Trip to Egypt & Israel, Nov. 2011

Dec 31st, 2010, 02:48 PM
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Trip to Egypt & Israel, Nov. 2011

Hi, I'm contemplating a first trip to this region in November, 2011. I'll be accompanying my cousin and his wife, who've been on this trip before. We fly into Cairo and stay for about 4 days. Then take a bus or shuttle to Jerusalem and stay for 4 days.

In Cairo, I'm thinking of doing 2 day-trips with a tour company. One would be a day-trip to Alexandria, with time at the library and Pompey's Pillar and Roman Amphitheater. The other trip would possibly be to Fayoum, or I could go to Memphis and Sakkara. Thoughts on which might be more worthwhile?

Also, I see that one tour company offers dinner cruises on the Nile, however I'd kind of like to cruise during the day. Are cruises offered during the day also? Thanks for any advice. I'll post questions about Jerusalem separately. Greg
gregs317 is offline  
Dec 31st, 2010, 03:01 PM
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Just out of curiosity - what is your interest in Fayoum? Don't get me wrong, the area is interesting, but it's not something I would do on a first/quick trip. Memphis/Sakkara makes more sense logistically, assuming you have hit the other major sites as well. A day trip to Luxor is possible.....long.......but very do-able.

For some tour ideas, you could look at

Debbie (Casual_Cairo) is a frequent poster here, but never solicits business.
Grcxx3 is offline  
Dec 31st, 2010, 06:26 PM
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Well, Fayoum is one of the day tours offered by Viator. I guess the main draw here is the waterworks right? I'd definitely be up for a day-tour to Luxor. I'm also interested in the Gold Island and Suez Canal tours. For the Suez Canal tour, do passengers actually ride on the water, or is it on a tour bus that drives along the canal path? Thanks, Greg
gregs317 is offline  
Dec 31st, 2010, 06:34 PM
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Even tho it's a long day - I would definitely do Luxor over Fayoum.

We went to the town of Fayoum once - by accident. No big excitement. The "fun" part of that area is the old Roman ruin across the lake, but that requires off-road vehicles and I'm not sure any tours do that.

Sorry, don't know anything about the Suez tour. Lived there 4 years and never felt a desire to do it.

It it were me and my first trip - I would try to hit the highlights. If you can't do Luxor, I would look at what other options there are in Cairo.
Grcxx3 is offline  
Jan 1st, 2011, 02:57 AM
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Congrats on your trip...

Cairo nice but big congested city Alexandria ok not great.

You should try to make more time if you can.

At least do an overnite in Luxor for the Karnak

Temple night show and the Valley of the Kings

Was the highlight of my trip along with Petra

in Jordan went to Jerusalem from there.

A truly AMAZING and spiritual journey...

Happy Planning,
qwovadis is offline  
Jan 1st, 2011, 06:12 AM
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qwovadis - Did you really like the Karnak Sound and Light show? The only S&L show I would go out of my way to see is the one at Abu Simble.
Grcxx3 is offline  
Jan 1st, 2011, 10:19 AM
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I wouldn't go out of my way (or even "in my way") to see any light show (I've been once, at the Parthenon, and once was more than enough), but Karnak is a fabulous temple to visit by daylight (my favorite of all the antiquities we visited in Egypt - better than the pyramids)! Luxor Temple, too, as well as Hatsepshut's Temple and the Valley of the Kings/Valley of the Queens.
sf7307 is offline  
Jan 1st, 2011, 11:57 AM
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You're right, sf7307 - I liked the Abu Simble S&L show, but we did it as part of a Lake Nasser cruise. I wouldn't spend the night in Abu Simble to see it, but I do think it was good. The Karnak S&L show I thought was awful.
Grcxx3 is offline  
Jan 2nd, 2011, 02:55 AM
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Thanks for all the replies. Are there belly dancing performances in Cairo? Not looking for lessons, just the performance. What is the best bazaar to visit for fun shopping? Greg
gregs317 is offline  
Jan 2nd, 2011, 06:00 AM
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Here is a recent thread on belly dancing performances -

As for bazaars, the Khan el Khalili is the place to go - a multitude of things to look at/buy, interesting history and architecture, and fascinating people watching! I love that place!
Grcxx3 is offline  
Jan 2nd, 2011, 06:51 AM
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The daytrip to Alexandria will be long long long; likewise if another out to Fayoum. I'd figure 2/days w/ 1 overnight in Alex returning next day. And, instead of Fayoum, visit the traditional sites aroung Cairo including Memphis & Sakkara, Giza, Pyramids, Sphinx, Khan al Khalili Bazaar. Attempting to get to Suez is a long haul also and likely disappointing... there was a thread on this question sometime back (do a search) and it received "thumbs down" as I recall, but check it out.

As regards bus from Cairo/Jerusalem... I'd double check whether that even still runs and if it does, figure a full day transit. There are flights between Cairo/Israel but can be expensive with limited schedules... however, safer.
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