Outstanding customer service, attention to detail and prompt follow-up to any questions was a great start before we even arrived in Egypt. Our travel planner's 5 star service before we left the US was amazing. I feel very lucky that when researching a vacation to Egypt I found this travel agent. I don't think I could have asked for anything else. My family of 4 spent 9 days in Egypt. Cairo, Luxor and Aswan. My kids are 14 and 12 turning 13 on our trip and my daughter has type 1 diabetes. We were greeted in Cairo by a representative who was a wonder in the airport at getting our visa etc. He helped us 4 times during our trip which was very reassuring. Our guide for our entire trip really made the trip a huge success with his energy, knowledge and enthusiasm. We really saw the sites of Egypt in a way that not many get to experience. Traveling with our guide our trip was personalized and away from the crowds, catered to our family's needs and attention span. We feel like we really lucked out.
I'm glad we spent a few days in Cairo before moving on to Luxor as we had originally talked about doing. Staying at the Mena House with a view of the pyramids was incredible for a first day. The Egyptian Museum is a must-see and it is incomprehensible the amount of artifacts it houses. We enjoyed eating at local restaurants and this is one of the reasons we decided not to do a Nile River boat cruise from Luxor to Aswan. We loved driving and seeing all the towns and people and we did not want to eat cruise food from the same kitchen for days. Plus we are able to stay at some outstanding hotels right on the Nile with gorgeous gardens and amazing pools for the kids. We felt safe the entire trip.
I think a highlight for us in Luxor was entering Queen Nefertari's tomb. Definitely worth the extra money. If it is open you can not say no to this. It is like the walls were painted yesterday. AMAZING. And we were the only ones in it. Flying over Luxor in a hot air ballon at sun-rise was an incredible way to see the Nile and the contrast between green and desert. Landing in a farmers field was just as interesting (you never know where the wind with take you) and we were able to see up close the traditional farming methods still used today. We went to Luxor Temple at night. IMPRESSIVE. I would recommend going to one temple for a light show. They are so beautiful at night.
In Aswan we stayed at a hotel and you could not beat the setting right on the Nile. You can watch the action of the Feluccas sailing the Nile or watch actual excavation taking place on the other side of the Nile. You have to pinch yourself that it is real. Philea Temple was interesting to approach by boat and see how it had been successfully moved when the damn was built. We all enjoyed swimming in the Nile which is clear and surprisingly VERY VERY cold in Aswan. I'm glad we went to the Nubian village and our guide avoided the real tourist traps of everyone riding a camel to the village. We had an outstanding meal off the beaten path.
I really don't think we would change a thing. So many temples and tombs and cultural experiences. I was a bit worried that it would be too much for the kids but they enjoyed it as much was we did thanks to our guide.
Really our guide made the trip. His attention to detail was incredible and he even picked up on the fact the we give my daughter her insulin 20 minutes before a meal. He would tell us when we would be eating without us asking. It was so nice how he kept us away from the crowds by talking to the other local tour guides at night and found out what their plan was and we would do the opposite or at different times. This guide is so passionate about Egypt, and so knowledgable, he can read hieroglyphics like it is nothing and was so fun with the kids. Lucky us! He was flexible and we did make a few changes to our itinerary. Our travel planner was checking in every day to make sure our trip was going smoothly and spoiled our daughter with birthday celebrations that we will never be able to replicate. She will remember turning 13 in Egypt forever.
Nothing if it was a first trip to Egypt.
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