The Nile is the essence of life in Egypt; it is where the civilization began, evolved, and will ever last. The Nile River is not only a cradle of civilization, but it was a major way of transportation by sailing on it. The Nile River connects Egypt from the North to the South; it is like a shining artery if you look at it from the top. Cruising the Nile River is a great way to travel across Egypt, but it wasn’t a speedy option till the End of the 70th.
The Evolution of Nile Cruising
By the End of the 70th and the beginning of the 80th, Egypt started importing small ships from abroad, and by the End of the 80th, they started building their own ships according to the International Regulations for the cruises.
Nile River Cruising is A Turning Point in Tourism
In 1870 a new technology called Speedy streams was introduced that speeded up the journey by more than half the time. Before that time, the sailing from Cairo to Luxor took around 50 days plus the days you take between Luxor and Aswan with the visits. After the speedy streams, it took only 20 days to sail from Cairo to Aswan, and just a week to cruise between Luxor and Aswan. What a difference!
The new technology wasn’t only a turning point to sailing in Egypt, but it also affected tourism from abroad. In the 20th century, Egypt became a primary tourism destination for the Westerners, especially during the winter, so the Nile cruises became the key bone behind Egyptian tourism.
What is the Nile Cruise?
Now you know the story of sailing in the Nile, time to understand what is the Nile cruise exactly?
The Nile Cruise is like a floating hotel with a reception, lounge, restaurant, swimming pool on deck, and of course, it has cabins for sleeping. The cabin sizes vary from 20 to 30 meters square, which is a moderate size for a room. There are different categories of Nile cruises, from 5 stars to 3 stars, so you have various options.
Where does the Nile Cruise go?
Since the Nile River crosses Egypt from North to South, then you can cruise from Cairo to Aswan, but that sort of has conditions; the River level needs to be high in order for that to happen. The most common Nile cruise is from Luxor to Aswan, so you can fly or take the train to Luxor and start your journey on the Cruise from there.
Types of Nile Cruises
There are two main kinds of Nile cruises: Cairo to Aswan and the other is cruising Lake Nasser, which takes you from Aswan to Abu Simbel.
The New trend in Nile cruises is actually old-fashioned, which is the Dahabiya. It is a luxury sailing boat with no engines, it sails with the wind, and if there happens to be no wind, then no problem, a motorboat will come and push it instead. Dahabiya is a private sailing boat, it has a maximum of 10 to 12 cabins, and each cabin takes from 3 to 5 people. The Dahabiya is a fancy way of sailing on the Nile; it is such a uniquely peaceful experience.
The Nile cruises are an essential part of most Egypt tours since it is a lovely way to discover the historical city of Luxor that is considered an open-air museum from the amount of monuments it beholds, and the magical Aswan, the city that will clear your mind and soul. The Nile Cruise also makes two stops between Luxor and Aswan, at Kom Ombo and Edfu, to see two magnificent temples.