EGYPT: Beyond Imaginings
January 7-21, 2012
Don’t miss a unique opportunity to see the museums and monuments in and around Cairo, and the ancient wonders of Aswan, Esna, Abu Simbel, and Luxor. Marvel at the antiquities and participate in Egyptian daily life in cities few visitors see. Walk the corridors of Karnak, a religious center nearly 2,000 years in the making. Enter the temples and tombs of pharaohs and nobles that still astonish after as much as 4,500 years.
In this first-hand introduction, the history, customs and beliefs of Egyptians come alive as you follow footsteps that date to the dawn of history and birth of civilization. This tour focuses on the distinctive history, art, architecture and religious beliefs of ancient Egypt.
Your escort is Maryanne E. White '79, MA '85, adjunct professor of art at Broome Community College in Binghamton. She has worked closely with Gerald Kadish, Distinguished Teaching Professor of History at Binghamton University, in organizing several tours of Egypt and Greece. She has led trips to Egypt and Turkey, and frequent visits have advanced her knowledge, while creating close personal friendships with many local merchants and educators there.
Cost: $3,985/person, double occupancy* (single supplement $725)
* Based on 10 participants, current air fares, rates of currency exchange and payment by check. Credit card payments are accepted, subject to $185 service fee.
The above price includes:
• Round-trip airfare between New York's JFK Airport and Cairo
• 14 nights' accommodations in first-class hotels
• Airport and hotel transfers with luggage assistance
• All transfers in modern motor coaches
• All tours on itinerary, including permanent local guide, escort and entrance fees to visited sites
• Flights within Egypt
• Buffet breakfast daily; lunches and dinners as indicated on itinerary
• Gala farewell dinner party
• All taxes and service charges
Not Included: Gratuities to driver, local guides and hotel staff, airport taxes, security charges, fuel surcharges, some beverages and personal items. NOTE: A $20 visa fee must be paid on arrival in Cairo.
Jan. 7: Depart JFK Airport for overnight flight to Cairo, with meals aloft.
Jan. 8: Arrive and transfer to hotel. Evening at leisure to unpack and see central Cairo. (B)
Jan. 9: First day of sightseeing begins at the vast Saqqara necropolis with the recently opened Imhotep Museum. Walk the causeway of the Pyramid of Unas and enter the Old Kingdom tombs. We continue to the Pyramid of Teti with its text, followed by the early mastabas of Ti, Mereruka, and Kagemni. Then, it is on to Dahshur and the Bent and Red Pyramids’ of Sneferu. (B/L)
Jan. 10: The day is devoted to the Giza Plateau. Stand in awe of the three majestic pyramids of kings Khufu, Khafre and Menkaure. Walk through Khafre’s valley temple and gaze upon the great Sphinx. View the well-preserved solar boat of King Khufu. We will enter the Great Pyramid, if open, and climb to the burial chamber of King Khufu. Also planned are visits to the seldom visited surrounding cemeteries, and the tomb of Queen Meresankh III. After lunch in the fabled Khan el Khalili Bazaar, wander its narrow alleys and test your bargaining skills in the souks. (B/L)
Jan. 11: After breakfast, explore the Egyptian Antiquities Museum which houses the world's finest and most extensive collection of Egyptian artifacts. The treasures of King Tutankhamun alone would justify a trip to Egypt. After lunch, return to see the Hall of the Royal Mummies and more exhibition rooms filled with the relics of the splendor of ancient Egypt. (B/L)
Jan. 12: Early morning flight to Luxor. Afternoon at leisure to get acquainted with the area and begin your exploration of ancient Thebes. (B)
Jan. 13: After breakfast, a full day of touring begins with an in-depth investigation of Karnak, the world’s largest religious center -- built, rebuilt and decorated by rulers for more than 2,000 years. The variety, scope and monumentality of these structures are astonishing. Later, walk the newly excavated Boulevard of the Sphinxes and examine the Temple of Amun at Luxor Temple. (B)
Jan. 14: Cross to the West Bank of the Nile and visit tombs in the Valley of the Nobles: Ramose, Sennefer, Rekhmire, and Kheruef. Continue on to the Ramesseum, a complex built by Ramesses II that includes a main temple, royal palace, and mortuary temple. The workmen’s village at Deir el-Medina includes the tombs of workers who built tombs for kings. After lunch, see the funerary temple of Ramesses III and end this day at the Colossi of Memnon. (B)
Jan. 15: Full-day excursion to Abydos, sacred city of Osiris, to visit the phenomenal temple built by Seti I and finished by his son Ramesses II. The temple is also home to the famous King List that traces the Egyptian kings from Menes of Dynasty I up to Seti I. Then, head to Dendera to view the Ptolemaic-Roman era temple dedicated to Hathor. Climb the steps used by ancient priests to the roof where the Festival of the New Year was celebrated in ancient times. (B)
Jan. 16: We return to the West Bank and the mortuary temple of Queen Hatshepsut at Deir el-Bahri followed by the Valley of the Queens. A visit to the royal tombs in the Valley of the Kings will fill the afternoon. Among the tombs on our schedule: Ramesses VI, Tutankhamun, Ramesses IX, Thutmose III and Thutmose IV. (B)
Jan. 17: Depart to Aswan. Stop at Esna Temple dedicated to the god Khnum who (legend says) created humankind on a potter’s wheel. Then, see the well-preserved Ptolemaic Temple of Horus at Edfu. Lastly, Kom Ombo, a site dedicated to Haroeris and the crocodile god Sobek. (B)
Jan. 18: Morning visit to the Island of Philae and the Ptolemaic Temple of Isis. This complex displays some of the best-preserved architecture of ancient artisans. Later, cross the Nile by felucca and climb to see rock-cut tombs of Meku, Sarenput I and Sarenput II at Qubbet el-Hawa. In the evening, wander the exotic and aromatic spice market that has survived for generations. (B)
Jan. 19: Tour the Unfinished Obelisk in the ancient stone quarries. Transfer to airport for flight to Abu Simbel. Enjoy the rest of the day at your leisure and a desert sunset over Lake Nasser. (B/D)
Jan. 20: Early morning visit to the magnificent temples of Ramesses II and Queen Nefertari. Return flight to Cairo, with a stop at the Citadel of Salah-el-Din, a fortress and religious center overlooking Cairo. (B/D)
Jan. 21: Transfer to airport for return flight.
Tour arrangements provided by Travel with the Experts.