Tips, advice and things you need to know when going on a cruise down the River Nile

by - 12:02:00 AM

The River Nile - can there be a stretch of water more steeped in history and mystery? To take a river cruise along the legendary Nile is to take a trip through ancient times, marvelling at the ancient architecture, the dusty landscape and traditional ways of life that seem to have changed little over the centuries. Travel along the Nile is slow-paced - you will see no speeding pleasure craft zipping along the water here and as you drift along you will see farmers working their land with the help of camels, mules and donkeys. Note that it is vital to take travel advice before booking a cruise along the Nile, in light of political instability. Most visitors will have no trouble and a cruise along the Nile is a relaxing way to see some of the most magnificent historic sights in the world.

See the Pyramids, Temples and Tombs by River Sightseeing on foot can be an exhausting in the scorching heat. A river cruise is by far the most relaxing way to see the ancient wonders of Egypt and wise travellers will make sure that their cruise takes in the waters that connect Luxor and Aswan - it is here that the best-preserved historical monuments can be seen, with sights including the Valley of the Kings and Valley of the Queens, as well as the temples and tombs of Edfu, Dendera, Luxor and Karnak. To avoid the worst of the crowds, sail outside the months of September though to May, when the tourist levels are at their highest and the waters can get clogged with boat traffic.

See the Longest River in the World
The longest river in the world, the mighty Nile stretches for over 4,000 miles and makes its way through no fewer than nine nations, from Uganda to Egypt. The magnificent river is also a physical anomaly - while most rivers run flow from north to south, the Nile flows from south to north - as a result, Upper Egypt - the destination for most Nile cruises - is in the south of the country, while Lower Egypt is in the north. The green belt that follows the river along its course is nine miles wide in places and is a veritable oasis of verdant nature in an otherwise desert region.

Choose the Length of your Cruise
Most cruises along the Nile last between three nights and a week and some cruises form part of package trips to Egypt. Those who wish to see Cairo should bear in mind that, while most cruise ships pass through the city, few make a stop here. It may be possible to see the city as part of a land tour before taking your cruise. The hectic, fast-paced nature of life in the city can be exhausting - so it is best to do this before, rather than after, taking to the river - otherwise you may return home in need of a break.

Cruise Ships for all Budget Levels
Most Nile cruise boats have similar layouts - with space for less than 140 passengers, they are typically four-deck vessels with a sundeck - usually with a pool. But while layouts are similar, the boats range from simple and even shabby right up to full-scale luxury. Depending on your budget and the level of creature comforts you expect, you can expect anything from gourmet meals on board to very basic provisions. Check peer reviews and seek word of mouth recommendations to get the best deals.

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