Egypt & Jordan Discovery October 2023

A$8,900
NEW
A$8,900
NEW

From the Valley of the Kings to the awe-inspiring ruins of Petra, this adventure through Egypt and Jordan reveals so much more than the sphinxes and tombs of your childhood dreams. You’ll sail down the ancient Nile and fall under its spell, visit traditional village communities, dig for obscure treasure in ancient marketplaces and dip your feet into the crisp salt waters of the Dead Sea.
Travel to Egypt and experience the history and culture on a tour that explores Cairo, cruises along the Nile and visits Luxor, Aswan and the famous Abu Simbel temples. Then continue on to Jordan, with the sweeping desert and echoing formations of Wadi Rum, the hidden and hand-hewn facades of Petra and the ancient Roman ruins at Jerash all make Jordan a true adventurer’s paradise.

Will you join us?

Day 1 – Wednesday 4th Oct

CAIRO (D)

Welcome to Cairo! You will be met at the airport and transferred to your hotel. Today is simply an arrival day, so you can arrive in Cairo at any time, although you will need to be in the hotel foyer to meet your fellow travellers, local tour guide and the Two’s a Crowd Host around 6pm this evening. We will have tour briefing and enjoy our first meal together as a group. Cairo is one of the great cities of antiquity and its history can perhaps be symbolised by two imposing landmarks—the Pyramids of Giza and the Mosque of Mohammed Ali. If you arrive early, perhaps go out and explore the busy streets of this city of contrasts- where you can see donkey carts and expensive cars, medieval slums and modern shopping malls.

Please note: the Novotel is a “dry” (no alcohol) hotel, however there are a number of great options in the surrounding Zamalek area.

Accommodation: Your own room at Novotel El Borg or similar


Day 2 – Thursday 5th Oct

ASWAN (B/D)

After breakfast we will transfer to Cairo airport and travel to Aswan. Welcome to Aswan, Egypt’s southernmost city. Its easy-going charm is due in no small part to its large Nubian population. The city is Egypt’s southern gateway to Africa and an important market town, so take time here to check out one of the country’s best bazaars. When you arrive, you’ll explore the beautiful Temple of Isis (the Goddess of health, marriage and wisdom), which was rescued from the rising waters of the Nile and relocated on Philae Island. It’s a marvel of decorative pylons featuring some of Egypt’s finest carvings—definitely one of the real gems of Upper Egypt. In any free time, you might choose to visit the excellent Nubian Museum, which showcases the history, art and culture of the Nubians. This evening you’ll experience modern Nubian culture first-hand with a visit to a nearby village. You’ll join a local Nubian family for dinner and get an unforgettable insight into the daily life of the local people. This is a rare and memorable experience, giving you the chance to become fully immersed in the local culture.

Accommodation: Your own room at Basma Aswan Hotel or similar


Day 3 – Friday 6th Oct

NILE CRUISE (B/L/D)

This morning we take a short flight (approx. 45 minutes) from Aswan to Abu Simbel, where we will explore some magnificent temples. Built by Ramses II, it was the gateway to Egypt for Southern Africans and its imposing facade clearly delineated the line between what was the Pharaoh’s land and what was not. With the four gargantuan statues of Ramses guarding the Great Temple, carved directly out of the mountain on the west bank of the Nile, this is one of Egypt’s most memorable sights. Return from Abu Simbel and transfer to meet your Nile cruise boat. Enjoy a fantastic mix of total relaxation and organized sightseeing on an iconic Nile River cruise to Luxor.

Note: Nile cruise boats are typically very large with a passenger capacity of around 150. All cabins have private facilities and the boat is fully air-conditioned. Evenings will be spent on the boat, so make full use of the boat’s facilities where you can relax on the top deck by the pool and watch the stunning Nile scenery pass by. All meals are included on board. Although we use the best possible five-star rated cruise boats available, please note that the local equivalent of five stars isn’t to the same standard that we might expect at home. They are very comfortable and a great way to experience the Nile (due to varying schedules we aren’t able to provide advance notice of which exact boat we’ll be sailing on).

Accommodation: Your own cabin onboard a Nile Radamis boat or similar


Day 4 – Saturday 7th Oct

NILE CRUISE (B/L/D)

Continue your leisurely cruise down the Nile, with today’s stop Kom Ombo Temple, north of Aswan. Built on a high dune overlooking the Nile, the complex sits picturesquely ruined on the river’s edge and dates back to the early 2nd century BC. The complex is unique because it has a mirror-image design, divided down the middle, with either side dedicated to a different set of Gods. One half is known as the Temple of Sobek (the crocodile-headed god of fertility), and it includes details on the Ancient Egyptian’s relationship with crocodiles, whom they revered and feared in equal measure. The other half is dedicated to Haroeris (also known as Horus the falcon god), and the whole temple is full of fascinating reliefs. Return to the cruise boat where you’ll continue travelling upriver, with free time relaxing on the sundeck and taking in the surrounding sights – desert hills forming a backdrop to lush riverbanks, fishermen casting their nets and farmers working their land.

Accommodation: Your own cabin onboard a Nile Radamis boat or similar


Day 5 – Sunday 8th Oct

NILE CRUISE (B/L/D)

Today finds you moored near Edfu, a beautifully preserved temple also dedicated to Horus, the falcon-headed god. You will disembark and discover the lively streets of Edfu town—get acquainted the bustling town centre and the bazaar. There is the chance to visit the Temple of Edfu*. Back on board continue towards Luxor passing through the Esna Locks. It is not uncommon to have to queue to proceed through the locks, a great opportunity to check out the process from up on deck with a cool drink in hand, and listen to the shouts of the many captains as they navigate their way through the various small boats of merchants selling their wares to a captive audience—life on the Nile! Arrive Luxor around 3pm. You will visit the Luxor temple.

*Note: The only mode of transport available to visit the Edfu temple is by local horse/carriages. As a responsible travel focused business, animal welfare is extremely important to us and we want to ensure that we are not promoting any activities where the working animals are not properly cared for. Unfortunately, some operators of the horse/carriages have been found to be in breach of our animal welfare guidelines and it is, for this reason, we will no longer include the visit to Edfu Temple. In addition to the animal welfare concerns, there has also been a substantial amount of feedback suggesting that the experience itself is quite uncomfortable due to the pushy nature of the vendors and local suppliers outside the site. While we recommend that you do not use the horse/carriage to visit the Temple, the decision is ultimately up to you. Edfu is an included stop on the Nile River cruise schedule.

Accommodation: Your own cabin onboard a Nile Radamis boat or similar


Day 6 – Monday 9th Oct

LUXOR – TRAIN TO CAIRO (B/D)

Rise early this morning and head into the Valley of the Kings. Buried under the arid hills are over 60 tombs of pharaohs, many richly decorated with reliefs and paintings. Explore this sprawling and spectacular place where discoveries are still being made. Tutankhamun’s final resting place is also located here, and you’ll have free time to visit it. Your guide will explain the funerary rites of the ancient Egyptians and significance of the many paintings and hieroglyphics. You will visit three royal tombs and then continue to the Temple of Queen Hatshepsut, set in a spectacular natural amphitheatre. Visit the valley of the queens. Your final stop is the Colossi of Memnon—giant statues that were once part of an impressive colonnade Crossing to the East Bank of the Nile. Travel to Karnak, one of the world’s most celebrated temple complexes, built over a period of some 200 years, and some of it dating back to 2,055 BC. Your guided tour of the temple reveals its finest sections. Afterwards you will transfer to the hotel, where there is plenty of time to freshen up before you are transferred to the railway station for the overnight sleeper train to Cairo.

Accommodation aboard the overnight train is in your own cabin, although there are 2 beds which convert to bunk beds. All bedding is provided on board and western-style toilets are located in each carriage. Your bags will be stored in your cabin, where airline-style dinner and breakfast will be served. However, it may be worth bringing some additional snacks, especially if you are vegetarian or have dietary requirements. Your tour leader can help you to arrange this. Despite being a tourist class train, facilities are basic. Please also keep in mind general train cleanliness may not be to the same standards you are accustomed to.

Accommodation: Your own cabin onboard the Luxor to Cairo Sleeper Train


Day 7 – Tuesday 10th Oct

CAIRO (B/D)

After breakfast on board, we will arrive in to Giza Station. Today you will dive into another layer of Egyptian history: medieval Cairo. Head to Khan al-Khalili Bazaar, Cairo’s oldest mosque and the Gayer-Anderson Museum. The ‘Khan’, sprawling around an old area known as Al-Azhar, is a quintessentially Cairo experience—a warren of alleys with stalls serving up a succession of intoxicating scenes. It retains a distinctly medieval feel. You will explore the gold market, ‘perfume street’ and the spice market, where heady aromas hang in the air like a thick blanket of Damascene cloth (which can be purchased next door in the cloth market). The gorgeous 9th-century Ibn Tulun Mosque is one of the oldest and largest in Egypt, possibly its most beautiful too. Its perfectly proportioned courtyard and distinctive minaret make it a masterpiece of Islamic architecture. Nearby stands the Gayer-Anderson Museum, housed in two fine old villas and vaunting a fascinating collection of Arabic artefacts, furniture and memorabilia. Also don’t miss the chance to drink Arabic coffee or mint tea from Cairo’s oldest cafe, it has a long history and fantastic atmosphere. This evening you will get to share an authentic Egyptian meal with a local family. Visit a family home, chat with the local family members about life in the Middle East, and learn some of your favourite traditional Egyptian dishes while enjoying a delicious dinner.

Accommodation: Your own room at Novotel El Borg or similar


Day 8 – Wednesday 11th Oct

CAIRO (B/L)

This morning after breakfast drive out to Giza, home to perhaps the greatest iconic structures ever created by man – the Pyramids and the Sphinx. Instantly familiar yet retaining a mystique and power, getting up close to these incredible pharaonic tombs is captivating. For an additional charge you may be able to go inside the Great Pyramid of Khufu (or Cheops). The Egyptian Museum is simply one of the world’s great museums, home to a stupendous collection of antiques and treasures from the region. We will head here after lunch and your expert guide will take you through Egypt’s rich and fascinating dynastic history. You will then have some free time to explore on your own; you may wish to visit the Royal Mummy Room (included). Afterwards, meet up with your guide and head out for a walking tour to experience a more modern side of Cairo and gain an understanding of how locals live today. You’ll sample some of Cairo’s favourite street food and see interesting architecture along the way.

Accommodation: Your own room at Novotel El Borg or similar


Day 9 – Thursday 12th Oct

AMMAN (B)

This morning you will be transferred to the airport for your flight to Amman, the capital of Jordan. On arrival we will be met at the airport by our new Country leader and guide, and taken to our central hotel. Cosmopolitan and contemporary, yet steeped in biblical history, Amman has served as the modern and ancient capital of Jordan and is one of the oldest continuously inhabited cities in the world. A 1994 excavation uncovered homes and towers believed to have been built during the Stone Age (circa 7000 BC). Maybe head to the Old Town’s Roman Amphitheatre, find fine culture at the Jordan National Gallery of Fine Arts, look down on the city from the hilltop Temple of Hercules, or begin your Jordan experience with a relax in a Turkish bath
house. Soak up the atmosphere as you sip mint tea in a café.

Accommodation: Your own room at Toledo Hotel or similar


Day 10 – Friday 13th Oct

AMMAN – AQABA (B)

After breakfast today we will journey down the Desert Highway, with the beach resort of Aqaba as your destination (approx. 4 hrs). The small Ottoman Mamluk Fort, dating from the 14th century and from where Lawrence of Arabia rode to Cairo, is worth a look. Otherwise, most of the fun is to be found in the water. Acquaint yourself with the hotel’s pool, or head to the beach – some of the best snorkelling in the world can be found around the untouched coral reefs just south of the town.

Accommodation: Your own room at City Tower Hotel or similar


Day 11 – Saturday 14th Oct

AQABA – WADI RUM (B/D)

This morning you will see the contrast between the sparkling waters of the Red Sea and an ochre sea of desert on the way to spell-binding Wadi Rum. Drive approximately 1 hour into this desolate yet achingly romantic landscape the way the locals do – in rather old, rickety (but reliable) jeeps operated by the local Bedouin Community. After lunch (not included) in the small village of Rum and a browse around the city centre, you will visit some of the most stunning desert scenery you’ll ever witness. Wadi Rum is a truly spectacular desert landscape. Visit several of the distinctive rock formations and soak in the vast silence of this lunar-like landscape. Today you will also meet your new Bedouin Friends, the backbone of Jordan. Journey through the sweeping swathes of desert, wondering how this place could be liveable until you soon get your answer—a group of dark tents low-pitched to the ground: a Bedouin camp. Meaning ‘Desert Dwellers’ in Arabic, the Bedouins are a semi-nomadic people considered by many to be the predecessors of the settled Arabs, and in Jordan up to 40 per cent of the general population is believed to possess Bedouin ancestry. This might explain the legendary hospitality of the Jordanians—in traditional Bedouin culture, a huge onus is placed on taking in and feeding any visitor, and so a very warm welcome is assured on your arrival. This evening enjoy a delicious dinner cooked in an earthen oven by your Bedouin Hosts. Zarb (otherwise known as Bedouin barbeque) has been prepared for centuries by Bedouins in the Arabian Peninsula, who cooked their food underground in their earth ovens. Cooking time can take 2.5 – 3 hours. Once the food is ready the sand and blankets are removed to reveal the delicious slow cooked smoky meat and perfectly cooked vegetables. Spend the night in this incredible location, deep in Wadi Rum and under a huge expanse of stars.

Note: Here we stay in permanent Bedouin-style tents with shared bathroom facilities. Tents are luxuriously furnished complete with comfortable king-size or twin beds, Bedouin sofa, mirrors, lamps, and the finest bed linens. All the furniture is hand-made. There is cosy relaxation area outside the tent to watch the stars at night. Electricity is provided in the guest tents in the evenings via solar power. Each tent has a private terrace with a fantastic view over the Wadi Rum Mountains.

Accommodation: Your own luxury desert tent within the camp


Day 12 – Sunday 15th Oct

WADI RUM – PETRA (B/D)

After waking up in the unique surrounds of the Bedouin camp this morning, you will enjoy a walk around the area (the length of the walk will depend on how energetic you are feeling) before scaling one of the large dunes to enjoy sensational views of the surrounding area. Keen photographers will be delighted. You will then continue your journey to the fabled city of Petra (approx. 2.5 hrs). On arrival there is time in the afternoon to check out the town that has grown up around the site, and to just relax… ready for a big day of exploring Petra tomorrow.

Accommodation: Your own room at P. Quattro Hotel or similar


Day 13 – Monday 16th Oct

PETRA (B/D)

Petra is justifiably on most people’s list of ‘must-visit’ places. It is the jewel of Jordan, the lost city of the biblical Nabateans, an impressive series of tombs and dwellings hidden behind ornate façades carved directly into the rock. Dating back to the 6th century BC, the site was lost to Western minds until it was rediscovered in 1812 by a Swiss explorer. The iconic Petra view is arguably the single most striking sight of the entire region. The first taste of this exquisite craftsmanship among such stark scenery is a moment that manages to be both eagerly anticipated and also an almost surreal surprise. The Siq leads through the rock and is sometimes only a few metres wide, with walls soaring up to 180 metres on either side, and it is impossible not to imagine the armies and traders who made their way down here in the ancient times. Petra’s greatest surprise, however, is its size. With your guide you will explore the old Roman road, amphitheatre and several old tombs. You will also climb up to the second beautiful façade of the Monastery, from where you will have a magnificent view of the entire site. This is a memorable day exploring a truly extraordinary destination- a highlight of your trip. Later in the afternoon we return to our hotel where it won’t take much convincing to try a soothing traditional Turkish bath. The rest of the day will be at your leisure—perhaps take the chance to witness Petra by night- seeing it lit up by flickering candle light while Bedouin music plays is a magical experience.

Accommodation: Your own room at P. Quattro Hotel or similar


Day 14 – Tuesday 17th Oct

PETRA – AMMAN (B)

Petra is an incredible site and almost demands more than one visit. If you want to see more, then get up early to soak in the dramatic setting, walk to extra sites like the High Place of Sacrifice, and just try to comprehend the history and life of a city that was once able to challenge the might of Rome. Later, the ancient Crusader castle at Shobak makes as imposing sight as you make the short drive up to it. It was originally built to protect the eastern flank of the Latin Kingdom and its trade routes to the sea before it fell to Saladin in 1189 AD. Stroll the site and discover a small chapel, original gatehouse, and find out where a long, dark secret passage leads. Continue half an hour to the ancient village at Dana, on the edge of the Dana Biosphere Reserve, where local artisans sell attractive silver jewellery and charms. Drive on to Madaba (approx. 3 hrs), home to a number of fine Byzantine mosaics. Visit the Greek Orthodox Church of St. George and see an impressive mosaic map of the Holy Land that clearly depicts Palestine and Lower Egypt around 550 AD. We will arrive in to Amman in the late afternoon, where you can spend the evening in one of its several fine restaurants.

Note: Please be aware that Kerak Castle is not included in your tour, as it is often very congested and busy. However, if there is sufficient interest among members of the group, your leader can also arrange an optional visit to Kerak Castle. Many travellers however prefer to spend extra time in Amman.

Accommodation: Your own room at Toledo Hotel or similar


Day 15 – Wednesday 18th Oct

AMMAN (B/L/D)

Today you will leave Amman for a short drive north (approx. 1 hr) to Jerash, once one of the grandest ancient Roman cities in the world. These are some of the best Greco-Roman ruins around. Reaching its zenith as a favourite of the emperor Hadrian, it has a striking collection of archways and theatres, baths, public buildings and colonnaded streets, and is a beautiful place to spend a morning exploring. Grand ionic columns encircle the city’s centrepiece, the Oval Plaza, a wonderfully atmospheric place to linger after exploring Jerash’s riches. You better have packed your swim gear, because in the afternoon you can wash off the dust from exploring ruins with a dip like no other. Drive approx. 1.5 hrs to spend the afternoon on the shores of the Dead Sea. Named for the scarcity of life in its waters, this lake is so intensely salty that the density of the water makes swimming and getting underneath the surface very difficult. Floating on the surface without any sort of lilo makes for a unique pleasure though. Maybe grab a handful of the shoreline’s mud and slick it over your body on the way back in—it’s full of nutrient-rich natural minerals and will leave your skin feeling luxurious. Afterwards you will return to Amman for the evening (approx. 1 hr journey). Tonight the group will spend their farewell night together at one of the many restaurants and bars in West Amman, or ask your leader about the traditional cafés dotted around the city where locals spend their evenings.

Accommodation: Your own room at Toledo Hotel or similar


Day 16 – Thursday 19th Oct

AMMAN DEPARTURE DAY (B)

After breakfast our tour ends as we transfer to the airport for our flight home, or onwards for further adventures. Alternatively, we can organise for you to stay for a night or two longer in Amman if you wish.

TOUR PRICING $8,900 PLUS INTERNATIONAL AIRFARES AND TAXES

TOUR DATES: 4TH – 19th OCTOBER 2023

Novotel Cairo El Borg

The hotel that makes every moment matter…

Feel welcome at Novotel Cairo El Borg. Taking your family to experience the vibrant city of Cairo, Our hotel is your preferred home with well-equipped Superior Rooms overlooking the great River Nile and Cairo tower, At central location at the Downtown.” -Hotel Manager

Novotel Cairo El Borg is a contemporary 4-star hotel with panoramic views over the Nile. Centrally located, the hotel is within walking distance of the Opera House and Egyptian Museum. After immersing yourself in Egyptian culture with a visit to the iconic Pyramids and the Sphinx, cool down in the pool or relax with a massage at Novotel . ALLSAFE hygiene & prevention measures has been implemented to ensure a healthy and safe environment for our guests and employees. Cairo’s clean and efficient Metro takes you to many points of interest in the city, while the unmissable Pyramids of Giza and the Great Sphinx are just 18 km away. Enjoy the best panoramic views of the river Nile. Novotel Cairo EL Borg is located in the heart of Cairo, few minutes from Cairo top attractions. Novotel Cairo El Borg hotel in Cairo ticks all the boxes for a pleasant stay with panoramic views over the Nile, and proximity to Opera House & Egyptian Museum.

 

Basma Hotel

Enjoy Aswan’s Magnificent Views from The Comfort Of Your Room

Basma Hotel is located on the highest point of Aswan next to the famous pharaonic monuments and overlooking the beautiful greenery and the amazing Nile Views. From the moment you step in, you are surrounded by authentic unique art. Hand-painted walls and ceilings immediately give you a head start on the beauty you will enjoy during your stay. Basma Hotel is the place to be in Aswan. We provide rooms and hospitality that are top-class in our category. We cater to your comfort and happiness above all. When you choose to stay with Basma, you choose peace, happiness, and simplicity, which is also what Aswan is all about. Basma Hotel provides a wide range of dining experiences and is a magnet for food lovers. At each and every restaurant is a variety of quality world cuisines, with a flare of our chef’s creativity to bring you something truly unique.

 

Toledo Hotel

“Welcome to your home in Amman. The staff will go to great lengths to ensure comfort and great service. We spend a great deal of effort and time to train the staff “the art of hospitality”. The word “cannot” is not in our vocabulary. Whether the request is accommodation/hotel related or concerns getting around the city, the “can I help you!” attitude is instilled in each member of our staff, and I guarantee it.” -Hakam Barakat, General Manager Toledo Amman Hotel

Toledo Amman Hotel is situated in the heart of Amman, on the edge of the old city center and within walking distance to the new downtown. Toledo Amman Hotel is only few minutes away from major historical and biblical sites, in addition only a two minute walk to the future entertainment center “Al Abdali Boulevard”.

City Tower Hotel

City Tower Hotel is strategically located by Middle Beach of Aqaba opposite Arab Revaluation Square. Offering luxurious modern room and suites, with an ambience decorated for your comfort. Making each stay unforgettable, for you and you family. We are the hotel of choice for both the leisure and business travellers searching for an authentic experience, which meets with the local culture. Our Hotel benefits from 72 well appointed rooms each with it’s own facilities, with lift accessibility to all floors. All of our rooms are restful, each beautifully furnished with a carefully considered colour scheme. It is perfect if you value privacy and welcome friendly service, dignity, security and comfort.

P. Quattro Hotel

P. Quattro Relax Hotel is located in the rose city Petra, in the heart of the city center, entertainment and shopping district, the hotel is 5 minutes drive from the main gate of Petra. We go all out to make your stay or event as remarkable and memorable as possible, because your comfort is our satisfaction. The epitome of luxury and comfort, the guests will experience the city life, the magnificent and commanding views in our roof terrace of the city skyline.

Cairo

Cairo is the capital of Egypt and, with a total population in excess of 16 million people, one of the largest cities in both Africa and the Middle East (the regions which it conveniently straddles). It is also the 19th largest city in the world, and among the world’s most densely populated cities.

On the Nile river, Cairo is famous for its own history, preserved in the fabulous medieval Islamic city and Coptic sites in Old Cairo. The Egyptian Museum in the centre of town is a must see, with its countless Acient Egyptian artefacts, as is shopping at the Khan al-Khalili bazaar. No trip to Cairo would be complete, for example, without a visit to the Giza Pyramids, and to the nearby Saqqara Pyramid Complex, where visitors will see Egypt’s first step pyramid built by the architect Imhotep for the third dynasty Pharaoh, Djoser.

Though firmly attached to the past, Cairo is also home to a vibrant modern society. The Midan Tahrir area situated in downtown Cairo area, built in the 19th century under the rule of Khedive Ismail, has strived to be a “Paris on the Nile”. There also are a number of more modern suburbs including Ma’adi and Heliopolis, while Zamalek is a quiet area on Gezira Island, with upmarket shopping. Cairo is best in the fall or spring, when the weather isn’t so hot. A felucca ride on the Nile is a good way to escape from the busy city, as is a visit to Al-Azhar Park.

 

Aswan

Located about 899 km south from Cairo, Aswan is a serene Nile Valley destination where the Nile is more majestic than anywhere else, flowing through granite rocks, and round emerald islands covered in palm groves and tropical plants. It is considered as an all-time favourite winter destination. Moreover, you’ll be surprised to see how many monuments and sites this small city has to offer. Consider sailing to the temple of Philae, seeing the Agha Khan Mausoleum and taking an excursion to St. Simeon Monastery. Egypt’s sunniest southern city is the perfect destination to stroll and relax in a magical cultural setting: wander down the broad walkway, locally known as the corniche, to watch feluccas slowly sailing the Nile then stop at one of the floating restaurants to enjoy Nubian music and freshly caught fish. Aswan offers a splendid view of the Nile and is a great starting point for a Nile cruise. Aswan also offers a rich cultural experience; you will get to know Nubian culture and shop for spices, henna tattoos, souvenirs and African handmade goods at the Aswan souk. The word Aswan derives in fact from the Ancient Egyptian word Soun meaning souk or trade. It has earned its name thanks to the city strategic position, on the trade route linking the North of Egypt to its South. Since Ancient times, Aswan has also been known for its environmental therapy: burying the aching parts of your body in Aswan sand gives valuable results and can help relieving you from stubborn ailments such as rheumatism, arthritis, joint edema and skin inflammation. The town climate is also known to have great relaxing and rejuvenating properties.The best times to visit Aswan are May and September, summers are scorching, and winter temperatures have been known to reach 27 during the day, with cold nights.

 

Amman

Amman is the capital and largest city of the Hashemite Kingdom of Jordan with a population of more than four million. Amman forms a great base for exploring not just Jordan, but the wider region as well and does, despite popular belief, offer much that is of interest to the traveller. The city is generally reasonably well-organized, enjoys great weather for much of the year and the people are very friendly. Although Amman can be difficult to penetrate at first sight, the city holds many surprises for the visitor. Visit Amman’s Roman Amphitheatre, its many art galleries or the newly opened Jordan Museum, while an afternoon away on a chic cafe terrace, take a course in the University of Jordan or stay in luxurious hotels and dine on the region’s varied and delicious cuisine. Modern shopping malls are increasingly abundant in Jordan but open air souqs are what many travellers will remember most.

Amman is experiencing a massive (some would say: reckless) change from a quiet sleepy village to a bustling metropolis, some of whose neighbourhoods seem hell-bent on wanting to imitate Dubai. Amman’s roads have a reputation of being very steep and narrow in some of parts of the city but the city has state of the art highways and paved avenues. The steep terrain and heavy traffic remains challenging for pedestrians and for the rare cyclist. New resorts and hotels dot the city and there are many things for the traveller to see and do in and around Amman.

 

Wadi Rum

People have lived in Rum for thousands of years, struggling to survive in its harsh environment. They have been hunters, pastoralists, farmers and traders, as Rum is close to national borders. Even the famous Nabateans once occupied Rum, leaving behind several structures, including a temple.

Local people gained notoriety more recently when they joined the arab revolt forces under the leadership of king Faisal and fought along with Lawrence of Arabia during the Arab Revolt (1917/18) to fight the occupying Turkish and German armies. Lawrence himself makes many references to Wadi Rum in his book ‘The Seven Pillars of Wisdom’, a title apparently inspired by one of Rum’s imposing mountains. The exploits of Lawrence have become part of local folklore, and some popular tourist sites are named after him, although whether he used these exact sites is open to debate.

Virtually all the people living in and around Wadi Rum today are of Bedouin origin and, until recently, led nomadic lives, relying on their goat herds. They are resourceful, hospitable people who are largely responsible for developing Wadi Rum as a tourist destination.

Recognizing the unique natural and cultural history of Wadi Rum and the vital importance of tourism to the local economy, the government of Jordan declared Wadi Rum a protected area in 1998. With support from the World Bank they commissioned the Royal Society for the Conservation of Nature, a national NGO, to prepare a conservation plan and build a team of local people to manage the area. This team is now under the Aqaba Special Economic Zone Authority and is pioneering ways to restore and safeguard Rum’s sensitive desert habitats from ever-increasing human pressure

 

Petra

The Nabatean Kingdom chose Petra as it capital around the 6th century BCE, carving what is one of the greatest wonders of the world out of the unique reddish rock that this region of Jordan is built upon. The extensive city was one of the most advanced of its time, with water management systems, and extensive and enormous monuments and features. When the Nabatean Kingdom was absorbed into the Roman Empire, the Romans continued to develop the city and it remained an important point on several trade routes including the ancient Spice Route.

An earthquake hit Petra around 660 AD, and with vital infrastructure destroyed, the city was abandoned and largely forgotten, until 1812 when the first Westerner, a Swiss explorer named Johann Ludwig Burckhardt discovered it. At this point, Bedouins had made the city their own, living in the caves and ruins. Over the next 200 years, more explorers and archaeologists uncovered parts of the city, with Scottish explorer David Roberts being the first to chronicle the city in 1839. It wasn’t until the 1920’s however, that excavations began in Petra, and more of the city was uncovered, and more recently, that the Bedouin population moved out of the site itself following its designation as a UNESCO World Heritage Site.

Today Petra is a National Park, and the most popular tourist site in Jordan. Managed by a conservation trust, the site is extensive, and for those who wish to really explore in depth, a few days is required. Most visitors, however, come to Petra for one or two days, and see the main highlights and famous points including the Treasury, the Siq, and the Monastery.

Tour Inclusions:

  • Two’s a Crowd Tour Host
  • 11 nights’ accommodation in your own hotel room, as well as 3 nights onboard the MS Nile Radamis in your own cabin, 1 night in the desert in your own Bedouin-style tent, and 1 night in your  own cabin onboard a sleeper train
  • Meals as per itinerary (B=breakfast, L=lunch, D=dinner, S=supper)
  • Return group transfers from airport to hotel at the start and end of the tour
  • All transport as detailed in the itinerary by comfortable air-conditioned bus, riverboat, and sleeper train
  • Professional English-speaking guide throughout
  • All sightseeing, guided tours, and entrance fees as detailed in the itinerary
  • Solo room – always!

Tour Exclusions:

  • Travel Insurance (we can assist)
  • International/domestic flights to the start/end of the tour
  • Expenses of a personal nature, such as laundry, taxis, souvenirs, and phone calls
  • Meals and drinks not included in the itinerary
  • Pre- and post-tour accommodation (we can assist)
  • Visa costs (if applicable)
  • Any tours listed as “Optional Tours” (and are subject to change, depending on weather and schedule changes)
  • Gratuities (optional)

From the Valley of the Kings to the awe-inspiring ruins of Petra, this adventure through Egypt and Jordan reveals so much more than the sphinxes and tombs of your childhood dreams. You’ll sail down the ancient Nile and fall under its spell, visit traditional village communities, dig for obscure treasure in ancient marketplaces and dip your feet into the crisp salt waters of the Dead Sea.
Travel to Egypt and experience the history and culture on a tour that explores Cairo, cruises along the Nile and visits Luxor, Aswan and the famous Abu Simbel temples. Then continue on to Jordan, with the sweeping desert and echoing formations of Wadi Rum, the hidden and hand-hewn facades of Petra and the ancient Roman ruins at Jerash all make Jordan a true adventurer’s paradise.

Will you join us?

Day 1 – Wednesday 4th Oct

CAIRO (D)

Welcome to Cairo! You will be met at the airport and transferred to your hotel. Today is simply an arrival day, so you can arrive in Cairo at any time, although you will need to be in the hotel foyer to meet your fellow travellers, local tour guide and the Two’s a Crowd Host around 6pm this evening. We will have tour briefing and enjoy our first meal together as a group. Cairo is one of the great cities of antiquity and its history can perhaps be symbolised by two imposing landmarks—the Pyramids of Giza and the Mosque of Mohammed Ali. If you arrive early, perhaps go out and explore the busy streets of this city of contrasts- where you can see donkey carts and expensive cars, medieval slums and modern shopping malls.

Please note: the Novotel is a “dry” (no alcohol) hotel, however there are a number of great options in the surrounding Zamalek area.

Accommodation: Your own room at Novotel El Borg or similar


Day 2 – Thursday 5th Oct

ASWAN (B/D)

After breakfast we will transfer to Cairo airport and travel to Aswan. Welcome to Aswan, Egypt’s southernmost city. Its easy-going charm is due in no small part to its large Nubian population. The city is Egypt’s southern gateway to Africa and an important market town, so take time here to check out one of the country’s best bazaars. When you arrive, you’ll explore the beautiful Temple of Isis (the Goddess of health, marriage and wisdom), which was rescued from the rising waters of the Nile and relocated on Philae Island. It’s a marvel of decorative pylons featuring some of Egypt’s finest carvings—definitely one of the real gems of Upper Egypt. In any free time, you might choose to visit the excellent Nubian Museum, which showcases the history, art and culture of the Nubians. This evening you’ll experience modern Nubian culture first-hand with a visit to a nearby village. You’ll join a local Nubian family for dinner and get an unforgettable insight into the daily life of the local people. This is a rare and memorable experience, giving you the chance to become fully immersed in the local culture.

Accommodation: Your own room at Basma Aswan Hotel or similar


Day 3 – Friday 6th Oct

NILE CRUISE (B/L/D)

This morning we take a short flight (approx. 45 minutes) from Aswan to Abu Simbel, where we will explore some magnificent temples. Built by Ramses II, it was the gateway to Egypt for Southern Africans and its imposing facade clearly delineated the line between what was the Pharaoh’s land and what was not. With the four gargantuan statues of Ramses guarding the Great Temple, carved directly out of the mountain on the west bank of the Nile, this is one of Egypt’s most memorable sights. Return from Abu Simbel and transfer to meet your Nile cruise boat. Enjoy a fantastic mix of total relaxation and organized sightseeing on an iconic Nile River cruise to Luxor.

Note: Nile cruise boats are typically very large with a passenger capacity of around 150. All cabins have private facilities and the boat is fully air-conditioned. Evenings will be spent on the boat, so make full use of the boat’s facilities where you can relax on the top deck by the pool and watch the stunning Nile scenery pass by. All meals are included on board. Although we use the best possible five-star rated cruise boats available, please note that the local equivalent of five stars isn’t to the same standard that we might expect at home. They are very comfortable and a great way to experience the Nile (due to varying schedules we aren’t able to provide advance notice of which exact boat we’ll be sailing on).

Accommodation: Your own cabin onboard a Nile Radamis boat or similar


Day 4 – Saturday 7th Oct

NILE CRUISE (B/L/D)

Continue your leisurely cruise down the Nile, with today’s stop Kom Ombo Temple, north of Aswan. Built on a high dune overlooking the Nile, the complex sits picturesquely ruined on the river’s edge and dates back to the early 2nd century BC. The complex is unique because it has a mirror-image design, divided down the middle, with either side dedicated to a different set of Gods. One half is known as the Temple of Sobek (the crocodile-headed god of fertility), and it includes details on the Ancient Egyptian’s relationship with crocodiles, whom they revered and feared in equal measure. The other half is dedicated to Haroeris (also known as Horus the falcon god), and the whole temple is full of fascinating reliefs. Return to the cruise boat where you’ll continue travelling upriver, with free time relaxing on the sundeck and taking in the surrounding sights – desert hills forming a backdrop to lush riverbanks, fishermen casting their nets and farmers working their land.

Accommodation: Your own cabin onboard a Nile Radamis boat or similar


Day 5 – Sunday 8th Oct

NILE CRUISE (B/L/D)

Today finds you moored near Edfu, a beautifully preserved temple also dedicated to Horus, the falcon-headed god. You will disembark and discover the lively streets of Edfu town—get acquainted the bustling town centre and the bazaar. There is the chance to visit the Temple of Edfu*. Back on board continue towards Luxor passing through the Esna Locks. It is not uncommon to have to queue to proceed through the locks, a great opportunity to check out the process from up on deck with a cool drink in hand, and listen to the shouts of the many captains as they navigate their way through the various small boats of merchants selling their wares to a captive audience—life on the Nile! Arrive Luxor around 3pm. You will visit the Luxor temple.

*Note: The only mode of transport available to visit the Edfu temple is by local horse/carriages. As a responsible travel focused business, animal welfare is extremely important to us and we want to ensure that we are not promoting any activities where the working animals are not properly cared for. Unfortunately, some operators of the horse/carriages have been found to be in breach of our animal welfare guidelines and it is, for this reason, we will no longer include the visit to Edfu Temple. In addition to the animal welfare concerns, there has also been a substantial amount of feedback suggesting that the experience itself is quite uncomfortable due to the pushy nature of the vendors and local suppliers outside the site. While we recommend that you do not use the horse/carriage to visit the Temple, the decision is ultimately up to you. Edfu is an included stop on the Nile River cruise schedule.

Accommodation: Your own cabin onboard a Nile Radamis boat or similar


Day 6 – Monday 9th Oct

LUXOR – TRAIN TO CAIRO (B/D)

Rise early this morning and head into the Valley of the Kings. Buried under the arid hills are over 60 tombs of pharaohs, many richly decorated with reliefs and paintings. Explore this sprawling and spectacular place where discoveries are still being made. Tutankhamun’s final resting place is also located here, and you’ll have free time to visit it. Your guide will explain the funerary rites of the ancient Egyptians and significance of the many paintings and hieroglyphics. You will visit three royal tombs and then continue to the Temple of Queen Hatshepsut, set in a spectacular natural amphitheatre. Visit the valley of the queens. Your final stop is the Colossi of Memnon—giant statues that were once part of an impressive colonnade Crossing to the East Bank of the Nile. Travel to Karnak, one of the world’s most celebrated temple complexes, built over a period of some 200 years, and some of it dating back to 2,055 BC. Your guided tour of the temple reveals its finest sections. Afterwards you will transfer to the hotel, where there is plenty of time to freshen up before you are transferred to the railway station for the overnight sleeper train to Cairo.

Accommodation aboard the overnight train is in your own cabin, although there are 2 beds which convert to bunk beds. All bedding is provided on board and western-style toilets are located in each carriage. Your bags will be stored in your cabin, where airline-style dinner and breakfast will be served. However, it may be worth bringing some additional snacks, especially if you are vegetarian or have dietary requirements. Your tour leader can help you to arrange this. Despite being a tourist class train, facilities are basic. Please also keep in mind general train cleanliness may not be to the same standards you are accustomed to.

Accommodation: Your own cabin onboard the Luxor to Cairo Sleeper Train


Day 7 – Tuesday 10th Oct

CAIRO (B/D)

After breakfast on board, we will arrive in to Giza Station. Today you will dive into another layer of Egyptian history: medieval Cairo. Head to Khan al-Khalili Bazaar, Cairo’s oldest mosque and the Gayer-Anderson Museum. The ‘Khan’, sprawling around an old area known as Al-Azhar, is a quintessentially Cairo experience—a warren of alleys with stalls serving up a succession of intoxicating scenes. It retains a distinctly medieval feel. You will explore the gold market, ‘perfume street’ and the spice market, where heady aromas hang in the air like a thick blanket of Damascene cloth (which can be purchased next door in the cloth market). The gorgeous 9th-century Ibn Tulun Mosque is one of the oldest and largest in Egypt, possibly its most beautiful too. Its perfectly proportioned courtyard and distinctive minaret make it a masterpiece of Islamic architecture. Nearby stands the Gayer-Anderson Museum, housed in two fine old villas and vaunting a fascinating collection of Arabic artefacts, furniture and memorabilia. Also don’t miss the chance to drink Arabic coffee or mint tea from Cairo’s oldest cafe, it has a long history and fantastic atmosphere. This evening you will get to share an authentic Egyptian meal with a local family. Visit a family home, chat with the local family members about life in the Middle East, and learn some of your favourite traditional Egyptian dishes while enjoying a delicious dinner.

Accommodation: Your own room at Novotel El Borg or similar


Day 8 – Wednesday 11th Oct

CAIRO (B/L)

This morning after breakfast drive out to Giza, home to perhaps the greatest iconic structures ever created by man – the Pyramids and the Sphinx. Instantly familiar yet retaining a mystique and power, getting up close to these incredible pharaonic tombs is captivating. For an additional charge you may be able to go inside the Great Pyramid of Khufu (or Cheops). The Egyptian Museum is simply one of the world’s great museums, home to a stupendous collection of antiques and treasures from the region. We will head here after lunch and your expert guide will take you through Egypt’s rich and fascinating dynastic history. You will then have some free time to explore on your own; you may wish to visit the Royal Mummy Room (included). Afterwards, meet up with your guide and head out for a walking tour to experience a more modern side of Cairo and gain an understanding of how locals live today. You’ll sample some of Cairo’s favourite street food and see interesting architecture along the way.

Accommodation: Your own room at Novotel El Borg or similar


Day 9 – Thursday 12th Oct

AMMAN (B)

This morning you will be transferred to the airport for your flight to Amman, the capital of Jordan. On arrival we will be met at the airport by our new Country leader and guide, and taken to our central hotel. Cosmopolitan and contemporary, yet steeped in biblical history, Amman has served as the modern and ancient capital of Jordan and is one of the oldest continuously inhabited cities in the world. A 1994 excavation uncovered homes and towers believed to have been built during the Stone Age (circa 7000 BC). Maybe head to the Old Town’s Roman Amphitheatre, find fine culture at the Jordan National Gallery of Fine Arts, look down on the city from the hilltop Temple of Hercules, or begin your Jordan experience with a relax in a Turkish bath
house. Soak up the atmosphere as you sip mint tea in a café.

Accommodation: Your own room at Toledo Hotel or similar


Day 10 – Friday 13th Oct

AMMAN – AQABA (B)

After breakfast today we will journey down the Desert Highway, with the beach resort of Aqaba as your destination (approx. 4 hrs). The small Ottoman Mamluk Fort, dating from the 14th century and from where Lawrence of Arabia rode to Cairo, is worth a look. Otherwise, most of the fun is to be found in the water. Acquaint yourself with the hotel’s pool, or head to the beach – some of the best snorkelling in the world can be found around the untouched coral reefs just south of the town.

Accommodation: Your own room at City Tower Hotel or similar


Day 11 – Saturday 14th Oct

AQABA – WADI RUM (B/D)

This morning you will see the contrast between the sparkling waters of the Red Sea and an ochre sea of desert on the way to spell-binding Wadi Rum. Drive approximately 1 hour into this desolate yet achingly romantic landscape the way the locals do – in rather old, rickety (but reliable) jeeps operated by the local Bedouin Community. After lunch (not included) in the small village of Rum and a browse around the city centre, you will visit some of the most stunning desert scenery you’ll ever witness. Wadi Rum is a truly spectacular desert landscape. Visit several of the distinctive rock formations and soak in the vast silence of this lunar-like landscape. Today you will also meet your new Bedouin Friends, the backbone of Jordan. Journey through the sweeping swathes of desert, wondering how this place could be liveable until you soon get your answer—a group of dark tents low-pitched to the ground: a Bedouin camp. Meaning ‘Desert Dwellers’ in Arabic, the Bedouins are a semi-nomadic people considered by many to be the predecessors of the settled Arabs, and in Jordan up to 40 per cent of the general population is believed to possess Bedouin ancestry. This might explain the legendary hospitality of the Jordanians—in traditional Bedouin culture, a huge onus is placed on taking in and feeding any visitor, and so a very warm welcome is assured on your arrival. This evening enjoy a delicious dinner cooked in an earthen oven by your Bedouin Hosts. Zarb (otherwise known as Bedouin barbeque) has been prepared for centuries by Bedouins in the Arabian Peninsula, who cooked their food underground in their earth ovens. Cooking time can take 2.5 – 3 hours. Once the food is ready the sand and blankets are removed to reveal the delicious slow cooked smoky meat and perfectly cooked vegetables. Spend the night in this incredible location, deep in Wadi Rum and under a huge expanse of stars.

Note: Here we stay in permanent Bedouin-style tents with shared bathroom facilities. Tents are luxuriously furnished complete with comfortable king-size or twin beds, Bedouin sofa, mirrors, lamps, and the finest bed linens. All the furniture is hand-made. There is cosy relaxation area outside the tent to watch the stars at night. Electricity is provided in the guest tents in the evenings via solar power. Each tent has a private terrace with a fantastic view over the Wadi Rum Mountains.

Accommodation: Your own luxury desert tent within the camp


Day 12 – Sunday 15th Oct

WADI RUM – PETRA (B/D)

After waking up in the unique surrounds of the Bedouin camp this morning, you will enjoy a walk around the area (the length of the walk will depend on how energetic you are feeling) before scaling one of the large dunes to enjoy sensational views of the surrounding area. Keen photographers will be delighted. You will then continue your journey to the fabled city of Petra (approx. 2.5 hrs). On arrival there is time in the afternoon to check out the town that has grown up around the site, and to just relax… ready for a big day of exploring Petra tomorrow.

Accommodation: Your own room at P. Quattro Hotel or similar


Day 13 – Monday 16th Oct

PETRA (B/D)

Petra is justifiably on most people’s list of ‘must-visit’ places. It is the jewel of Jordan, the lost city of the biblical Nabateans, an impressive series of tombs and dwellings hidden behind ornate façades carved directly into the rock. Dating back to the 6th century BC, the site was lost to Western minds until it was rediscovered in 1812 by a Swiss explorer. The iconic Petra view is arguably the single most striking sight of the entire region. The first taste of this exquisite craftsmanship among such stark scenery is a moment that manages to be both eagerly anticipated and also an almost surreal surprise. The Siq leads through the rock and is sometimes only a few metres wide, with walls soaring up to 180 metres on either side, and it is impossible not to imagine the armies and traders who made their way down here in the ancient times. Petra’s greatest surprise, however, is its size. With your guide you will explore the old Roman road, amphitheatre and several old tombs. You will also climb up to the second beautiful façade of the Monastery, from where you will have a magnificent view of the entire site. This is a memorable day exploring a truly extraordinary destination- a highlight of your trip. Later in the afternoon we return to our hotel where it won’t take much convincing to try a soothing traditional Turkish bath. The rest of the day will be at your leisure—perhaps take the chance to witness Petra by night- seeing it lit up by flickering candle light while Bedouin music plays is a magical experience.

Accommodation: Your own room at P. Quattro Hotel or similar


Day 14 – Tuesday 17th Oct

PETRA – AMMAN (B)

Petra is an incredible site and almost demands more than one visit. If you want to see more, then get up early to soak in the dramatic setting, walk to extra sites like the High Place of Sacrifice, and just try to comprehend the history and life of a city that was once able to challenge the might of Rome. Later, the ancient Crusader castle at Shobak makes as imposing sight as you make the short drive up to it. It was originally built to protect the eastern flank of the Latin Kingdom and its trade routes to the sea before it fell to Saladin in 1189 AD. Stroll the site and discover a small chapel, original gatehouse, and find out where a long, dark secret passage leads. Continue half an hour to the ancient village at Dana, on the edge of the Dana Biosphere Reserve, where local artisans sell attractive silver jewellery and charms. Drive on to Madaba (approx. 3 hrs), home to a number of fine Byzantine mosaics. Visit the Greek Orthodox Church of St. George and see an impressive mosaic map of the Holy Land that clearly depicts Palestine and Lower Egypt around 550 AD. We will arrive in to Amman in the late afternoon, where you can spend the evening in one of its several fine restaurants.

Note: Please be aware that Kerak Castle is not included in your tour, as it is often very congested and busy. However, if there is sufficient interest among members of the group, your leader can also arrange an optional visit to Kerak Castle. Many travellers however prefer to spend extra time in Amman.

Accommodation: Your own room at Toledo Hotel or similar


Day 15 – Wednesday 18th Oct

AMMAN (B/L/D)

Today you will leave Amman for a short drive north (approx. 1 hr) to Jerash, once one of the grandest ancient Roman cities in the world. These are some of the best Greco-Roman ruins around. Reaching its zenith as a favourite of the emperor Hadrian, it has a striking collection of archways and theatres, baths, public buildings and colonnaded streets, and is a beautiful place to spend a morning exploring. Grand ionic columns encircle the city’s centrepiece, the Oval Plaza, a wonderfully atmospheric place to linger after exploring Jerash’s riches. You better have packed your swim gear, because in the afternoon you can wash off the dust from exploring ruins with a dip like no other. Drive approx. 1.5 hrs to spend the afternoon on the shores of the Dead Sea. Named for the scarcity of life in its waters, this lake is so intensely salty that the density of the water makes swimming and getting underneath the surface very difficult. Floating on the surface without any sort of lilo makes for a unique pleasure though. Maybe grab a handful of the shoreline’s mud and slick it over your body on the way back in—it’s full of nutrient-rich natural minerals and will leave your skin feeling luxurious. Afterwards you will return to Amman for the evening (approx. 1 hr journey). Tonight the group will spend their farewell night together at one of the many restaurants and bars in West Amman, or ask your leader about the traditional cafés dotted around the city where locals spend their evenings.

Accommodation: Your own room at Toledo Hotel or similar


Day 16 – Thursday 19th Oct

AMMAN DEPARTURE DAY (B)

After breakfast our tour ends as we transfer to the airport for our flight home, or onwards for further adventures. Alternatively, we can organise for you to stay for a night or two longer in Amman if you wish.

TOUR PRICING $8,900 PLUS INTERNATIONAL AIRFARES AND TAXES

TOUR DATES: 4TH – 19th OCTOBER 2023

Novotel Cairo El Borg

The hotel that makes every moment matter…

Feel welcome at Novotel Cairo El Borg. Taking your family to experience the vibrant city of Cairo, Our hotel is your preferred home with well-equipped Superior Rooms overlooking the great River Nile and Cairo tower, At central location at the Downtown.” -Hotel Manager

Novotel Cairo El Borg is a contemporary 4-star hotel with panoramic views over the Nile. Centrally located, the hotel is within walking distance of the Opera House and Egyptian Museum. After immersing yourself in Egyptian culture with a visit to the iconic Pyramids and the Sphinx, cool down in the pool or relax with a massage at Novotel . ALLSAFE hygiene & prevention measures has been implemented to ensure a healthy and safe environment for our guests and employees. Cairo’s clean and efficient Metro takes you to many points of interest in the city, while the unmissable Pyramids of Giza and the Great Sphinx are just 18 km away. Enjoy the best panoramic views of the river Nile. Novotel Cairo EL Borg is located in the heart of Cairo, few minutes from Cairo top attractions. Novotel Cairo El Borg hotel in Cairo ticks all the boxes for a pleasant stay with panoramic views over the Nile, and proximity to Opera House & Egyptian Museum.

 

Basma Hotel

Enjoy Aswan’s Magnificent Views from The Comfort Of Your Room

Basma Hotel is located on the highest point of Aswan next to the famous pharaonic monuments and overlooking the beautiful greenery and the amazing Nile Views. From the moment you step in, you are surrounded by authentic unique art. Hand-painted walls and ceilings immediately give you a head start on the beauty you will enjoy during your stay. Basma Hotel is the place to be in Aswan. We provide rooms and hospitality that are top-class in our category. We cater to your comfort and happiness above all. When you choose to stay with Basma, you choose peace, happiness, and simplicity, which is also what Aswan is all about. Basma Hotel provides a wide range of dining experiences and is a magnet for food lovers. At each and every restaurant is a variety of quality world cuisines, with a flare of our chef’s creativity to bring you something truly unique.

 

Toledo Hotel

“Welcome to your home in Amman. The staff will go to great lengths to ensure comfort and great service. We spend a great deal of effort and time to train the staff “the art of hospitality”. The word “cannot” is not in our vocabulary. Whether the request is accommodation/hotel related or concerns getting around the city, the “can I help you!” attitude is instilled in each member of our staff, and I guarantee it.” -Hakam Barakat, General Manager Toledo Amman Hotel

Toledo Amman Hotel is situated in the heart of Amman, on the edge of the old city center and within walking distance to the new downtown. Toledo Amman Hotel is only few minutes away from major historical and biblical sites, in addition only a two minute walk to the future entertainment center “Al Abdali Boulevard”.

City Tower Hotel

City Tower Hotel is strategically located by Middle Beach of Aqaba opposite Arab Revaluation Square. Offering luxurious modern room and suites, with an ambience decorated for your comfort. Making each stay unforgettable, for you and you family. We are the hotel of choice for both the leisure and business travellers searching for an authentic experience, which meets with the local culture. Our Hotel benefits from 72 well appointed rooms each with it’s own facilities, with lift accessibility to all floors. All of our rooms are restful, each beautifully furnished with a carefully considered colour scheme. It is perfect if you value privacy and welcome friendly service, dignity, security and comfort.

P. Quattro Hotel

P. Quattro Relax Hotel is located in the rose city Petra, in the heart of the city center, entertainment and shopping district, the hotel is 5 minutes drive from the main gate of Petra. We go all out to make your stay or event as remarkable and memorable as possible, because your comfort is our satisfaction. The epitome of luxury and comfort, the guests will experience the city life, the magnificent and commanding views in our roof terrace of the city skyline.

Cairo

Cairo is the capital of Egypt and, with a total population in excess of 16 million people, one of the largest cities in both Africa and the Middle East (the regions which it conveniently straddles). It is also the 19th largest city in the world, and among the world’s most densely populated cities.

On the Nile river, Cairo is famous for its own history, preserved in the fabulous medieval Islamic city and Coptic sites in Old Cairo. The Egyptian Museum in the centre of town is a must see, with its countless Acient Egyptian artefacts, as is shopping at the Khan al-Khalili bazaar. No trip to Cairo would be complete, for example, without a visit to the Giza Pyramids, and to the nearby Saqqara Pyramid Complex, where visitors will see Egypt’s first step pyramid built by the architect Imhotep for the third dynasty Pharaoh, Djoser.

Though firmly attached to the past, Cairo is also home to a vibrant modern society. The Midan Tahrir area situated in downtown Cairo area, built in the 19th century under the rule of Khedive Ismail, has strived to be a “Paris on the Nile”. There also are a number of more modern suburbs including Ma’adi and Heliopolis, while Zamalek is a quiet area on Gezira Island, with upmarket shopping. Cairo is best in the fall or spring, when the weather isn’t so hot. A felucca ride on the Nile is a good way to escape from the busy city, as is a visit to Al-Azhar Park.

 

Aswan

Located about 899 km south from Cairo, Aswan is a serene Nile Valley destination where the Nile is more majestic than anywhere else, flowing through granite rocks, and round emerald islands covered in palm groves and tropical plants. It is considered as an all-time favourite winter destination. Moreover, you’ll be surprised to see how many monuments and sites this small city has to offer. Consider sailing to the temple of Philae, seeing the Agha Khan Mausoleum and taking an excursion to St. Simeon Monastery. Egypt’s sunniest southern city is the perfect destination to stroll and relax in a magical cultural setting: wander down the broad walkway, locally known as the corniche, to watch feluccas slowly sailing the Nile then stop at one of the floating restaurants to enjoy Nubian music and freshly caught fish. Aswan offers a splendid view of the Nile and is a great starting point for a Nile cruise. Aswan also offers a rich cultural experience; you will get to know Nubian culture and shop for spices, henna tattoos, souvenirs and African handmade goods at the Aswan souk. The word Aswan derives in fact from the Ancient Egyptian word Soun meaning souk or trade. It has earned its name thanks to the city strategic position, on the trade route linking the North of Egypt to its South. Since Ancient times, Aswan has also been known for its environmental therapy: burying the aching parts of your body in Aswan sand gives valuable results and can help relieving you from stubborn ailments such as rheumatism, arthritis, joint edema and skin inflammation. The town climate is also known to have great relaxing and rejuvenating properties.The best times to visit Aswan are May and September, summers are scorching, and winter temperatures have been known to reach 27 during the day, with cold nights.

 

Amman

Amman is the capital and largest city of the Hashemite Kingdom of Jordan with a population of more than four million. Amman forms a great base for exploring not just Jordan, but the wider region as well and does, despite popular belief, offer much that is of interest to the traveller. The city is generally reasonably well-organized, enjoys great weather for much of the year and the people are very friendly. Although Amman can be difficult to penetrate at first sight, the city holds many surprises for the visitor. Visit Amman’s Roman Amphitheatre, its many art galleries or the newly opened Jordan Museum, while an afternoon away on a chic cafe terrace, take a course in the University of Jordan or stay in luxurious hotels and dine on the region’s varied and delicious cuisine. Modern shopping malls are increasingly abundant in Jordan but open air souqs are what many travellers will remember most.

Amman is experiencing a massive (some would say: reckless) change from a quiet sleepy village to a bustling metropolis, some of whose neighbourhoods seem hell-bent on wanting to imitate Dubai. Amman’s roads have a reputation of being very steep and narrow in some of parts of the city but the city has state of the art highways and paved avenues. The steep terrain and heavy traffic remains challenging for pedestrians and for the rare cyclist. New resorts and hotels dot the city and there are many things for the traveller to see and do in and around Amman.

 

Wadi Rum

People have lived in Rum for thousands of years, struggling to survive in its harsh environment. They have been hunters, pastoralists, farmers and traders, as Rum is close to national borders. Even the famous Nabateans once occupied Rum, leaving behind several structures, including a temple.

Local people gained notoriety more recently when they joined the arab revolt forces under the leadership of king Faisal and fought along with Lawrence of Arabia during the Arab Revolt (1917/18) to fight the occupying Turkish and German armies. Lawrence himself makes many references to Wadi Rum in his book ‘The Seven Pillars of Wisdom’, a title apparently inspired by one of Rum’s imposing mountains. The exploits of Lawrence have become part of local folklore, and some popular tourist sites are named after him, although whether he used these exact sites is open to debate.

Virtually all the people living in and around Wadi Rum today are of Bedouin origin and, until recently, led nomadic lives, relying on their goat herds. They are resourceful, hospitable people who are largely responsible for developing Wadi Rum as a tourist destination.

Recognizing the unique natural and cultural history of Wadi Rum and the vital importance of tourism to the local economy, the government of Jordan declared Wadi Rum a protected area in 1998. With support from the World Bank they commissioned the Royal Society for the Conservation of Nature, a national NGO, to prepare a conservation plan and build a team of local people to manage the area. This team is now under the Aqaba Special Economic Zone Authority and is pioneering ways to restore and safeguard Rum’s sensitive desert habitats from ever-increasing human pressure

 

Petra

The Nabatean Kingdom chose Petra as it capital around the 6th century BCE, carving what is one of the greatest wonders of the world out of the unique reddish rock that this region of Jordan is built upon. The extensive city was one of the most advanced of its time, with water management systems, and extensive and enormous monuments and features. When the Nabatean Kingdom was absorbed into the Roman Empire, the Romans continued to develop the city and it remained an important point on several trade routes including the ancient Spice Route.

An earthquake hit Petra around 660 AD, and with vital infrastructure destroyed, the city was abandoned and largely forgotten, until 1812 when the first Westerner, a Swiss explorer named Johann Ludwig Burckhardt discovered it. At this point, Bedouins had made the city their own, living in the caves and ruins. Over the next 200 years, more explorers and archaeologists uncovered parts of the city, with Scottish explorer David Roberts being the first to chronicle the city in 1839. It wasn’t until the 1920’s however, that excavations began in Petra, and more of the city was uncovered, and more recently, that the Bedouin population moved out of the site itself following its designation as a UNESCO World Heritage Site.

Today Petra is a National Park, and the most popular tourist site in Jordan. Managed by a conservation trust, the site is extensive, and for those who wish to really explore in depth, a few days is required. Most visitors, however, come to Petra for one or two days, and see the main highlights and famous points including the Treasury, the Siq, and the Monastery.

Tour Inclusions:

  • Two’s a Crowd Tour Host
  • 11 nights’ accommodation in your own hotel room, as well as 3 nights onboard the MS Nile Radamis in your own cabin, 1 night in the desert in your own Bedouin-style tent, and 1 night in your  own cabin onboard a sleeper train
  • Meals as per itinerary (B=breakfast, L=lunch, D=dinner, S=supper)
  • Return group transfers from airport to hotel at the start and end of the tour
  • All transport as detailed in the itinerary by comfortable air-conditioned bus, riverboat, and sleeper train
  • Professional English-speaking guide throughout
  • All sightseeing, guided tours, and entrance fees as detailed in the itinerary
  • Solo room – always!

Tour Exclusions:

  • Travel Insurance (we can assist)
  • International/domestic flights to the start/end of the tour
  • Expenses of a personal nature, such as laundry, taxis, souvenirs, and phone calls
  • Meals and drinks not included in the itinerary
  • Pre- and post-tour accommodation (we can assist)
  • Visa costs (if applicable)
  • Any tours listed as “Optional Tours” (and are subject to change, depending on weather and schedule changes)
  • Gratuities (optional)

 

 

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What Our Clients Say

20 out of 10!

The trip was just great - I can't really think of any negatives. Diane will back me up when I say I usually give 10/10s - I gave her 20/10. Trish, Canada/Alaska

Excellent trip

I found the overall trip excellent. I believe Diane's professionalism, inclusive personality and ability to relate to all contributed to this. She worked to ensure the group was cohesive without individuals impinging on the personal space of others etc. a good skill to have and one she applied effectively. Kate, Canada/Alaska

Fantastic value for money

Fantastic value for money paid. Russell our guide is an asset to your company... he was fantastic! Overall the trip was magical from start to finish. Well done Two's a Crowd ... the best trip ever. Barbara, Canada/Alaska

Fantastic first solo trip

I had a fantastic trip. Absolutely loved Canada and Alaska. It's the first time I have travelled solo and was pleasantly surprised to find a bunch of people that all got on so well. Diane our host was great. She did a good job of getting us altogether for meals, excursions, shopping trips etc. I liked that she quietly got things done without being loud or "in-your-face". She was good at being one of us as well as our leader. Wendy, Canada/Alaska

Good balance of activities and spare time

Had a great time. Good mixture of organised activities and spare time. Diane was an excellent tour host. Russell the tour guide was great, very knowledgeable and personable with his insights into growing up and living in Canada. Sharon, Canada/Alaska

Well organised trip with an excellent host

The trip was well organised, with a good mix of activity and free time. The scenery was spectacular and fellow travellers were a great bunch. Diane is a excellent host - helpful, courteous and above all a pleasure to know. I found her bubbly personality a bonus and can only speak highly of her. Gary, Canada/Alaska

I had a fabulous time

I had a fabulous time. Lake Louise and the hotel were magnificent. The cruise was excellent. Diane made sure that she was available for group meals and sightseeing, and was alway in good humour and great fun. I would recommend your company to everyone and am very interested in the Scandinavia  tour at the end of 2017.

Cathy, Adelaide - Canada/Alaska May 2016

Great holiday

What a great trip! I experienced so much and participated in all that was offered. I had read and reviewed as much as time allowed me but was not prepared for what the trip gave me and that is a better understanding of the beautiful people of both countries. - Lesley on Vietnam/Cambodia

In good company

I thought the suggestions for optional things to do, in the "free" time were very good. So good, we really ended up with very little free time. So much to do! - Mary on Vietnam

Great time together

I found the trip interesting and eye opening with a great overview of both Vietnam and Cambodia. The other travellers on the trip were fabulous and we had a great time together. - Anonymous on Vietnam/Cambodia

Fantastic first experience!

Extremely well organised with fabulous guides throughout - especially in Vietnam! First holiday with your company and certainly not the last. - Glenys on Vietnam

Great group to travel with

Having a small group meant that the days were more relaxed and flexible and I really felt spoilt and looked after. Melinda on Borneo

Thoroughly enjoyed Uganda

Thoroughly enjoyed my trip especially Uganda. There was so much variety of things to do on this trip. Jaros & Julius were great. Thought in Kenya the Maasai Mara were beautiful people, so easy to get along with. Judy

Can’t stop talking about my experience

I just feel so privileged to have shared with the Maasai the most awe-inspiring majestic sights and sounds of Africa. The fantastic memories will be with me forever. Maureen

Absolutely enjoyable

Gillian was a fantastic host. She was there for us from the moment we reached Hotel Troy. Heather on Africa

Best holiday I’ve been on!

One of the best holidays that I have been on - really well organised. I would never have travelled to Vietnam or Cambodia on my own. Bronwyn

Well organised

Fun, well organised and a really great group. Barbara on Vietnam/Cambodia

Great time together

I found the trip interesting and eye opening with a great overview of both Vietnam and Cambodia. The other travellers on the trip were fabulous and we had a great time together.

Great value

Well done. No complaints. Very pleased with this trip. Great value for my hard earned dollars! Really enjoyed the [Vietnam/Cambodia] tour. 

Fabulous rapport filled with much humour!

A great bunch of people & I can't believe how we all had such a fabulous rapport filled with much humour!!!

I couldn’t fault anything.

The (Uniworld River) cruise was great, I met up with some wonderful people who treated me like part of the family !
The ship & crew were fantastic & the excursions were very good, I couldn't fault anything. I'd recommend this cruise to anyone.  Peter

Informative and educational

The entire trip was one of the most enjoyable and exciting. Also so informative and educational. I was so pleased to make the trip. Wish I was over there in that magical place.  Marjorie

Delighted

I’ve just returned from the wonderful Kimberley trip.  It was my first experience with Two’s a Crowd and I was delighted.  Kay

Opportunity to experience

I have had the opportunity to experience things I would never had done by myself.  Solo travellers is a fantastic concept and use of social media has been a great way to share and keep in touch with friends and family. Judi

I need not have worried

Being my first tour and a senior member, I admit I was apprehensive but I need not have worried. It was great and I was very well looked after.  Can’t wait to go to Kenya with Two’s a Crowd.  Maureen

Smooth and seamless

A memorable trip of a lifetime, a wish fulfilled.  A fascinating cultural country steeped in history which I found totally enthralling.  Two’s a Crowd service was smooth and seamless.  Pam

A wonderful experience

It was a wonderful experience visiting Cambodia and Vietnam and gave me a better understanding of these countries. I had a great time with new friends, we had a good bunch and Leonie was the perfect host. Eric

Value for money

Value for money and outstanding co-operation from your staff and tour operators. Joan

Safe and secure and totally looked after

An awesome adventure for my first time overseas alone.  Leonie was excellent and both guides were also fantastic.  At all times I felt safe and secure and totally looked after.  Melinda

Well done Two’s a Crowd.

Leonie was an excellent host, the ideal person. I never felt any pressure to  be involved in every activity so I could explore alone during free time. Having 2 or 3 nights in most places was great – you could rest up or party. Well done Two’s a Crowd. Jenny

A completely different experience

It was a nice surprise holiday, a completely different experience from all my other holidays. Thanks. Piroska

I’ve had at least 10 travel agents.

In my travelling life, I’ve had at least 10 travel agents.  Two’s a Crowd is the first one where I haven’t had to correct anything in my travel documents.   Piroska

I’m so excited to have found you Two’s a Crowd.

“Finally. A travel company is recognising the needs of people like me”

This is perfect for me.

“I’ve been to Burma but can you please send me some information about other destinations. This is perfect for me.”

I really wanted to meet the people behind it

“I saw your ad in the local paper and could have phoned but I wanted to come in and congratulate you on starting this great business. I really wanted to meet the people behind it.”

Two’s a Crowd on the internet was definitely meant to be!

I’m really enthusiastic about the niche you are determined to cover in the market, and have the feeling stumbling on Two’s a Crowd on the internet was definitely meant to be.

I find them inspirational

Thanks for sending these emails as I find them inspirational and will sit dreaming for the next hour or so.

Thank you for providing a service for people like me

“I am very excited to read about your area of speciality, and look forward to devouring all information that might come my way. Thank you for providing a service for people like me.”

Excellent throughout.

The entire 14 days ran so smoothly from Two's a Crowd booking my flights to  airport transfers and then the 12 days camping in the Kimberley. Excellent throughout. Congratulations. Marjorie

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