It would be best if you didn’t visit Egypt without seeing the country’s ancient wonders. Lots of Egypt’s highlights can be visited while you are in Cairo, but some of the best that Egypt has to offer can be found in Luxor. If you have the time, we recommend a day trip (or longer) to Luxor. Luxor is one of the cultural highlights of Egypt. Luxor is where the pharaohs were buried inside the valley of the Kings. Where you can find the restored Hatshepsut temple and the largest ancient temple you can think of; the Temple of Karnak.
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Luxor is a must-see in Egypt and can ‘easily’ be reached from Cairo. It is only a one-hour flight away. If you book a day trip, you will leave for Luxor on the first flight in the morning and return late in the evening.
What to do in Luxor?
Luxor markets itself as the ‘world’s largest open-air museum’ and honors that nickname. Together with Cairo, the southern Egyptian city is home to the country’s most important sites. All the sites are UNESCO World Heritage sites and include the famous tomb of Tutankhamun.
Luxor is a southern Egyptian city built on the Nile’s banks. The East Bank contains multiple temples, the city’s souk, and most hotels. On Luxor’s West Bank, you can find the city’s most attractive sites, including the Valley of the Kings and Hatshepsut Temple. Each of these activities alone would be worth the one-day trip. A professional guide will accompany you during the journey and explain the different sites.
Valley of the Kings
The Valley of the Kings is where the pharaohs were buried after the ancient Egyptians stopped building pyramids for them. In the Valley of the Kings, you can feel like Indiana Jones as you enter historic tombs filled with well-preserved wall paintings. A standard ticket allows you to go insight three tombs. For 500 Egyptian Pounds extra, you can also enter the famous but relatively small tomb of Tutankhamun. In his tomb, you can see the Pharaoh’s mummy and sarcophagus.
Situated on the West Bank of the Nile, the Hatshepsut Temple is one of Egypt’s most picturesque sites. The temple was built for queen pharaoh Hatshepsut and is considered a ‘masterpiece of ancient architecture. The temple has been extensively reconstructed and is open to visitors.
Of all the temples you can visit in Egypt, we find Karnak temple to be the most impressive. Karnak is a vast temple complex where you can dwell for hours. It has an ancient pillar gallery, numerous statues, and a full boulevard of sphinxes starting from Karnak. Karnak by itself will make your trip to Luxor worth it.
Colossi of Memnon
The Colossi of Memnon are massive ancient statues of Pharaoh Amenhotep II. You will visit the figures on the way to Hatshepsut Temple and the Valley of the Kings. The sculptures themselves stand on a field that is still an active archeological site. Surrounding the statues, you can see archeologists working on restoring the rest of the area.
What is the best day trip from Hurghada to Luxor?
Booking a day trip to Luxor from Cairo is easy. You can basically book the trip at any tourist organization. Although the one-day trip can be booked anywhere, the price will be different every single time. That is why we recommend booking your day trip to Luxor online.
You can easily book a day trip online through a reliable booking website. You can hold the booking website accountable if something goes wrong. For example, when the trip is canceled or your driver doesn’t show up.
Egypt is the land of hustle, deals, and earning commissions. That makes booking the right hot air balloon experience for the right price a challenge. Prices vary heavily; whoever you book it with will earn a nice commission. We recommend booking your trips and excursions in advance and online. We recommend booking your trip either through Viator, owned by TripAdvisor, or the fast-growing booking company GetYourGuide.com.
How long is the flight from Cairo to Luxor?
The flight from Cairo to Luxor is about 1 hour. Alternatively, you can also travel to Luxor by night train but this will not be possible on a day trip to the Southern Egyptian city.
What to wear for your day trip to Luxor?
When you make a one-day trip to Luxor, we recommend wearing layers. Prepare for being outside a lot. Wear light trousers and a shirt with long sleeves to protect you against the sun. A cap or hat is highly recommended!
Best time to visit Luxor
Luxor lies in the south of Egypt in the middle of the desert. It can get scorching in Luxor during the summer months (June to September). To avoid extreme temperatures, the best time to travel is from October to March, which is peak season. The best time to travel to Luxor to avoid crowds is early or late in the peak season.
Is one day enough to visit Luxor?
A one-day trip to Luxor is better than not visiting the city. You can visit Luxor’s main sites in a single day. On a one-day trip to Luxor, you can visit Hatshepsut Temple, the Valley of the Kings, Karnak Temple, and maybe one or two other sites.
The honest answer would be that a one-day visit to Luxor isn’t enough. You will not be able to see all the glory of the ancient Egyptian’s side. You need at least one day to explore the West Bank, one day to explore the city’s East Bank, and another to really appreciate the vibe of life on the river Nile.
What will you visit on a day trip to Luxor?
Most one-day tours to Luxor will include the following sites and activities:
- Valley of the Kings
- Hatshepsut Temple
- Karnak Temple Complex
- Colossi of Memnon
- Option to cross the Nile on a Felucca sailing boat
- Lunch at a local restaurant
- Some free time to explore Luxor’s souk