Egypt - Is a Cruise Necessary

Old May 12th, 2010, 09:57 AM
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Egypt - Is a Cruise Necessary

Hello - I will be traveling to Egypt with a friend who gets seasick; I was told by a fellow traveler that some parts of Egypt can only be done via cruise because there are no hotels; was wondering if that is true
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Old May 12th, 2010, 10:53 AM
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Hi Kitty - we were on a Nile Cruise for 4 nights - it was extremely calm - I don't think the Nile is ever very rough.
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Old May 12th, 2010, 12:24 PM
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hi kitty i have done the cruise with my wife for 4 years now and ive never felt a ripple the boats are big enough to stop sea sickness with the small ripples created in the nile and yes i say the cruise ,to see everything is the only way
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Old May 12th, 2010, 12:41 PM
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It is not "necessary" to take a cruise - we didn't and we had a great trip (and, honestly, enough antiquities). We took the train (you can fly) from Cairo to Aswan, then drove (with a driver) from Aswan to Luxor, and flew back from Luxor to Cairo. If we missed a few ancient temples, so be it -- as I said, we saw plenty!
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Old May 12th, 2010, 01:42 PM
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Of course you can do without a cruise, but the Nile boats aren't like those that ply the Atlantic, Caribbean - big big
cruiser boats.

They're very much smaller, have flat bottom, you can see both shorelines (Nile if very narrow) and barely a ripple of water could be felt.

I'm the last person you'd find on a "cruise" but that on the Nile was like a paddle in a bathtub.
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Old May 12th, 2010, 08:38 PM
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agree with Sandi lol

Sandi, I love your expression - paddle in a bathtub

Didnt feel any ripples either, and on my first (cheap cruiseboat) the water was almost at eye level from my room window(cos I think I was under the kitchen my room was that cheap

You dont have to travel by cruise, but I think its an excellent way to get some rest and relaxation and save the old numb bum from sitting in a car or bus too long.

Scotsgirl
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Old May 13th, 2010, 04:45 AM
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You basically only cruise between Luxor and Aswan anyway. You don't cruise all the way from Cairo as some people think. You do need to fly or take a train to either Luxor or Aswan and then cruise the other way between IF YOU WANT TO CRUISE. There aren't hotels that most people would want to stay in between Luxor and Aswan, but it is only a day trip so not a big deal. You can do it on land and see the same temples the cruise does, plus perhaps Esna. You have the option.
Sea sickness as the others have said would not be an issue. Imagine the Mississippi river with a BIG boat on it - not too likely you'd get sea sick.
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Old May 13th, 2010, 06:31 AM
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We were in Egypt for 2 weeks and did a 6 day cruise as part of our trip. We are not "cruise people", but I must say that the trip on the Nile was fabulous. No packing and unpacking for 6 nights. Great shore excursions. Wondetful scenery on the shores of the Nile as you cruise by small villages. I enjoyed watching the farmers working their fields with water buffalo and the women washing their laundry at the shore. There was no sea sickness as the water barely moved. If you are concerned about sea sickness, book a room at water level. That's what we did and the views were fantastic from our balcony. We enjoyed watching the feluccas and fishing boats go by.
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Old May 13th, 2010, 06:32 AM
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Can you tell me about the Uniworld Cruises? They have several to Egypt. What areas are the most popular to visit?
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Old May 13th, 2010, 01:58 PM
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scotsgirl - Glad you liked "a paddle in a bathtub!"

That's just what it was and the only reason I'd get on the boats. Those that sail on the Nile are boats NOT ships.
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Old May 14th, 2010, 01:06 AM
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We did a 7 night cruise and it was by far the BEST way to see Egypt as far as we are concerned. I'd do it again in a heartbeat. The vistas of Egypt while you gently cruise on the Nile are unique, peaceful, beautiful, and fascinating. Being on the boat (hardly can call them 'ships' as sandi mentions) allowed us to relax in between the morning and evening sightseeing excursions, not to mention being able to cool off and have a drink and chat with wonderful people. We made friends for life on our Nile cruise. I hope you do the cruise and love it!
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Old May 14th, 2010, 10:01 AM
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>>

I am not trying to deter you at all from taking a cruise. The people who have done it obviously love it. But for the record, when we were in Aswan and Luxor, on land, we did exactly the same thing -- morning and evening sightseeing, and in between -- pool, drinks and fellow travelers. And we saw the vistas because we took the train from Cairo to Aswan.
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Old May 14th, 2010, 09:20 PM
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I have asked friends who travel frequently whether they find a preplanned trip necessary. There are so many places I would like to see in egypt, I wonder if it is beneficial to have a preplanned itenerary. I wonder if travel by rail be better.
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Old May 16th, 2010, 04:23 AM
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I too have done it by train before. But you'll have plenty of on the ground experiences in Cairo and at the sites. Do the cruise. I don't know one person who has done it who wishes they didn't. It's NOT like a big boat cruise. Much more intimate.
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Old May 16th, 2010, 04:24 AM
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ps: if you must do the train, make it an adventure and do it 2nd class. I did.
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Old May 17th, 2010, 02:10 PM
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I'm investigating Egypt now and I'm about 99% certain that we will NOT do a cruise. My best friend and her sister did Egypt a couple of years ago without a cruise and she loved it. Said they spent a lot more time in the temples and were not rushed around like the cruise groups were. If you read the actual itineraries for the cruises, they don't stop at that many places. The one thing that really turned me off is how many of the boats raft together at the stops. It sounds like a giant traffic jam. I'm considering flying to Aswan or Luxor and doing day trips from there. As sf7307 says, I'm sure we'll see "enough antiquities". I think we'll use the money saved on a cruise to dive the Red Sea, tour Petra or spend a couple of days in a desert oasis - for something different.
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Old May 21st, 2010, 11:26 AM
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Thank you so much, these are all such informative and thoughtful responses
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Old May 21st, 2010, 03:10 PM
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I've nearly missed the boat on this thread (haha!), but I'll chime in to say we really enjoyed the cruise. Totally calm water with the major advantage being you don't have to pack/unpack and change hotels in order to move to a new location. We thought it was fabulous.
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Old May 26th, 2010, 12:22 PM
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The cruises I saw docked by the Answan and Luxor's corniche were huge. They're really more like floating hotels than boats.

When I was in my van heading towards Edfu from Kom Ombo, I saw like at least 5 cruises on the nile heading towards the direction of Kom Ombo. I shudder to think that all those cruises will stop at Kom Ombo at about the same time and all those people deboarding onto the site.
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Old May 26th, 2010, 11:55 PM
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I LOVED our cruise. It was an absolute highlight. I also get seasick easily (even on large cruise vessels) and didn't have any problems. You really can't feel the movement at all. We cruised on the Oberoi Philae, which has private docks and individual balconies, and I think that made a big difference. We also had a private guide, so we weren't caught up with the huge tourist groups at the various stops. I would do the cruise again in a heartbeat and can't recommend it highly enough.
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