Stride climate

Trip Type : Small Group Tour
Ancient Christians in Egypt tour

Ancient Christians in Egypt

Encounters Travel
5.0 . Excellent
100%
Travel Style: You will have solid amounts of both free time and structured time with some activities and meals included. Mixed
Physical Level: Regular walking or cycling over moderately long, hilly, or bumpy distances. Some public transport or utility vehicles such as safari jeeps. Moderate
Lodging Level: Mid-range budget with accommodations ranging from comfortable lodges, guesthouses, and homestays to three star hotels. Value - 3 star
11 days
From: $ 1,699 $ 154 / day
Checking price

Overview

Short Description

This tour focuses on many Egyptian biblical sites such as the Church of St Sergius (where the Holy Family resided), Mount Sinai (where Moses received the 10 commandments) and St Catherine’s Monastery (site of the burning bush)

Small groups are usually defined as between 10 and 24 travelers, often less. If you're the kind of person who enjoys more intimate experiences and personal service this is a good choice. All else being equal you will pay a premium for this style vs a larger group tour.
Trip Type Small Group Tour
See all the highlights and popular spots on a classic tour.
Itinerary Focus Classic Highlights
Mid-range budget with accommodations ranging from comfortable lodges, guesthouses, and homestays to three star hotels.
Lodging Level Value - 3 star
Flights & Transport Only ground transport
Start City N/A
End City N/A

Travel Theme

N/A

Destinations

Egypt

Cities & Attractions

Cairo

Activities

N/A

N/A
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Trip Includes

  • All accommodation as stated in the itinerary in 5-star hotels
  • All transport and transfers in private AC vehicles
  • Overnight sleeper train from Cairo to Luxor
  • 24-hour airport arrival & departure transfer service
  • Sightseeing tours as detailed in the itinerary
  • Services of a local Egyptologist guide for all the sightseeing tours
  • Entrance fees to sites visited
  • Meals as indicated in the itinerary

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Itinerary

Day 1, Arrive in Cairo, transfer to hotel
You arrive at Cairo Airport where we meet and greet and transfer you to your hotel. Our Egypt Uncovered rep. Welcomes you, helps you settle into the hotel, and outlines the plan for the next few days.
| OVERNIGHT
Cairo hotel
| EXTRAS
Extra day in Cairo - pre-tour, Single Room Supplement

Day 2, Cairo, Egyptian Museum & Coptic Cairo tours
We have a full day of tours planned for today which begins with a visit to the Egyptian Museum, which houses a vast collection of artefacts from Egypt's past, including the famous King Tutankhamun display. After an included lunch we continue to Coptic Cairo which is home to many ancient churches. Whilst in Coptic Cairo we will visit the Church of St George, Al Moalaka Church and the Church of St Sergius which is believed to have been built on the spot where the holy family rested at the end of their journey into Egypt. Later on we visit the Coptic Museum which is home to an excellent collection of Coptic artefacts.
| OVERNIGHT
Cairo hotel
| MEALS
Breakfast
| EXTRAS
Nile dinner cruise in Cairo

Day 3, Cairo, Pyramids & Sphinx tour, Wadi Natrun
After breakfast we take you on a tour of the pyramids & sphinx at Giza. The majestic sight of these enormous structures rising out of the desert is a breathtaking spectacle. Here you have the chance to climb inside one of the pyramids (there are a limited number of tickets available for the Great Pyramid). Before continuing on to the Sphinx you will visit the Solar Boat Museum which is located close to the Pyramids. The Museum houses a full size, intact boat which was discovered in 1954 in a pit cut into the Giza bedrock. The boat is almost certainly the oldest, largest and best preserved boat in antiquity. Close by, the mysterious Sphinx stands guard, as it has done so for thousands of years. You have another guided tour around the sphinx and some free time to walk around and take photos. Following our tour of the Giza plateau we leave Cairo and head north towards Alexandria. Along the way we will visit the monasteries around Wadi Natrun and have a picnic lunch. The monasteries around Wadi Natrun were born from Christian hermits who sought to emulate St Anthony by forming these remote communities. The four monasteries were constructed in the 4th century; however each of the monasteries has been totally ruined and reconstructed at least once in its life. Much of what you see today dates to the 18th century. After time at Wadi Natrun our journey continues north to Alexandria where we will spend the evening. After checking into your hotel the remainder of the evening is free for you to get accustomed to your new surroundings.
| OVERNIGHT
Alexandria hotel
| MEALS
Breakfast, Lunch

Day 4, Alexandria city tour
After breakfast we have a full day tour of Alexandria. Your tour of the city includes the Roman amphitheatre, which has twelve semi-circular marble tiers and is in remarkably good condition, Pompey's pillar, and the Catacombs of Kom al-Shoqafa, which is the largest Roman cemetery in Alexandria. Dating from the beginning of the Second Century AD this fascinating underground cemetery displays a unique blend of Pharaonic and Roman art. Later in the afternoon you will also visit Qait-Bay Fort and the famous Library of Alexandria.
| OVERNIGHT
Alexandria hotel
| MEALS
Breakfast

Day 5, Drive to Ismailia via Tanis
We leave Alexandria behind today and follow the Mediterranean coast to Ismailia. Along the way we make a stop along the Nile Delta to visit the town of Tanis. During Biblical times Tanis was known by the name Zoan, as referred to in the Bible. In the film the Raiders of the Lost Ark, Tanis was said to be the hiding place of the Ark of the Covenant. The city was founded late in the 20th dynasty and became the northern capital of Egypt during the 21st dynasty under the rule of Smendes. Tanis then remainder Egypt's northern capital into the 22nd dynasty. There are many ancient sites at Tanis, including temples and a royal necropolis. In 1939/1940 Pierre Montet discovered the intact burial sites of Psusennes I, Amenemope and Shoshenq II which contained a large amount of Gold, Jewellery, Lapis Lazuli and many other precious items which are now housed in the Cairo Museum. After time in Tanis we continue on to Ismailia where we will spend this evening.
| OVERNIGHT
Ismailia hotel
| MEALS
Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Day 6, Drive to St Catherine’s Monastery
After free time in Ismailia we cross the Suez Canal and drive into the Sinai Peninsula to St Catherine's Monastery. St Catherine's is located at the foot of Mount Sinai, although known as St Catherine's, the full, official name is 'The sacred and imperial Monastery of the God-trodden Mount of Sinai'. The Greek Orthodox monastery is now a UNESCO World Heritage site, and has been declared the world's oldest working Christian monastery - although, the Monastery of St Anthony also holds claim to that title. The monastery was built between the years 527 and 565 around the 'Chapel of the Burning Bush' which was built at the site where Moses is reported to have seen the burning bush. The living bush is reputed to be the original. You have lunch and dinner in a basic hotel before getting some rest as you have a very early start tomorrow.
| OVERNIGHT
St Catherine hotel
| MEALS
Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Day 7, Mount Sinai Hike, drive to Suez
At approximately 0130 you will begin your hike to the summit of Mount Sinai. Bedouin tradition says that Mount Sinai is the mountain where Moses received the Ten Commandments from God. Some Christian traditions however, place this event at the nearby Mount Serbal. A monastery was founded at the foot of Mount Serbal in the 4th century; it was only in the 6th century that the monastery was moved to its current location at the foot of Mount Catherine, and is now known as St Catherine's Monastery. For Muslims, Mount Sinai also has religious significance and a chapter in the Quran is named from it. You should reach the summit of Mount Sinai in plenty of time to watch the spectacular sunrise over the Sinai Mountains. After your descent you will have time for some breakfast before visiting St Catherine's Monastery, home to an important icon collection. You will also have time for lunch at St Catherine's before we continue our journey to Suez. After checking into the hotel you will have some free time.
| OVERNIGHT
Suez hotel
| MEALS
Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Day 8, Monasteries of St Paul & St Anthony, drive to Cairo
We will have breakfast in Suez before following the Gulf of Suez south to the town of Zafarana. Here you will visit the Monasteries of St Paul and St Anthony. The Coptic monastery of St Paul lies in Egypt's eastern desert far from any other ancient ruins. St Paul is said to have been born to rich parents, however by the age of 16 both of his parents had died. Paul gave up his inheritance and gave his life to God, seeking refuge in a cave in the Eastern desert, where he lived until the age of 113. St Paul lived a life of extreme austerity, and is said to have been fed half a loaf of bread each day by a raven. At around 340AD the well-known desert monk St Anthony is said to have visited St Paul just before he passed away. Legend has it that when Paul died, 2 lions dug his grave. St Anthony then buried Paul and designated him a saint. It was above St Paul's cave that the monastery you see today was built. It dates back to around the 5th Century. The monastery of St Anthony was founded around 356 AD just after the death of St Anthony, on his burial site. Although a Coptic monastery today, throughout its history, the monastery was often multi-faith, home to monks from many different Christian religions. Amazingly the monks who inhabited the monastery today still speak Coptic; a religion directly descending from that of the ancient Egyptians. Today, St Anthony's is a self-contained 'desert village' with a bakery, a mill, gardens and 5 churches. The best of these churches is that of St Anthony himself. Recently the Egyptian Council of Antiquities and the American Research Centre in Egypt collaborated to restore many of the exceptional wall paintings. Many of these paintings date back as far as the 7th and 8th centuries and depict holy knights in bright colours and the hermit founders of the monastery. After spending time at these historic monasteries, we drive back to Cairo.
| OVERNIGHT
Cairo hotel
| MEALS
Breakfast, Lunch

Day 9, Visit Fayoum Oasis
After an early breakfast we head out of Cairo to the Oasis town of Fayoum. Whilst at the Oasis you will see the famous bucket-wheels and will have the chance to visit the Karanis Museum and the remains of the ancient Roman city. You will have lunch beside the banks of Karun Lake before returning to Cairo in the afternoon.
| OVERNIGHT
Cairo hotel
| MEALS
Breakfast, Lunch Day 10, Memphis, Saqqara & city tour
Ensure you don't miss breakfast today as we have a full day of tours ahead. We begin the day with a visit to Memphis and Saqqara. Memphis is thought to have been founded by Menes (aka Narmer) around 3100 BC. At this time Memphis was located at the apex of the Nile Delta, giving it control of overland and river communications. The city is often regarded as the world's oldest imperial city and even after Thebes became Egypt's capital, Memphis continued to hold sway over much of the country. Memphis remained Egypt's second city until Ptolemaic times. Today, not much remains of this once great city, however some of its glory is evident in the great necropolises scattered across the desert landscape. To truly appreciate Memphis, you need to recall the city's great past. After time in Memphis we continue on to Saqqara, which lies 25km to the south of Cairo. Djeser's (Zoser's) Step Pyramid (built 4700 years ago) dominates the skyline and is believed to have been the ancient Egyptians' first attempt at Pyramid building. The entire 7km stretch of desert at Saqqara is a treasure trove of pyramids, temples and tombs, which we will have plenty of time to explore while we learn about the history of pyramid building in Egypt. We return to central Cairo around lunch time to visit the Khan-el-Khalili bazaar where we will have lunch in one of the local restaurants. In the afternoon we visit the Citadel of Salah el Din, with its collection of Mosques and Palaces. You can always be guaranteed an excellent view over the city from here and on a clear day you may even be able to see the Pyramids.
| OVERNIGHT
Cairo hotel
| MEALS
Breakfast, Lunch Day 11, Cairo, tour ends with transfer to airport
Your tour ends after breakfast and your time is free until we transfer you to the airport for your flight home.
| OVERNIGHT
N/A
| MEALS
Breakfast
| EXTRAS
Extra day in Cairo - post-tour

Availability

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Price From $ 1,699
Price Per Day: $ 154 per day
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5 Encounters Travel Travel Reviews & Ratings

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5.0 out of 5 (100+ reviews)
Excellent 5
Great 0
Average 0
Disappointing 0
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Value
5.0
Guide
5.0
Activities
5.0
Lodging
5.0
Transportation
5.0
Meals
5.0

Ancient Christians in Egypt

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Knowledgeable and entertaining

5.0
Details
Value5.0
Guide5.0
Activities5.0
Lodging5.0
Transportation5.0
Meals5.0
I just got back from the Discover Egypt tour and I don't have enough good things to say. Our guide, Mohamed El Zawahry is an Egyptologist and is incredibly knowledgeable and entertaining. I took my 2 kids, ages 12 and 16, and he did such an amazing job with them (and everyone else). Honestly as a blond haired, green eyed westerner I was a bit nervous about safety issues, but couldn't have felt better than I did (and I'm not a novice traveler). We saw so many things, learned so much, I only wish I would have added the Jordan trip on the front end of this tour! I had a medical complication in the middle of the trip and Mohammad and Walid went out of their way to help accommodate me. They made this trip so much more than it could have been! I highly recommend all of the 'extra' tours- Abu Simble, hot air balloon, Philae Temple- all incredible. Thanks for everything! My kids are still in awe!
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Amazing bespoke trip round North India.

5.0
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Value5.0
Guide5.0
Activities5.0
Lodging5.0
Transportation5.0
Meals5.0
I just came home from an amazing bespoke trip round North India.
Encounters Travel were amazing. Hotels were beautiful, our driver and local guides I couldn’t praise more. The trip was well planned and ran like clockwork.
I saw some amazing places, learned about the history, architecture and people. I would recommend anyone to go to India and to go with Encounters
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Amazing trip to Egypt!

5.0
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Value5.0
Guide5.0
Activities5.0
Lodging5.0
Transportation5.0
Meals5.0
I just got back from my amazing trip to Egypt!
My tour was Discover Egypt from January 13 to January 21, 2018... What can I say?! I grew up with a fascination for Egypt and I feel so blessed I was able to go, with so many dates as an option, once I saw the date of my birthday, that was it! What better way to spend my birthday than in a country that has always been on the top of my bucket list !
I was lucky to meet an amazing group of people that shared my desire to see this amazing place and every single person involved in this tour was absolutely amazing! My tour guy Big Mo was the best! I felt very safe and well taken care of from the moment I landed in Egypt to the day I left. I really appreciated the birthday celebration as well!
I miss every single moment I lived during those days.
I went with a fascination and left loving Egypt, it’s culture and it’s beautiful people.
I will treasure this experience forever.
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Well organized

5.0
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Value5.0
Guide5.0
Activities5.0
Lodging5.0
Transportation5.0
Meals5.0
My husband and I booked the Discover Egypt trip in February 2017 and traveled in may 2017 and it was even more than we could have asked or dreamed it would be. Our group was led by Magz and we learned so much about Egyptian history and current culture. The trip was well organized and communication before during and after the trip was incredible. I have recommended this company to anyone who asks and can't wait to take another trip with them in the future. For any additional questions feel free to message me - I'm happy to provide more feedback. Thank you encounters for the trip of a lifetime!
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Discover Egypt is the most comprehensive tour I've ever been on

5.0
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Value5.0
Guide5.0
Activities5.0
Lodging5.0
Transportation5.0
Meals5.0
Encounters Travel Discover Egypt is the most comprehensive tour I've ever been on.They met us at the airport getting off the plane and took us back to the airport and saw that we got through security and everything in between. It is very safe in Egypt. You can walk the streets and when telling people that ask that we were from America we were met with smiles and positive comments. Because of the low number of tourists in the country right now Encounters Travel has negotiated with the hotels to stay in 5 star hotels. The pyramids are spectacular but it's only a small part of what you will see. Right now there are no crowds. An example My Wife and I took an optional tour to some pyramids southwest of Cairo. We went inside the Red Pyramid to the burial chambers. Two people passed us going in and two people passed us going out. That's 4 other people in the pyramid with us. All of the people with Encounters Travel are there to see to it that you have an enjoyable time and are extremely helpful.Our tour guide Big Mo is very knowledgeable and friendly.The Encounters agent in Hurghada, Mohamed,( I think everyone in Egypt is that name,HaHa) Was extremely pleasant and fun to be with. When Anass,the Encounters manager found out that my wife couldn't walk far he arraigned for a wheel chair to tour the Egyptian museum so she could see it all. This was my second time going on the Discover Egypt tour. I went last year with my son and when my wife heard all of our stories she wanted to see it. Someone asked her on the way home what her favorite part was and she replied "All of it" If you ever thought of going to Egypt now is the time.
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Details

Flights & Transport

Only ground transport

Trip ID#:

Encounterstraveltourcms-EGSIAC

Trip Excludes

  • International flights (available on request)
  • Visa fees (available on arrival for most nationalities)
  • Travel Insurance (mandatory, available on request)
  • Meals not indicated in the itinerary
  • Tipping kitty (allow US$30)
  • Drinks, snacks and other personal expenses (e.g. laundry)
  • Tour guide tips
  • Hotel Gala Dinners (if charged by the hotels on 24 & 31 Dec, see Tour notes)
  • Any other items not mentioned above
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