Discover the modern and ancient marvels of Egypt and Jordan on this 22-day journey to two of the Middle East's most fascinating countries. Beginning in Cairo, pass by the magnificent Pyramids of Giza, take a four-day cruise down the legendary Nile and learn about the battles fought in El Alamein. Fly to Jordan and discover the unique culture of the Bedouin in Wadi Rum, float in the salty Dead Sea and stand in awe in front of the elaborate Treasury of Petra. With premium accommodation, local leaders and a relaxed pace all as standard, you’ll be enjoying these masterpieces in all their prized glory.
Welcome to Egypt! You’ll be met at Cairo International Airport by a Peregrine representative and transferred to your hotel. You’re welcome to arrive at any time, but please note that there’s an important meeting at 6 pm with your local leader and fellow travellers. If you do happen to arrive early, there’s plenty to hold your attention in this chaotic city of contrasts. Perhaps take a stroll around the markets or, if there’s time, jump in a traditional felucca for a sail down the Nile.
This morning after breakfast, travel to arguably the most recognisable structures in the world – the Great Pyramids of Giza and the Sphinx. These incredible feats of engineering are captivating when seen up close. For an additional charge, you may be able to step inside the Great Pyramid of Khufu (or Cheops). After spending some time here and eating lunch, continue to the Egyptian Museum where an expert guide will talk you through Egypt’s rich history. Have some free time to explore on your own, perhaps opting to purchase a pass to visit the Royal Mummy Room. As you return to your accommodation, enjoy the premium facilities on offer including the large outdoor pool overlooking the pyramids or multiple onsite eateries. Instead, you may like to take a taxi into town to explore Cairo further, or for something special, book in for a dinner cruise on the Nile.
Take to the road for your journey to Alexandria after breakfast, stopping in Wadi El Natrun after approximately 100 kilometres. This area became a sanctuary for Christians after Saint Macarius the Great retreated here in AD360, and there were once some 60-odd monasteries in the Wadi though now only four remain. One of these is Anba Bishoy Monastery, named for Saint Bishoi who came to the site to live in solitude. Take a wander around the gardens and observe the resident monks as they go about their daily lives, then visit the church for expansive views over the desert. Continue this afternoon to the city of Alexandria, which was founded by Alexander the Great and is often referred to as the Pearl of the Mediterranean.
Enjoy a full day exploring Alexandria – Egypt’s second-largest city. Visit Pompey’s Pillar and the Catacombs of Kom El Shuqafa, a Roman burial site dating back to the second century that wasn’t discovered until 1900. The fascinating tombs were created during a transitional period in Alexandria’s history and interestingly feature Greek, Egyptian and Roman elements. Continue to the Bibliotheca Alexandrina (once the Great Library of Alexandra), which is found where the Library of Ptolemies once stood some 1700 years ago. Finish up with a stop at the Montazah Palace and Royal Gardens, a complex featuring beautifully maintained gardens and two royal palaces built during the 19th and 20th centuries. Spend the evening by the water wandering along the corniche or relax back at your hotel.
Today, travel 100 kilometres south of Alexandria for a more sombre experience at the historic battle site of El Alamein. It was here that British and Commonwealth soldiers fought a decisive Allied victory against the German Afrika Korps that defined the North African campaign. Both sides suffered heavy losses and the memorial commemorates nearly 12,000 Commonwealth servicemen who died in the Western Desert campaigns during the Second World War. Return to Cairo in the afternoon and spend the evening visiting Tahrir Square in Downtown Cairo – the site of the political demonstrations that led to the 2011 Egyptian Revolution.
Transfer to Cairo Airport after breakfast and board a 1-hour flight to Luxor. Often referred to as its ancient name of Thebes, Luxor was the pharaoh’s capital during the height of their power and is now perhaps the world’s greatest open-air museum. Upon arriving in Luxor, transfer to your premium Nile cruise ship where you’ll unpack and settle in for the next four nights. This afternoon, visit Karnak – one of the world’s most celebrated temple complexes built over a period of approximately 200 years. Some parts date back to 2055 BC and your guided tour will take you to its finest sections. The rest of the afternoon and evening is free for you to relax, take a shopping trip through the bazaar or perhaps relax in a local teahouse.
Rise early this morning to journey into the Valley of the Kings. There are over 60 pharaoh tombs buried under the hills here, many of which are richly decorated, and your guide will take you through this spectacular place where discoveries are still being made. Learn about the funerary rites of the ancient Egyptians and the significance of the paintings and hieroglyphics, and visit the final resting place of Tutankhamun. You’ll visit another three royal tombs and continue to the Temple of Queen Hatshepsut, which is set in a spectacular natural amphitheatre. Your final stop is the Colossi of Memnon – giant statues that once formed part of an impressive colonnade – before returning to the boat for a leisurely lunch. Enjoy some time relaxing either on deck or in your cabin before setting sail upstream to Edfu, where you’ll arrive late in the evening.
This morning, you will be moored near Edfu and may have the option to venture independently into town to see the nearby temple. Continue along the river, relaxing in the sun on deck and taking in the desert hills forming a backdrop over the lush riverbanks. This afternoon, arrive at Kom Ombo Temple, sitting spectacularly on the river’s edge. The temple was built in approximately 181 BC and is dedicated to two gods – Horus (god of protection) and Sobek (god of fertility, linked to the Nile’s water). Each god has a dedicated section – north or south – and there have been recent discoveries of mummified crocodiles in the Sobek section. Afterwards, board your boat around 6 pm and continue to Aswan, arriving at around 9.30 pm.
Spend the morning visiting the temple complex of Philae including the stunning Temple of Isis, located on Agilkia Island. The temple was reassembled in this location after being saved from rising waters and is a true architectural gem featuring some of Egypt’s finest carvings. Some Egyptologists believe that Philae was the last active site of the ancient Egyptian religion and where the last Egyptian hieroglyph was written. Afterwards, return to your sailboat for lunch before boarding a simple Nile felucca and visiting either El Nabatat Island or Kitchener’s Island, home to the Aswan Botanical Gardens. These lush gardens are filled with palms and plants from all over the world. Return to the boat for another evening being rocked to sleep by the calm Nile waters.
Travel by road this morning to Abu Simbel, taking approximately 3.5 hours. Your accommodation is located right by Lake Nasser and features lush grounds, two swimming pools and fantastic views over the lake. Spending the night here allows the group a chance to visit the Abu Simbel temples at a more leisurely pace as opposed to a jam-packed half-day trip. Built during the reign of Ramesses II, these mammoth temples took 20 years to complete and feature rock-cut statues of the pharaoh and the queen, some of which are 20 metres in height. This evening, head back to the temples for an impressive sound and light show.
Travel back to Aswan, arriving in time for lunch and to check-in to the hotel. Enjoy some free time before meeting up with your fellow travellers later in the afternoon. Visit the Old Cataract Hotel – a 19th-century luxury hotel built by Thomas Cook that has hosted guests including Princess Diana, Winston Churchill, Tsar Nicholas II and Agatha Christie. Enjoy high tea in the luxurious surrounds then make the most of a free evening to find a local gem for dinner – your leader can help with recommendations.
This morning, visit a much more modern example of Egyptian engineering – the Aswan High Dam. Located 13 kilometres south of Aswan, its controversial history that required the relocation of many ancient temples and statues has, in the end, had a mostly positive impact on the region. Afterwards, head to the Unfinished Obelisk – an abandoned structure that would’ve been the largest obelisk ever erected in ancient Egypt, had it been finished! Return to Aswan for some time to relax, then meet your leader in the late afternoon to board a felucca and sail to the settlement of Elephantine Island. This island was once thought to be the home of Khnum – the god who guarded and controlled the Nile’s waters. Enjoy a sunset drink on the river before disembarking at a village to join a local family for a traditional Nubian feast.
This morning, transfer to the airport for a 1.5-hour flight back to Cairo. Settle into your hotel in downtown Cairo then meet up with the group in the early afternoon for a walking tour of the area. Bring your appetite, as you’ll discover the food scene and taste some local favourites such as koshary – made of rice, pasta and lentils mixed together, topped with a spicy tomato sauce, garlic vinegar and garnished with chickpeas and crispy fried onions. It may look a bit messy, but its flavour combinations make it some of Egypt’s most popular street food.
Spend the day discovering yet another layer of Egyptian history – medieval Cairo. Explore the Khan al-Khalili Bazaar – a labyrinthine area filled with sprawling alleyways packed with shops, cafes and more. This is a quintessential Cairo experience, home to the gold market, perfume street and the spice market. If you need a quick break, don’t miss a chance to relax and drink Arabic coffee or mint tea from El Fishawy, which is Cairo’s oldest café. Continue on to the Mosque of Ibn Tulun and Gayer-Anderson Museum. To celebrate your Egyptian adventure, share an authentic Egyptian meal with a local family. Be welcomed into their home, chat with the family about life in Egypt and learn how to make some of your favourite traditional dishes while enjoying the delicious food.
This morning you will be transferred to the airport for your flight to Amman. On arrival, you will be met at the airport by a Peregrine representative and taken to your hotel in Amman. Amman is one of the oldest continuously inhabited cities in the world, with a 1994 excavation uncovering homes and towers believed to have been built during the Stone Age around 7000 BC! Enjoy a free afternoon to perhaps head to the Old Town’s Roman Amphitheatre or Jordan National Gallery of Fine Arts, look down on the city from the hilltop Temple of Hercules, or relax in a Turkish bathhouse. Tonight, meet your new local leader and fellow travellers at another group briefing in your hotel at 6 pm.
After breakfast, drive from Amman to Wadi Rum (approximately 4.5 hours). Enjoy some lunch in the small village of Rum and browse the informative visitor’s centre. Afterwards, jump into a local jeep and journey into Wadi Rum with your Bedouin hosts. This region is probably best known for its connection with the British officer T E Lawrence, who was based here during the Great Arab Revolt of 1917 and 1918. Much of David Lean's movie on his exploits, 'Lawrence of Arabia', was actually filmed in Wadi Rum. Visit several of the area’s distinctive rock formations and appreciate the vast silence and spectacular desert landscapes. These landscapes are home to Bedouin communities that live in scattered camps. You will enjoy an evening with them at one of their camps, set in an amazing location deep in the desert.
After waking up in the unique surrounds of your Bedouin camp this morning, take a walk around the area – the length of which depends on the group’s desires – before scaling one of the large dunes to enjoy panoramic views of your surrounds. Afterwards, head in 4WDs back to the main entrance opposite the Seven Pillars of Wisdom – the mountain named after Lawrence of Arabia’s book. The visitor's centre here is also a great spot to buy some jewellery and handicrafts, mostly made by a women's co-operative dedicated to supporting local industries. Continue your journey to the fabled city of Petra (approximately 2.5 hours). On arrival, there is time to check out the town that has grown around the site and to relax, ready for a big day of exploring Petra tomorrow.
Petra, dating back to the sixth century BC, is the jewel of Jordan, the lost city of the biblical Nabateans, an impressive series of tombs and dwellings carved directly into the rock. The iconic view – the Treasury's glorious facade, glimpsed from a narrow cleft known as the Siq – is perhaps the single-most striking sight of the entire region. The Siq leads through the rock and is sometimes only a few metres wide, with walls soaring up to 180 metres on either side. With your guide, explore the old Roman road, amphitheatre and several old tombs. You will also climb up to see the Monastery, providing a magnificent view of the entire site. There is a cafeteria on the site, where you can enjoy your own light lunch. The rest of the day will be at your leisure. This evening, perhaps take the chance to witness Petra by night if your dates align. Seeing the Treasury plaza lit up by candlelight while Bedouin music plays is a truly memorable experience.
For another glimpse at Petra, rise very early for an unguided morning visit, if you wish. Afterwards, drive to the ancient Crusader castle at Shobak – originally built to protect the eastern flank of the Latin Kingdom and its trade routes to the sea before it fell to Saladin in 1189. Enjoy superb scenery and stop off at the viewpoint overlooking the Dana Nature Reserve before arriving in the late afternoon at your Dead Sea premium accommodation. Named for the lack of life in its waters, this lake is so intensely salty that the water density makes swimming and getting underneath the surface very difficult.
Enjoy a relaxing morning spent at the Dead Sea, perhaps heading back to the lake shores for a swim. The warm, highly saline waters make bobbing on the water's surface a unique experience. After lunch, leave the Dead Sea for Mount Nebo, considered to be where Moses saw the Promised Landed before he died. The modest church here with foundations dating back to the fourth century houses some of the best mosaics in Jordan. Continue to Madaba – or the City of Mosaics – and stop at St Georges Church, best known for its Byzantine mosaic depicting a map of the Holy Land. Head back to Amman and spend the evening here.
This morning, leave Amman for a short drive north to Jerash (approximately 1 hour) – once one of the grandest ancient Roman cities in the world. These are some of the best ruins Greco-Roman ruins around. Reaching its peak as a favourite of the emperor Hadrian, it has a striking collection of archways and theatres, baths, public buildings and colonnaded streets, and is a beautiful place to spend the morning exploring. Grand columns encircle the city's centrepiece of the Oval Plaza – an atmospheric place to linger after exploring Jerash's riches. Afterwards, return to Amman for the evening (approximately 1 hour). Perhaps spend your night at one of the many bars and restaurants in West Amman, or speak with your group leader about the traditional cafes dotted around the city where locals spend their evenings.
Your trip will come to an end today after breakfast. Check-out time is usually around 12 pm (midday), and so you are free to leave at any time. If you have arranged a private airport transfer, you will be advised of the pick-up time. If you would like to spend more time in Amman, we’ll be happy to organise additional accommodation (subject to availability).
Minimum: 1 Maximum: 12
21 Breakfasts, 12 Dinners
Take your time exploring Abu Simbel with an overnight stay, discovering this magnificent monument carved out of the mountainside at both day and night.
Relax with four nights on a premium Nile riverboat, cruising slowly down the river past ancient temples, and gazing from the terrace bar and restaurant to local life unfolding on the riverbank.
Discover traditional Nubian customs and lifestyle at a dinner experience on Elephantine Island, and in Cairo, enjoy an authentic meal in a local Egyptian family home.
Journey through the desert to a premium Bedouin camp on a 4WD adventure and get to know the customs and cultures of this community spending the night under a starry sky.
You never forget your first glimpse of The Treasury through narrow canyon walls in Petra. Spend a day taking in its majesty and mystery, and if your dates align, consider booking an unforgettable night experience.
Ved skriftlig aksept av vårt tilbud bekrefter du/dere at våre betingelser er både lest og forstått og at evt kansellerings gebyrer kan tilkomme ved en evt. avbestilling av reisen.