22 DAY EXOTIC EGYPT & GORGEOUS GREECE
Day 1: Monday – See ya Australia!
Say goodbye to Australia! We’ll let you know what time your flights are and where you need to catch them from. Get ready to begin your memorable journey. Make sure you take lots of photos especially to make your Facebook friends jealous!
Please note: Depending on flight availability, you may leave Australia early morning on Day 2 and arrive the same day. Don't worry though, you won’t miss out on anything!
Day 2: Tuesday – Hello Egypt!
Okay - long-haul flight over. Hopefully you’ve had a little sleep on-board, otherwise you’re going to get to have one soon. Guess what? You’re in Egypt! As the Egyptians say, ahlan wa sahlan – which means welcome! Your time here is going to be filled with culture, history and so much fun. Step off the plane, take a short walk and you will see us! Our tour guides will be holding a sign to identify themselves. This is where your 5 star service begins. They will direct you through customs and immigrations then assist you with your luggage. Off to the hotel we go. You will have some time to freshen up and relax.
Please note: Hotel check in is generally around 2pm however we will do our best to get you a room as soon as you arrive.
Day 3: Wednesday - Museum & Old Cairo
Try some traditional ful medames at breakfast this morning! You’ll have a huge selection of foods and Egyptian-style delights, so we’re absolutely positive you’ll find something you want to smuggle home with you.
Start your adventure with an understanding of Egypt history at the famous Egyptian Museum. You’ll have a chance to view major historical pieces discovered literally thousands of years ago, dating back to 3000BC - there are approximately 1,200 items in the Museum, including the 11kg Gold Mask of Tutankhamun. If you want to pay a little extra you’ll also have a chance to enter the Mummy’s Room. (We don’t make any promises you won’t get homesick, seeing the mummy there.)
This afternoon you’ll get a chance to check out Old Cairo! Our guide will help you to ensure you’re respectful of the religious gatherings and ceremonies going on as you visit the beautiful Muhammed Ali mosque, as well as the breathtaking Hanging Church of the Virgin Mary.
End the day with a visit to Khan El Khalil Bazaar, where you can smoke watermelon shisha, drink an Egyptian coffee (that’s strong!), go shopping, or ... Well, all of the above.
Day 4: Thursday - Cairo - Pyramids
You’re probably going to be up at 5:00am today - which is either the jetlag or your excitement, like a kid before Christmas. Today’s going to be awesome! You’re going to visit the pyramids today - one of the seven wonders of the ancient world.
Beginning with the ancient necropolis, Saqqara, we’ll visit one of the oldest stone structures in the world: the Step Pyramid! You’ll get to learn that the secrets of this desert world have been forgotten over the years, buried in the expansive sands - excavation is underway all year ‘round, making progress towards new discoveries every day.
From here you’ll have a bit of free time for lunch before arriving at The Great Pyramids to witness the beautiful architecture and appreciate all the work that really went into making this marvels.
Today you’ll also have a chance to get up close to the Sphinx. Your tour guide will give you a rundown of the history and cultural significance of the things you’re seeing - you’ll get a true taste of what it was like in Ancient Egypt.
Day 5: Friday - Cairo to Alexandria
Today we’re going to be travelling from Cairo to Alexandria - it’s a truly beautiful city. Pack your bags and pop them outside your door so that our porters can pick ‘em up and get them delivered straight onto your transfer vehicle for you! How’s that for 5-star service?
Alexandria is a 3-hour drive from Cairo, so buckle up. Don’t worry though, the drive’s not without entertainment - don’t be surprised if our Egyptologist give you an impromptu belly dance up during your journey. Just try to stop them. Really. Please. We can’t!
Tonight you can check out the Alexandria night life, do some shopping, walk the Mediterranean shore or jump on the local tram - truly like one of the locals! Just mind that crazy traffic! Ask our tour guide for suggestions if you’re not sure where to go!
(Side note: Belly dancing is at the discretion of the Egyptologist and cannot be guaranteed. Just saying.)
Day 6: Saturday - Alexandria
Alexandria is a beautiful city situated right on the Mediterranean Sea. After a calorie packed breakfast, we start exploring Alexandria with Pompey’s Pillar - this is the biggest memorial column in Egypt, which was constructed in honour of Emperor Diocletian. You’ll also have a chance to explore the Catacombs, discovered in the 1900s by pure chance when a donkey-drawn cart fell smack-bang into a pit. How’s that for a bit of luck?
Continue to the well-preserved Roman-Graeco Theatre where decades of excavation efforts have led to the discovery of evidence of Roman lifestyle and culture, with marble seats for up to 800 spectators, galleries, and sections of mosaic-flooring. Take in the grandeur of what it was like to live as a Roman in a world ruled by Rome!
Finally we finish up at Alexandria’s Great Library, a newly completed structure built after the old Alexandria fires.
Day 7: Sunday - Alexandria to Luxor via Cairo
Alexandria, we came, we saw, we conquered and we are off to temple heaven, Luxor! But not without another fun-filled drive back to Cairo.
Once you get to Cairo airport, we’ll take care of all your luggage and check it all in for you. All part of the service! Enjoy a short flight to Luxor.
You’ll check into your luxury (Luxory?) hotel with time to relax and explore Luxor on your own, at your own pace.
Day 8: Monday – Luxor |Nile Cruise
This morning we check out of our hotel and begin our day by seeing some amazing temples: the Temple of Complex Karnak (Egypt’s largest!), and the Luxor Temple, known as the Southern Shrine. Luxor Temple is unique in that it’s one of the few temples which wasn’t built for the sake of a God or for any proper divine reason - in fact, it was built to celebrate the rejuvenation of kingship. Some archaeologists think that many of the Kings of Egypt were crowned here!
Next check into our 5-star Nile cruiser - it will be your home for the next 4 nights. All meals are included on the cruise so brace yourself for the added kilos! This food is delicious.
Tonight enjoy a welcome drink and some not so welcome drinks, and relax :) It’s been a big day.
Day 9: Tuesday – Edfu via Esna | Nile Cruise
Did you have a few too many welcome drinks? We understand. Hopefully our guide will have something to help, or you can get a quick fix at the breakfast buffet.
Today we visit the west bank in Luxor. You’ll visit the famous Valley of the Kings followed by a visit to the remarkable Temple of Queen Hatshepsut. You’ll also see the Colossi of Memnon - breathtaking stone statues which guarded the gates of the ancient Egyptian city of Thebes.
In the afternoon we’ll sail to Edfu, via the Esna Lock. This is heaps of fun! Getting through the Lock might take some time so make sure you make some purchases from the local villagers - you won’t have a chance to disembark but that won’t stop the Egyptian merchants! They’ll paddle right up to you in paddle boats - how do you make a purchase? Toss some money down to them! Super fun environment, even if you’re not looking to (literally) splash some cash!
Day 10: Wednesday – Kom Ombo | Nile Cruise
This morning we make a stop at the Edfu Temple to marvel at Egypt’s best-preserved temple, the Temple of Horus, with its ancient hieroglyphs and original ceilings. Isn’t it weird to think that someone hand-drew those things thousands of years ago, and we can still see them today?
Have lunch back on the cruise and have some free time either to catch up on sleep or bathe on the sundeck in the beautiful Egyptian sun! This afternoon check out Kom Ombo Temple, the double temple of Egypt.
Finish the night with a Galabia Party - an Egyptian dress-up party. Fellas, you can finally fulfil your life-long dream of wearing a dress - ladies, have a go at Nefertiti. Whoever you want to dress as, have fun! Take a video and tag us in it, we’d love to see – facebook.com/toptoursandtravel or Instagram/toptoursandtravel
Day 11: Thursday –Aswan | Nile Cruise
Enjoy a delicious breakfast and let us know how you went in your galabia - was it a hit? You can check out the photos from last night at the cruise shop.
Today we discover the breathtaking city of Aswan. Aswan is a beautiful city - you’ll see the gorgeous greenery matched against the calm of the Nile River, which flows right through the city. This morning enjoy a relaxing felucca ride on the Nile, a traditional wooden sailing boat. Heaven!
After lunch visit the Aswan high dam, which is considered an engineering marvel. You’ll also have a chance to see the Philae Temple, which is dedicated to the Goddess Isis.
Tonight watch the Nubians perform a traditional dance. Surprisingly it's quiet different to an Egyptian dance.
Day 12: Friday – Aswan to Cairo
Today you’ll transfer to Aswan airport to head back to Cairo - but hey, you can always come back! Check into our Cairo hotel and have the time to go shopping or catch up on some Arabic TV while you still can. Make sure you chat to your tour guide if there’s something you really want to buy before you leave Egypt - they’re there to help!
TOUR EXTENSION: HURGHADA Want some down-time? Ask us about extending the tour to Heavenly Hurghada. Situated on the Red Sea, Hurghada is a fantastic destination for those seeking a little extra R&R - try snorkelling, building sandcastles on the beach or go on a desert safari! This is your time to gain some truly unique experiences to wave in your colleagues’ faces back home for at least the next three months.
Day 13: Saturday – Bye Egypt, Hello Greece
Egypt isn’t going anywhere. You know that, but it was so beautiful - it’s sad to leave. You’ll have to come back one day! Catch your flight from Cairo to arrive in the city of Athens. It’s a 2-hour flight, so you’ll be there before you know it.
Then guess what? You’re in Greece! You will be transferred to your hotel to check in. The rest of the day is yours to enjoy! You might be jet-lagged but trust us, it’s easier to just hold off on sleeping ‘til night time - while you’re here in Greece why not try one of those foam-covered iced coffees the locals are drinking? It’s called a frappe. It’s delicious!
Day 14: Sunday - Athens
Good morning, Athens! Enjoy your breakfast :) Today you’ll set out on a sightseeing tour, to - well, sight-see, in this diverse and beautiful city. We start at the Panathinaiko Stadium, the site of the first modern Olympics in 1896 - we’ll also stop by UNESCO’S world-heritage listed site of the Acropolis. Once you’ve had a chance to check them out we’ll continue on a coach panoramic tour to see the Ex-Royal Palace, the Roman Temple of Olympian Zeus, St Paul’s Church, the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier and much more! We’ll return to the hotel in the afternoon so you can unwind and start sending your friends photos to make them jealous. Tonight why don't you go out to explore the thriving Athens nightlife, have dinner and a chat and properly get to know each other.
Day 15: Monday Athens-Olympia
Alright - you’ve done Athens. Time to see the rest of Greece! We drive via the Corinth Canal for a shot photo-op-stop (say that three times fast). We’ll continue on to Epidaurus and visit the ancient theatre, then on to Nafplion for lunch (own expense) - you may be a bit tired of the souvlaki (though trust us - we’re not!) so you could always go traditional and try a pistachio. (Not really. We mean pastitsio.)
Not far from Nafplion is Mycenae, where you can visit the archaeological site which is home to the famous Beehive Tombs - your tour guide will walk you through and tell you what is known about the site, as well as where it got its brilliant name. You’ll also have a chance to visit the best-preserved tomb among the beehives, the Tomb of Agamemnon.
Once you’re finished you’ll arrive into Olympia in the late afternoon for an overnight stay. Take this opportunity to check out Zorba’s Ancient Olympia! Great views and great cocktails - c’mon, what more could you ask for?
Day 16: Tuesday Olympia - Delphi
We’ll properly visit the site of Olympia today! Home of the ancient Olympic Games and located in the western Peloponnese, you’ll love this place (especially if your name is Zeus - there’s a massive statue). We start our journey to Delphi. Along the way you’ll want to take your camera out to snap some pics of the beautiful landscape as we drive through the winding roads of Greece. Don’t forget dinner!
Day 17: Wednesday Delphi-Kalambaka
At the foot of Mount Parnassos is Delphi, which housed one of the most famous oracles of Ancient Greece and is home to the breathtaking Temple of Apollo. The ancient Greeks believed this site was the centre of the Earth. Have any questions for the oracle?
Tonight we’ll eat in the Monastic town of Kalambaka, where you’ll see the sweeping lights leaping off the great, rounded boulders, reaching for the sky. They really make this area shine.
Hint: Take a walk through the main city. There’s only one main road - you can’t get lost!
Day 18: Thursday Kalambaka-Athens
Those beautiful boulders aren’t just for looking at. Today we’ll scale them by car to visit two different Byzantine Monasteries, which earned themselves a spot on the list of World Cultural Heritage monuments, because of how uniquely and harmoniously they match their architecture to the natural beauty of the landscape. If you’ve seen the movie 300 (or want to have a look before we disembark!), you’ll be reminded of some scenes as we pass through the town where the battle of Leonidas against the Parsians took place. The movie is based on this - you’ll even see the monument of the King of Sparta!
We’ll arrive back in Athens fairly late in the evening, so try to catch up on some sleep and be ready for our island cruise tomorrow.
Day 19: Friday Athens cruising to Mykonos
This morning you’ll need to make your own way down to Pireaus port (maybe give a taxi a go - it’s a staple of the modern traveler!). We find it easiest to arrive by 9:00am so you can check in early and avoid the crowds. Today you’ll be travelling on over to Mykonos, a cosmopolitan paradise so impressive it attracts everyone - tourists, artists, socialites and even celebrities! It’s famous for its beaches and its vibrant nightlife (and rightly so). Arrive by the afternoon and take a stroll through the picturesque alleyways, shop at the boutique stores or head down to the aptly-named Paradise Beach for a drink. You can even take one of the shore excursions offered by the cruise ship (at your own expense) and see all there is to see!
In the late evening we’ll depart for the coastal town of Kusadasi, in Turkey.
Day 20: Saturday Kusadasi cruising Patmos-Heraklion (Crete)
Kusadasi is a beach resort town known for its beautiful marina and colourful bazaar - mostly, though, it’s famous for its proximity to the Hellenistic ruins of Ephusus. Ephusus is an ancient city, famed for the Temple of Artemis - one of the Seven Wonders of the Ancient World. Today you’ll be treated to a shore excursion of Ancient Ephusus through the ages of Hellenistic/Roman times. In the afternoon we’ll depart for the island of Patmos, where many believe Saint John the Evangelist wrote the book of revelations in a small, mountainside grotto.
Enjoy the beautiful island of Patmos at your own leisure.
Day 21: Sunday Heraklion (Crete)- Santorini- cruising Athens
See a former Venetian harbour with representative architecture, art and an Archaeological Museum with invaluable treasures. The city is just a short (included) cruise to the Minoan Palace of Knossos, home to Europe’s oldest civilization and the setting of the legend of Theseus and the Minotaur. Once you’ve had a look around we’ll depart for the picturesque island of Santorini. You’ll have an included shore excursion of the Oia village, perched on the Caldera Rim. Your journey through Athens may be over, but don’t worry ... you can always come back ;)
Day 22: Monday Athens departure
Kalo taxidi - safe travels! Remember Greece isn’t going anywhere. You know that, but it was so beautiful - it’s sad to leave. You’ll have to come back one day!
Today you’ll transfer to Athens Airport to catch your flight back home - or somewhere else in the world! Add a stop-over. Go on. Ask us how!
DATES & PRICES
01 October – 24 October 2018
11 June – 04 July 2018
09 July – 01 August 2018
20 August – 12 September 2018
17 September – 10 October 2018
Prices are based on per person twin share
Add $1800 for a Single Traveller
MIN 2 PAX | ALL DEPARTURES ON OUR TOURS ARE GUARANTEED WITH A MINIMUM OF 2 PASSENGERS
Economy International airfares ex Australia to Cairo and return Athens to Australia including taxes
Economy class airfare from Cairo to Athens
Meet & greet at Athens and Cairo airport.
Transfers as per itinerary
Sightseeing and entry fees as per itinerary
Accommodation in 4/5 star properties
4 Night nile cruise with full board
Dinner daily in Egypt
English speaking tour guide for sightseeing.
4 Night Cruise in Greece
ALL inclusive on the cruise in Greece including soft drinks and alcohol
Tour exclusions - Tipping in Egypt (Compulsory $120 fee per person) , Entry Visa, optional tours as indicated on itinerary, travel insurance, items of a personal nature, beverages not mentioned, mini bar, laundry services, phone calls, meals not indicated in itinerary.
YOUR HOTELS IN EGYPT & GREECE