A Tightly-Packed Day

The pace of events has been brisk as several sites are packed into each day in Cairo and surrounding regions. The transfer from Giza to Abu Simbel (aboard a Petroleum Air charter flight) required us to eat breakfast at 3:00 PM. In addition to Friday’s flight and the desert crossing from Abu Simbel to the Aswan Dam, we boarded our ship (for lunch) and toured the Philae Temple before partying at the “Welcome Aboard” reception on Friday evening.

Everything was justified when we reached the table for our luncheon aboard the Nile Adventurer. I still think that the Sakkara Palm Club was the best buffet, but the meals aboard the cruise ship provide some serious competition. The day was still very busy, but at last we could relax.

Abu Simbel was so impressive! It was HUGE and complex and in good condition. One still needed to run the gauntlet of vendors to reach the tour bus, but at least they stayed away from the two temples where we looked at the wall decorations and statues. In Aswan too, the vendors stayed in the dock area so that we could enjoy the Philae Temple.

There is very little tourist activity in Aswan now, so we are having the chance to really absorb the information about the artifacts. Addel (our Egyptologist) is an archeologist who helped dismantle and move the Philae Temple so he was so full of information about the project and the temple history that we had little free time on the island. ( He is Nubian and proud of his heritage so Kom Ombo will be great to see with him as leader!)

Two warnings: First, the wind on the mountain top at Abu Simbel was fierce. The view is breath-taking, but a heavy neck scarf and jacket was helpful. Second, the WC at Aswan Dam should be avoided. Otherwise this is a great trip and I'm so surprised to have the relics and sites to ourselves.


  • Hi Nefertiti2,

    Abu Simbel is amazing!! Thank goodness they were able to move it to higher ground so the World could view this treasure for many years to come. So glad you have Matt as your tour director. We were lucky to have him on two tours in the past 15 years. Tell Matt that Sheila Monroe says "hello"!

    Love to read your posts. Keep them coming. Brings back wonderful memories of our Egypt/Jordan tour in 2009.

  • I shall pass along your greetings to Matt. Tonight is "Galabeya Night" and Matt has promised to do the belly-dance for us -- if FEDEX has delivered his costume to Edfu on time. The ship is approaching Edfu as I write, so the excitement is palpable!
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