Pyramids, temples, tombs, Roman ruins — this two-week tour of Egypt takes you to the country's top cultural and historic highlights. You'll visit Cairo, Luxor, and Aswan, touring the most important monuments along the way, from the Karnak Temple Complex to the Great Pyramids of Giza to the Valley of the Kings. Finish the trip with a few relaxing days in Sharm El Sheikh, an Egyptian resort town with white sandy beaches and clear water perfect for swimming and boating.

Highlights

  • Visit the Great Pyramids of Giza
  • Learn about Cairo's Islamic heritage
  • Marvel at treasures like King Tut's tomb
  • See Roman ruins in Alexandria
  • Wander through the Valley of the Kings
  • Soak up the sun on the beaches of Sharm El Sheikh

Brief Itinerary

Day Highlights Overnight
Day 1 Arrive in Cairo  Cairo
Day 2 Visit the Pyramids of Giza Cairo
Day 3 See the Antiquities of Alexandria on a Day Trip Cairo
Day 4 Tour the Egyptian Museum & Islamic Cairo Cairo
Day 5 Fly to Aswan & Go Sightseeing in the City  Aswan
Day 6 Visit Abu Simbel Temples Aswan
Day 7 Drive to Luxor & Tour Kom Ombo and Edfu Temples Luxor
Day 8 Discover the West & East Bank  Luxor
Day 9 See the Tombs of the Nobles in Luxor Luxor
Day 10 Transfer to Sharm El Sheikh  Sharm El Sheikh
Day 11 Relax in Sharm El Sheikh Sharm El Sheikh
Day 12 Enjoy Boating & Beaches in Sharm El Sheikh Sharm El Sheikh
Day 13 Fly to Cairo  Cairo
Day 14 Depart   

Detailed Itinerary

Day 1: Arrive in Cairo 

A view of Cairo's city and the Nile River
A view of Cairo's city and the Nile River

Welcome to Egypt! After arriving in Cairo — one of the largest cities in Africa and in the Middle East — you'll head to your hotel. You'll be free to relax and rest in time before the tour begins. You could also start exploring the city, venturing out to try some local cuisine in one of many excellent restaurants.

Day 2: Visit the Pyramids of Giza

Giza Pyramids
The Great Pyramids of Giza

After breakfast, you will meet your guide and travel to Giza, located outside of Cairo, where you will see the three major pyramids at its necropolis complex. Your guide will explain the history of the construction of the Pyramids of Giza: the Great Pyramid of Giza, Cheops, and the smaller Chephren and Mykerinos. Next, you'll head to Memphis, an ancient Egyptian capital, to see the Pyramid of Saqqara and the Pyramid of Djoser.

Day 3: See the Antiquities of Alexandria on a Day Trip

Alexandria
Roman Amphitheater of Alexandria

After breakfast, you'll travel to Alexandria, where a local Egyptologist will guide you through the city's history and major sites. Tour the Catacombs of Kom El Shoqafa, one of the largest Roman burial sites in Egypt, and the Roman Amphitheater. In the 1960s, this place was discovered by accident. The only Roman amphitheater in Egypt, it consists of a lower-level stage surrounded by thirteen marble seats with room for up to 800 people. Finish at the Alexandria National Museum, displaying more than 1,800 artifacts from Egypt's history in the former palace of businessman Asaad Bassili. 

Day 4: Tour the Egyptian Museum & Islamic Cairo

Cairo by night
Explore the Khan el-Khalili Bazaar

Meet your guide, who will accompany you on your day exploring the city and its sites. Today's activities include the Egyptian Museum, which has a substantial collection of ancient treasures, including the tomb of King Tut. Then learn about Islamic Cairo at the Citadel of Saladin See, an important example of military architecture from the Middle Ages, and the Mosque-Madrassa of Sultan Hassan, a monumental mosque that was built during the Mamluk period of the 1300s. Finally, hunt for treasures in the Khan el-Khalili Bazaar, a souk in the historical center of Islamic Cairo, where you can shop for lamps, rugs, jewelry, and more.

Day 5: Fly to Aswan & Go Sightseeing in the City 

Philae Temple
Ancient architecture at Philae Temple
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Today you'll fly to Aswan and spend the day sightseeing there. Stops include the Aswan High Dam, built in the 1960s and completed in 1970. It was an engineering marvel at the time, as it increased Egypt's cultivable land by 30 percent and doubled its electricity supply. Next, visit Philae Temple. There were once temples at Philae — construction began in 690 BCE — dedicated to the goddess Isis. The complex was moved from its original location on Philae Island to Agilkia Island due to the construction of Aswan High Dam. You'll board a small boat to learn more about the temple here. 

Day 6: Visit Abu Simbel Temples 

Abu Simbel Temple
The iconic statuary at Abu Simbel Temple

Today's itinerary starts with another domestic flight, this time transferring you to Abu Simbel. You'll visit the magnificent site of the Abu Simbel Temples, a pair of temples built by the Egyptian king Ramses II, who reigned 1279–1213 BCE. These massive rock-cut temples are truly incredible to see in person: despite their relatively remote location, they're one of the most popular sites in the country.

Day 7: Drive to Luxor & Tour Kom Ombo and Edfu Temples

Edfu Temple
Relief sculptures at Edfu Temple

The next stop on your trip will be to see the temples at Edfu and Kom Ombo. Your guide will explain the significance of these temples in further detail. The Temple of Horus at Edfu was constructed between 237 BCE and 57 BCE. It is one of the best-preserved shrines in Egypt, and inside you can still make out many of its inscriptions. The Temple of Sobek and Haroeris at Kom Ombo was dedicated to the crocodile god (Sobek) and falcon god (Haroeris). Many of the walls of its courts, halls, sanctuaries, and rooms are still intact, along with wall carvings and statues. Continue on to Luxor, where you'll spend the night.

Day 8: Discover the West & East Bank 

Tourists at the Mortuary Temple of Hatshepsut

Visit the Valley of the Kings today to see rock-cut tombs for kings and powerful nobles (including Tutankhamun) dating from the 16th to 11th century BCE. Stop at the Colossi of Memnon to see the ruins of Amenhotep’s memorial temple. What remains are two imposing statues of Pharaoh Amenhotep III that were erected to guard the temple's entrance. Then head to Hatshepsut Temple. The memorial of Queen Hatshepsut is the focal point of Deir el-Bahri, a complex of mortuary temples and tombs.

In the afternoon visit Karnak Temple, one of Egypt’s largest surviving temples. It was once a key religious center. You'll also see the famed Luxor Temple, a large temple complex located on the east bank of the Nile River. It was founded during the New Kingdom, around 1400 BCE.

Day 9: See the Tombs of the Nobles in Luxor

Habu Temple
Habu Temple

Your guide will escort you today to the West Bank of Luxor to visit the ancient Habu Temple and Carter House, a mud-brick house where the English archeologist and Egyptologist Howard Carter lived during his search for Tutankhamun's tomb. Then you'll head to the Tombs of the Nobles, where some of Egypt's most powerful historical figures have their burial places. Get an overview of the region's history at the Luxor Museum before the day comes to a close.

Day 10: Transfer to Sharm El Sheikh 

Red Sea
Sharm El Sheikh coastline

After breakfast at your hotel in Luxor, it's time to take a break from history and relax. Fly to the resort city of Sharm El Sheikh, where you'll spend a few days relaxing at the end of the trip. Located between the Sinai Peninsula and the Red Sea, the area is known for its beautiful beaches and offshore coral reefs surrounded by clear water.  

Days 11-12: Relax & Enjoy Boating and Beaches in Sharm El Sheikh

A beach in Sharm El Sheikh

The last couple of days of the trip are free for you to enjoy Sharm El Sheikh. Walk on the beach, go swimming in the ocean, or check out Ras Muhammad National Park, a diving destination that's rich with marine life. In the evening, beachfront restaurants and bars are great places to try fresh seafood, prepared Egyptian-style, and surround yourself with a local crowd.

Day 13: Fly to Cairo & Have One Last Night in the Capital

Cairo Citadel

You'll return to Cairo today. After check-in at your hotel in the capital city, you can explore the city once more, taking time to visit museums, go shopping, sample Egyptian cuisine, or simply enjoy sunset views over the Nile River on your last night in the country. 

Day 14: Depart

A bird's-eye view of Cairo

After breakfast, you'll make your way to Cairo International Airport for your flight home. Safe travels!

More Great Egypt Itineraries

Looking for more inspiration for your trip to Egypt? Check out these other 14-day Egypt itineraries, with Nile River cruises, cultural trips, and best-of tours to hit the highlights. 

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