Egypt & Nile River Cruise
Spiritual Directors: Fr. Aaron Esch
Spiritual Directors: Fr. Philip Schumaker
January 17 - 27, 2020
Your trip includes
- Round-trip airfare
- Airport taxes & fuel surcharges
- Accommodations in first class hotels and cruise as following: (or similar)
- ~ 2 nights: Jan 18 - 20 | Hotel Conrad, Cairo, Athens
- ~ 4 nights: Jan 20 - 24 | Sonesta Star of Luxor Cruise
- ~ 1 nights: Jan 24 - 25 | Hilton Alexandria King’s Ranch, Alexandria
- ~ 2 nights: Jan 25 - 27 | Hotel Conrad, Cairo
- Transfers as per itinerary
- Breakfast and Dinner daily
- Breakfast, Lunch and Dinner while on cruise
- Wine with dinners
- Transportation by air-conditioned motor coach
- Assistance of a professional local guide(s)
- Sightseeing and admissions fees as per itinerary
- Mass daily & Spiritual activities
- Luggage handling (1 piece per person)
- Visa for Egypt
- Flight bag & portfolio of all travel documents
- Meals and Beverages not mentioned, Tips to your guide & driver
Friday, January 17 | Depart from the US
Your life changing journey begins this evening as you board your overnight flight to Cairo, Egypt. Meals will be served on board.
Saturday, January 18 | Arrive Cairo
Arrive in the land of the Pharaohs, Jacob, Joseph and Israel during the famine! Upon arrival at the airport, meet your guide and transfer to Cairo, the capital of Egypt. Arrive to your hotel to settle in and start soaking up the atmosphere of this exciting city. Dinner and overnight in Cairo.
Sunday, January 19 | Cairo with Coptic Cairo
Breakfast and then a full day of touring the wonders of the ancient world, some of which date back to 1000+ years prior to Abraham. We spend time at one of the seven wonders of the world, the pyramids. Cheops, with an original height of 496 feet, is the most colossal pyramid ever built. Today, we will also see the Sphinx and tour the Egyptian Museum, location of Tutankhamen's treasures and ancient remains. We then visit the Hanging Church - the most famous Coptic church in Cairo. The Hanging Church was named so as it was built by the Nile River over the Roman Gate of Babylon. During a walking tour, our guide will point out that this section of the old city was definitely the route taken by Abraham, Joseph, Moses and the family of Jesus - an inspiring thought. Next we visit the beautiful Alabaster Mosque of Muhammad Ali to better understand Moslem religious practices. Completed in 1848, the Ottoman style Muhammad Ali Mosque is the most noticeable in all of Cairo and has dominated the skyline for the past 150 years. Dinner and overnight.
Monday, January 20 | Cairo - Aswan - Beginning of the Nile River Cruise | OPTIONAL excursion to Abu Simbel
This morning after breakfast we transfer to the airport for our flight to the modern city of Aswan. Upon arrival we take time to visit the High Dam, built from 1960 - 1971 and is a major factor in Egypt’s agricultural success. We then also spend time at Philae Temple on the Island. This complex was moved from up river due to the impending destruction upon the completion of the High Dam. For those who wish to participate a visit is available this afternoon to Abu Simbel, part of the UNESCO World Heritage Site known as the "Nubian Monuments." Our Egyptologist guide discusses the relevance of this spectacular site from Egyptian history. We will also try to put in perspective the long history of Egypt. Here we visit the massive temple of Pharaoh Rameses II, perhaps the greatest builder of temples in ancient Egypt (13th Century BC) and a second one of Queen Nafertari, Rameses's most beloved wife. For those who do not participate on the trip to Abu Simbel, Free Time is available in Aswan followed by a Felucca ride around the Agh Khan Mausoleum. Late this afternoon we embark on our cruise ship and head south to Kom Umbo. Dinner and overnight on board. *Abu Simbel excursion available for supplemental cost of $150.00.
Tuesday, January 21 | Kom Ombo, Edfu
Breakfast is served on board before traveling to visit the remains of Kom Ombo Temple, situated on the riverside. Unlike most, this temple is dedicated to two gods - the crocodile god of Sebek and the solar god of war, Horus the Great. We spend time here before continuing on to Edfu, the location of one of the best preserved Egyptian Temples. After time for visit we continue through the Esna Lock to Luxor. Dinner and overnight on board.
Wednesday, January 22 | Esna to Luxor, Karnak
After breakfast our travels continue to Luxor. Upon arrive in Luxor we have free time for lunch before visiting the Temple of Karnak (temple of the New Kingdom period) and the East Bank of the Nile. It was during this period that the bondage and Exodus occurred. Karnak second to Giza’s Pyramids, is one of Egypt’s most important Pharaonic sites. We visit the famous Temple of Luxor, which was founded in the reign of Amenhotep III, grandson of the pharaoh of the Exodus. Reboard our ship for dinner and overnight.
Thursday, January 23 | Valley of the Kings
This morning we visit the Valley of the Kings (where many ancient pharaohs were buried) and the famous Temple of Hatshepsut, the princess who perhaps pulled baby Moses out of the Nile River. This temple may have been designed by Moses. Lunch and continue visit to the museum of Luxor. Dinner and overnight on board.
Friday, January 24 | Luxor - Cairo - Alexandria
Following breakfast, transfer to the airport for our flight back to Cairo. Arrival Cairo international airport, meet and assist. Drive to the northern part of Egypt where we will visit the 2nd capital of Egypt, Alexandria, know as “The pearl of the Mediterranean.” Alexandria has an atmosphere that is more Mediterranean than Middle Eastern ; its ambience and cultural heritage distance it from the rest of the country. First stop is the Fort at Quit Bay fort that witnessed the conquest of the famous French leader, Napoleon upon his expedition on Egypt back in 1798. Continue to the ancient Catacombs of Kom. Following visit Check-in at hotel. Dinner and overnight in Alexandria.
Saturday, January 25 | Alexandria - Cairo
Following Breakfast visit to the Pompey’s pillar. Stroll through the Montaza Palaces and Gardens where the ex Royal family used to live in Egypt. Stroll through the beautiful corniche followed by drive back to Cairo. Arrival for dinner and overnight at our hotel.
Sunday, January 26 | Memphis - Sakkara - Joseph's Store houses
Breakfast and flight back to Cairo. We enjoy a short ride to Memphis. Founded around 3,100 BC, Memphis is the legendary city of Menes, the King who united Upper and Lower Egypt. From a Biblical perspective, Memphis is most likely where Abraham lied to Pharaoh about his wife Sarah being his sister and where Joseph served as second in command. While in Memphis we will view a very large and well preserved statue of Ramses II. Next is Sakkara, which is one of the most extensive archaeological sites in Egypt! Sakkara is dominated by the Step Pyramid of King Zoser, dating back to 2700 BC. It is one of the oldest stone structures in the world! Enjoy a stop to see how local Egyptian carpets are made before a short drive to the south finds us in Faiyum, the region created by the divinely inspired wisdom of Joseph. Here you will find ancient storehouses and a man made lake created by a canal, whose construction was ordered by Joseph. It was this lake that provided irrigation for a desert land and supplied the food needed to survive his prophesied seven year famine. Dinner and overnight.
Monday, January 27 | Cairo - USA
Following breakfast, transfer to airport for your flight(s) back home.