Egypt, the oldest megalithic civilization in the world, has 3,000 years of habitation along the Nile, including portions of Nubia and Sudan. The Nile River corridor from Tanzania to the Mediterranean was and has remained a trail for peoples from Africa to travel to Eurasia.
On a recent trip to Egypt, we began our adventure in Cairo walking neighborhoods, visiting museums and places of worship, and of course, the great pyramids of Giza.
We flew to Aswan staying at the “Old Cataract” hotel along the riverbank of the Nile River. This historic hotel is where Agatha Christie and Winston Churchill spent warm winters away from England. We visited Philae, an Egyptian structure on an island within the lake created by the lower Aswan dam. We rode on camels to St. Simon monastery, and then drove through the Sahara Desert to Abu Simbel, to visit the massive colossi of Ramses II. Abu Simbel was inundated by the construction of the “high” Aswan dam (Lake Nassar) flooding most of the history of the Nubian culture.
Upon our return to Aswan, we boarded a dehabeya (a double mast sailboat generally pulled by a tug) to spend 6 nights on the Nile River meeting the local farmers and visiting other Egyptian pharaonic temples such as Kom Ombo, Gembel Silsila, Edfu, and Khnum.
Departing the boat in Luxor we walked through the ruins of Luxor, Karnak (Thebes), and experienced the tombs in the Valley of the Kings. This only describes a very small portion of what we saw and experienced.
We then travelled north, taking a side trip to St. Bishoy, a Coptic Cristian monastery in Wadi Natron. Christians and tourists remain under attack to this day by a radical Islamic faction. We ended our Egyptian discovery in the ancient city of Alexandria, along the shore of the Mediterranean.