From the soaring pillars of the Karnak temple to off-the-beaten-path Dendera, from the aromatic spice market of Aswan to Esna’s red sandstone Temple of Khnum, a luxury Nile cruise is a truly immersive and indulgent way to experience the mystical allure of Egypt. Boasting a mesmerizing collection of ancient architecture and temples, lush and fertile valleys and strikingly barren desert, this is one of the world’s great cruise destinations and a link to antiquity.
Perhaps the most popular stretch is from Luxor to Aswan, home to Egypt’s highest concentration of well-preserved monuments and showcasing the Ptolemaic temples of Esna, Edfu and Kom Ombo. Your luxury Nile cruise will sail through the locks of Esna en route to the Temple of Horus at Edfu, built high above the river valley and the most completely preserved of Egyptian temples. The frenetic town of Edfu itself is known for its sugar and pottery – the local residents depend on agriculture and tourism for their livelihood. Continue on to the unique double temple of Kom Ombo, dedicated to Sobek, the crocodile god, and Horus, the falcon-headed god.
As always, we provide insight into the sites you’re visiting, thanks to our on-the-ground (or on-the-river) experts and Egyptologists. This might mean guiding you to the right sort of vessel for your luxury Nile cruise experience. Rather than embarking on a typical cruise vessel, our guests have the opportunity to sail in a non-motorized, river-going sailboat, or dahabiya – common in Egypt in the days of the monarchy (1920 to 1940s) when aristocrats and sophisticated travelers sought to sail the Nile in high style. These intimate vessels carry a maximum of 16 passengers, allowing us to offer a highly personalized and luxurious experience. And they have the ability to stop at smaller islands and ancient sites that are typically passed over by larger cruise vessels – it’s often easier, then, to lull yourself to sleep by the sounds of the river or enchanting riverbank music wafting over the water from local villages.