Abu Simbal

Old Apr 24th, 2010, 12:13 PM
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Abu Simbal

In checking flights they seem to either work out to leaving at 4am and returning at appx 9:30am giving little time to see site or leaving at 5am and returning at 10pm. Can anyone who has done this as a day trip please advise. thanks in advance.
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Old Apr 24th, 2010, 12:23 PM
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When we visited (no doubt schedules change regularly) we were on a 7am flight, arriving Abu Simbel about 8:30am, visited the site. Site is small with the two amazing temples which tour itself took about 45/min-1/hr; had sufficient time to wander on our own and take photos*). We then returning to airport for 11am flight to Aswan. Here we boarded our Nile cruise boat.

*don't believe photos can taken inside the temples nowadays.

So, the 4am departure gives you more than sufficient time to fly there, tour site and fly back.
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Old Apr 24th, 2010, 01:06 PM
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We took an early morning flight and we were back in Aswan by midday. The time you are allotting is more than sufficient. Try to sit on the left side of the plane as you fly to Abu Simbel. I did and I could see the temples just before we landed.

When I was there in Dec 2007 photos were not allowed inside the temples, although many people were doing it on the sly. I do not recommend this.
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Old Apr 25th, 2010, 12:16 PM
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JoanneH,
If you're mentioning a 4:00 am departure, then I think you might be going from Cairo on Egypt Air, instead of leaving from Aswan as sandi and P_M talk about. I took a day trip from Cairo to Abu Simbel in February of this year, departing Cairo at 4:00 am, touching down in Aswan to discharge/pick up additional passengers, then arriving in ABS around 7:00 am. If this is what you are doing, be sure to choose the direct flight (although it has one technical stop) so that you don't have to deplane in Aswan. We chose to go on a Friday, when there is an additional afternoon flight back to Aswan/Cairo that leaves in the afternoon, but we didn't really need the extra time. While it seems that it's a fast itinerary to be departing ABS at 9:30, I think it's fine. The site is less than 10 minutes from the airport and the airport is small, so you don't need to factor in much time to/from the airport and for check-in. Yes, it was nice to see the site after 9:30 am when most of the other day trippers had left, but we had much more time there than we needed. We walked to a nearby hotel (Nefertari) in hopes of having some lunch, but decided the on-site snack bar at the site looked better. Definitely take the trip--it was one of the highlights of my visit to Egypt. I have a trip report posted if you want further info. Oh, and sandi is correct--you cannot take photos inside the temples anymore, and it's such a crowded madhouse that they wouldn't turn out well anyway.
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Old Apr 25th, 2010, 01:58 PM
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I was referring to the flights departing CAI, whether the 4am that OP indicates or what we took at 7am back some years. Ours was supposed to stop at Aswan, but as all on the plane were going to Abu Simbel, we flew straight on, non-stop.

In our case, as we were then doing the Nile Cruise, our return flight at 11am went to Aswan, but the 9:30am as OP indicates, if to CAI, leaves more than sufficient time to visit the site.

On arrival at ABS, there's a shuttle bus to take you to the site. Once there you can get a guide to take you around and should then have time on your own, before getting on the shuttle bus (or leisurely walk), back to the airport. But it is rather hot down this way. An a/c bus is nice.

Abu Simbel is definitely worth the visit even if you have to be up in the middle of the night to get there. Enjoy!
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Old Apr 26th, 2010, 09:48 AM
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Thanks for the info I was wondering about that short time frame. Getting up at 2am to catch 4am flight as I have a small farm and usually am awake by 3am in anycase.
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Old Apr 26th, 2010, 10:05 AM
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I think another recent change at Abus Simbel is the lack of shuttle buses provided by Egypt Air. We had planned to take one from the ABS airport to the site, but they don't seem to be operating anymore. Yes, there were shuttle buses, but they were meeting people who had pre-arranged tours--there was no "general public" shuttle bus that we could find. It was simple to hire a cab, though, and we arranged for our driver to come back and get us at a specified time. We didn't pay him until he dropped us off back at the airport for our return flight, so we weren't concerned about him not coming back to the site to pick us up since he hadn't yet been paid. I don't recall how much it was round trip--perhaps 50 Egyptian pounds?
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