Departure Lounge Founder Keith Waldon has a long love affair with Egypt, which he has visited several times. On February 27, 2021, Keith is hosting a Founder’s Journey for select Departure Lounge clients on Uniworld’s new luxury river ship, the S.S. Sphinx, the nicest vessel on the Nile, combined with pre and post river cruise stays at the Four Seasons in Cairo. The timing of the trip is specially planned to allow the group to visit the new Grand Egyptian Museum, an incredible vast new showcase for 50,000 artifacts, including the first exhibition of the full tomb collection of King Tutankhamun. The collection includes about 5000 items in total and will be relocated from the Egyptian Museum in Cairo. Other objects will be relocated from storages and museums in Luxor, Minya, Sohag, Assiut, Beni Suef, Fayoum, the Delta, and Alexandria. So many of these antiquities will be seen by the public for the first time.
The 12-day journey showcases the best of Egypt and should be considered a true trip of a lifetime. Below are the itinerary details and pricing. Space is limited, as the S.S. Sphinx only features 42 accommodations. Egypt is very much in demand currently, and this sailing will quickly sell out.
CAIRO TO CAIRO
DAY 1: Cairo
Arrive at Cairo International Airport. If your cruise/tour package includes a group arrival transfer or if you have purchased a private arrival transfer, a Uniworld representative will be on hand to greet you and escort you to the opulent Four Seasons Hotel Cairo at Nile Plaza.
Note: For Arrival, Departure and Transfer details, please visit Uniworld.com/transfers. For Port Location details, please visit Uniworld.com/ports.
DAY 2: Cairo
The ancient quarter of Cairo is intense—the colors, the sounds, the density of people—and it’s likely been this way for thousands of years. Your local expert will show you a 12th-century citadel, the beautiful Alabaster Mosque and an unsurpassed collection of priceless artifacts, including mind-boggling treasures once buried with the boy king Tutankhamen. The highlight of today will be a visit to the new Grand Egyptian Museum.
Citadel of Salah al-Din, Alabaster Mosque and Grand Egyptian Museum
Note: Dressing modestly is recommended as a show of respect for the culture and customs of the Egyptian people. In particular, women should ensure that shoulders are covered and legs are concealed at least to the knee on all shore excursions throughout this itinerary.
DAY 3: Cairo, Fly to Luxor (Embark) Cruising the Nile River, Dendera
Prepare to be amazed at the legendary Temple of Karnak, a massive and absolutely astounding site, with gigantic columns, broad avenues lined with stone sphinxes and halls of truly epic proportions. This evening, you’ll revel in a Welcome Reception and Dinner onboard.
Temple at Karnak
Note: Flights to Luxor depart early in the morning to take advantage of more favorable weather and traffic conditions, and to optimize tour scheduling.
DAY 4: Dendera, Cruising the Nile River, Luxor
Like its twin shrine, the Temple of Karnak, the Temple of Luxor stands on the site of ancient Thebes, the once flourishing capital of Egypt’s New Kingdom. It was built over hundreds of years and even in ruins it is still an extraordinary place. You’ll also visit the Temple of Hathor, dedicated to the goddess of love and beauty.
Temple of Hathor
Temple of Luxor
DAY 5: Luxor, Cruising the Nile River, Kom Ombo
The word “colossal” will take on a whole new meaning after today’s excursion to the gigantic twin statues known as the Colossi of Memnon. And that’s just the beginning—you’ll also visit the temple of one of Egypt’s rare female pharaohs as well as the Valley of the Kings, used as a royal burial place for nearly 500 years and where the mummified remains of Tutankhamen are on display.
Colossi of Memnon, Hatshepsut Temple and Valley of the Kings
DAY 6: Kom Ombo, Cruising the Nile River, Aswan
After visiting a temple dedicated to a crocodile god today (don’t miss the display of some of the 300 mummified crocs found in the local area), hop aboard a small boat for a bird-watching excursion along the Nile.
Kom Ombo Temple
Bird watching boat ride and tea with a Nubian family
DAY 7: Aswan
Today is an epic day, filled with wonders from start to finish. You’ll visit a marvel of modern engineering—the Aswan High Dam—as well as the Unfinished Obelisk and the beautiful Philae Temple complex, which was moved from one island to another back in the 1970s. But wait, there’s more. You’ll also take a ride in a felucca—a traditional Egyptian sailboat—and enjoy afternoon tea at a famous hotel depicted in Agatha Christie’s novel Death on the Nile.
Aswan High Dam, Unfinished Obelisk and Philae Temple
Boat ride in traditional Nile River felucca and afternoon tea at the Old Cataract Hotel Aswan
After dinner onboard this evening, you’ll be treated to an enchanting Nubian show featuring traditionally attired performers, live music and dancing.
DAY 8: Aswan, Cruising the Nile River, Kom Ombo, Edfu
Spend the day at leisure or join us for an optional excursion to see the magnificent temples of Abu Simbel.
DAY 9: Esna, Cruising the Nile River, Luxor
On today’s excursion, you’ll learn how the Temple of Esna was buried under debris for many centuries and is one of the last great Egyptian temples ever built. Your Egyptologist guide will share all sorts of fascinating insights about this significant cultural site and show you the façade bearing the last known hieroglyphic inscriptions ever recorded in Egypt.
Temple of Esna
Later, savor the Nile’s majestic scenery as the ship cruises to Luxor.
DAY 10: Luxor (Disembark), Fly to Cairo
Disembark in Luxor and transfer to the airport for your return flight to Cairo. Then, check in to the Four Seasons Hotel at Nile Plaza where you’ll have time to relax before tonight’s Farewell Dinner at the elegant Mena House Hotel.
Farewell Dinner at the Mena House
Note: Flights to Cairo depart early in the morning to take advantage of more favorable weather and traffic conditions, and to optimize tour scheduling.
DAY 11: Cairo
It’s a day of Bucket List Moments today as we venture to Ancient Memphis, a UNESCO World Heritage Site with a number of amazing monuments to see—including the enigmatic Great Sphinx. After seeing the pyramids from afar last evening, you’ll have a thrilling opportunity to view them from an up-close perspective, the only way to fully appreciate their remarkable size and grandeur.
Ancient Memphis sites, including the Pyramids of Giza, the Great Sphinx and Sakkara visit
DAY 12: Depart Cairo
Check out of your hotel and transfer to the Cairo International Airport for your flight home, or extend your trip with a memorable optional extension in Jerusalem.
Note: Ship schedule and order of sightseeing my change throughout the itinerary. Tour to port of destination by motorcoach and substitute visits to other sites may occur during your trip due to the impact of water levels, closures because of public holidays or other uncontrollable factors.
Beginning Of Itinerary In Cairo: February 27, 2021 for 12 days
FRENCH BALCONY $5,999 per person/double occupancy SOLD OUT/WAITLIST ONLY
DELUXE FRENCH BALCONY $6,699 per person/double occupancy SOLD OUT/WAITLIST ONLY
SUITE $7,499 per person/double occupancy SOLD OUT/WAITLIST ONLY
GRAND SUITE $8,499 per person/double occupancy
ROYAL SUITE $8,999 per person/double occupancy
Reservations and Payments: A deposit of at least 10% of the cruise-tour fare (cruise-tour, plus port charge, plus pre and or post land extensions, less applicable discounts), per person is required within 72 hours of reservation. Final payment is due at least 120 days prior to departure. Reservations will be canceled if final payment is not received in a timely manner. Purchasing travel insurance is strongly recommended. Book by June 30, 2020 and receive 5% off Suites and 10% off all other categories if you pay in full, non-refundable.
Departure Lounge clients will receive $300 shipboard credit on this sailing.
To reserve your space, contact your Departure Lounge travel advisor today. If you do not have a Departure Lounge travel advisor, contact Founder Keith Waldon at [email protected]