The Essence of Egypt & Jordan

22 Days
Cairo to Amman
From (GBP)
£ 8,595
Dates & Pricing

2020 Cairo > Amman

Tour Map
Tour Code:
DMEJ
Duration:
22 days
Departure City:
Cairo
Return City:
Amman

Selected Itinerary

22 Day Itinerary

  1. Day 1 - UK > Giza

    Fly from London Heathrow. Regional airports available on request. Arrive in Cairo and transfer to our iconic hotel, which offers spectacular views of Gîza’s famed pyramids.

  2. Day 2 - Gîza

    Enjoy welcome drinks and dinner as the sun sets over the oldest of the Seven Wonders of the World.

    Meals Included: Breakfast, Dinner

  3. Day 3 - Giza

    Set out this morning to explore the Pyramids at Giza, elaborate burial complexes built some 4,500 years ago for Egyptian pharaohs. Our hotel is situated at the foot of the pyramids, ensuring that we arrive before the crowds for a peaceful view of the sun rising over the limestone peaks. Next, visit the Solar Boat Museum, home to a restored cedarwood barge built to transport Pharaoh Khufu to the afterlife and sealed in the Great Pyramid around 2500 B.C. Ponder the riddle of the Great Sphinx, the 240-foot-long monolith carved out of the limestone bedrock of the Giza plateau during the reign of Pharaoh Khafre. Then learn about the rich history of the Nile region during a talk given by our National Geographic expert. After the sun goes down, see the pyramids illuminated by Giza’s spectacular multicolored light show.

    Meals Included: Breakfast, Lunch

  4. Day 4 - Giza > Luxor

    Fly to Luxor, which makes up part of what was known in antiquity as the great city of Thebes. Settle into our historic hotel, where British archaeologist Howard Carter regularly gave updates after the discovery of King Tutankhamun’s treasure-filled tomb in 1922. Wander amid the fragrant gardens and opulent rooms of this former palace, once a winter retreat for the Egyptian royal family. Then visit the nearby Luxor Museum to peruse ancient relics. Tonight, take a guided walk through the souk, an open-air market where vendors sell spices, silks, jewelry, and fragrant street food.

    Meals Included: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

  5. Day 5 - Nile Cruise

    Spend the day exploring the Valley of the Kings, ancient Egypt’s “gateway to the afterlife.” Enjoy an optional hot-air balloon flight to gain a stunning bird’s-eye view of the sites that dot this stark desert valley, where the pharaohs constructed underground tombs to hold treasures, jewelry, sacred objects, furniture, and even food for the next world. Here, in 2018, a highly publicized National Geographic–supported investigation using ground-penetrating radar concluded that there were no hidden chambers behind King Tutankhamun’s tomb. Discover the neighboring Valley of the Queens, where queens and some royal children were buried, and view the impressive mortuary Temple of Hatshepsut—the longest reigning female pharaoh. Then enjoy a special visit to the well-preserved mortuary Temple of Ramses III, who is believed to have been the victim of an assassination plot led by one of his wives. Board our riverboat this afternoon; then explore the vast open-air temple complex of Karnak, marveling at the towering columns of the Great Hypostyle Hall. After dinner, toast the beginning of our Nile cruise with cocktails and canapés on the sundeck.

    Meals Included: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

  6. Day 6 - Nile Cruise

    Today we make our way to Dendera, one of the best-preserved temple complexes in Egypt. Enormous mud brick ramparts enclose more than 130,000 square feet of desert studded with remnants of shrines and towering colonnades. Marvel at the vibrantly painted hieroglyphs adorning the roof of the Temple of Hathor. Later, return to Luxor and explore Luxor Temple, created over hundreds of years by various pharaohs. This evening, delight in a mesmerizing performance by whirling dervishes and a Nubian dancing performance.

    Meals Included: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

  7. Day 7 - Nile Cruise

    Follow the procession route of the pharaohs as we cruise south along the Nile, where magnificent temples and ancient villages line the banks against a dramatic desert backdrop. Disembark at Edfu to explore the well-preserved Temple of Horus, erected to honor the god of the sky. Stand tall beside larger-than-life carvings of pharaohs on the outer walls, and gaze up at the blackened ceiling of the hypostyle hall, believed to be the result of ancient arson. Travel further upriver to Kom Ombo, a temple perched high on the east bank of the Nile and dedicated to Sobek, the crocodile-headed god. Tonight, enjoy a lively evening of music and dance with performers adorned in galabia, traditional Egyptian dress.

    Meals Included: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

  8. Day 8 - Nile Cruise

    Continue sailing south to Aswan, a busy market town located just north of the colossal Aswan High Dam, completed in 1970 to tame the regular flooding of the mighty Nile. Meet National Geographic grantees who are excavating an ancient quarry at nearby Gebel el Silsila, where laborers once cut stone for the construction of temples such as Luxor and Karnak. Explore the island temple of Philae, a site of ancient pilgrimage for devotees of the goddess Isis. In the 1960s the entire temple complex was moved to its present location on Agilkia Island because of flooding caused by the construction of the Aswan dams. Visit a nearby quarry to learn about ancient carving techniques and view the “unfinished obelisk.” This enormous monument, half-carved out of granite bedrock, was intended to be larger than any ancient obelisk ever erected, before a large crack caused the project to be abandoned. In the afternoon, explore the Nile by felucca, a traditional wooden boat with one or two distinctive lateen sails. After an educational presentation from our expert, join the captain and crew for a gala dinner.

    Meals Included: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

  9. Day 9 - Cruise > Aswan

    Fly to Abu Simbel, part of a UNESCO World Heritage site and home to two of Egypt’s most impressive temples, built by the Egyptian king Ramses II. In the 1960s, the site was dismantled, lifted, and reassembled some 600 feet west and 200 feet above the original site, a feat of engineering rivalling the original construction of the temples. Stand at the base of the colossal statues of Ramses II and puzzle out the hieroglyphs carved on the walls of the inner hall.
    Later, check in to our hotel—converted from a 19th-century Victorian palace, where notable guests such as Sir Winston Churchill and Agatha Christie once stayed—and admire sweeping views of the river from your balcony. Watch the sun set over swaying date palms as you sample delicious Mediterranean cuisine during a private dinner at the hotel’s renowned restaurant.

    Meals Included: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

  10. Day 10 - Aswan > Cairo

    Choose to visit a traditional Nubian village, ride in a motorboat to the upper reaches of the Nile, or explore the vibrant Aswan Botanical Garden.
    Later, continue by local flight to Cairo and enjoy a free evening to explore Egypt’s capital city on your own.

    Meals Included: Breakfast, Lunch

  11. Day 11 - Cairo

    Delve deeper into ancient history during a visit to the Egyptian Museum. View relics recovered from Tutankhamun’s tomb, documents made of delicate papyrus, elaborate sarcophagi, and a selection of royal mummies. After lunch, explore the walled city of Islamic Cairo, originally founded as the royal enclosure of the Fatimid caliphs. Weave your way through narrow streets lined with hundreds of mosques, tombs, and madrassas. Then make your way to Old Cairo, the location of the earliest original settlement, where the Canal of the Pharaohs once connected the Nile to the Red Sea. This area is home to the Coptic Christian community, the ruins of Roman fortifications, the first mosque built in Egypt, and the oldest synagogue in Cairo. This evening, gather for a festive farewell dinner to celebrate our adventure.

    Meals Included: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

  12. Day 12 - Cairo/Amman

    Fly to Amman, the capital of the Kingdom of Jordan for two nights. Join your Jordanian Tour Director for a dinner of local delicacies.

    Meals Included: Breakfast, Dinner

  13. Day 13 - Amman

    Discover the ancient Roman city of Jerash, inhabited since the Bronze Age. Explore the impressive ruins and witness an exciting re-enactment of a Roman chariot race in the hippodrome.

    Meals Included: Breakfast, Lunch

  14. Day 14 - Amman > Petra

    During a visit to the Royal Automobile Museum view the extensive private collection of the Royal Family. At Madaba discover the famous mosaic map of the Holy Land then continue to the rose red city of Petra for your two night stay.

    Meals Included: Breakfast, Lunch

  15. Day 15 - Petra

    This magnificent World Heritage-listed city is the legacy of the Nabataeans, who settled in southern Jordan more than 2,000 years ago. The impressive eastern entrance leads through a brilliantly coloured narrow gorge to the imposing Treasury, more than 40 metres high. Designed to impress, the rock-cut facade will take your breath away. This is only the first of many wonders you will discover here today.

    Meals Included: Breakfast, Dinner

  16. Day 16 - Petra > Wadi Rum

    After a free morning in Petra, continue your journey to Wadi Rum. You will feel like you have stepped onto the moon during your Special Stay in the luxurious Martian tents of the Sun Camp.

    Sundowners

    Witness the vivid and dramatic colours of the desert at sunset over a refreshing drink.

    Meals Included: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

  17. Day 17 - Wadi Rum > Aqaba

    This morning travel in the footsteps of Lawrence of Arabia as you discover the dramatic desert landscapes of Wadi Rum. Explore Lawrence Road and be awed by the vistas of ancient valleys and towering weathered sandstone mountains rising out of the pink and white sands. Later, continue south to Aqaba for a two night Special Stay. Relax in the luxurious surrounds of your hotel, step onto your balcony with sweeping Red Sea views or take a dip in the pool.

    Meals Included: Breakfast, Dinner

  18. Day 18 - Aqaba

    Freechoice

    Cruise and snorkel the Red Sea in search for marine life. Alternatively, you may choose a relaxing Spa treatment.

    The afternoon is at leisure to relax and enjoy the facilities of your resort.

    Meals Included: Breakfast

  19. Day 19 - Aqaba > Dead Sea

    Travel north toward the Dead Sea, stopping at Bethany Beyond the Jordan to see where Jesus was baptised and view the memorial to Moses at Mount Nebo. Continue on to the Dead Sea for a two night stay at your luxurious resort. Relax and take in the views over the Dead Sea across to Israel from your balcony.

    Meals Included: Breakfast, Lunch

  20. Day 20 - Dead Sea

    Enjoy the facilities of your resort including direct access to the sea. Spoil yourself and allow the staff to slather you in the therapeutic mud. Or float in the hypersaline waters of the Dead Sea, while reading a book or the newspaper.

    Sundowners

    Join your Tour Director at the Sky Bar and toast the end of a wonderful journey.

    Meals Included: Breakfast, Dinner

  21. Day 21 - Dead Sea > Amman

    Transfer to Amman and stay overnight in a luxurious hotel.

    Meals Included: Breakfast

  22. Day 22 - Amman > UK

    Transfer to Amman airport for your flight to the UK.

    Meals Included: Breakfast

Pricing & Availability