Alex City Travel – Egypt
Alexandria, Cairo and Luxor
There are moments of awe experienced by travelers that can only be described as surreal, when you find yourself standing before the Eiffel Tower, at the crest of the Grand Canyon, gazing at Michaelangelo’s ceiling in the Sistine Chapel, at the feet of Jesus high above Rio, viewing wildebeest and zebra in frantic migration at the Serengeti, awaiting the spray of Old Faithful in Yellowstone or the breaching of whales off Hawaiian shores, and you feel that ultimate recognition and breathless sensation. The stunning moment of realization, “I am here”. A dream is fulfilled and the pilgrimage completed, the Leaning Tower really does lean, the Taj Mahal does gleam, Disneyland is a Magical Kingdom, and the images from TV, movies, and history books are really before my eyes. Travel is made meaningful with those moments of discovery and reflection, to be cherished, experienced with gratitude, celebrated. They are undeniably addictive; whatever your destination, you are always left wanting more.
That surreal moment is nowhere more palpable than the first view of Egypt’s pyramids at Giza. Rising from the desert sands, the pyramids first appear as a mirage… highly anticipated and recognized, yet their majesty leaves you breathless. Our guide respectfully let it sink in, we had arrived at one of the most ancient wonders of the world.
Alex City Travel premier touring makes Egypt past and present come alive with seamless planning of an itinerary that meets the goals of each group no matter what size and length of stay. This Egyptian owned travel company has grown from its original focus on Alexandria day tours, to include Cairo, and now beyond to all travel destinations within Egypt, from 1 day to 1 month packages. Alex City Travel has a fleet of the most modern equipped tour buses, air conditioned comfort is foremost. In the early stages of planning your Egypt tour, Alex City Travel arranges destinations, transport, choice accommodations and meals to meet budget and needs. It is known for its highly personable and knowledgeable English speaking guides, and for providing tourists with a perfect balance to illuminate and experience Egyptian culture, its ancient history, its mythology, its religions, and modern life. Alex City Travel works to maximize each experience, adjusting to all ages and specific interests. In a country of endless wonders to discover and explore, they ensure each stay captures the highlights of Egypt’s most important sites within your time frame.
Arriving in Cairo, our first excursion was to the renowned ancient Mediterranean port city of Alexandria. Here we saw the modern restored ancient Mediterranean capital of Egypt, once a repository of all knowledge in its famed library. Though destroyed and every volume lost, the impressive modern revisioning of Alexandria’s Library is once again a thriving home of knowledge and research for students from around the world. The second largest city in Egypt today, here we are also reminded of Greek and Roman influences in its history from catacombs to a Roman Amphitheater, from Alexander the Great to Cleopatra.
Day 2 Destination: the Great Pyramids of Giza and The Sphinx. Those breath-taking moments of wonderment are realized at last. In a historical review, our guide brings to life the immensity of this construction feat, the Great Pyramid of Pharaoh Khufu, the largest single building ever built. The two neighboring pyramid tombs were built for Pharaoh Khafre and lesser known, Menkaure. The three smaller pyramids for Khufu’s favorite wives and flat topped pyramids for his favorite children. Climbing the massive stones of the base, crawling the claustrophobic entry tunnel is to have an appreciation of the scope and vision of these perfectly mathematically measured structures over 4,000 years old. Next, we move on to the iconic Great Sphinx, its mystery and presence forever the symbol of Egypt’s ancient civilization now a memorable photo op. Gazing at its tangible portrayal of indomitable strength and resilience guarding the pyramids through time, created by men in a desert far from mountains, stones transported by boats sailing canals extended from the Nile River, the masons, craftsmen, scribes, priests, unite in a functional temporary city of thousands of workers is truly beyond astonishing.
From here we travel back in time to the earlier manifestation of pyramid tombs, the necropolis of Memphis, the first step pyramids of Old Kingdom pharaohs. Walking sands of eternity that revealed these treasures in extensive excavations feels like a historic privilege.
Day 3 Exploring Cairo Sites: The phenomenal collections of Cairo’s historic Museum of Egyptian Antiquities will soon be relocated to the immense newly built state of the art facility, but for now, this stately old building houses these exhibits showcasing Egypt’s archaeological treasures, halls of statuary and cases of mummies, temple restorations and pyramid treasures including those of King Tut’s long hidden tomb. Having our experienced Alex Tour guide navigate and narrate through the historic finds and easily overlooked wonders was extremely valuable.
Cairo is a city of impressive mosques and historic churches, works of art and architecture. A visit to Old Cairo is an opportunity to visit the historic Coptic Church of earliest Christians and the Ben Ezra Synagogue where a thriving Jewish community worshipped for centuries.
Later, a horse drawn carriage ride acquaints guests with the community and neighborhood life, shopping district and nearby historical sites.
Alex City Travel arranged our flight to Luxor and, accompanied by our wonderful guide, we arrived at the beautiful modern accommodations of the Sonesta St. George Hotel Luxor. Its Five Star Luxury is highlighted by its friendly service, popular olympic size swimming pool, expansive sun terrace with loungers and umbrellas, snack and cocktail bar, Spa retreat and fully equipped fitness center. The views of the Nile River and the environs beyond from the pool area and the hotel’s riverfront park seating are stunning, a perfect setting for live entertainment.
Each of the guest rooms feature modern decor and comforts in sleeping and seating, spacious baths and high end amenities. Guests may select rooms with two twin beds, queen, or king with fresh, crisp linens, all with air conditioning, minibar, flatscreen TVs, some with Nile view and balcony.
Sonesta has a large welcoming lobby for gathering before leaving on excursions, visiting with other tourists, quietly reading or catching up on email. Four restaurants, The Lotus, Asian, Italian, and International are upscale and guaranteed to please every traveler’s palate. The lobby cafe has a menu of coffees and teas, baked goods, and delicious sandwiches for a quick light meal. Everyone raves about the amazing breakfast buffet served in spacious comfort, the cheery wait staff and chefs, the fresh and flavorful choices with western and Mediterranean flair. The omelet bar is most popular, with pancakes a close second.
The beautiful Sonesta St. George Hotel Luxor is a welcome retreat at the end of a day of touring, whether at the pool, the Spa, the lobby, or the comforts of your room. Enjoying a meal at one of the hotel restaurants or cozy room service, the days end is a time to reflect, to journal, or relax in luxe comfort with fellow travelers or your special companion.
Day 4 Luxor: The Valley of Kings, The Temple of Hatshepsut, The Colossi of Memnon. The splendor of arts found in the tombs of the Valley of the Kings, the stories of lives told in pictures and hieroglyphs, are revealed and honored. The walkways take you to the entrance of realms beyond time, tombs of illustrious names in history from Ramesses to Tutankhamun.
Day 5 An extraordinary Hot Air Balloon ride over Luxor, breathtaking views above the Valley of the Kings, Valley of the Queens and a stunning sunrise over the Nile. Excursion to Luxor Temple and Karnak Temple before returning to Cairo and a stop at the Khan Khalili Bazaar.
Alex City Travel created a memorable trip of a lifetime. As always, we leave wanting more.