Ancient Wonders

Save the date for February 13, 2020 

Coral on Travel invite you on an exclusive seven-night cruise along the fabled Nile River. 

You’ll explore Egypt’s ancient wonders alongside a private Egyptologist , including a private Great Sphinx visit, a camel ride around the Pyramids, a starlit Gala Dinner & Dance on your cruise ship — and that’s just to name a few. You’ll also spend four days delving into the intricacies of Cairo, one of the world’s most fascinating cities, with the most luxurious hotel on the Nile waterfront as your home base. Your journey concludes in fine style with a stay in a luxury seafront hotel in Alexandria, “the Pearl of the Mediterranean.” This exclusive Journey with its special Nile river cruise is a unique and one-off departure, and our team is pulling out all the stops to make it memorable in every way.

DAY 1: Thursday

Arrive in Cairo and relax in splendor at your deluxe Nile hotel

After arriving in the Egyptian capital, transfer to your deluxe hotel, located in the heart of the city on the banks of the Nile River. You’ll be met outside the airport arrivals area and your hotel transfer will be waiting. This evening, join for a welcome drink and briefing, followed by dinner at the hotel.

 

Included Meals:

Dinner

 

The Nile Ritz-Carlton Cairo  or similar

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DAY 2: Friday

An audience with King Tut at the Egyptian Museum

Following a leisurely morning and lunch at the hotel, you’ll visit Cairo’s renowned Egyptian Museum — home to the world's largest collection of pharaonic antiquities. Among the museum’s spectacular displays are numerous fine examples of art and statuary from ancient dynasties, the golden treasures of King Tutankhamen’s tomb, and the mummies of many of Egypt’s greatest pharaohs.


Travel back to the hotel later this afternoon and begin planning your outfit as you will have a festive cocktail party at the hotel, followed by a sumptuous banquet with a live band providing music for dancing.

 

Included Meals:

Breakfast, Lunch & Dinner

 

The Nile Ritz-Carlton Cairo  or similar

  

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DAY 3: saturday

Ride a camel around the Pyramids, shake paws with the Sphinx, and more

You can cross one of the world’s most iconic destinations off your bucket list today! You’ll make an excursion to the Giza Plateau on the southwest outskirts of the city to marvel at the Pyramids of Giza. The Great Pyramid — or Pyramid of Khufu — is the oldest and largest of the three, dating back to 2580–2560 BC and towering at 455 feet high.
You’ll also see the Great Sphinx, the massive statue carved from the plateau's limestone bedrock, of a reclining lion with the head of the pharaoh Khafre. But while most visitors must marvel at the Sphinx’s noseless face from a distance, we’ve made special arrangements with the Minister of Antiquities for entrance to its enclosure in yet another mind-blowing 

You’ll be able to walk right between the Sphinx’s paws to pose for photos, and even touch it.
But the excitement doesn’t end there.  Next, you’ll find yourself stepping into the stirrups for a camel ride along the plains overlooking the Pyramids. With a surprisingly graceful see-saw, you’ll be hoisted up and away on your ship of the desert for a parade straight out of a picture postcard.

Still staggered by the day’s wonders, you’ll board a bus and head for the date palm plantations of Saqqara. Here, you’ll enjoy a peaceful poolside lunch at a local restaurant before visiting the Step Pyramid at Saqqara. Built during Egypt’s third dynasty to honor the pharaoh Josser, it's said to be the world's earliest pyramid, and is also part of the Memphis Necropolis UNESCO site. After a busy day of breathtaking discovery, you and your fellow travelers will enjoy dinner together at a local restaurant.

Included Meals:

Breakfast, Lunch & Dinner

The Nile Ritz-Carlton Cairo  or similar

 

 


 

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DAY 4: sunday

Discover Islamic Cairo and the Old Town, a UNESCO World Heritage Site

Today, delve into Cairo’s historic quarter and the captivating story of Egypt's predominant religion. Begin with a tour of Islamic Cairo, featuring visits to the fortified, medieval Citadel and the Great Mosque of Muhammad Ali. The grand, domed mosque is built in the Ottoman style and partly clad in translucent alabaster, hence its nickname “the Alabaster Mosque.” Be sure to have your camera at hand to capture panoramic views of the city from the Citadel's hilltop site, where, on a reasonably clear day, you can see all the way across the city to the Pyramids.

From here, it’s a short drive to Al-Azhar Park — a serene public oasis in the midst of an urban desert. The park, listed as one of the world's 60 great public spaces, was developed in 2005 at a cost of over USD $30 million and was a gift to the city from Aga Khan IV. We'll have lunch at a popular restaurant in the park, enjoying views over the landscaped gardens towards the Great Mosque.*


Your tour continues with a trip to the Museum of Islamic Art, home to one of the world's most important collections of Islamic artifacts, followed by an excursion to Cairo's Old Town — a UNESCO World Heritage Site. This evening, recall your adventures in and around Cairo during dinner at the hotel.
* NOTE: Please be advised that Al-Azhar Park does not serve alcohol for religious reasons. A full soft drink beverage selection will be available and is included in your tour cost.

Included Meals:

Breakfast, Lunch & Dinner

The Nile Ritz-Carlton Cairo  or similar

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DAY 5: monday

Board your cruise ship and attend a Gala Dinner and Dance

After breakfast, you'll transfer to Cairo Airport for your flight to Luxor — the ancient Egyptian city of Thebes. Here, you'll drive through lush farmlands to the Nile waterfront, where the cruise ship welcomes you aboard.

After a safety briefing, you'll enjoy lunch on board ship: the first of many memorable shipboard meals to come. This afternoon, you can enjoy settling into your distinguished Cabins and exploring the Cruise ship magnificent lounges and pool deck.

Tonight, look forward to a very special occasion: A gala dinner on your Cruise ship!

We’ve arranged for tables under the stars, dinner will be accompanied by music for dancing. It’s going to be an Egyptian evening to remember!
 

Included Meals:

Breakfast, Lunch & Dinner 

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DAY 6: tuesday

Serene Nile cruising to Edfu, enjoying the Nile Cruise luxury amenities

As Luxor Temple and the Winter Palace dwindle into the distance behind you, you'll join a procession of other stately cruise ships, amongst which your Nile cruise surely takes the gold.
The afternoon is spent in the most relaxing way possible, with scenic cruising on the Nile. As you pass tiny riverside villages and groves of date palms, you'll feel as if you're witnessing scenes straight out of biblical times. Glimpses of sand dunes and bare cliffs just beyond the slender strip of agricultural land attest to the life-giving importance of the Nile to this desert land.
A day of sailing gives you plenty of time to unwind after last night’s party — perhaps you’ll get in some exercise at the pool or fitness center, do some reading or sightseeing on the top deck, or make a refreshing visit to the spa.

Scenic Sailing : Step out onto the Upper Deck for views of the Luxor Temple during your sailing.

 

Included Meals: 

Breakfast, Lunch & Dinner

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DAY 7: wednesday

Visit the unique Temple of Kom Ombo and cruise to Aswan

Today we continue cruising up the Nile, arriving at the Temple of Kom Ombo in the late morning. On a visit to the temple, beautifully situated on a small hillside right beside the river, you'll discover its unique "double" design, with symmetrical halves dedicated to two different gods. The southern half of the temple was dedicated to the crocodile god Sobek, god of fertility and protection against the dangers of the Nile, while the northern part of the temple was dedicated to the falcon god Haroeris, or "Horus the Elder,” patron god of the pharaohs. The path out of the temple complex leads to the Crocodile Museum, Egypt's first museum devoted exclusively to crocodiles, which houses a fascinating collection of mummified crocodiles and ancient carvings. We'll return to the ship for lunch and sail on towards the city of Aswan.

Scenic Sailing:  Enjoy opportunities for bird watching  as you sail between Luxor and Aswan — be sure to step out onto the deck with your camera or Go-pro  to capture some of the action. Perhaps you'll spot albatross, petrels, or black-winged stilts.

 

Included Meals:

Breakfast, Lunch & Dinner.

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DAY 8: thursday

Relax with a traditional felucca sailing, and attend a galabiya party

Later today, you’ll board traditional felucca boats for some relaxing afternoon sailing. Savor some sparkling wine as you sit back and enjoy the ride and the views on these dramatic sailboats, which rely solely on wind!

After dinner tonight, slip into traditional Egyptian finery with a galabiya — the long tunics native to the Nile Valley — during a special show and party on the ship! This festive event, and seeing everyone wearing the traditional clothing of the region, really highlights your journey and this special occasion.

Included Meals:

Breakfast, Lunch & Dinner

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DAY 9: friday

Discover the treasures of Aswan: the High Dam, Philae Temple

 

Today you'll explore the area around Aswan, beginning with the massive Awan High Dam. This 3960-meter-long and 975-meter-wide wall was built across the Nile between 1960 and 1970 with Soviet support. It supplanted the British-built Low Dam of the 1900s and created the vast reservoir known today as Lake Nasser.
You’ll also take a short boat ride across the reservoir of the Aswan Low Dam to visit the elegant Temple of Philae, another of UNESCO’s Nubian monuments that was rescued from flooding. Philae was originally located near the First Cataract but was flooded after the construction of the Aswan Low Dam. As part of the UNESCO Nubia Campaign project, the temple complex was drained, dismantled, cleaned, and moved to a nearby island, to protect it before the completion of the Aswan High Dam.
Our explorations then take us to an ancient quarry, where you’ll see the famed Unfinished Obelisk, whose construction was ordered by Queen Hatshepsut about 3,500 years ago. Marks from workers' tools are still clearly visible as well as lines marking where they were working. Abandoned after cracks appeared, the massive granite pylon would have stood 42 meter high; had it been completed, it would have been by far the largest of Egypt’s obelisks.

 

Included Meals:

Breakfast, Lunch & Dinner

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DAY 10: Saturday

Fly south or a Bus excursion to see the twin Temples of Abu Simbel Discover the treasures of Aswan

Visit the almost intact Temple of Horus at Edfu and sail back to Luxor

 

You'll get an idea of the vastness of Egypt's ancient dynasties, as we fly 143 miles south from Aswan to the visit the great twin temples of Abu Simbel. Along with the Temple of Isis at Philae, they make up the UNESCO World Heritage Site known collectively as the Nubian Monuments. Here, imposing 70-foot statues of Ramses II and Queen Nefertari overlook the Nile. Originally carved out of the mountainside in the 13th century BC to commemorate Ramses II's victory against the Hittites at the Battle of Kadesh, the huge rock relief figures at their entrances have become famous icons, and the sight of them is well worth the flight.
What makes them even more interesting, however, is that they had to be moved. A famous rescue mission, overseen by UNESCO, was undertaken to save them from the waters inexorably rising behind the great Aswan High Dam. Between 1964 and 1968, in a feat almost as impressive as building them in the first place, the entire site was carefully cut into large blocks, dismantled, lifted, and reassembled in a new location 65 meters higher up.

 

After marveling at the architectural ingenuity of both past and present, you’ll fly back to Aswan in time to enjoy lunch on board the ship and prepare for another unforgettable experience.

 

After lunch on board ship, we’ll start our relaxing return cruise towards Edfu.
Scenic Sailing: Enjoy cruising through Aswan, Upper Egypt’s most beautiful location, with its views of the West Bank tombs lit up in the evenings and the sails of traditional feluccas.

 

Horse-drawn carriages will be waiting for us beside the river this afternoon for the ride through this small river city to Edfu’s famously well-preserved temple. The largest temple dedicated to Horus the falcon god, it is notable for the two stone falcons at its entrance and the huge relief figures on the façade.
The temple was built in the Ptolemaic Kingdom between 237 and 57 BC, but was literally lost beneath the sands of time as drifting desert sand and river silt deposited by the Nile buried it to a depth of 13 meter  Local inhabitants built homes over it and, by 1798, when the temple was identified by a French expedition, only the upper reaches of the pylons were visible.

 

Included Meals:

Breakfast, Lunch & Dinner

 

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DAY 11: sunday

Explore the Valleys of the Kings and Queens and the fabulous temples of Luxor and Karnak

We’ll cross the river this morning and drive through farmland to a range of low mountains. A series of rugged ravines in these hills are known today as the Valleys of the Kings and Queens. Part of the greater Theban Necropolis UNESCO World Heritage Site, the Valley of the Kings encompasses more than 60 tombs and burial chambers cut deep into rock cliffs over a 500-year span. Exploring some of these sacred chambers, you’ll see elaborate hieroglyphs and paintings that are almost as vivid now as they were three thousand years ago, when they were new.
Additional ancient wonders await in the nearby Valley of the Queens, a burial ground with as many as 90 tombs of the wives and children of the rulers. Before returning to the ship for lunch, we’ll also visit the magnificent multi-terraced Temple of Hatshepsut, named for Egypt’s longest-reigning female pharaoh.
This afternoon, we’ll explore two of Egypt’s most illustrious shrines, the Karnak and Luxor temple complexes. Said to be the world’s largest religious structure in area, the vast Karnak Temple complex was built and used over a period of 2,000 years. You’ll be absolutely amazed by the Great Hypostyle Hall, where a monolithic forest of 134 huge columns is ranked in 16 rows. The largest are 10 meter around and soar to 24 meter in height. You’ll also revisit the Luxor Temple complex, this time getting the chance to see it during the day.

After dinner, treat yourself to one of the most traditional forms of Egyptian entertainment: a belly-dancing show! It's said that this dance originated in Cairo's nightclubs, but you'll find that these deliberate, controlled movements are much more artistic when a troupe of expert dancers joins us on board for a spectacular show that will have you riveted by the costumes, dance moves, and the history! Included Meals:

Breakfast, Lunch & Dinner

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DAY 12: monday

Fly to Cairo then continue overland to coastal Alexandria

As we continue our journey to a city with a location and cultural climate unlike any other destination you’ve visited in Egypt so far. To reach Alexandria, the great Mediterranean port city founded by Alexander the Great, we’ll fly to Cairo, then continue to the coast by motor coach. After checking into our beautiful seaside hotel, you’ll have lunch, followed by the afternoon at leisure with dinner included at the hotel.

 

Included Meals:

Breakfast, Lunch & Dinner

 

Four Seasons Hotel Alexandria  or similar

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DAY 13:

Walk in Cleopatra’s footsteps as you explore Greco-Roman Alexandria


This morning we explore Alexandria on a panoramic tour showcasing the highlights of "the Pearl of the Mediterranean," including the seafront promenade and the faded glory of the downtown area. We’ll descend the ancient staircase to the underground catacombs of Kom el Shoqafa, an extensive subterranean burial site that dates to the Greco-Roman era of the 2nd century AD. Many of the features of the catacombs merge Roman, Greek, and Egyptian cultures — for example, some statues are Egyptian in style, yet bear Roman clothes and hairstyles. The location of the site had long been lost and was only rediscovered in 1900 when an unfortunate donkey stumbled into one of the shafts

You’ll also visit Alexandria’s tallest monument, Pompey’s Pillar. Dating back to the 4th century, it stands 30 meter tall and 10 meter wide and was hewn from a single block of red granite brought all the way from Aswan, almost 1125 Kilometer away. Following lunch at a local restaurant, your tour of Alexandria's past continues with a visit to the Roman Amphitheatre and the National Museum. Enjoy dinner at the hotel tonight.

 

Included Meals:

Breakfast, Lunch & Dinner

 

Four Seasons Hotel Alexandria  or similar

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DAY 14:

Return to Cairo for a Gala Farewell Dinner

This morning, we return by road to Cairo. Upon arrival, you’ll check into your deluxe hotel, located in the upscale Cairo suburb of Heliopolis, and conveniently close to Cairo Airport. Tonight you’ll toast a final goodbye at a Gala Farewell Cocktail Dinner at the hotel.

 

Included Meals:

Breakfast, Lunch & Dinner

 

JW Marriott Hotel Cairo  or similar

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DAY 15:

Depart Cairo and fly home

After breakfast at the hotel, transfer to the Cairo airport for your flight home.

 

Included Meals:

Breakfast