CAIRO, THE PYRAMIDS, NILE CRUISE, KARNAK AND LUXOR
Are you intrigued by the mystery of mummies? Have you imagined yourself in a scene from an Indiana Jones film? Here’s your chance to be an amateur Egyptologist, digging into this country’s enigmatic architecture and antiquities on our special women-only departure. You’ll enjoy highlights like the Great Pyramids of Giza, as well as a fascinating lecture about modern Egyptian women! Enjoy homemade food at a Nubian restaurant with a chance to learn more about their traditions before you embark on a cruise down the legendary Nile River in a level of comfort even Cleopatra would approve of. Explore the Valleys of the Kings and Queens and visit a local Egyptian home and farm at the West Bank for tea. After its grand opening in November 2022, visit the Grand Egyptian Museum (GEM), which will be the largest archaeological museum in the world. Along with captivating commentary, your smarTours guide will offer tips, tailored to your interests and activity level, on how to make the very most of your free time in the land of the pharaohs.
Extend Your Trip! Enjoy our 14-day Women-Only Splendors of Egypt with Alexandria tour which includes 2 nights in Alexandria with visits to the Alexandria Library, National Museum, Montazah Gardens, and more plus an extra night in Cairo!
Looking for a roommate or to connect with other women before your trip? Join our smarTours Women-Only Facebook group! Visit the group here (https://www.facebook.com/groups/1145762302478350/) and click the + Join Group button!
Did you know that you can make this tour private? Find out about pricing and options for groups of 10 or more travelers.
- International Flight
- 2 nights in Cairo
- 1 night in Aswan
- 3-night Nile Cruise
- 2 nights in Luxor
- 1 night in Cairo
- Optional 3-night extension to Alexandria
- Great Pyramids of Giza
- Sphinx of Giza
- Philae’s Temple of Isis
- Ptolemaic Temple for Horus and Sobek
- Temple of Queen Hatshepsut
- Temples of Karnak & Luxor
- Egyptian Museum of Antiquities or Grand Egyptian Museum*
- Khan El Khalili Bazaar District
- Alexandria Library
- National Museum
- Montazah Gardens
- Jewelry Museum
- Modern Egyptian Women Lecture Led by a Female University Professor
- Lunch at Nubian Restaurant
- Visit to Local Egyptian House & Farm
Your Tour Includes
- Round-trip airfare from New York (JFK) (passengers may also book this tour without flights)
- Airfare taxes, fees & fuel surcharges
- Accommodations at deluxe hotels and on cruise ship
- 18 meals: 9 breakfasts, 4 lunches, 5 dinners
- Comprehensive sightseeing tours and entry fees
- Experienced, English-speaking Egyptologist Tour Director
- Transportation in an air-conditioned bus
Find your special women-only tour experiences in bold in the itinerary below.
Day 1: Depart from the U.S.
Overnight flight to Cairo. Your tour includes round-trip airfare from the U.S.
*Passengers who did not purchase flights will join the tour in Cairo on Day 2.
Day 2: Arrive in Cairo
Welcome to Egypt’s capital and largest city. Upon arriving at Cairo International Airport, you will be met and assisted through customs and formalities before transferring to your hotel. Take some time to relax and get settled before joining fellow travelers at a welcome dinner.Accommodations: Cairo Marriott Hotel or similar
Day 3: Pyramids of Giza
Our destination today: the wondrous Pyramids of Giza. Built during the Third and Fourth Dynasties, these monuments stand as testimony to the skill and strength of their builders. We’ll get up close to study the Great Pyramid, as well see as the Pyramids of Khefren and Mycerinus in the distance. Nearby, we’ll gaze at the mythical Sphinx of Giza, which famously combines a reclining lion with the head of an Egyptian king. After these amazing sights, we’ll lunch as the Egyptians do at a local Cairo restaurant. This afternoon will include a fascinating lecture led by a female University professor discussing Modern Egyptian Women.Accommodations: Cairo Marriott Hotel or similar
Meals: Breakfast, Lunch
Day 4: Cairo/Aswan
Today you’ll be picked up at your hotel and we’ll fly from Cairo to Aswan. Upon arrival you can either hop on another short flight for an optional tour to the Abu Simbel Temples or head to the hotel and start exploring Aswan at your leisure. For lunch, we will dine at a Nubian Restaurant (homemade) in Aswan and meet the local Nubian Women who are eager and empowered to share their traditions. Nubians are believed to be one of the earliest cradles of civilization descended primarily from southern Egypt.Accommodations: Movenpick Aswan or similar
Day 5: Aswan/Nile Cruise
In the morning, visit a modern-day architectural wonder, the Aswan High Dam, as well as Philae’s Temple of Isis, which was nearly lost to rising water in the 1960s until the dam was built. Afterwards, you’ll board your Nile cruise ship to depart on a three-night journey from Upper to Lower Egypt. There more about the Nile River here.Accommodations: Movenpick Royal Lily or Steigenberger Minerva
Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner
Day 6: Nile Cruise/Kom Ombo/Edfu/Luxor
We’ll cruise to Kom Ombo to visit an unusual double temple, built in the Ptolemaic period and dedicated to the crocodile god Sobek and the falcon-head god Horus. After exploring Kom Ombo, we’ll sail on to Edfu, an Egyptian city on the west bank of the Nile River. Our day continues with a tour of the immense, well preserved Temple of Edfu, built between 237 and 57 B.C. and also dedicated to Horus. Legend says that this was the site where Horus avenged his father’s murder by his uncle, the god Seth. Back on board the Royal Lily, we’ll sail past Esna to Luxor.Accommodations: Movenpick Royal Lily or Steigenberger Minerva
Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner
Day 7: Nile Cruise/Luxor
Often considered the most extraordinary open-air museum in the world, Luxor boasts an imposing array of ruins and monuments. The modern name for Thebes (the “city of palaces”), Luxor is also the inspiration for the word luxury, and we’ll see quite a bit of architectural extravagance today. The graceful Temple of Luxor was built over several centuries by Amenhopis III, Tutankhamun, Ramses II and Alexander the Great and features an avenue of sphinxes. We’ll also tour the ancient temple complex of Karnak. The immense wealth of Thebes was spent embellishing and building temples in honor of Amun-Ra, the most important and powerful of ancient Egyptian gods. The balance of the day is at your leisure. And for your evening’s entertainment, take in a belly dancing show!Accommodations: Movenpick Royal Lily or Steigenberger Minerva
Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner
Day 8: Luxor
After breakfast, we’ll say farewell to the Royal Lily and continue our exploration of Luxor and the Nile’s west bank. We’ll visit the Temple of Queen Hatshepsut, Egypt’s second confirmed female Pharaoh and regarded as one of its most successful rulers, as well as royal tombs in the Valley of the Kings and the Valley of the Queens. The afternoon is free to relax or investigate exhibits at the Luxor Museum.Accommodations: Sonesta St. George Luxor or similar
Day 9: Luxor
Today we will visit a local Egyptian House and farm at the West Bank to have tea. Tea (shai) is the national drink in Egypt and you have the opportunity to connect with the local Egyptians over this pastime. The balance of the day is at your leisure to further explore Luxor or relax by the pool.Accommodations: Sonesta St. George Luxor or similar
Day 10: Luxor/Cairo
A morning flight takes us back to Cairo and our last hotel. Today, we’ll explore the Egyptian Museum of Antiquities, which houses the world’s largest collection of artifacts from the era of the pharaohs, including some belonging to King Tut. Afterwards, we’ll wander through the bustling, colorful Khan El Khalili Bazaar. We’ll end the day by sharing memories of our amazing travels through Egypt at a farewell dinner.Accommodations: Hilton Heliopolis or similar
Meals: Breakfast, Dinner
Day 11: Cairo/U.S.
Take a last look at Egypt before your airport transfer and flight back to the U.S.
*The tour will end for passengers who did not purchase flights on Day 11 in Cairo.Meals: Breakfast
Prices listed as “with flights” below include round-trip airfare from one or more airports in the USA. Travelers may choose to purchase the tour only, and arrange their own arrival in destination. Please note this may change your tour start date.
Rates are per person based on double occupancy.
Single supplement applies when not sharing a room. Select a date above to see the rates for that specific departure.
Reservations and Payments
Reservations can be made online or by phone (1.800.337.7773 ) and will be confirmed upon receipt of your non-refundable, non-transferable deposit, which must be received at the time of reservation. Deposits are $300 per person. Full payment is due 90 days prior to departure. Space and prices subject to availability. Please see the smarTours Terms and Conditions for complete booking information.
Optional Tours Customize your trip with these optional tours.
Enhance your trip with our recommended optional tours. Indicated optional tours are available to pre-book when you reserve your trip and can be added to your reservation up to final payment. This is the best option to guarantee your spot on your preferred optional tour! Optional tours require a minimum number of participants. Optional tours are non-refundable unless they do not operate.
Some optional tours can be purchased in-destination and may cost extra. The payment methods and currency information to purchase tours in-destination will be provided on final documentation.
Half-Day & Sakkara Tour
- $44 per person
Visit Sakkara, the Step Pyramid on which Imhotep experimented with the design of his stone tomb, beginning with a standard mastaba like those built in mud-brick at Abydos and Saqqara by the 1st and 2nd dynasty Kings. The Sakkara Step Pyramid, constructed 4,700 years ago, is said to be the oldest monumental masonry structure in the world.
AVAILABLE TO PRE-BOOK!
Abu-Simbel by Air
- $335 , including flight
Be amazed by the magnificent UNESCO-listed Abu-Simbel Temples. Threatened by the waters of Lake Nasser, these gigantic landmarks were famously saved, dismantled and relocated in the 1960s. The larger temple is dedicated to Ramses II, while the smaller was built for his favorite wife, Nefertiti.
MUST BE PRE-BOOKED!
This tour must be pre-booked prior to final payment as it is not available to book in-destination.
Luxor Museum Visit
- $36 per person
This wonderful little museum is located on the Corniche about halfway between the Luxor and Karnak Temples, and is home to a small but well-chosen collection of relics from the Theban temples and necropolis. Displays of pottery, jewelry, furniture and statues were created by the Brooklyn Museum of New York.
AVAILABLE TO PRE-BOOK!
Cairo Marriott Hotel
Your home base in Cairo is a historic palatial property with lush gardens and 5-star accommodations. Pool, casino, spa, on-site dining.
16 Saray El Gezira Street • Zamalek, Cairo, Egypt 11211
Aswan Governorate 81111, Egypt
Movenpick Royal Lily
Travel in style on this flagship cruiser, which features 56 spacious cabins. The MS Royal Lily also features a spa, restaurant on the Main Deck and the Salon Deck, where you can enjoy expansive views with afternoon tea.
Sonesta St. George Luxor
Set on the banks of the Nile, this luxurious contemporary hotel welcomes you with a spa, array of fine dining choices and superb level of amenities. Don’t miss the outdoor terrace with majestic Nile views.
Corniche El Nile Street • Luxor, Egypt
16, Saad Zagloul Square
Raml Station Alexandria
Departing the U.S.: For the safety of everyone in the group, smarTours has implemented COVID-19 travel requirements which apply to all tours regardless of destination. To learn more, click here.
Please note destination entry requirements are changing rapidly. smarTours will communicate entry requirements in your Tour Documents 10–14 days prior to departure. For up-to-date information, please click the links below.
- Entry requirements
- State Department Travel Advisory Updates (Egypt)
- Center for Disease Control Updates & Information (Egypt)
Please make sure to allow sufficient time for clearing customs and immigration if you are planning a connecting flight. We recommend at least three-and-a-half hours. Please note that flight schedules are subject to change without prior notice.
|Departure Date||Airline||Depart JFK||Return JFK|
|2022: Oct. 3||EgyptAir||5:15PM||2:40PM|
ADVANCE SEAT ASSIGNMENT
EgyptAir does not assign seats in advance. Seat assignments can only be arranged at the airport upon check-in. If you have a preferred seating choice, please make sure you check-in for your flight as early as possible. EgyptAir does not offer frequent flyer miles.
International flights to/from the U.S. are not included. Land-only travelers are responsible for arranging entry and exit flights, as well as their arrival and departure transfers. smarTours cannot be held responsible for any damage caused by air schedule changes and delays. Unused land services are non-refundable.
Main Tour: Land-only services start upon independent check-in at your Cairo hotel on Day 2 of the itinerary and end after breakfast at your Cairo hotel on Day 10.
Main Tour + Extension: Land-only services start upon independent check-in at your Cairo hotel on Day 2 of the itinerary and end after breakfast at your Cairo hotel on Day 14.
PASSPORT AND VISA INFORMATION
You must possess a passport valid for at least 6 months after the date of travel. Your passport must contain at least one blank page. For U.S. passport holders, a tourist visa is required and may be obtained upon arrival in Cairo for $25 USD. Clients who book air with smarTours will be charged $28, which includes the visa and facilitation service upon arrival. The visa facilitation service is not available for land-only clients and forfeited. Non-U.S. citizens should check with the respective consulates as to the most current visa requirements to all their travel destinations. Please remember that it is your responsibility to obtain the necessary travel documents before the trip.
TICKETS AND FINAL DOCUMENTS
Final instructions, documents, and travel tips will be emailed to you 10–14 days before the scheduled start of your tour. If you have not received your final documents, please check your spam folder or contact smarTours.
Immunizations are not currently required; however, you should consult your personal physician, local public health authorities or the Center of Disease Control (CDC) as to their suggestions.
Night and day temperatures can vary greatly. Here’s what you can expect:
- December–February: Highs in the mid to low 60s with nighttime as low as 48˚F.
- March–November: Highs in the upper 60s to low 70s with nighttime lows in the mid-50s.
- April–October: High 70s and low 80s with nighttime lows in the mid-50s to mid-60s.
- May–September: Average highs in the low 90s with nighttime lows in the high 50s to high 60s.
CULTURE AND DRESS
Given Egypt’s wide range of temperatures, we recommend you bring a sweater and/or layer to accommodate cooler morning/evening temperatures. Egyptians typically dress more conservatively. If you are exploring independently, please note that religious centers such as mosques will often require ankle-length pants, skirts or dresses, and, for women, a scarf to cover their hair.
CREDIT CARDS AND LOCAL CURRENCY
U.S. dollars, Euros and Canadian Dollars are accepted at Egyptian banks and money-changers, which can be found at most of the places that you’ll visit throughout the country. It is typically recommended that you ask for small bills when exchanging money. The currency in Egypt is the Egyptian Pound.
You may dine at the hotels or restaurants recommended by your Tour Director. The average cost for a hotel dinner (excluding drinks) in a casual restaurant is about $20-25 per person. Restaurants outside the hotel may be less expensive.
Each passenger may bring one piece of checked-in luggage (suitcase) max. 44 pounds, and one carry-on not exceeding 18”x10”x8”. We recommend that you do not overpack and that you take a variety of casual separates with climate and comfort in mind.