Explore the best of Egypt and Morocco on this two-week tour of the highlights. You'll sightsee in Cairo, visit the pyramids, enjoy a three-day cruise along the Nile River, and more. Then zip over to Morocco, where you'll tour Casablanca, wander through the bustling medina of Fes, and float over the countryside near Marrakech in a hot air balloon.

Highlights

  • Visit the Great Pyramids of Giza in Cairo
  • Discover the rock-cut tombs at the Valley of Kings
  • Sail along the Nile to the ancient Philae Temple
  • Enjoy Moroccan street food at a souk in Fes
  • Float high in the sky on a hot air balloon tour near Marrakech

Brief Itinerary

Day Highlights Overnight
Day 1 Arrive in Cairo Cairo
Day 2 See the Great Pyramids Of Giza Cairo
Day 3 Go on a Nile River Cruise  Aswan
Day 4 Discover Aswan, Kom Ombo, and Edfu Luxor
Day 5 Visit the Temple of Luxor Luxor
Day 6 Return to Cairo from Luxor Cairo
Day 7 See the Highlights of Casablanca  Fes
Day 8 Explore Fes on a Walking Tour Fes
Day 9 Learn about Architecture in Fes Fes
Day 10 Stop at Meknes & Sleep at Agafay Desert Camp Agafay
Day 11 Wander Around Marrakech Marrakech
Day 12 Explore Marrakech on a Guided Tour Marrakech
Day 13 Ride in a Hot Air Balloon & See Majorelle Garden Marrakech
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, or you could start exploring the city by venturing out to try some local cuisine in one of many excellent restaurants.

Day 2: See the Great Pyramids Of Giza

The Great Pyramids of Giza in Egypt
The Great Pyramids of Giza

After breakfast, you will 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. You'll also 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

Day 3: Go on a Nile River Cruise

Philae Temple from the Nile River
The grandeur of Philae Temple

Catch a flight to Aswan this morning. After arriving, you'll be transferred to a boat for an afternoon cruise along the Nile River. Enjoy lunch onboard and prepare for several stops along the way. Highlights this afternoon include the High Dam, the Unfinished Obelisk, and the Temple of Philae. Dine on the boat in the evening before retreating to your cabin.

Day 4: Discover Aswan, Kom Ombo, and Edfu

Horus Temple in Edfu
Hieroglyphics at Horus Temple in Edfu

After breakfast on the boat, visit the Temple of Kom Ombo, located about 30 miles (48 km) north of Aswan. It was built during the Ptolemaic era in honor of two gods, Sobek and Haroeis, or " Horus the Elder." Its unique "double design" meant that there were courts, halls, sanctuaries, and rooms duplicated for two.

Continue on to Edfu, where you'll visit The Temple of Horus, constructed between 237 BCE and 57 BCE on top of the remains of earlier temples. Have afternoon tea on the boat as you sail to Luxor via Esna.

Day 5: Visit the Temple of Luxor

Luxor
A sweeping view of Luxor

Today you'll visit the famed Valley of the Kings (the final resting place for the kings of the 18th, 19th, and 20th dynasties), the Temple of Hatshepsut, and the Colossi of Memnon (remains of Amenhotep’s memorial temple) with its imposing statues of Pharaoh Amenhotep III. After lunch on the boat, you'll cruise along to Karnak Temple and Luxor Temple, once the largest and most important religious center in ancient Egypt.

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Day 6: Return to Cairo from Luxor

Karnak Temple in Luxor

It's time to say farewell to the boat. You'll head to Luxor's airport this morning to make a connecting flight to Cairo. The afternoon is free to explore or relax: sit in an outdoor café, try some Egyptian cuisine, or do any sightseeing you didn't have time for earlier in the trip. You'll spend the night in Cairo before crossing the border to Casablanca, Morocco, where the adventure continues. 

Day 7: See the Highlights of Casablanca 

Hassan II Mosque at sunset
Hassan II Mosque at sunset

Fly to Morocco, where you'll spend the morning touring Casablanca. A must-see is the Hassan II Mosque, located at a picturesque spot on the seafront. While the exterior and surrounding areas of the mosque are impressive, the interior is even more lavish, designed with wood, marble, carved stone, and gilded ceilings. This is one of the few mosques in Morocco that's open to non-Muslim visitors.

After a little exploration time in Casablanca, you'll start your journey to the imperial city of Fes. It's known for having one of the world's largest urban car-free zones. While strolling through Fes el-Bali, the ancient medina, you're walking through 1,300 years of Moroccan heritage. It's a place that's only recently been touched by the advent of globalization and an influx of visitors. Even with this uptick in tourism, you'll still be enchanted by the magic of Fes and everything it's endured throughout history. Beautiful mosques, picturesque archways, covered passages, and madrassas (Islamic schools) are photogenic hallmarks of this exquisite city.

Day 8: Explore Fes on a Walking Tour

In the medina of Fes
In the medina of Fes

After breakfast, you'll meet your local guide for a walking tour and culinary experience through Fes. The ancient medina will fascinate you with its amazing history and labyrinth of pedestrian walkways. You'll visit three different food souks that offer the opportunity to try traditional Moroccan street food, including bread and pastries, dried meats, dates, spicy sardines, potato cakes, soups, olives, and more. At the honey souk, you will be able to sample delicious wild honey and find out why honey is so important in Moroccan cooking and Islamic culture.

Day 9: Learn about Architecture in Fes

The University and Mosque of Karaouine
The University and Mosque of Karaouine

Visit Bab Boujloud, one of the ornate gates which welcome travelers into the Medina, on today's guided tour. You'll also stop at buildings such as the Medersa Bou Inania and El Attarine — both prominent Qur'an schools — and the University and Mosque of Karaouine. While exploring these buildings, you'll notice the harmonious geometrical details that adorn them and find out more about their significance.

You'll also learn about traditional artisan work at the Nejjarine Museum of Wooden Arts and Crafts, and find out where artisans employ techniques passed down from generation to generation in order to make tools, carpets, furniture, and musical instruments. You'll then visit the Jewish Quarter. Afterward, venture outside the medina where the Royal Palace is located, and take some time to walk through its large plaza lined with palm trees. End your tour with a trip to the Bab Fettouh cemetery, where you will enjoy a panoramic view of the city, the hills, and the expansive sky.

Day 10: Stop at Meknes & Sleep at Agafay Desert Camp

The Volubilis near Meknes
The Bab al-Mansour Gate

After breakfast, you'll depart for another imperial city, Meknes, and spend a few hours exploring its ancient streets. The two main points of interest are the Ville Impériale (Imperial City) and the medina. In Ville Impériale, you'll visit the Bab al-Mansour Gate, the Mausoleum of Moulay Ismail, and the Royal Stables. Then walk around the medina, which is smaller and easier to navigate than the medinas in Fes or Marrakech. 

You'll then continue the journey to Agafay Desert Camp. You'll arrive with some time to relax and enjoy the spectacular sunset. Get some rest in the peace and quiet before tomorrow's trip into busy Marrakech.

Day 11: Wander Around Marrakech

Marrakech Market Place
Rooftops of Marrakech

Today you'll have the pleasure of exploring the bustling city of Marrakech, Morocco's second-largest city. “The Red City” is known for its stunning natural red ochre pigment, built right into the walls. Your guide will point it out on a walking tour around the medina. 

Wander around the souks, alleys, and markets in the medina. Many areas are covered, offering a nice respite from the heat. A few souks you may want to explore include Souk el Attarin (spices), Souk Haddadine (blacksmiths), and Souk Smata (slippers). If you're looking to escape the crowd, check out the beautifully renovated 16th-century Medersa Ben Youssef, a Koranic school that once housed students of the nearby mosque of Ben Youssef.

Later, spend some time in Jemaa el-Fna Square, which begins to fill in the late afternoon with musicians, storytellers, acrobats, dancers, henna artists, and snake charmers. As it gets dark, many rows of food stalls will begin to appear, serving fruit drinks, dried dates, and small snacks alongside more filling meals.

Day 12: Explore Marrakech on a Guided Tour

The old medina in Marrakech
The old medina in Marrakech

Begin your day with further explorations of Marrakech. Impressive monuments of note include the 12th-century Koutoubia Mosque and the adjacent Koutoubia Minaret, which towers over the medina, thanks to a long-standing city planning ordinance that forbids new construction from rising above it.

You'll then visit Dar el Bacha Palace, considered a highlight of Moroccan architecture. If the palace calligrapher is present, you may be able to see an artist at work creating intricate Arab calligraphy. You'll also visit the Almoravid Dynasty Dome, which is the oldest monument in the city, dating back to the early 12th century. Then discover the hidden quarters and the historic caravanserai (roadside inns). These were once used as hotels for caravan traders, and they are still in use today by Marrakech artisans who have set their workshops inside. Wander through the stalls and buy some locally made crafts while you're there. 

Day 13: Ride in a Hot Air Balloon & See Majorelle Garden

Hot air balloons near Marrakech
Hot air balloons near Marrakech

Early in the morning, you'll be picked up for a 40-minute drive out of the city for a hot air balloon ride. You'll be welcomed with coffee, tea, and a big fire as the hot air balloon is prepared. You'll then depart for a one-hour ride with unforgettable views over the countryside and Marrakech. An outdoor breakfast awaits when you're back on the ground.

You'll have some time to relax over lunch before heading over to the tropical Jardin Majorelle (Majorelle Garden). The twentieth-century French painter, Jacques Majorelle, spent four decades creating this enchanting oasis within the city. The garden was lovingly restored under the patronage of the late fashion designer Yves Saint-Laurent, who purchased the garden in 1980 with his partner Pierre Bergé. 

Day 14: Depart

Sunset in Marrakech
Sunset in Marrakech

The trip has come to a close. Your driver will pick you up to transfer you to the airport in time for your international flight. Safe journey!

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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