With lots of research we had organised to visit 4 main cities of Egypt; Cairo, Luxor, Aswan and Hurghada over a course of just under 16 days. Including a Nile cruise! Our choices are based on the best locations in each city, the price and what they offer. If you are considering a similar trip, do your research well and choose what you would be most comfortable with.
This post contains affiliate links!
Where to stay in Egypt
Giza – 4 Nights at Great Pyramid Inn
We had chosen to stay at Great Pyramid Inn for our first few nights in Egypt. As we were mostly interested in the historical aspects of Giza, staying in Giza seemed like the best and closest option. It worked out as the perfect location for our day trips for Giza, Saqqara and Cairo.
The top highlight of this hotel is the view. From our room and also from the rooftop we could see the Pyramids of Giza and the Sphinx in clear sight.
The hotel itself was pretty decent to stay at, with unlimited free water bottles, tea and coffee at all times of the day. We also enjoyed the complementary dinners choices that they had prepared for all guests. You will not need to visit the Sound & Light Show of the Pyramids during your Giza visit, as you can view and hear it all during dinner!
For four nights we would have preferred a little more luxury but we had no serious complaints. We missed the idea of a swimming pool to cool off in during the afternoons but our private bathroom had a good, clean shower as alternative.
Luxor – 2 Nights at Sofitel Winter Palace
We stayed at Sofitel Winter Palace before our Nile cruise in Luxor. We would be visiting many temples and locations during our cruise so we picked this hotel based on the relaxation aspects. The 25meter swimming pool was perfect to get some exercise, before relaxing with a book on a lounge chair.
This hotel has the most gorgeous gardens we have seen in Egypt. With the large variety of breakfast choices you can sit outside on their terrace and enjoy the birds singing and sun breaking through the palm trees. For dinner we dined at their very fancy restaurant for steak. For sleeping we had an en suite room with plenty of space for our luggage.
Nile Cruise – 4 Nights on the MS Mayfair
Our stay on the MS Mayfair was a very pleasant one, with top service and friendly staff throughout the 4 nights.
The bedroom on the cruise were very comfortable and clean. The en suite was pretty small but suitable for the 4 nights. Perfectly fine for what we needed after a day of visiting temples and museums. Food on board was delicious, with daily changing buffets for breakfast and lunches. Dinner on the cruise was a la carte, choosing only your main course, combined with receiving the same starter, soup and dessert. All meals on board tasted good, with absolutely no complaints. Many times we even had seconds!
Only a little thing to mention for anyone who is taller than 6ft for the MS Mayfair Cruise. My 6ft5 Dutchie didn’t fit under the shower and definitely not in the bath. My Dutchie also had problems with the ceiling levels throughout the cruise, where he couldn’t stand up straight. He had to dodge some sprinklers during the cruise since they were even lower! We saw some other cruise boats that had higher ceilings in the lounge areas, however all cruises seemed similar in the amount of decks so I expect them all to have similar ceiling levels everywhere else. One thing that I missed in general was some more shade areas on the rooftop.
Life on the Nile Cruise was a royal one, with 28 guests to 64 staff. Pretty luxurious for us! What we soon came to realise was that for all the travellers on the cruise, there were 6 tour guides travelling with us too. We had our tour organised through Memphis Tours, with 2 other couples on board. An American couple and a German couple. So all the other guests on cruise were with different tour companies. Interesting to know, as we assumed all were with one tour company in the beginning. Surely it would be easier for them to have one tour on one cruise, since we saw multiple Memphis Tours guides in other temples doing similar routes but just from different cruise boats.
One good tip for if you are going on a Nile cruise, sit with other guests from the same tour you are with. When you start a tour, you are placed on our own separate table. Which can be nice if you are more private and do not wish to sit with anyone else. However we decided to sit with both the American and German couples during meal times. This was much more fun and social for your cruise experience. We pleasantly enjoyed their company and recommend you to do the same. Some enjoyable topics we discussed was about the temples we saw during the day, other travel experiences and life in general. We personally got on with the German couple much better than the American couple, probably since as Dutchies we are neighbors!
We’d highly recommend this MS Mayfair cruise boat as we truly enjoyed our whole stay and the interactions with the friendly staff. The staff at breakfast, lunch and dinner were the most fun, including great singing voices for when it was someones birthday or anniversary!
Wondering what temples and museums we visited during our stay in Egypt? Check our Ultimate Egypt Vacation post! (COMING SOON!)
Aswan – 2 Nights at Citymax
We stayed at the Citymax hotel in Aswan after our Nile Cruise with the plan of visiting Temple Abu Simbel. However this did not go to plan and we ended up just chilling at the hotel for most of our stay. We had a good view of the Nile from our room, and enjoyed the gym in the hotel too.
All went smoothly with checking in to the hotel with friendly staff at reception. Our room was sufficient with 2 water bottles in the mini fridge and a good wifi connection. We were late with the buffet breakfast so ended up being the only two in the dining room. Regarding dinner we ate food outside of the hotel, such as a guilty visit to the McDonalds just 2 minutes away!
Only thing we disliked was the noise of our airco, which at times seemed like it was going to take off like a rocket at one point. So if you are light sleeper, make sure to ask for a room with a quiet airconditioning unit.
Hurghada – 4 Nights at Hotel Steigenberger
Ending our Egypt vacation on the most luxurious place you can find in Hurghada, we stayed at Hotel Steigenburger. This was located just a short 10min journey distance from the airport with their airport pick up service.
The high level of service in this hotel is outstanding. Right from check in you are welcomed with a drink, seated in their lounge and given all relevant information while they check you and your suitcase in. So you do not need to stand waiting at the front desk with your belongings. We had a little wait for our room as it was not yet ready, but with the fantastic service we didn’t mind at all. We could already explore the hotel and check out the large swimming pool. Large as in the largest pool in Hurghada too with 5000m2!
Our room was situated on the 5th floor overlooking the pool. It was gorgeous and extremely clean, a two bed with en suite, storage area and balcony. Large amount of space to walk freely through the room too, unlike our nile cruise room which was more tight and cosy. The bathroom had a deep bath and separate shower with ceiling mount, allowing my 6ft Dutchie to fit perfectly underneath.
Enjoying this hotel at the end of our vacation was the perfect way to think about all we had seen on our vacation. It allowed us to also finish reading our 3rd books (yes take at least 3!) and truly relax without having to get up to visit something. During one day we did book a snorkelling trip with the hotel, but will share that in another post soon.
All the hotels and Nile cruise were great choices and we would definitely recommend them all if you are considering the same route through Egypt. If you were to stay 4 nights or longer in Giza, we would however consider a more luxurious location. We were missing that relaxation aspect at the hotel, such as a pool or lounge area for the afternoons. The two nights extra in Luxor gave us the time to relax by the pool before our Nile cruise would start. The Nile cruise had very high standards throughout, such as the quality of food which is very important for your health. Stopping in Aswan for 2 nights was good, but since we didn’t visit Abu Simbel (last minute decision) it wasn’t really needed and wished we went to Hurghada straight after the Nile cruise. We finished with the most gorgeous place in Hurghada which ended our vacation perfectly. If you are looking where to stay in Egypt, we’d recommend all these hotels based on a similar itinerary.
We didn’t get sick at all during our whole vacation through Egypt. Many westerners get sick based on the different foods or poorly prepared meals, but we have had no problems. During each meal at the start of our vacation in Giza we were a little wary of salads, and mostly focused on eating other options. But by the time we were in Hurghada we were eating everything.
Throughout our different hotels and Nile cruise we really noticed the lack of tourism in Egypt. All locations were extremely busy at the temples and museums, but we noticed lack of travellers everywhere else. Like what we experienced on the Nile cruise with 28 guests to 64 staff and at Aswan with being the only two guests at the buffet breakfast. However we do feel that tourism is increasing within Egypt with positive feedback from locals, staff and our tour guide.
We also felt safe at every location and hotel we visited during our 18 days in Egypt. There are guards and police pretty much everywhere. At the airports, at your hotel entrances, at all temple and museum entrances and in the streets. We were at no time worried something would happen either.
If you are interested in seeing what we actually visited, you can visit out Ultimate Egypt Vacation post here! (LINK COMING SOON!)
Pin for later:
Do you have any questions about our travel through Egypt? Or have you travelled through Egypt yourself before? We’d love to hear about it in the comments!