Luxury Cruises: Now that the beautiful weather of spring and summer is on its way, we all start to feel that excitement, imagining the perfect getaway. We all want the same things: luxury of accommodations, beauty of surroundings, and an experience we'll never forget. All of those things make the Sonesta Nile Cruise Luxor the perfect vacation for anyone ready for adventure.
Sonesta Cruise Line has five 5-star cruise ships, the most recently added to the fleet being the Sonesta St. George I, which is hailed as one of the most elegant and luxurious ships sailing the Nile today. With 47 deluxe cabins, 10 suites, full-service spa and fitness center, bar, restaurant, and nightly entertainment, your time on the ship will be as enjoyable and exciting as your time off the ship on one of Sonesta's incredible Egyptologist-guided excursions.
After settling into your room on the beautiful St. George, you will embark on your journey down the Nile to Aswan. You have the first day of the trip to yourself to relax and enjoy the ship's accommodations; preparing yourself for the excursions ahead of you. Then, Tuesday morning after breakfast at the ship's on-board restaurant, you will explore the West Bank, which includes the Valley of the Kings and temple of Hatshepsut who was the only woman pharaoh to ever hold power in the new Kingdom of ancient Egypt. The impressive architecture of her temple is often associated with the goddess of love and joy, Hathor. Then, after touring the Valley of the Queens and the Colossi of Memnon, it's back to the ship to sail to Esna where you'll have afternoon tea and lunch. You'll stay the night in Esna after enjoying the evening Folkloric Show, learning more about Egyptian history and culture.
Wednesday, it's off to Edfu, the site of one of Egypt's greatest and best preserved temples. Dedicated to Horus, the temple bears inscriptions describing construction methods and founding of similar temples, allowing us insight into the wonder of how the ancient civilization built such magnificent structures so long ago. Next is Kom Ombo, just 40 kilometers north of Aswan, where you'll spend the night. Thursday morning, Aswan is your final destination where you'll visit High Dam and the granite quarries, as granite was of high importance to the pharaohs for all their building projects. Next is the astonishing temple of Philae, the sacred complex of monuments constructed for the cult of Isis and Osiris. It was built under the Ptolemies and finished in Roman times, giving us great insight into the spiritual lives and ancient customs of the ancient Egyptians.
Friday brings a truly authentic experience. You will be sailing the Nile on a felucca boat (an Egyptian-style sail boat) to a small granite island called Kitchener of the Botanical island. On this unique journey, experiencing first-hand one of the ways the people of ancient Egypt traveled, you'll also visit Elepahntine Island. On your trip back to Luxor the following day, you'll stop once again at Kom Ombo to visit the temple shared by the two divinities Sobek (The Crocodile God) and Haerories (Horus the Elder). You'll then continue sailing through Edfu and back to Esna where you'll end Saturday with an exhilarating Egyptian Galabeya party.
Finally, as your trip comes to a close, the St. George I makes its way back to Luxor on the Nile. Opposite of the beginning of your trip, you will visit the East Bank to see the Luxor Temple: the unforgettable end to your adventure. The temple was built by the two great pharaohs Amenhotep III and Ramses II. Afterward, you will take the two-mile journey along an avenue of ram-headed Sphinxes to the Karnak Temple, which was the center of religious worship in ancient Egypt. Then, you'll spend the remainder of your day relaxing and taking in the luxuries of the new St. George I until Monday when your journey ends back at Luxor.
After seeing the wonders of the ancient Egyptian world, experiencing their customs and walking through the rich environment they inhabited, it will be hard to leave. Sonesta Cruise Collection offers an unparalleled experience to an area of the world unlike any other in the comforts of luxury, making the trip one you will never forget.
For LxM Kate Prihoda