The Ohio State University Alumni Association

Legends of the Nile

March 6 – March 17, 2018 Wait List Only

Details

Experience Egypt’s wonders on a ten-night, small-group journey, featuring a deluxe Nile cruise and luxurious accommodations in Cairo and Luxor.

On this once-in-a-lifetime journey, experience Egypt’s splendid cultural heritage and eternal allure. Contemplate the Great Pyramid in Giza and the enigmatic Sphinx. In Cairo, explore the Egyptian Museum’s dazzling treasures, discover its mosques, churches and synagogues, and revel in the old bazaar’s hubbub. Fly to Luxor and sail by felucca boat to the impressive Luxor Temple. Journey to the intriguing Valleys of the Kings and Queens. At the Oriental Institute’s Chicago House, learn about their meticulous epigraphic survey work. Then embark on a luxury Nile cruise to tour the temples of Karnak, Edfu and Kom Ombo. See Aswan’s High Dam and fly to Abu Simbel to witness Ramses’ colossal temple. Discuss what you are most curious about with your Egyptologist, a gifted, licensed professional who accompanies you on all excursions. While cruising, enjoy deluxe accommodations and generous meals, including wine with dinner. This ten-night, small-group program includes a Travel Director, four nights in a deluxe Cairo hotel and an overnight first-class hotel stay in Luxor.

Tour highlights and included features

  • Four nights in Cairo, Egypt, at the deluxe Four Seasons Hotel Cairo at Nile Plaza
  • One night in Luxor at the first-class Sonesta St. George Luxor Hotel
  • Four nights aboard the deluxe Sonesta St. George I
  • Day room in Cairo at the first-class Intercontinental City Stars Cairo
  • All transfers within the Land/Cruise Program: flights and deluxe motor coaches, including baggage handling
  • Extensive meal program featuring ten breakfasts, seven lunches and five dinners, including a Farewell Dinner onboard the ship; and wine with dinner
  • Discovery excursions highlight the local culture, heritage and history
  • An extremely knowledgeable, licensed Egyptologist travels with you on all excursions
  • Free time to pursue your own interests
  • Welcome and Farewell Receptions to mingle with fellow travelers
  • Clearly hear your English-speaking guide with your own VOX headset
  • Tipping of drivers and personnel at itinerary stops
  • Complimentary travel mementos

Dates March 6 – March 17, 2018 Wait List Only

Cost $4,795* (From price. Airfare is not included. All prices are per person, based on double occupancy, and early booking deadlines. Dates, itineraries, and prices are subject to change.)

Type Land and Cruise

Region Africa

Activity level

Host

Operator

Contact Addie Natalie
natalie.6@osu.edu
614-292-2372
800-852-TOUR (8687), ext. 3

Map

Experiences

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Itinerary

Depart gateway city

AHI FlexAir passengers depart for Cairo, Egypt. Please check your luggage from your gateway city to your arrival city. Your claim checks should have the following airport code: CAI.

If you have purchased only the Land/Cruise Program, please book flights that arrive on the first day of the Land/Cruise Program. The Land/Cruise Program dates appear at the top of your Reservation Confirmation.

Meals - Appropriate in-flight meal service

Arrive at Cairo International Airport. Proceed through immigration to the baggage claim area and retrieve your luggage. After completing customs, AHI FlexAir passengers traveling on flights that qualify for the group arrival transfer and Land/Cruise Program passengers who have purchased seats on the group transfer should exit the baggage claim area and proceed to the designated meeting spot, where an AHI Travel representative will meet them. The meeting location will be provided with your final documents.

Upon arrival, transfer to the Four Seasons Hotel Cairo at Nile Plaza. Please note if you arrive at the hotel before check-in time, your room may not be immediately available.

Accommodation - Four Seasons Hotel Cairo at Nile Plaza
Meals - Appropriate in-flight meal service

View on map

Begin each day of your adventure with a sumptuous breakfast.

Discovery: Egyptian Museum. This afternoon, tour the acclaimed Egyptian Museum, which contains the world’s most comprehensive collection of Egyptian artifacts, spanning 5,000 years of antiquity. More than 100,000 fascinating items are housed in its extensive halls, including royal mummies, sarcophagi and objects of everyday ancient life. In the Tutankhamen galleries, marvel at the glittering treasures from the tomb of the “boy king,” including his magnificent gold funerary mask.

This evening, become better acquainted with your fellow travelers and Travel Director at a Welcome Reception in the hotel.

Accommodation - Four Seasons Hotel Cairo at Nile Plaza
Meals - Breakfast

Discovery: The Pyramids of Giza. Today’s adventure takes you to the Great Pyramid of Giza, the sole surviving and oldest monument of the Seven Wonders of the Ancient World and a masterpiece of ingenious engineering. The largest of the three Old Kingdom pyramids in the complex, it was built for the pharaoh Khufu out of approximately 2.3 million massive blocks of stone. On guard nearby is the instantly recognizable and mysterious Sphinx, with the head of a pharaoh atop a reclining lion’s body, an imposing limestone sculpture 240 feet long and 66 feet high. In the Solar Boat Museum, see a cedar vessel thought to be over 4,500 years old that was intended as a means of transport for a pharaoh in the afterlife. Then learn about the ancient process of manufacturing papyrus at the Papyrus Institute.


Relax during lunch at a local restaurant.

Discovery: Sakkara. Journey to Sakkara, a vast burial site that served as the necropolis for the ancient capital of Memphis, and visit the Mastaba of Mereruka and the Pyramid Tomb of King Teti. Sakkara is also home to the Step Pyramid of Djoser, considered the first pyramid. Traditionally, royal tombs had been rectangular and flat-roofed structures, known as mastabas, the Arabic word for bench. Over King Djoser’s 20-year reign, his architect and builders adopted a new plan of adding six stepped layers of stone above the mastaba. When it was completed around 2611 B.C., it was the tallest structure of its time.

Accommodation - Four Seasons Hotel Cairo at Nile Plaza
Meals - Breakfast and lunch

View on map

Discovery: Islamic and Coptic Cairo. Discover the many mosques, churches and temples of Islamic and Coptic Cairo. Begin your day with visits to the Hanging Church, the city’s most famous Coptic Christian church, and the Church of St. Sergius, believed to be built over a cave where Mary, Joseph and Jesus once rested after fleeing to Egypt. Step inside the the historic Ben Ezra Synagogue, once a Coptic Christian church and now one of the most-visited Jewish sites in Cairo.

While in the area, see beautiful rice-straw paper being made by hand at the El-Nafeza Foundation, a cooperative artisan workshop that provides training and job opportunities for impoverished people.

Then delve into the colorful and exhilarating Khan el Khalili bazaar on your own for an exotic shopping experience filled with sensory delights, followed by lunch in a local restaurant.

After lunch, pass through the walls of the Citadel, a medieval Islamic fortress complex, to visit the Mosque of Mohammed Ali, also known as the Alabaster Mosque. Conclude your day at the grand Al-Rifai Mosque, one of Cairo’s largest, where many members of Egypt’s modern royal family are entombed.

Accommodation - Four Seasons Hotel Cairo at Nile Plaza
Meals - Breakfast and lunch

Early this morning, check out of the hotel and transfer to Cairo’s airport for your flight to Luxor.

Discovery: Luxor Museum. Through the museum’s informative and elegantly displayed exhibits, experience the glory of ancient Thebes as you admire artifacts collected from its temples and necropolis.

Afterward, check in to the Sonesta St. George Hotel Luxor.

Discovery: The Temple of Luxor. Drift peacefully under the graceful sails of a felucca boat on the calm waters of the Nile River, and arrive at Luxor Temple, impressively situated on the banks of the river. The temple’s construction began during the reign of Amenhotep III, and subsequent rulers, including Tutankhamen, Horemheb, Ramses II and Alexander the Great, added to it until 323 B.C. During the summer Opet Festival, Thebes’ most significant religious festival, statues of several revered deities were transported to this temple in processions from the Temple of Karnak.

Accommodation - Sonesta St. George Hotel Luxor
Meals - Breakfast, lunch and dinner

After breakfast, check out of the hotel.

Discovery: Luxor’s West Bank ~ The Valleys of the Kings and Queens. Visit the intriguing Valleys of the Kings and Queens, where New Kingdom pharaohs and their families awaited immortality. These once-hidden tombs were designed to resemble the passage to the underworld. Amazingly, the hieroglyphics that adorn the walls still spring to life with vibrant color. Explore several tombs, including that of the legendary King Tutankhamen. Then, below dramatic limestone cliffs, walk up the ramp that leads into the striking Temple of Queen Hatshepsut, designed with sweeping, colonnaded terraces. Afterward, stop at an alabaster workshop. Continue to the tomb of Amun-her-Khepeshef with its superbly preserved murals, and then gaze up at the majestic Colossi of Memnon.

Travel to the pier to begin your Nile River cruise. Board the Sonesta St George I and enjoy lunch.

Discovery: The Epigraphic Survey, Oriental Institute, University of Chicago (The Chicago House). Enjoy an exclusive visit to the Chicago House in Luxor, whose mission is the preservation of Egypt’s ancient cultural heritage through documentation, conservation and restoration. Founded in 1924, the Chicago House has completed epigraphic surveys of important archaeological sites in and around Luxor and has produced numerous publications of ancient Egyptian monuments. These publications often represent the only reliable scientific documentation of endangered and deteriorating monuments. Learn more about their important work and see their unique documentation methods firsthand.

This evening, after your dinner onboard ship, enjoy a belly-dancing performance.

Accommodation - Sonesta St. George I
Meals - Breakfast, lunch and dinner

Discovery: The Temple of Karnak. This morning, visit the Karnak Temple, an enormous complex spread across 60 acres. Within this important ancient religious center are numerous pylons, halls, smaller temples and chapels. In the Temple of Amun-Ra, feel dwarfed by the veritable forest of 134 gigantic sandstone columns as you wander through its great hypostyle hall.

After lunch on the ship, sail through the Esna Lock, then enjoy the remainder of the day at leisure onboard.

Accommodation - Sonesta St. George I
Meals - Breakfast, lunch and dinner

View on map

Pursue your own interests this morning as you cruise to Edfu. Relax on deck and watch the tranquil Nile scenery unfold. On the fertile green shores, oxen pull carts, donkeys carry loads of hay and local fishermen, anchored by slender rushes of reeds, athletically hurl their nets through the air.

Discovery: The Temple of Horus at Edfu. Go ashore at Edfu to visit the Temple of Horus, built circa 237 B.C. and completed almost 200 years later. The well-preserved reliefs that decorate the walls and columns have provided valuable details to historians about ancient religious rituals and political life.

This afternoon, the ship sails to Kom Ombo. After lunch, gain insights during an engaging discussion with an Egyptologist.

Discovery: Temple of Sobek and Haroeris. Arrive at Kom Ombo to visit the unusual double temple complex of Sobek and Haroeris. The building’s symmetrical ground plan unifies two adjacent temples, one dedicated to the crocodile-headed Sobek, god of fertility, and the other to the falcon-headed Haroeris, god of the sky.

Tonight, enjoy a traditional Nubian show on the ship.



Accommodation - Sonesta St. George I
Meals - Breakfast, lunch and dinner

View on map

This morning, the ship docks in Aswan, where it remains for the day. After breakfast, transfer to Aswan’s airport for your flight to Abu Simbel.

Discovery: Abu Simbel. Visit the colossal Great Temple of Ramses II, a monument commemorating triumphs over the Nubians, Hittites and Syrians. Marvel not only at the gargantuan size of this structure as you notice how the meandering tourists appear Lilliputian, but also at the mammoth feat of engineering that was required to reconstruct it on this higher ground, overlooking the Nile waters amassed by the Aswan Dam. Equally captivating is the smaller, neighboring temple dedicated to the goddess Hathor, one of the country’s best preserved temples.

Return to the airport at Abu Simbel for the return flight to Aswan. The afternoon is at your leisure.

This evening, delight in a Farewell Reception and Dinner onboard the ship.

Accommodation - Sonesta St. George I
Meals - Breakfast, lunch and dinner

After breakfast, disembark the ship.

Discovery: The Temple of Philae and the Aswan High Dam. Board a felucca and sail to the island temple complex of Philae, dedicated to the goddess Isis. When the rising waters of the High Dam threatened the complex’s beautiful structures in the 1970s, they were dismantled and reassembled on higher ground about 500 meters from their original site. Continue to the High Dam itself, an engineering marvel built in the 1960s, which has helped to control the Nile’s annual flooding and improved the nation’s power supply.

Transfer to Aswan’s airport for your flight to Cairo. Upon arrival, check in to the InterContinental CityStars Cairo and enjoy the remainder of the day at leisure.

Accommodation - InterContinental CityStars Cairo
Meals - Breakfast

*Itinerary subject to change due to local conditions.

Contact

Contact Addie Natalie at Ohio State Alumni Tours:
Phone: 614-292-2372 or 800-852-TOUR (8687), ext. 3
Email: natalie.6@osu.edu

Space is limited. Book your tour now!