Felucca Odyssey & Dahab Explorer Trip Notes

General

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Discover the marvels of Egypt from Cairo and Dahab visiting some of the most astounding sites from the old world. Witness the mighty Pyramids alongside the Sphinx. Discover the vibrant bazaars of Cairo and journey along the Nile on a felucca like a true Egyptian. Marvel at the diverse landscapes when you visit Aswan and Luxor. Then take some time to relax in the sunny paradise of Dahab.

Duration : 12 Days

Destination : Egypt

Start/Ends in : Cairo / Dahab

Group Size :13-35 People

Age Req. : 18+

Trip Theme : Classic, Overland

Hotels : 5 & 4 Star

Departs : All Year Around

Why you will love this tour

  • * Time-travel through ancient Egyptian history, sail down the Nile and experience the chaos of bustling city life on this 12-day adventure with all breakfasts, 2 lunches, and 2 dinners included.
  • * Pack your swimsuit for an extended 3-night stay in Dahab! The seaside paradise is the perfect place to slow things down with sunbathing, swimming and snorkelling in the Red Sea.
  • * Travel with your local Egyptologist Guide to some of the world’s most impressive ancient wonders, including the Great Pyramids and Sphinx, the Karnak Temples, Valley of the Kings, Luxor Temple.
  • * All aboard a traditional Felucca Sailboat as we head down the Nile River like a Nubian local – access to wc facilities available throughout the two-night sail.
  • * Embrace the mayhem of haggling for antiques in the chaotic Khan el-Khalili Bazaar and explore Cairo’s beautiful Citadels, Mosques and busy streets on guided city tour.
  • * Add once-in-a-lifetime experiences to your adventure with optional activities, including hot-air ballooning over Luxor to a dinner cruise in Cairo, camel trekking on the beach, quad-biking in Dahab or snorkeling and scuba diving at the Red Sea’s famous Blue Hole.

Arrival Details

The group welcome meeting with your guide and other travelers is held around 18:30 at the hotel lobby on Day 1 of your tour unless otherwise notified.

Meeting Point:

The meeting point for the Felucca Odyssey & Dahab Explorer tour is:

The Oasis Hotel Pyramids – CAIRO

Cairo-Alexandria Desert Road P.O Box 44 Pyramids 12556 – Cairo / Egypt

Phone : +202 38387333

Emergency Number: +44 (0) 208 099 75 36

Airport Transfers :

All tours starting in Cairo include arrival airport transfer if your flight lands in Cairo on the first day of your tour between 5am and 11:30pm or if you have booked pre-accommodation with us. For tours ending in Cairo, departure airport transfer is available on the last day of the tour between 05:00 and 17:00, or if you book post-tour accommodation in Cairo through us.

To arrange your airport transfer please email us the following information at least 2 weeks before your departure date. [email protected]

Travel Date, Flight Number, Local Arrival Time, Name/s of the Passengers

Making Your Own Way to the Starting Point

The arrival hotel is located in the pyramids area, 32 km away from the Cairo Airport (CAI). It takes about 40 minutes – 1 hour by taxi depending on the traffic. You can take a taxi from the airport directly to the hotel, which is expected to cost around 350-400 EGP. You can also use Uber as long as you have data access (Please note that taxi numbers are in Arabic so you may have difficulty finding the vehicle). Another option is to arrange a private transfer via cairoshuttlebus.com, you can visit their desk at the airport, or prebook and pay at the airport. It may be 50-70 EGP more expensive than the other options. We recommend avoiding white cabs as these can be more costly

Finishing Point

The finishing point for the Felucca Odyssey & Dahab tour is:
Dahab Paradise Hotel – DAHAB
Address : Blue Hole Coast Road Dahab / Egypt

Phone : +201007002527
Emergency Number: +44 (0) 208 099 75 36

Highlights

Aswan: Sunniest city in Egypt and a popular touristic stop for many cruises. The local market here is an excellent place to do some shopping and to find Egyptian fresh spices.

Cairo: With the Great Pyramids of Giza, ancient temples, magnificent monuments, and the Egyptian Antiquities Museum, Cairo offers an experience of a lifetime.

Edfu: Edfu has the most complete and best-preserved temple in Egypt, the Ptolemaic Temple of Horus, which was constructed between 237 BC and 57 BC.

Giza: The Great Pyramid of Giza is one of the seven wonders of the ancient world and the only one still remaining to this day. An absolute must-see.

Komombo: Kom Ombo means “hill of the gold” crowned with the Temple of Komombo. The temple is unusual as one side is dedicated to the god Haroesis and the other side to Sobek.

Luxor: A top travel destination in Egypt with a wealth of historic monuments and buildings bringing Egypt’s fabled past to life. Luxor is called the world’s greatest open-air museum.

Philae Temple: Phliale Temple, a beautiful temple complex is one of the most picturesque in all of Egypt. It sits on Aglika Island just south of the old Aswan Dam.

Unfinished Obelisk: The 42m long obelisk was left unfinished when some cracks appeared but had this obelisk been completed, it would have been the heaviest, weighing nearly 1100 tons!

Itinerary

Please note that the itinerary may be subject to small changes depending on the conditions during the tour. Alternative accommodation of similar standards may be used depending on the group size and hotel availability.

Welcome to Egypt! At the Cairo terminal keep your eyes peeled for the Travel Talk sign for your transfer to the hotel. Freshen up and meet in the lobby around 6:00pm for an informal meeting with your guide and other tour members. Afterward, you have free time to start exploring vibrant Cairo or board a cruise for an optional group dinner.

Accommodation : The Oasis Hotel – 4 Star

Included Activities : Welcome Meeting

Optional Activities : Group Dinner on Cruise – 450 EGP

Set your alarms for 7.30am and fill up on plenty of breakfast before a big day exploring Egypt’s iconic Ancient Wonder of the World – the Pyramids and Sphinx! Follow your guide for a tour across the ancient site to learn about the 4,600-year-old wonders. After everyone has had their dose of awe, we’ll head out to Sakkara to see the iconic step pyramid built in 2700 B.C. Later in the afternoon, board an overnight sleeper train.

Accommodation : Overnight Sleeper Train

Meals Included : Breakfast, Dinner

Included Activities :

Sightseeing of Giza Pyramids
Sightseeing of Sphinx
Sightseeing of Sakkara Pyramid

Entrance Fees :

Giza Pyramids/Sphinx – 240 EGP
Sakkara Pyramid – 200 EGP

Wake up in Aswan, ready to explore on a city tour with your local guide. Visit the Unfinished Obelisk for a look into the incredible building methods used to create the four-sided, hallmark monuments that are placed at the entrances of Egyptian temples. Take some time to walk along the 42-metre-long lying bed of granite and learn about its significance from your guide. Visit the Philae Temple, dedicated to the goddess Isis, divine mother of the pharaohs. The temple is set beautifully on an island in the middle of the Nile. We will then arrive at the hotel for check-in at 5.30pm with the option to join a traditional Nubian dinner in the evening.

Accommodation : Tolip Hotel – 5 Star

Meals Included : Breakfast

Included Activities :

Aswan City tour
Sightseeing of Philae Temple
Sightseeing of Unfinished Obelisk of Aswan

Optional Activities :

Nubian Dinner – 32 USD

Entrance Fees :

Philae Temple – 225 EGP

Enjoy a free morning to explore Aswan and the banks of the Nile River at your own pace. If you are feeling up to it in the afternoon, join the optional trip to the UNESCO World Heritage Listed Abu Simbel. It is a must-do for all keen historians! Then we will hop on board the traditional Felucca sailboat and embark on our 2- night cruise down the Nile River.

Accommodation : Traditional Egyptian Felucca

Meals Included : Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Optional Activities : Abu Simbel – 94 USD

Today is a chill-day sailing down the Nile, watching beautiful scenery, and waving to the locals and fishermen. Whilst absorbing the stunning temples along the coast, sit back and enjoy the relaxing breeze. Have a dip in the Nile, play volleyball with the local kids and prepare for a local feast on the riverbanks as you watch the sunset with a cold drink in hand.

Accommodation : Traditional Egyptian Felucca

Meals Included : Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Included Activities : Sailing on the Felucca

Time to bid farewell to our lovely felucca as we hop back on board the coach and drive north towards Kom Ombo. Visit the Kom Ombo Temple, dedicated to the crocodile god Sobek. The next stop will be Edfu, home to one of the largest and best-preserved temples in Egypt. Dedicated to the falcon god Horus, the temple was built over 180 years from 237 BC to 57 BC. We’ll arrive in Luxor in the late afternoon, before checking out the Luxor Temple in the evening. Explore the dim-light temple after dark and learn from your guide of the temple complexes ancient history, dating back to the 14th century B.C.

Accommodation: Steigenberger Nile palace Hotel – 5 Star

Meals Included : Breakfast

Included Activities :

Sightseeing of Edfu Temple

Sightseeing of Komombo Temple
Sightseeing of Luxor Temple

Entrance Fees :

Edfu Temple – 180 EGP

Komombo Temple – 140 EGP

Luxor Temple – 160 EGP

The West bank of the Nile River awaits you! Follow your guide to the Valley of the Kings, also known as the ‘City of the Dead’, home to fancy royal tombs carved into desert rocks and filled with treasures for the Pharaoh afterlife. Next up, the Temple of Queen Hatshepsut and Colossi of Memnon. Not to forget, a visit to the vast Karnak Temple Complex, one of the most important religious centers of ancient Egypt with its marvelous temples. Your Egyptologist guide will enlighten you with the most intriguing stories and mythologies from the temple complex. Feeling adventurous? Take to the skies on an optional hot air balloon ride over Luxor. In the evening, board an overnight sleeper train to Cairo.

Accommodation: Overnight Sleeper Train

Meals Included : Breakfast, Dinner

Included Activities :

Sightseeing of Karnak Temple
Sightseeing of Hatshepsut Temple & Colossi of Memnon

Entrance Fees :

Valley Of The Kings – 244 EGP
Hatshepsut Temple – 142 EGP

Optional Activities :

Hot Air Balloon- 124 USD

The journey continues with one of the most important museums dedicated to the ancient world. Egyptian Museum of Cairo houses around 120,000 ancient Egyptian relics and antiquities. Then roam around Cairo stopping by the Citadel of Saladin, the Mosque of Mohammed Ali, the Hanging Church, and the world-famous Khan el-Khalili bazaar. Make sure to wear your haggling hats and brace for the mayhem!

Accommodation: The Oasis Hotel – 4 Star

Meals Included : Breakfast

Included Activities :

Sightseeing of Cairo
Sightseeing of Egyptian Museum
Sightseeing of Citadel of Saladin
Sightseeing of Mohammed Ali Mosque
Sightseeing of Hanging Church
Sightseeing of Bazaar Khan El- Khalili

Entrance Fees :

Egyptian Museum – 220 EGP
Citadel of Saladin – 180 EGP

Following an early breakfast, head out to the Red Sea paradise of Dahab. Pack your swimsuit close and ready for a dip in the sea. You’ll get plenty of swimming, snorkeling, diving and sunbathing. The perfect way to relax after a week of cultural discovery.

Accommodation: Dahab Paradise Hotel – 4 Star

Meals Included : Breakfast

Today our Dahab experience starts with an optional snorkeling trip to the famous Blue Hole. Here you can snorkel off the shore, swim along with colorful fish and experience the beauty of the coral reefs. Dahab is renowned for being one of the best diving destinations in the region, offering an unforgettable experience to divers of all levels. Depart for St. Catherine at 22:30 and start the ascend to Mt. Sinai, where you’ll witness the spectacular sunrise which blankets the surrounding peaks in gold, unveiling one of the best views in Egypt.

Accommodation: Dahab Paradise Hotel – 4 Star

Meals Included : Breakfast

Included Activities :

Mt Sinai Trek
Sightseeing of Dahab

Optional Activities :

Mountain Dinner – 24 USD
Snorkelling at Blue Hole – 34 USD

Start off the day with a visit to the beautiful St. Catherine Monastery before you drive back to Dahab. Free time to rest up and recharge after the hike. Get to improve your waterskiing or wakeboarding skills and ride the waves to cool off.

Accommodation: Dahab Paradise Hotel – 4 Star

Meals Included : Breakfast

Included Activities :

Sightseeing of St. Catherine Monastery

Optional Activities :

Quad Biking – 29 USD

Have your final breakfast with us and start bidding farewells to your travel mates before checking out of the hotel in Dahab (11:00am). Time to start counting days for your next adventure with Travel Talk!

Meals Included : Breakfast

Inclusions & Exclusions

The tour price covers the following services:

Accomodation : 5 and 4 star hotels, traditional felucca boat.

Airport Transfer : Arrival and Departure transfers on the first and last days of the trip

Meals : 11 breakfasts, 2 Lunches, 3 Dinners

Transportation : A/C coach or mini-bus, Felucca sailboat

Guide : Services of experienced Travel Talk local guides licenced by the Ministry of Tourism

Sightseeing :

Giza Pyramids, Sphinx, Sakkara Pyramid, Philae Temple, Unfinished Obelisk of Aswan Edfu Temple, Komombo Temple, Luxor Temple, Karnak Temple, Egyptian Museum Hatshepsut Temple & Colossi of Memnon, Citadel of Saladin, Mohammed Ali Mosque, Hanging Church, Bazaar Khan El- Khalili, St. Catherine Monastery

What is NOT included in the tour price?

  • Any flights not mentioned above
  • Travel insurance
  • Meals not stated above
  • Items of a personal nature
  • Tips & gestures
  • Entrance fees to the sights and museums
  • Optional activities
  • Other services not stated in the itinerary

Hotels & Accomodation

Solo travellers will be roomed with another solo traveller of the same gender in a twin or triple room or can upgrade to a solo room by paying the single supplement. You may choose the solo room option when booking online or contact us to arrange a private room.

THE OASIS HOTEL PYRAMIDS – CAIRO – 4 Star

The hotel is located very close to the Pyramids of Giza. The Egyptian Museum and Great Sphinx. The hotel offers a sundeck, swimming pool, tennis court, gym, and fitness center.

STEIGENBER HOTEL – LUXOR – 5 Star

This 5 star hotel, located in the heart of Luxor by the Nile River, provides an outdoor pool, fitness centre and sauna. All rooms feature air-conditioning and satellite TV.

TOLIP HOTEL – ASWAN – 5 Star

This 5-star hotel overlooking the river, offers a pool, nightclub, and spa center. Air-conditioned rooms are equipped with a minibar and a satellite TV, also free wif-fi access.

DAHAB PARADISE HOTEL – DAHAB – 4 Star

This beautiful hotel located by the Red Sea features an outdoor pool and a panoramic view of Sinai Mountain. All of the rooms are air-conditioned and have a balcony with a spectacular view.

SLEEPER CABIN TRAINS- CAIRO TO ASWAN & LUXOR TO CAIRO

Privacy, a comfortable bed in which to sleep, a fine dinner, and excellent service are the hallmarks of Egypt’s sleeper trains. The twin-share cabins are equipped with bunk beds.

Felucca Boat

Feluccas are traditional sailing boats that have been used on the Nile for centuries. Though somewhat modernized, they are very simple sailing boats and have no engines or facilities. There is a single deck on which you can stretch out during the day under a shade awning. Each felucca sleeps 6-8 people and is crewed by a captain and a deck hand – both of whom have grown up along the banks of the Nile. As well as being experienced Nile sailors they also make the most delicious meals out of simple local ingredients. You may sit down to a lunch of local bread, white cheese, hummus, and delicious fresh juicy tomatoes or a dinner of pasta and mixed vegetables with delicious tomato sauce. If spending the night, you will sleep on the deck, which is covered with mattresses, cushions, and blankets. A light sleeping bag is recommended if you are travelling in the winter. We also use a special felucca that tags along the way to provide you with WC and shower facilities throughout your sailing adventure.

Distances

Please find below the distances between the sights visited in Egypt and the approximate driving times. We will always strive to take a short break every few hours to enable passengers to stretch their legs, purchase snacks and use wash facilities during long drives.


Cairo – Aswan : 982 kms – 12 hrs
Luxor – Cairo: 735 kms – 9 hrs
Aswan – Luxor: 247 kms – 3 hrs
Aswan – Abu Simbel: 309 kms – 3.5 hrs

Cairo – Dahab : 550 kms – 6.5 hrs

Budgeting

Please note that entrance fees to sights and optional activities are not included in the tour price. Optional activities are not operated by Travel Talk and may require a certain number of attendees to run. Your guide will be happy to inform you further about the available optional activities at the start of your tour. Optional activities are also listed under each day in your tour itinerary.

Entrance Fees

Cairo

Giza Pyramids/Sphinx — EGP 240

Sakkara Pyramid — EGP 200

Egyptian Museum — EGP 230

Citadel of Saladin — EGP 180

Aswan

Philae Temple — EGP 225

Edfu Temple — EGP 200

Komombo Temple — EGP 160

Luxor

Luxor Temple — EGP 180

Hatshepsut Temple — EGP 165

Valley Of The Kings — EGP 265

TOTAL 2045 EGP (approx. 120 USD)

Optional Activities

Please note that optional activities are not operated by Travel Talk.

Hot-Air Ballooning — 124 USD

Abu Simbel — 94 USD

Nubian Dinner — 32 USD

Group Dinner — 10-15 USD

Mountain Dinner — 24 USD

Snorkeling at Blue Hole — 34 USD

Personal Spending

The currency of Egypt is the Egyptian Pound (EGP). Most major cities and towns in Egypt have ATMs and credit or debits cards are widely accepted in the tourist areas. If you plan to travel off the beaten track, be prepared to have cash for souqs, small meals,, and entrance fees. While every traveler’s spending habits may differ slightly, we have estimated the average daily expenses to help with budgeting for your next trip. Here you’ll find the average cost for a meal or drink and advice on best practices in tipping.

Meals

Lunch at restaurant: US$ 4-8

Dinner at restaurant: US$ 10-15

Shawarma (lamb pitta) at a stall: US$ 1-2

Zalabya – Egyptian Donut ball: US$ 0.30

Drinks

Bottle of water: US$ 0.5

Coffee: US$ 1.5-2

Tea: US$ 1-2

Bottle of beer: US$ 3-4

Tipping

Known as ‘Baksheesh’, tipping is a natural part of daily life and is considered part of the traditional payment structure for services in Egypt. We recommend budgeting around 5-10 USD a day for tipping with an estimation of a ~10% tip at restaurants, taxis, and the rest. Your Guide, Felucca Sail crew, and Driver would also appreciate this kind of gratitude at the end of your tour or their service.

Shopping

Souqs or local markets, along with larger bazaars are not only the perfect place to shop for souvenirs but also among the most remarkable attractions of Egypt. The biggest and most famous soup is the 500-year-old Khan El Khalili Bazaar in Cairo. Quality can vary quite significantly depending on how much you spend and where you shop, so feel free to always ask your expert guide for their advice while on tour. Haggling and bargaining over prices in bazaars and souqs is a fundamental part of shopping in Egypt. The key is to start low and work your way up but always have a maximum value in mind.

Cartouche Jewellery

Cartouche, commonly known as hieroglyphics, is an ornate Egyptian scroll featuring engravings and inscriptions. It is common to find gold and silver jewelers all over Egypt selling personalized Cartouche pendants. Silver jewelry featuring a cartouche pendant is a common souvenir across Egypt but to buy quality, we recommend purchasing silver that is stamped with ‘925’ quality. Prices for quality Cartouche jewelry can range between 10 USD – 1,000 USD depending on the metals.

Muski Glassware

Since medieval times, Muski glass has been hand-blown to create incredible plates, vases, candle holders, glasses, and more to fashion through the homes of local Egyptians. This bubble-shot glassware comes in vibrant shades of blue, green, and purple, and is known to be extremely fragile so pack with caution!

Perfume

Egypt is a major trading center for the perfume industry, and you can’t escape the country without visiting an essential-oil dealer to try a few for yourself! Got a favorite perfume that you would like to purchase at the cheap? Local shops across Egypt will duplicate famous perfumes at a reasonable price. Lotus (sawsan) and Jasmine (full) are the most distinctively Egyptian scents, and you can expect to pay approximately 15-25 USD for a duplicate perfume.

Essential Information: Egypt

Bear in mind the essential information regarding traveling to Egypt before your trip. For more, check out our Egypt travel advice page.

Passport & Visas

Visas to enter Egypt are compulsory for all tourists. It is possible to obtain a tourist visa when you get to Cairo International Airport for most nationalities. However, we recommend applying for a Visa online two weeks prior to arrival in Egypt.

Please note passport holders from the UK, USA, Australia, New Zealand, Canada, and the EU may purchase their visa stamp upon arrival, while South Africans must arrange their visa prior to arrival.

If you wish to get a visa on arrival, you can do so at approved bank kiosks within airport arrival halls, before reaching immigration counters. The visa fee is US$25, payable in GBP, USD, or EUR. Visas granted on arrival are valid for a maximum of 30 days.

Passport validity entry requirements: Travellers entering Egypt must also carry a passport or travel document valid for at least 6 months from your arrival date.

This information is provided as a guide, we strongly advise that you check with the consulate or embassy as this information can change. Please note that visa costs can change at any time and with little notice depending on the political climate of the region. It is your responsibility to make sure that all the required travel documents are ready when traveling.

Travel Advice

We are closely monitoring the latest travel updates to Egypt and follow the advice of the UK Foreign Office. For the latest travel advice from UK Foreign, Commonwealth & Development Office (FCDO), please visit: https://www.gov.uk/foreign-travel-advice/egypt

We recommend all travellers to check their Government National Travel Advisory prior to their departure:

Australia – https://www.smartraveller.gov.au/

Canada – https://travel.gc.ca/

New Zealand – https://www.safetravel.govt.nz/

USA – https://travel.state.gov/

Travel Insurance

All passengers traveling with Travel Talk are required to have personal travel insurance before participating in any of our tours. Your guide will collect your travel insurance details on the first day of your trip. It is your responsibility to make sure you have adequate and suitable travel insurance for you in place, you may read more at https://www.traveltalktours.com/travel-insurance

Health & Safety

The health and safety of our passengers, staff, and communities visited is of utmost priority. As we monitor and comply with the official advice from the UK Foreign Office, as well as World Health Organization and government authorities regularly, we have implemented several policies and precautions on our tours for your wellbeing. You may find our Safe Travels Protocols at https://www.traveltalktours.com/safe-travels

Travel Talk Adventures has received the Safe Travels stamp by the World Travel and Tourism Council (WTTC), which allows travellers to recognise companies around the world that have adopted health and hygiene global standardised protocols – so consumers can experience ‘Safe Travels’.

Please make sure to regularly check your Government’s travel advice before travelling and be well-informed of any requirements. Your tour guide will also notify you of the regulations and protocols to follow throughout your trip with us.

Please note that if any traveller is unable to complete the itinerary or possesses a potential risk to themselves and/or the rest of the group, we reserve the right to remove them from all or part of a trip.

Please consult with your doctor for the latest medical travel information and any vaccinations you may need. We recommend that you bring any personal medical requirements and medications with you as these may be difficult to obtain while on tour.

Weather

Egypt is a year-round destination with sunny days, a warm climate, and very little rain. The summer months, from June to August, can be particularly hot, especially in the south of the country in Luxor and Aswan where temperatures can hit 40 degrees Celsius. If you are visiting Egypt during this time, take plenty of sunscreen and hydrate regularly throughout the day. The best time to visit Egypt, and also traditionally the busiest season, is from October to late March. During these months, the days are usually bright and sunny. If you are travelling during these winter months and plan to trek in the Sinai or cruise on the Nile river, you should expect temperatures to fall considerably overnight, especially near Mt. Sinai – Come prepared with some extra layers to rug up overnight. Spring and Autumn are only short seasons and during the 50 days (Khamaseen) between the end of March and mid-May, dust storms can occur sporadically. Check out our weather guide for the best time to visit Egypt.

Money Matters

The local currency of Egypt is the Egyptian Pound (EGP).

Major credit and debit cards are widely accepted in major cities and tourist sites across Egypt. However, if you’re travelling off the beaten track, come prepared with a small stash of cash on hand for inexpensive purchases at local markets, souqs, entrance fees, or small meals. ATMs can be easily found in many places across the cities, however, are not as common in rural areas. We recommend you do not exchange bulk sums of money at the airport, as the exchange rates are usually more favorable in the major cities. Your tour leader will be happy to help if you need any assistance.

Please remember that everyone has different spending habits, some prefer to spend more on souvenirs, some on experiences and others on a night out! Make sure to budget your trip to your spending habits for shopping, drinking, and tipping.

Known as ‘Baksheesh’, tipping is a natural part of daily life and is considered part of the traditional payment structure for services in Egypt. We recommend tipping ~10% of the total bill when dining in a restaurant if a service fee has not already been applied. You can round up the taxi fare for convenience and tip good service around the country by carrying some loose change. Your tour leader, driver, and Felucca Sail crew would also appreciate this kind of traditional gratitude at the end of your tour.

It is common for group members to contribute to a “Tipping Kitty” to minimize worries regarding tipping, such that the guide may collect tips at the start of the tour for the whole group in order to avoid the hassle while adventuring throughout Egypt. “Tipping Kitty” is voluntary and does not cover tips for the tour leader or driver. We recommend to budget 5-10 USD per person per day for tipping in Egypt.

Eating & Drinking

Egyptian food combines elements of Mediterranean, Middle-Eastern and French cuisines. Egypt’s staples are bread and beans. Eating and drinking in Egypt will introduce travellers to the native foods of the country, many of which are already commonplace in Western countries – including pita bread, falafel, and hummus. We strongly recommend not to drink tap water in Egypt and to exercise caution if buying refreshments in markets and bazaars due to the uncertainty regarding the quality of water used. Bottled water and soft drinks are inexpensive and readily available across the country.

Egyptian eating habits differ from the norm with restaurants normally serving lunch between 13:00-16:00 and dinner between 20:00-24:00. Searching for unique and authentic dishes can often be overwhelming if you’re not a local, so here are a few must-try dishes to get you started in Egypt. For more, check out our Egypt Food Guide.

Fuul: Commonly known as fava beans, Fuul is quite cheap and can be prepared in several ways including boiled or mashed with tomatoes, onions, and spices. Often served as part of a larger mezze with babaganoush, hummus and labne, this dish has a long history.

Ta’meya: Commonly known as Falafel, Taamiya is deep-fried patties of spiced green beans are crunch on the outside, soft on the inside and considered a Middle Eastern staple! Usually served in pitta bread with salads, pickles, and tahina sauce, Taamiya can be purchased at street stalls for quick, cheap meals.

Koshary: Koshary is considered one of Egypt’s most well-known dishes, consisting of pasta, rice, lentils, fried onions, beans, garlic, vinegar, chillies and smothered in tomato paste. That mix may sound strange, but it is worth a try! The dish is sold at hole-in-the-wall eateries and street carts.

Hamam Mahshi: A North African acclaimed delicacy, Hamam – roasted pigeon stuffed with cracked wheat and rice – can be found on the menu of most traditional Egyptian restaurants.

Shawarma: A popular street food, similar to the famed Greek gyros, with an Egyptian twist. Shawarma is made up of a choice of either chicken or beef marinated with Middle Eastern spices and cooked on a spit.The shaven meat is served in a wrap with tahini.

As a predominantly Muslim country, Egypt give alcohol a low profile. Most of the hotels serve alcoholic drinks, but during Ramadan some hotels may close their bars. Public drunkenness is not widely accepted however alcohol can be obtained in most places and local beers ‘Luxor’ and ‘Stella’ are worth a try! Egypt’s national beverage is tea (shai) while every main street is teeming with stand-up juice stands offering freshly squeezed banana, guava, or mango juice.

Internet Access

Internet access has become increasingly common in hotels, cafes and restaurants in large Egyptian cities, however, the quality of connection differs. Many internet cafes can be found in the cities as well. Make sure to enable data roaming on your mobile if you wish to use 3G/4G abroad, although the connection may be unreliable in smaller towns and rural areas. Purchasing an Egyptian SIM card for the duration of your tour may be a cost-effective option. Your guide will be happy to advise on this.

Essentials to Bring

-Face mask/cover and hand sanitizer enough for your personal use throughout the trip – See more at https://www.traveltalktours.com/safe-travels/

-Travel Documents: Passport, Visa (if required), flight or transport ticket (and photocopies)

-Travel Talk Tour Voucher (printed or digital)Travel Insurance Policy (and photocopy)

-Personal medical kit and medicine

-Money (cash, credit card, travellers’ cheques)

-Power Adapter

-Reusable water bottle

-Ear plugs and eye mask

-Sun protection – hat, sunglasses, sunscreen

-Comfortable, closed walking shoes

-Wind/waterproof jacket

-Warm clothes, hat, and gloves for cold weather

-Sandals, swimwear, and shorts for warm weather

Culture and Traditions

Egypt’s culture is a fusion of both ancient and modern, bound by a strong sense of community across the country. Egyptian traditions and culture stand among the oldest civilizations’, and can be seen through impressive sites, architecture, and artwork. Home to breath-taking monuments such as the world-famous Pyramids of Giza and Abu Simbel, the unparalleled history accumulated over millennia around the Nile is unique. Throughout Egypt, family remains the most important link in the social chain, particularly among the Bedouin of the deserts. Tourism plays a crucial role in the country and Egyptians are friendly, open to other cultures, and known for showing good hospitality towards tourists. Egyptians see their country as the gateway between Western society and the rest of the Arabian world. This mixing is most apparent in major cities such as Alexandria and Cairo where international franchises and traditional eateries stand side by side in a fusion of old and new.

Religion, Etiquette, and How to Dress

Religion plays a big role in the life of Egyptians, and it is intermingled with the daily activities of Muslims and Christians. Approximately 90% of the population are Muslim, and the way people dress and interact with each other is largely influenced by religion – it affects many parts of societal life, is permitted by the law and life entails daily prayer. The religious holidays of Ramadan and Eid are the most significant events for Muslims. A wide array of cultural norms, including how people dress and interact with the opposite sex, are influenced as such. In traditional homes, women are largely defined by their role as a mother and matron of the house, whereas men are expected to be the provider.

As a general guideline, we recommend wearing lightweight, comfortable, loose-fitting clothing and walking shoes while travelling Egypt. Please also keep in mind that when visiting religious sites, appropriate attire is required. It is recommended to pack at least one set of modest clothing that covers both shoulders and knees, to be worn when visiting mosques and other religious complexes. A headscarf for women is necessary when visiting religious complexes in Egypt.

Solo Travellers

We have many solo travellers joining our tours. Solo travellers will be roomed with another traveller of the same gender. If you would like a private solo room, please contact us. You may see out solo travels page for more details.

Rules to Follow

We are committed to ensuring a safe and enjoyable experience for everyone. We do not tolerate any form of violence (physical or verbal), bullying or harassment involving customers, partners, Travel Talk staff or locals. Sexual relationships between a tour leader and a passenger are forbidden.

We will not tolerate any illegal activity, including but not limited to: use and possession of illegal drugs, trespassing, and disrupting public order. If you consume alcohol, please ensure that you drink responsibly and follow the local laws and regulations.

You must follow the advice of your tour leader and local officials regarding health and safety measures. We operate all tours under Safe Travels protocols for the wellbeing of our passengers, staff and communities visited. Please ensure that you have read the https://www.traveltalktours.com/safe-travels/ and are fully prepared for your trip.

If someone is acting inappropriately regarding these matters, please notify your tour leader immediately or contact us on the emergency contact number provided below.

Your tour leader has the right to remove from the group anyone not abiding by these rules, with no right of compensation or refund. See more at https://www.traveltalktours.com/booking-terms/

Please remember that our travellers come from different parts of the world and will have various needs and preferences. Be understanding and patient with your fellow travellers, and always strive to be on time.

Responsible Travel

We believe that travel is a force for good and show our support through various initiatives and charity organizations, as well as keeping the principals of responsible and sustainable travel at the core of our ethos. These values are ingrained in our business culture and the design of our trips just the same. Together with you, we strive to make a positive impact on local people and economies, respecting the local culture, environment, social fabric and customs; encouraging respectful and meaningful cross-cultural exchange. Read more at https://www.traveltalktours.com/responsible-travel/

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+44 20 809 995 96
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Monday - Friday: 09:00 AM - 6:00 PM
Saturday: 10:00 AM - 5:00 PM
Sunday: Closed
W. Europe