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Hidden Jewel of the Desert

4 stars


The Hidden Jewel of the Desert takes you off the beaten track to visit the secret wonders of Egypt. Explore the fascinating attractions of Cairo and Alexandria before travelling through the Western Desert to the lush oases of Siwa and Bahariya. This is a journey of vast desert landscapes, lush palm groves, salt lakes and incredible ancient ruins. See the ancient Pyramids of Giza, follow in the footsteps of Alexander the Great at the Temple of Amun and cross the sands that swallowed the ancient army of Cabyses. On your final night you can marvel at the canopy of stars and the serene beauty of your surroundings at a remote desert camp. The Hidden Jewel of the Desert tour is an Egyptian holiday of both wonder and adventure.

Hidden Jewel of the Desert Highlights

  • Pyramids of Giza
  • Egyptian Museum
  • Alexandria
  • Siwa Oasis
  • Bahariya Oasis
  • The Western Desert

Day 1 - Cairo

Upon arrival at Cairo International Airport, a representative will welcome you and assist you through the immigration process before you are transferred to your hotel. Your representative will ensure a smooth hotel check-in.

  • Overnight Movenpick Media City

Day 2 - Cairo

Enjoy breakfast at the hotel followed by a busy day of sightseeing. Get an up-close view of the Pyramids of Cheops, Khefren, and Mycerinus, the Sphinx, and the Valley Temple. Visit the world-renowned Egyptian Museum and see the treasures of King Tutankhamun and antiquities that date back some 3,350 years. Enjoy lunch at a local restaurant before visiting the Citadel. See the medieval fortress of Salah-El-Din, the Mosque of Mohammed Ali, and the famous Khan El Khalili Bazaar. (b,l)

  • Overnight Movenpick Media City

Day 3 - Alexandria

Depart early from the hotel and travel to Alexandria. On the way, stop at the fascinating monasteries of Wadi Natrun the official seat of Pope Shenouda of the Coptic Church. Continue on to Alexandria on the Mediterranean Sea and visit the ancient sites of Pompey’s Pillar and the Roman Theatre. Enjoy lunch down by the harbour and take the chance to soak up the atmosphere of this unique Egyptian city. (b,l,d)

  • Overnight Hotel Metropole or similar

Day 4 - The Long Road to Siwa

Drive to Alamein to visit the War Graves at El Alamein before travelling towards oasis town of Siwa. This journey travels along the Mediterranean coast before turning inland through the barren desert and the Wadi Istabl. Arrive in Siwa in time for a late lunch and go straight to the hotel, which offers great views from the terrace. In the afternoon, explore the attractions of Siwa including the fabled Siwa Oasis and Gebel Mawta, the ‘Mountain of the Dead’ which houses interesting tombs from the Greek and Roman eras. Next, see the mud brick mosque and intricate alleyways of Sha'ali, the ancient fortress town of Siwa. To end the day, cruise the lake to Fatness Island where you can watch a spectacular sunset over the salt lake before returning to the hotel. (b,l,d)

  • Overnight Siwa Paradise or similar

Day 5 - The Oracle of Amun

This morning, visit the Temple of Amun which was once the home to the famous Oracle of Amun which was visited by Alexander the Great. The central temple is set within the interesting ruined village of Aghurmi. See ancient hieroglyphics and caves at the Temple of Umm Beyid and visit the 'Pool of Cleopatra'. Continue to eastern Siwa to see the fascinating remains of a Roman town and an abandoned Libyan village with a Ptolemaic temple among the ruins. Enjoy lunch at Ain Sharouf, a charming natural spring and rock pool where you can take a well-earned dip. (b,l,d)

  • Overnight Siwa Paradise or similar

Day 6 - Bahariya Oasis

Drive to the Oasis Bahariya which is set in a long valley surrounded by a high escarpment. After checking into your hotel, tour the Old Town of Bahariya which has remained unchanged for many generations and features its own unique Bawiti architecture. (b,l,d)

  • Overnight Palm Village or similar

Day 7 - Bahariya Oasis

Spend the day exploring the monuments of Bahariya. First see some fascinating local artefacts as the Bawiti Museum, and then visit the original tomb of Benantui from the 26th dynasty. Next, explore the unusual Amasis chapels and then visit the Temple of Alexander. Travel south to the rarely visited site of El Hayyez which features a very early Coptic church and a Roman fortress. In the late afternoon you will leave the oasis and pass the mysterious crystal mountain en route to the White Desert where you will stay in a desert camp. (b,l,d)

  • Overnight Palm Village or similar

Day 8 - The Great Western Desert

Today, travel across the expanse of the Great Western Desert. Travel through the Qattara Depression which reaches 50 feet below sea level, over the ever changing sand dunes and through area where the ancient Persian army of Cabyses disappeared under the sands. Drive to the Giza Plateau passing some of the largest and most magnificent sand dunes of the journey. Return to the hotel for a well earned-rest and a long shower. (b,l)

  • Overnight Desert Camp

Day 9 Cairo - Red Sea Holiday Extension or Fly Home

An early departure takes you through the streets of Cairo to the airport for your Red Sea holiday extension or your flight home. (b)

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Holidays at Hidden Jewel of the Desert

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Opening hours 09:00 - 20:00 GMT