Recapturing the golden age of 19th century cruising, these exclusive journeys sail the waterways between Luxor and Aswan aboard beautifully crafted dahabiyyas; elegant wooden sailing ships that afford the chance to experience the Nile without the usual crowds. With expert guides, small groups and 7 nights aboard to fully appreciate the classic landscapes, this exceptional and best selling itinerary offers antiquity and ambience in equal measure. The cruise will either operate Luxor to Aswan direction or vice versa. You will be booked on one of the 4 exclusive Dahabiyya’s to Bales. All the Dahabiyya’s are identical with exception of the décor.


This exclusive traditional ‘dahabiyya’ is outfitted in colonial style with oriental and Egyptian touches. The interiors boast period furnishing, and each cabin has its own individual decoration. The Zahra has six compact cabins measuring 5.75m x 2.50m; each with its private bathroom of 1.25m x 2.50m with a toilet, wash basin, shower and hairdryer. Four cabins have two single beds and 2 have a double bed. The boat can accommodate a maximum of twelve passengers. The communal lounge covers the width of the boat, and is a lovely setting for serving meals.

Today fly on EgyptAir to Aswan (1 hour 25 minutes) and embark on the Zahra, your exclusive ‘dahabiyya’, for a relaxing week spent cruising on the Nile. This afternoon visit the High Dam, Old Dam and the beautiful Philae Temple, dedicated to the goddess Isis, rescued from the rising waters of Lake Nasser when the dam was constructed. Overnight at the private mooring near Aswan.
Meals: B, L & D
Hotel: Cruise Boat - The Zahra

Day 5

Day 5
This morning there is the opportunity to visit the spectacular temples of Abu Simbel by air. Built by Ramses II, the setting of this magnificent structure, besides the shores of Lake Nasser, makes it one of the most spectacular of Egypt’s ancient sites. Please advise at the time of booking if you would like to take this excursion. Once more overnight at your private mooring near Aswan.
Meals: B, L & D
Hotel: Cruise Boat - The Zahra

Day 6

Day 6
This morning you will sail to Kom Ombo to visit the Ptolemaic temple, uniquely dedicated to two gods – the falcon god Horus and Sobek, the crocodile god. Its superb location overlooking the Nile and perfect double symmetry make this one of the most picturesque on the river. Overnight private mooring beside a Nile island.
Meals: B, L & D
Hotel: Cruise Boat - The Zahra

Day 7

Day 7
This morning you will sail to Edfu where you will visit the magnificent and spectacularly preserved Temple of Horus at Edfu, constructed in the 3rd century BC and, after Karnak, the largest temple in Egypt. Overnight private mooring beside a Nile island.
Meals: B, L & D
Hotel: Cruise Boat - The Zahra

Day 8

Day 8
Today will be a leisurely day. After breakfast, commence your journey to Esna, cross the lock and onwards to Luxor, where the boat moors overnight.
Meals: B, L & D
Hotel: Cruise Boat - The Zahra

Day 9

Day 9
There is the option of rising at dawn to take a hot air balloon flight over Luxor. Please advise at the time of booking if you would like to take this excursion (please see ‘Pre Bookable Option Excursions’ below). Today cross over to the West Bank to visit the tombs of the Pharaohs, the romantic Valley of the Kings, where Howard Carter famously discovered the tomb of Tutankhamun in 1922. Continue to the Valley of the Queens, Medinet Habu and the Colossi of Memnon. Return to your dahabiyya for an afternoon at leisure. This evening you will overnight at our mooring near Luxor.
Meals: B, L & D
Hotel: Cruise Boat - The Zahra

Day 10

Day 10
A leisurely morning is planned, affording the time to relax and take in the surroundings. After lunch visit Luxor’s East Bank, taking time to explore the magnificent settings of the Luxor and Karnak Temples. These sumptuous monuments, built over 4000 years ago, represent the epoch of the once mighty city of Thebes and the worship of the god Amun. Karnak’s immense Hypostyle Hall alone contains the phenomenal sight of 134 towering columns of intricate stonework. Return to your dahabiyya for dinner. Overnight mooring in Luxor.
Meals: B, L & D
Hotel: Cruise Boat - The Zahra

Day 11

Day 11
Today bid farewell to the crew and disembark the boat after breakfast, before taking the EgyptAir flight back to Cairo (1 hour 5 minutes). On arrival in Cairo transfer to the Sonesta Cairo Hotel and Casino.