DAY ONE – Depart the USA Today you'll depart the USA on your transatlantic overnight flight to Cairo, Egypt.
DAY TWO – Cairo, Egypt Upon arrival, you'll be met by a representative of Mayflower Tours and transferred to your hotel. Enjoy the remainder of the day at leisure in this remarkable city that offers renowned history and culture.
DAY THREE – Sphinx and the Great Pyramids of Giza After breakfast at your hotel, enjoy a tour to the Pyramids of Saqqara located south of Cairo. Close to the Ancient Egyptian capital of Memphis, it contains burials from much of Egypt's history. You'll enjoy an included lunch at a local restaurant. This afternoon, you'll visit the great Pyramids of Giza followed by a visit of the Sphinx. The last remaining 'wonder' of the Seven Wonders of the Ancient World, the Great Pyramids of Giza are perhaps the most famous and discussed structures in history. The Great Sphinx of Giza, commonly referred to as the Sphinx, is a limestone statue of a reclining or couchant sphinx that stands on the Giza Plateau on the west bank of the Nile. The Sphinx of Giza is a symbol that has represented the essence of Egypt for more than 4,500 years. (Breakfast, lunch and dinner)
DAY FOUR – Tour of Cairo Your day begins with a tour of the Egyptian Museum of Antiquities. Here you'll see the spectacular treasures of King Tutankhamen and the extensive collection of approximately 160,000 Egyptian artifacts covering 5,000 years. Following an included lunch, you'll visit the iconic Citadel of Saladin. The citadel was used as the seat of the king and his government in Egypt for many centuries and dynasties. You'll continue on to visit the Mosque of Muhammad Ali. Round out your day in Cairo with a visit to the world's oldest marketplace which dates back as far as 1382. (Breakfast and lunch)
DAY FIVE – Nile River Cruise, Karnak and Luxor Temples Depart for the Cairo airport for an early morning flight to Luxor. Upon arrival, you will be transferred to your river ship, MS Mayfair, for a four night cruise on the Nile River. Following lunch onboard, you'll visit the Karnak Temple Complex which comprises a vast mix of decayed temples, chapels, pylons, and other buildings. This complex, a city of temples built over 2,000 years ago, is the largest religious building ever constructed. Luxor Temple is a large Ancient Egyptian temple complex in the city today known as Luxor which was founded in 1400 BC. Luxor is unique among the main Egyptian temple complexes in having only two Pharaohs leave their mark on its architectural structure. (Breakfast) (Lunch and dinner onboard)
DAY SIX – Valley of the Kings and Edfu Today's excursion visits the stunning tombs at the Valley of theKings where, for a period of nearly 500 years from the 16th to 11th century BC, tombs were constructed for the Pharaohs and powerful nobles of the New Kingdom. This ancient site has given Egyptologists the opportunity to study the life and death beliefs of the ancient Egyptians. The walls of the tombs are covered with hieroglyphic writing including text from the Book of the Dead. You'll visit the Queen Hatshepsut Temple which took fifteen years to complete, between the 7th and the 22nd years of her reign. A photo stop is made by the giant Colossi of Memnon. This afternoon we sail to Edfu located on the west bank of the Nile River, some sixty miles south of Luxor. Its ancient name was Wetjeset-Hrw, or "The Place Where Horus is Extolled." (Breakfast, lunch and dinner onboard)
DAY SEVEN – Kom Ombo After breakfast, visit the Temple of Horus in Edfu which is dedicated to Horus, the falcon-headed god. Not only is this the best preserved ancient temple in Egypt, but it is the second largest after Karnak. In the afternoon, sail to Kom Ombo, a small town situated on the east side of the Nile. Surrounded by fields of sugarcane and corn, Kom Ombo is a pleasant agriculture town and home to many Nubians. Visit the unusual Temple of Kom Ombo dedicated to both Horus and the Crocodile God Sobek. After reembarking, the ship sails for Aswan. (Breakfast, lunch and dinner onboard)
DAY EIGHT – Aswan Your morning is at leisure in Egypt's third largest city, Aswan – small enough to walk around and graced with the most beautiful setting on the Nile. Spend the day strolling the broad Corniche, watching the sailboats or sitting in a floating restaurant listening to Nubian music and eating freshly caught fish. Or choose an optional excursion to the Abu Simbel Temples. This afternoon, enjoy a scenic felucca ride on the Nile. A felucca is a traditional sailboat, relying solely on wind-power, used to transport people and goods on the river. What a great way to enjoy some of the stunning views of the Nile just as Cleopatra did so many centuries ago! (Breakfast, lunch and dinner onboard)
DAY NINE – Return to Cairo After breakfast onboard, disembark the ship and enjoy a short tour to visit the lovely Temple of Philae followed by a visit of the High Dam. Philae was one of the last outposts of Egyptian religion, surviving two centuries after the Roman Empire converted to Christianity. Lunch is included at a local restaurant during the tour. On your visit to the High Dam, which separates Lake Nasser from the Nile, you'll be astounded at the size which is over 11,000 feet long. Following the tour, transfer to the Aswan airport and return to Cairo. Tonight your Tour Manager hosts our Farewell Dinner at the hotel. (Breakfast onboard) (Lunch and dinner)
DAY TEN – Cairo / USA This morning, transfer to the Cairo airport and return home with memories of the life enriching experiences from Egypt and your cruise along the Nile River. (Breakfast)
This itinerary is approximate. The exact times, days and destinations may vary due to unforeseen circumstances.