Seriously tight schedule in Egypt - Abu Simbel in a day
Replies: 7 - Last Post: Nov 19, 2012 3:43 PM Last Post By: beibolugo
Nov 18, 2012 6:46 AM
Seriously tight schedule in Egypt - Abu Simbel in a dayHello,
We head to Egypt next week for eight days and are very excited.
Although it''s extremely tight we want to try and do this:
Monday arrive late in Alexandria, spend two nights
Wednesday catch the 4pm train to Luxor, arrive 6AM Thursday.
Check out Friday and catch the last train to Aswan 10pm
Arrive in Aswan at 2AM and catch the first bus to Abu Simbel *
Catch a late train from Aswan to Cairo and arrive Sunday morning/afternoon
Three days in Cairo before catching a flight the following Wednesday.
We are doing it on a budget and wanted to see Abu Simbel, from my understanding the cheapest way to do that is from Aswan.
Does anyone know if you can reserve seats on the mini-buses/coaches going there by convoy? As we arrive at 2AM (on a Saturday) and plan to go there the same day, will there be anywhere open at that time to buy tickets? Ideally we'd like to avoid a group and just pay for transportation to and from.
If anyone could please shed some light on this we'd be very grateful. Thank you
Nov 18, 2012 7:01 AM
1Also is there any left luggage in Aswan train station?
Nov 18, 2012 7:09 AM
2Bear in mind:
a) you aren't likely to sleep on the trains - that's potentially 2 nights in a row without sleep,
b) they won't necessarily run to schedule - if they arrive a few hours late it will have a major impact on your trip.
And one day in Luxor (especially following a 14 hr + train journey) is a bit of a waste to say the least ... better to lose the extra day in Alex or shave one off Cairo. Ideally I'd say skip Alex with only 8 days but it sounds like you're arriving there?
If you want to go to in the 4am convoy I suggest the best option would be to try and book in advance through a hotel in Aswan but whether they'll do that without you staying with them I don't know. You could turn up at the convoy meeting point but the vehicles meeting there are coaches/minibuses booked by hotels and operators not public transport. Technically you need a permit to travel in advance. However the driver for another party may let you join a bus for some £ - there would be no guarantee though you might be left standing there.
Nov 18, 2012 7:17 AM
3I'll support itchyfeet on three important points.
Just because they are sleeper trains doesn't mean you'll actually sleep. I'm never able to sleep on those trains. A little bit of rest, maybe, but never sleep.
Luxor has a big footprint. You'll do a lot of walking. Trying to see or do anything useful on the short period of time on no sleep will be next to impossible and certainly not enjoyable.
We're all different and it's your trip, but there is little in Alex to compare with Luxor or Cairo. If it were my trip I'd skip spending anything but the bare minimum of time there in favor of an extra day in Luxor.
Nov 18, 2012 12:27 PM
4Thanks to both of you for your input. We've made some minor adjustments based on your recommendations and decided to stay just one night in Alex and two nights, three days in Luxor.
We went ahead and booked a hostel for a vital couple of hours kip in Aswan, but the main reason is so they should hopefully be able to arrange transport to Abu Simbel and keep a hold of our bags.
Just going back to delays in transport, how much of a delay is it likely to be. We've been delayed days in Bolivia before. It's not that bad is it?
Nov 18, 2012 1:43 PM
5Most of the time they run more or less on time, but since the revolution there have been occasional strikes or protests that can hold the trains up for fairly lengthy periods. Not multiple days though - and there'll generally be an alternative if the worst comes to the worst, though not a particularly safe or comfortable one (local busses).
Nov 18, 2012 2:50 PM
6elbear, I hope you have a great time in your travels around Egypt. One point which will help is to be prepared to make further 'minor adjustments' while you're on the move! As far as travel plans in Egypt go; the hope usually far outweighs the reality, but as long as you're prepared for that eventuality, and are willing and able to take any upsets in your stride, then you should be OK, insh'Allah!!!!
Nov 19, 2012 3:43 PM
7Considering your tight schedule and the fact that Abu Simbel seems to be the highlight of your trip, I think you should fly from Alexandria to Aswan, spend a day in Aswan, join the 4 AM tour to Abu Simbel (that's about 3 days altogether) and then take the train north, to Luxor (2-3 days) and Cairo (2-3 days). Good luck!!
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