Historic Houses of Australia Private Tour

A private tour for members of ‘Historic Houses Association of Australia’


Accompanied throughout by Archaeologist Dr Chris Elliott.


DEPARTING 11th February 2023

Dr Elliott is currently Visiting Fellow at the Archaeology Department, the University of Southampton in the UK and Professional member of the International Association of Egyptologists. Author of many publications on Egyptian style architecture, Dr Elliott is the perfect expert for this tour.

Arrival in Cairo.

Given the great distances to be travelled by most participants, some of you will be arriving early. The following applies regardless of when you arrive. On arrival you will be met by our representative who will assist with visa and immigration and wait for you at the baggage carousel. Once bags are collected you will then take our private transfer to the Crowne Plaza Hotel on the North Western edge of Cairo – ideally placed for the pyramids and museum. You check in on room and breakfast basis. This newly opened hotel in West Cairo offers first class facilities. Although you are booked into the hotel on a Room and Breakfast basis, some other meals are included in the tour. At the end of each day you’ll see what they are with one or more of the letters (BLD) in brackets indicating Breakfast/Lunch/Dinner.

Day 1 - Saturday 11th February 2023

A relaxing day as we acclimatize to our new surroundings in Egypt. We will have a meeting to get acquainted and discuss the plans for the next two weeks. There will be a group dinner tonight. (BD)

Day 2 - Sunday 12th Feb - The Giza Plateau

This morning we will head straight to the Giza Plateau to view the Great Pyramid of Khufu. Time to enter the pyramid for those who wish. We will see the pyramids of Khafre and Menkaure before moving to the Valley Temple of Khafre and the Sphinx Enclosure. AWT has arranged a special permit to allow entry to the Sphinx Enclosure, which is normally closed to the public, enabling us to walk around the base of the Sphinx and view the ‘Dream Stele’ up close! Next, we head into the city to visit the Museum of Egyptian Antiquities in Tahrir Square with its amazing collection of artefacts. We will take lunch today on the terrace of the Sofitel Gezireh with views over the Nile. (BL)

Day 3 - Monday 13th Feb - Saqqara

A full day at Saqqara including entry to the Step Pyramid. We visit the Step Pyramid enclosure; the Pyramids of Unas and Teti to view early Pyramid Texts; the Old Kingdom Mastabas of Kagemni and Mereruka; New Kingdom Tombs of Horemheb and Maya and the mastabas of Mehu and Idut. We also include entry to the subterranean galleries of the Serapeum, the vast tombs of the Apis Bulls who lived from the twenty-sixth Dynasty to the Ptolemaic Period. We take a break mid-day for a refreshing lunch at Sakkara Palm Club. (BL)

Day 4 - Tuesday 14th Feb - Grand Egyptian Museum

A day at GEM allowing plenty of time to view all the halls. Refreshments and lunch will be available in the Museum. (B)

Day 5 - Wednesday 15th Feb - Dahshur

This morning we Drive to Dahshur where we can enter the Bent Pyramid and the Red Pyramid. We return to the Sakkara Palm Club for lunch on our way back to the hotel. Later today we will gather in our meeting room for a further talk on the days ahead (BL)

Day 6 - Thursday 16th Feb - National Museum of Egyptian Civilization

We travel to Fustat, the ancient capital of Egypt, to visit the National Museum of Egyptian Civilization that now houses the Royal Mummies in a new gallery. The museum offers a general overview of the entirety of Egyptian history. We have a tour of the famous Citadel and the Mosque of Muhammad Ali before driving to the Al Azhar Gardens for lunch. Time to enjoy the lovely views from the gardens to the Citadel. After lunch we head to Cairo Airport to board our flight to Aswan. On arrival we take our private transfer to the superb New Cataract Hotel. (BL)

Day 7 - Friday 17th Feb - Island of Isis

We take a short drive to the local dock where we board a motor launch for the Island setting of Philae Temple. Our guided tour will explain the history of the site and the saving of the temple in the 1970’s from the rising waters of the Nile. We continue on to the Open-Air Museum of the Unfinished Obelisk to view the ancient granite quarry. We return to our hotel for free time over the lunch period and this afternoon we make the short trip to the vast ruins of ancient Yebu on Elephantine Island. (B)

Day 8 - Saturday 18th Feb - Abu Simbel

An early start sees us taking the road trip to Abu Simbel on the shores of Lake Nasser. We enter the Temples of Ramesses II and the adjacent smaller Temple of Royal Wife Nefertari. Saved from the rising waters of Lake Nasser in the 1970’s this is a chance to view one of the grandest building schemes undertaken by Ramesses II. We travel with a lunch box today. Later this afternoon we will enjoy afternoon tea and cakes provided by our hotel on a motor launch as we take a boat trip around the charming islands of Aswan. (BL)

Day 9 - Sunday 19th Feb - To Luxor

After breakfast we say goodbye to Aswan and begin our journey to Luxor. En-route we make two exciting stops the first of which is the Ptolemaic Temple at Kom Ombo, dedicated to the gods Sobek and Horus the Behedite. Then we explore one of the best-preserved temples in all of Egypt, the spectacular Temple of Horus at Edfu. We travel with a lunch box today as we will not arrive in Luxor till late afternoon. On arrival we check in to the historic Winter Palace, Garden Pavilion Wing for four nights on room and breakfast basis. (BL)

Day 10 - Monday 20th Feb -The West Bank I

We cross the Nile on our private launch to meet our coach and then head to the Valley of the Kings. Our first stop though will be at the Colossi of Memnon, the two massive statues of Amenhotep III standing at the front of his ruined Mortuary Temple. In the Valley of The Kings our tickets allow entry to three tombs of those open on the day and we have also included a ticket for the tomb of Seti I. With its colourful and well-preserved reliefs this is perhaps the finest tomb in Egypt. Leaving the Valley, we make a stop to view the house of Howard Carter which is now a small museum. Finally this morning we visit the Mortuary Temple of Seti I. We have lunch at an excellent local restaurant before visiting the temples of Medinet Habu and the Ramesseum. (BL)

Day 11 - Tuesday 21st Feb - West Bank II

Again, we cross the Nile and this time we head straight to the Valley of The Queens where we have included tickets to the stunning tomb of Queen Nefertari the Great Wife of Ramesses II. Access to the tomb has been limited for many years since conservation work was completed by the Getty Institute. We move on to Deir el Medina to view the homes and the tombs of the workmen and artisans who built the Royal Tombs nearby. After lunch at our local restaurant, we visit some of the Nobles Tombs including those of Ramose and Sennefer. (BL)

Day 12 - Wednesday 22nd Feb - The Great Temples

An early start as this morning we have a guided tour of Karnak Temple, the Great Temple of Amun.  We start early when the light on the reliefs is at its best and we visit parts of the temple rarely seen by other groups. We include the Open-Air Museum with its beautifully reconstructed Red Chapel of Hatshepsut, Senusret’s White Chapel, and the Alabaster Chapel. There will be plenty of time for photography and even a break at the café by the Sacred Lake. We return to the hotel late morning and then we have a special treat as we take to the Nile for a sail in our Felucca. The Winter Palace will provide a lunch on the boats whilst we sail with time for bird watching along the riverbanks. Later today we will visit Luxor Temple for a guided tour as the sun goes down. (BL)

Day 13 - Thursday 23rd Feb - Back to Cairo

After breakfast we have our last visit in Luxor. A short drive will take us to Luxor Museum where we find displays of so many lovely artefacts from the local area including to wonderful statues in the Cachette Hall that were discovered buried in Luxor Temple in the 1980’s. We return to the hotel for free time over the lunch period before we head to Luxor Airport for our internal flight to Cairo. On arrival in Cairo our reps will take us straight to The Meridien Hotel at the airport where we check in for one night on room and breakfast basis. (RB)

Day 14 - Friday 24th Feb - Homeward bound

Today you will begin your journey home with a short walk via the walkway from the hotel direct to the International Terminal. (B)

B = Breakfast BL = Breakfast and Lunch BD = Breakfast and Dinner BLD = Breakfast Lunch and Dinner

Historic Houses of Australia Private Tour

  • Tour Code: AWHH110223
  • Departing: 11th February 2023
  • Returning: 24th February 2023
  • Cost Per Person: £6950
  • Single Supplement: £940

AWT's 'Single Supplement Guarantee' means that we only charge you what we are charged ourselves - we do not 'mark up'!

Talk to someone? 0333 335 9494