With the severest parts of the COVID-19 pandemic hopefully behind us, most travel enthusiasts are making plans again. So are we! We will take multiple trips this year. The one we are most enthusiastic about? A late October trip to Egypt.
While making an itinerary, we found out it isn’t easy or straightforward. There are some hard choices that have been made. We believe in traveling slowly to experience your destination truly. Unfortunately, you can’t do it all. We balanced the whole Egyptian cultural experience and relaxing vacation with this itinerary. We did decide to skip the Red Sea.
More about Egypt
- Egypt: where to go?
- Our luxury Egypt 10-day itinerary
- Egypt Travel Guides & Books
- Best time to visit Egypt
- Best tours & Excursions in Cairo
- Egypt tips & tricks
- Egypt: Beach or Culture?
Our choice: focus on Egypt's cultural and historic highlights with more than a touch of luxury.
When we started planning, we wanted to combine the archeological highlights of Egypt with a few days on the beach. We thought that would be the perfect combination of a cultural vacation and relaxation. But we quickly found out we would have to make lots of compromises on both goals. This is why:
On the photo you can see the Mövenpick Aswan hotel. This is a hotel that we intend to visit on our 10-day luxury Egyptian vacation on the Nile.
Option 1: Culture first, relaxation later
When we opted for a cultural vacation ending on the beaches of the Red Sea, we thought about splitting up the holiday in two. We looked into options such as flying into Cairo, then flying, or taking the train, to Luxor, and then taking a train to Hurghada from where we would fly out of the country again. That option would limit our stay in Cairo to maybe one full day and a maximum of two days in Luxor just to be on the beach for three days. We thought that was too much hassle. It would mean we travel on most of the days.
Option 2: Relaxation with cultural excursions
The second option that we considered was making Hurghada the trip’s base. A hotel for one week and then take excursions from there. We saw that many day trips to Luxor were offered from Hurghada and that you can even go all the way to Cairo on a day trip.
While this didn’t seem to be a bad idea at first, we looked into the detailed descriptions of the excursions. Hurghada is not close to Luxor! It is a four-hour drive. On a day excursion, you would spend eight hours of your vacation day inside a car in the middle of the Egyptian desert.
Going for this option would mean that we would be spending most of our time on the Red Sea. That wouldn’t be bad, but it would make it impossible to see the Great Pyramid of Giza, Abu Simbel, or experience everything the Nile offers.
Option 3: Culture focused luxury trip on the Nile
After looking at domestic flights and hotel options and reading multiple travel blogs, we decided to skip the beach but keep all the relaxation and luxury. We believe we kept that combination even without going to the Red Sea with this itinerary.
With its long history of tourism on the Nile, Egypt is home to many luxury hotels, luxury river cruises, and modern travel amenities. You can find some of the most stunning hotels on the River Nile. Although you might not be able to enjoy the sea, you can still relax in one of the many hotel pools that give you a view of the action on the river. In fact, with infinity pools on the River Nile, who needs the Red Sea?
Realizing that the Nile has so much to offer to travelers, we built the perfect itinerary around the river. We will start in Cairo, and the Nile will bring us to all the cultural highlights in the most relaxing way possible.
This itinerary is not for backpackers or those looking to spend as little as possible. This itinerary is all about combining the best of Egypt’s culture with the country’s best hospitality. And speaking of costs, the pandemic has badly damaged Egypt’s tourism industry. Supply and demand remain imbalanced, making a visit to Egypt in 2022 more affordable than you might think.