ll transfer straight to Mövenpick MS Darakum for your first night onboard. Guests also have the option to have a pre-cruise stay in Aswan (at extra cost).
Day: 2 Aswan
Today you’ll visit the High Dam, an impressive feat of engineering built to harness the power of the Nile and the beautiful Philae Temple which was moved and reassembled on higher ground to save it from flooding from the dam. In the afternoon, visit the Nubian Museum and learn about the ancient history of Nubians who are indigenous to the Nile region of southern Egypt and northern Sudan. Return to the ship for a cultural Nubian show after dinner. B, L, D.
Day 3: Aswan to Edfu
This morning is at leisure as your ship makes its way to Kom Ombo. After lunch onboard, visit the unique Kom Ombo Temple, a double museum dedicated to Sobek, the crocodile god, and Horus, the sky god commonly depicted as a falcon. Return to the ship for your onward journey to Edfu and enjoy a cocktail party and dinner. B, L, D.
Day 4: Edfu to Luxor
Sail to Luxor via Esna Lock. With much of the day at leisure, you can make the most of the ship’s facilities including the sun deck where you can have a drink as you view the sights along the Nile. This evening, listen to music in the Lounge Bar. B, L, D.
Day 5: Luxor
Today begins with a visit to the West Bank of Luxor, previously known as the great Egyptian city of Thebes. It’s home to the spectacular Valley of the Kings, the final resting place for many pharaohs and royal family members with tombs dating back between the 16th and 11th Century BC. As you head underground (where photography is forbidden), you’ll uncover an amazing piece of Egyptian history and see these ancient treasures firsthand, with walls inscribed with hieroglyphics and the former resting places of legendary pharaohs. Visit the Mortuary Temple of Queen Hatshepsut (Deir el-Bahri) which also sits within the valley. After lunch onboard, visit two of Egypt’s most significant relics, the great temples of Karnak and Luxor, before reboarding your ship for a manager’s cocktail party followed by dinner and a belly dancing show. B, L, D.
Day 6: Luxor to Nag Hammadi
This morning, sail north from Luxor to Qena, a city close to the famed Dendera Temple. After lunch, visit this beautifully preserved temple which was built during the 4th Century BC in honour of Hathor, the goddess of love. Its intricate ceiling carvings are a particular highlight. Return to the ship for dinner and sail to Nag Hammadi where you’ll pass its bridges. Have dinner and catch some music in the bar. B, L, D.
Day: 7 Nag Hammadi to Sohag
Sail to El Balyana via Abu Homar’s bridge and lock and have lunch before transferring to the ancient city of Abydos by coach to visit the remains of the Great Temple of Abydos, also known as the Temple of Seti I. Wander through this remarkable temple and view its impressive reliefs and the famous Abydos King List – a documentation of past kings engraved on one of the temple walls. Return to the ship for dinner and tonight’s Galabeya party and Egyptian wine tasting as the ship continues to Sohag. B, L, D.
Day 8: Sohag to Tel el Amarna
Sail towards Tel el Amarna this morning, cruising through Asuit’s Lock en route. Have lunch onboard before passing through the lock and continuing on to Tel el Amarna. On arrival visit the Amarna Visitor Centre and learn about Akhenaten and Nefertiti in a presentation. In the evening, take a cookery lesson before dinner in the main restaurant where you can have a taste of Egypt with local dishes served alongside international favourites. B, L, D.
Day 9: Tel el Amarna to Minya
Visit Tuna el Gebel and El-Ashmunein, where thousands of baboons, ibises and falcons were once mummified. Next, see Tel el Amarna, the capital built by King Akhenaten, husband of Nefertiti and father to Tutankhamun. A controversial pharaoh, King Akhenaten challenged the polytheistic beliefs of the time by declaring worship to a single god, the sun disk god, Aten. First, visit the Tel el Amarna tombs, where you’ll find the lesser-visited crumbling tombs in the northern section and see the tombs of important figures during King Akhenaten’s reign including Ahmose, Meryre, Pentu and Panehesy, as well as the Royal Tomb of Akhenaten. Continue on to the partially restored foundations of the Great Palace of King Akhenaten, where you’ll also see the remnants of the Small and Great Temples of Aten. Return to the ship and continue your journey to Minya at lunch time. Tonight’s dinner is followed by a folklore show onboard. B, L, D.
Day 10: Minya to Beni Suef
Transfer by road to the rock-cut tombs of Beni Hasan. Here, you’ll visit the four open tombs of great chiefs and administration officials Baqet III, Khety, Amenemhet and Khnumhotep II of the Middle Kingdom. Return to MS Darakum and sail for Beni Suef. Your afternoon onboard is at leisure. Tonight’s entertainment is a quiz and dinner. B, L, D.
Day 11: Beni Suef to Cairo
Have free time today as you travel onwards to Cairo, where you’ll arrive for tours of the Hanging Church, Coptic Museum and Jewish Synagogue after lunch. Dock overnight for your exploration of the city tomorrow and have dinner with Takht music. B, L, D.
Day 12: Cairo
Your unforgettable experience ends with one of the Seven Wonders of the Ancient World – the iconic Pyramids of Giza – as well as the Great Sphinx. After lunch, spend time at the Museum of Egyptian Antiquities, the largest collection of its kind and home to some of the most treasured relics from the age of pharaohs including the golden funerary mask of Tutankhamun that was discovered in the Valley of the Kings. As you return to the ship for your final night onboard with the ship docked in Cairo, you’ll be treated to music after dinner. B, L, D.
Day 13 Cairo
If you have an early flight, you’ll be given a packed breakfast before disembarking and transferring to the airport for your return flight to the UK. B.
Is this for you?
Mövenpick’s fleet of ships was made for cruising this great river. Life onboard combines Mövenpick’s Swiss service with local culture, where evenings often feature traditional Egyptian-inspired entertainment. Take in the passing views from your cabin’s window and sail along the famous river banks on a journey that takes you right up to some of Ancient Egypt’s most legendary sites.
Mövenpick MS Darakum
One of the largest ships on the Nile, Mövenpick MS Darakum has an array of facilities and a beautiful Moroccan-style design. There are 52 cabins and suites, each with air-conditioning and most with panoramic windows. Onboard facilities include a pool, sun deck and gym. All meals are served at the main restaurant, where each night has a different buffet theme.
Good to know
• Suitable for children over 12 years old. As this is a Kuoni recommended age, we cannot guarantee that there will not be any younger children on board
• Journey times do not take into account stops or local traffic conditions
• We recommend travelling with no more than one suitcase and one day bag
• A good level of fitness is required
• Itineraries are subject to change.
What to expect
• We recommend comfortable clothes and walking shoes
• Clothes should cover legs and shoulders in places of worship
• This itinerary also operates in reverse from Cairo to Aswan on a 14-night itinerary
• We recommend tipping the ship’s crew at the end of your cruise
• A good level of fitness is required
• Itineraries are subject to change.
2019 Feb 14; May 03; Sep 01, 27; Oct 23. 2020 Feb 13; Mar 10; Apr 05; May 01, 27; Sep 01, 27; Oct 23.
Included in price
• Quality accommodation
• Insightful local tour leaders
• Shore excursions and entrance fees
• Flexible arrival times
• Porterage and guide tips (we recommend tipping the ship’s crew at the end of your cruise)
• Meals where most convenient (B=Breakfast, L=Lunch, D=Dinner)
• All specified flights.
Upgrade your cruise
Single travellers No single cabin supplement on selected dates, otherwise from £996 per person
Cabin upgrade Upgrade to an upper deck cabin from £85 per person
Extend your stay Guests departing in 2020 will have an optional 3-night pre-cruise stay in Aswan. Stay at Movenpick Aswan on a half-board basis and have two full days of sightseeing which include Abu Simbel, the unfinished obelisk, Kalabsha Temple, the evening sound and light show at Philae Temple.
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