Day 1: Giza Pyramids, Cairo Museum, Light & Sound Show
What better way to start our riding adventures in Cairo than with a stunning trip on horseback to the 7th Wonder the World – The Giza Pyramids. Built to endure an eternity andthey have done just that!
The monumental tombs are relics of Egypt’s Old Kingdom era and were constructed some 4,500 years ago. Egypt’s pharaohs expected to become gods in the afterlife. To prepare for the next world they erected temples to the gods and massive pyramid tombs for themselves, filled with all the things each ruler would need to guide and sustain himself in the next world. Pharaoh Khufu began the first Giza pyramid project, circa 2550 B.C. His Great Pyramid is the largest in Giza and towers some 481 feet (147 meters) above the plateau. Its estimated 2.3 million stone blocks each weigh an average of 2.5 to 15 tons.
Khufu’s son, Pharaoh Khafre, built the second pyramid at Giza, circa 2520 B.C. His necropolis also included the Sphinx, a mysterious limestone monument with the body of a lion and a pharaoh’s head. The Sphinx may stand sentinel for the pharaoh’s entire tomb complex. The third of the Giza Pyramids is considerably smaller than the first two. Built by Pharaoh Menkaure circa 2490 B.C., it featured a much more complex mortuary temple. Each massive pyramid is but one part of a larger complex, including a palace, temples, solar boat pits, and other features.
On arrival at the pyramids you will dismount, and whilst the guides tend to the horses you will have time to explore these breathtaking structures and the chambers where the Pharaohs were buried.
Additionally, if time permits we will visit the Solar Boat Museum at the Pyramids where you will dismount and be met by our Egyptology guide. Here you will visit Khufu ship, which is an intact full-size vessel from Ancient Egypt that was sealed into a pit in the Giza pyramid complex at the foot of the Great Pyramid of Giza around 2500 BC. The ship is now preserved in the Giza Solar boat museum.
The ship was almost certainly built for Khufu (King Cheops), the second pharaoh of the Fourth Dynasty of the Old Kingdom of Egypt. Like other buried Ancient Egyptian ships, it was apparently part of the extensive grave goods intended for use in the afterlife, and contained no bodies, unlike northern European ship burials.
After an awe inspiring morning we will have lunch at one of our favorite Egyptian restaurants before heading back to the hotel to shower and change.
Our afternoon is a non-riding tour of Cairo Museum. Housing 165,000 Egyptian artifacts, the Egyptian Museum in Cairo attracts millions of visitors a year. The highlight for most are the priceless treasures of King Tutankhamun. His 6 gold gilded coffins dominate the main hall, while his magnificent death mask is the must-see item of the day. Your guide will introduce you to the most important pieces before allowing you free time to explore the museum at leisure.
Dinner will be served after our ride at a local restaurant overlooking the Great Pyramids of Giza where you can watch the light and sound show whilst enjoying a BBQ dinner. What an introduction to Egypt!
Day 2: Abusir, The Sun Temple & Sakkara Pyramids
Our morning ride takes us to The Pyramids Of Abusir and the Sun Temple. There are a total of 14 pyramids located in Abusir belonging to ancient Egypt’s fourth dynasty. Abusir is located 2.5 kilometers north of Sakkara and about 12 km south of the pyramids of Giza. The most important pyramids at Abusir are of those of Sahure, Niuserre and Neferirkare. The Abusir Pyramids Complex rarely gets the recognition it deserves, and in fact, many guide books and tour brochures don’t even mention it.
Be prepared to be dazzled on horseback as you visit the final resting ground for many pharaohs; nobles and other important officials, and particularly for those who lived during the time of the 5th Dynasty in Egypt’s Old Kingdom era. Unlike Giza, these Pyramids are rarely visited by tourists and remain ‘un-walled’ which means we are able to ride inside, get off and really explore.
We will have a late breakfast / early lunch in the desert close to the Sun Temple before our ride continues onto to Sakkara Pyramids, best known for the ‘Step Pyramid’, the oldest of Egypt’s 97 pyramids built in the Third Dynasty for King Djoser. Both Sakkara and Abu Sir served as cemeteries for the ancient Egyptian capital city of Memphis so are bursting with ancient Egyptian history. We aim to finish mid / late afternoon and you will have a few hours to relax and have dinner at your hotel.
Day 3: Deserts of Giza & Khan el Khalili Market
Our morning trail ride takes us to the deserts on the outskirts of the Great Pyramids of Giza. This is a fantastic ride where you will be able to enjoy the open ground and freedom you can only experience by horseback! You can prepare to be amazed as our sure footed horses will take you behind the 7th Wonders of the World where you can fly like Laurence of Arabia on your very own majestic horses.
Lunch is served locally before you head back to your hotel to freshen up and we will head out for our non-riding tour to El Khalili and Muez street which are the oldest parts of Cairo.
At the Khan el Khalili bazaar, your guide will give you an introduction to the famous markets which claim to have inspired Christopher Columbus to discover the USA. Enjoy free time to stroll through the maze of streets and try your luck bargaining with the shop owners for a souvenir of your trip to Egypt.
This is a private tour allowing you to determine the amount of time spent at each of the sites during the tour. In addition you can visit a Papyrus Institute to see how this famous artwork is made and have the chance to purchase genuine items if you wish.
Dinner and shisha at Fishawy cafe. In 1988 the contemporary writer Naguib Mahfouz became the first Arabic writer to win the Nobel Prize in Literature and hence the pride of his country. When in 1989 the Khan Khalili Restaurant and Café, run by the Oberoi chain, opened its doors, the café was dedicated to Naguib Mahfouz and named after him. This is one of the top 7 cafes rich in history to be found in Cairo.
Program finishes and departure.
Price: £599 per person based on 2 sharing
Single person supplement: On Request
Board Type: Bed and Breakfast (meals payable locally)
Airport Transfers: On request
Airport: Cairo – We recommend you arrive the day before the mini-break begins to get the full benefit of the programme and take a late evening flight for departure or add one extra night and leave in the morning. Cairo is notorious for heavy traffic so it is our recommendation to allow extra time before and after your holiday. Whilst the airport is only 35km away from Giza, this can take 2-3 hours on a bad day to drive.
Our first day starts in the morning at 8am and our last day ends around 6pm. Please let us know if you’d like to extend your stay at our hotel.