I’ve always dreamed of cruising down the Nile River. I didn’t expect I’d be running down a dusty path in the dark trying to find a place to jump on board the ship!
My four day cruise from Luxor to Aswan had been booked months before with a wonderful company based out of Cairo called Memphis Tours. But, I couldn’t anticipate getting violently ill while touring the Great Sphinx of Giza and being stuck in bed with an IV for a day and a half! Luckily I was staying at Le Meridien Pyramids Hotel, and they had an in-house doctor.
Once he gave me the go-ahead I immediately jumped on a plane to Luxor and raced to catch up with my cruise. Driving through rural Egypt itself was an exotic adventure with beautiful green strips of sugarcane and palm trees on one side and dusty villages on the other.
The Sonesta St. George 1 is a 5 star elaborately decorated ship with only 47 cabins – all river view. This ship was just refurbished – and it shows! Never did I expect to be cruising on such on something so luxurious. It even has a spa and fitness center. The trip includes all meals, excursions, entrance fees, an Egyptologist guide, service charges, taxes and transfers.
The rooms are spacious and comfy. But the best part is the shower! It has so many spa features that it comes with a remote control and a one page instruction sheet. I had fun trying out the steam bath, jacuzzi and water massage all to glowing disco-type lights.
Once I was able to tear myself away from the bathroom I discovered that the panoramic French windows opened. What a treat to be able to sit comfortably and glide along watching the green fertile banks of the Nile. It’s a scene that hasn’t changed in hundreds of years. The banks are lined with mud brick huts, sugar cane fields, egrets, donkeys, fishing boats and waving kids. It was relaxing and fascinating at the same time.
Due to my illness I missed the Valley of the Kings and Karnak. As sad as that made me, I was astounded at everything I was able to see. The beauty of Nile cruising is every temple is within a short distance of docking. We were never more than a horse and buggy ride away from a spectacular temple or sight!
I can’t wait to share more about my Egyptian adventure in another blog. Memphis Tours was superb, and as a woman traveling alone I never felt unsafe. The Egyptian people I met were very welcoming and kind, and the things I saw and experienced definitely surpassed my expectations. Stay tuned for more!