A Cruise at the Historical Nile
It’s amazing to note that some of the beautiful natural landmarks that tourists clamor to see have been around since the early days of humankind. In fact, some have been around for thousands of years already and have even borne witness to some of the most interesting events of humankind’s early history.
Take the case of the Nile River in Egypt. The Nile is generally ranked as the longest river on earth, measuring 6,671 km from its sources. These sources take their rise in the lake regions of modern Rwanda and Burundi and flow into Lake Victoria. From here, a river passes over to Lake Mobutu; farther north, the stream is known as the White Nile. At Khartoum, the White Nile is joined by the Blue Nile, which cascades down from the mountains of northern Ethiopia. North of Khartoum the river forms the Nile proper, and as such receives the waters of only one more tributary, the Atbara River, its confluence with the Nile occurring about 300 km (190 mi) NE of Khartoum. The Nile then winds its way through the desolate tableland of northern Sudan, passing over six separate beds of hard granite rock that create six cataracts between Khartoum and Aswan (Biblical Syene), the point where Nubia ended and ancient Egypt began.
However, the Nile has lost much of its volume because of evaporation and the rigorous demands of Egyptian irrigation. Hence, the Nile’s waters empty into the Mediterranean Sea some 2,700 km (1,700 mi) north of Khartoum.
The most famous reference made to the Nile River was when the Pharaoh’s daughter bathed there and caught sight of a small bassinet that carried the baby Moses. The rest, we can say, is history.
These days, though, the Nile is known as a popular tourist attraction in Egypt. In fact, many people say that a cruise along the Nile River is an experience that one shouldn’t pass up on. A Nile cruise runs for three, five, or eight days depending on what you have arranged with your travel agent. The cruise ship normally spends downtime at the ports of Luxor and Aswan, making it possible for travelers to explore these places.
In between Luxor and Aswan, the cruise ship passes through Edfu, Kom-Ombo, and Dendera. At Edfu, you can visit the Temple of Edfu, which is dedicated to the falcon-headed god Horus. The Temple of Kom-Ombo is dedicated to the crocodile god Sobek and the winged god of medicine, Haroeris.
Since there are over 200 cruise vessels to choose from, you should be meticulous and use discernment in choosing the vessel that could offer you the best of everything. If you’re after a romantic cruise along the Nile, the Royal Cleopatra makes for an awesome choice. Locals refer to this traditional sailboat as a dahabeeya. It can fit up to eight people. Hence, if you’re traveling with family or friends and you want a private cruise, this is the ideal vessel to take. It’s smaller than other vessels are; thus, you can dock wherever you want, enjoy an excellent view of the Nile, and explore more sights.
Of course, your cruise itinerary would all depend on how much time you have and what you want to see. Your travel agent can always arrange something else for you and book you in a beautiful hotel. Nevertheless, if you want to have a good time and enjoy a unique experience, renting your own cruise vessel seems like the best option since it makes the whole trip surreal.