Top Rated Nile Cruise Ships – Your Lifetime Nile River Cruise Memories Are Guaranteed!
Our Nile River Cruises offer a perfect blend of affordability, luxury, and unforgettable sightseeing in the Land of the Pharaohs. All of our Nile cruise ships feature 5-Star cruisers with full board and lodging, and all also feature multiple onshore excursions to some of Egypt’s most cherished ancient sites to be found in the Nile River Valley.
Whether you only want a short week-long break, or whether you want a more immersive experience, you can sure that we will have a Nile cruise ship that fits your needs perfectly. Cruise the Nile in absolute style while following in the footsteps of the pharaohs.
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The Only Way to See All of Egypt Is on Nile River Cruises
It may seem difficult to believe, but Nile river cruises have been running since the mid-1800s, shuttling tourists from all corners of the globe up and down the famous river. A lot about it has changed since then, but the river still has an irresistible attraction, and if you are organizing a visit to Egypt, it pays to consider options for cruises. After all, and as the title above indicates – the river is really the only way to see all of Egypt.
Running the entire length of the country, the Nile seems to define Egypt. Since its earliest days, the river has brought life with its annual floods that allowed for cultivation and the development of a vast, organized society, and it still supplies many industries. Naturally, one of the industries that the Nile supports is the tremendous tourist industry that is such a key component of modern Egypt, and Nile river cruises are one of its stars.
Take it from travel experts like the world-famous Condé Nast organization, that said of Nile river cruises, “For maximum sightseeing in a minimum amount of time, a Nile cruise is the way to go.” With travelers able to book cruises of three days, or even lengthier tours of up to eight days or more, it is possible to take in an unmatchable amount of scenery and sightseeing on board a cruise.
Yet, even if time is not an issue, there is no arguing that Nile river ships provide travelers with rare opportunities to see Egypt, particularly the sites relating to Ancient Egypt, in its entirety. In fact, for decades, it was Nile river cruises that enabled scores of travelers to visit the many sights of the southernmost reaches of Egypt, often considered inaccessible.
Today, there are flights far south into Aswan or the historic city of Luxor, and travelers can hop on board trains or take taxis or buses to reach some sites, but nothing can compare with the magic to be found while drifting up the famed river and taking in its many natural and historic sights. Visiting Upper Egypt is easier than ever, but when comparing all modes of travel, it is always the Nile river cruises that win.
More Than Just a Few Advantages in Nile River Ships
If you are just beginning to make plans for your next (or first) visit to Egypt, it is wise to consider the many advantages you will enjoy if you include one of the different options for Nile river cruises on your itinerary. And there are many advantages that are easily overlooked.
First and foremost is their comfort and ease. When you board your cruise, your days of packing and unpacking, settling and re-settling in a new accommodation, and navigating from point to point abruptly end. Instead, it is now your luxurious accommodation that travels along with you, and you can settle in for a few days of complete ease.
Naturally, Nile river ships are often some of the most luxurious accommodations, too. From gourmet meals and well-appointed cabins, upper decks for days of leisurely sightseeing and many amenities, they are always premier experiences. Because ships are never overly large, you enjoy a huge amount of attention from the crew and can even find many options for traveling with on-board experts. If the idea of frequent lectures and discussions with knowledgeable Egyptologists, qualified guest lecturers, or archaeologists prior to, during, and after visits to sites appeals…Nile river cruises can ensure this is part of the experience.
Most cruises also feature a good array of land excursions and allow you to spend time at the historic sites as well as local attractions and other features. Rather than rocketing past on a train, flying overhead in a plane or missing out altogether, Nile river cruises ensure you really see the very most possible. You can opt for cruises that emphasize the antiquities, but most will also introduce you to modern-day Egyptians, enabling you to enjoy a fuller experience of the country and its people.
Lastly, one of the greatest advantages of Nile river cruises is that they can be a major part, but not the entirety, of your visit to Egypt. You can opt to enjoy a cruise from one relevant area to the next, and then go on shore for several days of exploration at other sites.
You can expand on your river cruise by booking a Lake Nasser cruise or a cruise that might take you down the river and towards Cairo (rather than upriver and towards Aswan). You can also look for tour providers that have hotel add-ons and trip extending options that allow you to savor the delights of specific areas and high points, combining them with your cruise.
In other words, Nile river cruises are a wonderfully luxurious and flexible option when arranging your upcoming visit to Egypt. With all of that in mind, let’s take some time to discover the basics of Nile river cruises for first-time travelers or even for those who’ve already paid visits in the past.
What to Know about Nile River Cruises
So, you already know that Nile river cruises come in a wide array of styles and options. To make the best choice, you will want to start with a list of the destinations important to you on your visit. If you are very short on time and wish to see some of the highlights of the Ancient Egyptian world, a cruise can be a good way to see many of them in a short period of time.
Don’t leave out any destinations not situated along the river’s edge, or beyond the Aswan High Dam (such as Abu Simbel or New Kalabsha). There are many land excursions and alternative cruises that can get you to those beautiful locations.
Next, consider the time of year you intend to visit. Just like regular tourism season has its peak, shoulder and off seasons, so too do the Nile river cruises. In fact, they coincide with them, with peak season usually seen from October into early to mid-January. Shoulder season is considered mid-January until early April, and the off or hottest time for travel begins in May and runs through the end of September (though many also think of September through October as a potential shoulder season).
Rather than looking at the seasons as peak or off peak (which really means differences in prices and crowds), though, consider them in terms of their temperatures.
As an example, between the months of December and February, the daytime temperatures are still hot, but humidity levels are much lower. The summer months of May through August combine very high daytime temperatures along with humidity, making it very difficult for some to explore the land-based sights.
So, once you have a list of your “must see” destinations, and you have a good idea of the time of year you are going to travel, it is time to look at the types of Nile river cruises available to you.
How to Travel Along the Nile
Generally, the Nile navigable by luxury cruise liners and smaller vessels. As one expert explains, “The full river is inaccessible to larger and tall-masted boats due to the locks and bridges that cross it… Aswan to Luxor, or the reverse trip, is the typical run of larger cruise ships that can’t traverse the length of the river due to their size.”
In fact, most of the cruises make trips between Luxor and Aswan, paying a visit to each bank and making stops at such sites as Edfu, Kom Ombo and others along their way. The typical trip of this kind runs three to four days, but many travelers prefer more extended explorations aboard a diverse range of vessels.
Though there are nearly 300 registered vessels for visitors to enjoy Nile river cruises they vary widely in size and amenities. They can be no longer than 240 feet and no wider than 48 feet. They can stand only 41 feet in total height if they are to easily navigate the river. This is why most of the vessels, even the larger and more opulent have no more than four or five decks (with the uppermost usually open as a sundeck).
Some larger cruisers have dozens of suites and lots of options ranging from spas to sundecks. There are also charming little feluccas (usually not used for cruising, but rather for transport from one point to another as there are no cabins on most), and tall-masted dahabiya boats that are smaller, but just as appealing as luxury cruisers.
How to choose? If you understand the itinerary you desire, it helps to narrow the options. However, if you are still torn between the two options or find that several have the itinerary you seek, you can ask yourself about the overall pace you wish to follow. If your vision of the perfect cruise involves a slower pace, a lot of time on the water, and maybe even the look and feel of large sails above you as you sit on the deck – it is the dahabiya you want. If you are all about speed and modern amenities like a pool, the cruiser may be your ideal choice. The good news is that there are many options, between the luxury cruisers and the smaller, slower dahabiyas and any of them is sure to delight.
The Seemingly Endless Itinerary Options for Nile Cruises
Of course, to make your final decision, you must explore the various itineraries available, and this can often lead many travelers to feel frustrated and confused. After all, there are long cruises that begin in the Luxor area and sail northward (which is down-river) towards Cairo. They can take in some of the most stunning sites, including El Amarna and other locales before arriving in Cairo. Yet, there are also reverse itineraries departing from Cairo and heading to Luxor and even Aswan.
Clearly, if you are eager to take in as many locations as possible, it means opting for a longer cruise. As an example, a typical, five-day journey from Luxor to Aswan would often include land tours of Karnak Temple and/or an overnight in Luxor. The following day might include a western bank tour into the famed Valley of the Kings or the equally famous Temple of Hatshepsut, before departure. A stop or overnight at Edfu may be next with tours of the Horus Temple before departing towards Kom Ombo and a land tour there, as well. The final leg would be to Aswan with tours of the unfinished obelisk, the high dam and Philae.
That represents a great deal, but as you can see, it is fast-paced. If you wish to spend more time in each spot or expand upon it to include sites above Luxor, there are longer tours and combination tour options making it all possible.
For example, perhaps you wish to depart from Cairo? If so, you will find that there are finer providers happy to set sail from this famous city. You might begin with land tours of the Egyptian Museum (or its new location outside of the city center), the Giza Plateau and even the famous souk and other sites. You can then depart towards Beni Suef where you can visit the Maydom and Dahshour Pyramids before continuing south towards stops at Minya, Amarna, Asyut and others. You would then visit Luxor before continuing south to Aswan, with stops along the way at Edfu and Kom Ombo.
So, whether your schedule allows just a few days or more than a week enjoying one of the many options for Nile river cruises, you will not regret the decision to book. Nothing can compare with the experience of waking to the sights and sounds of modern Egypt. Whether it is a farmer singing to his cattle, the sounds of children swimming in the waters nearby or the sight of ancient pyramids and temples emerging from the morning mists, it is something not to be missed during your stay in this magical land.