13 days for $3975*
from New York (JFK)

Educational Resources Journey to the Land of the Pharaohs

January 10–22, 2011 • Hosted by Dr. Steven Derfler

Includes airfare, fuel surcharges, great hotels, transfers, meals, touring & more!

Dr. Steven Derfler & group at the Temple of Ramses II To travel to the land of Egypt is to feel profoundly touched by history. The glory and greatness, mystery and mystique that was once Egypt, beckons alluringly. Come and explore an ancient land of temples, tombs, and hieroglyphs as we visit a civilization shaped by the mighty Nile River.

Detailed Itinerary

A Journey to the Land of the Pharaohs Tour Itinerary Monday, January 10: USA/Egypt. Depart from New York on the first leg of our overnight flight to Egypt via Egypt Air jet service.

Tuesday, January 11: Cairo. Arrival in Cairo, where we are warmly greeted by our guide, assisted through customs formalities, and then escorted to our private touring coach to transfer to our Cairo hotel. Accommodations: Sheraton Cairo Hotel, Towers & Casino. Dinner provided.

Cairo & the Nile at night  © Sheraton Cairo Hotel Towers & Casino
Cairo & the Nile at night   © Sheraton Cairo Hotel Towers & Casino

Funery mask, Egyptian Museum, Cairo Wednesday, January 12: Cairo. Today's visits include the Cairo Museum, regarded as one of the most prominent in the world, where we can view remarkable treasures dating back 5,000 years. Here we'll visit the priceless antiquities of King Tutankhamen's tomb and the intriguing Mummy Room.

Mohammed Ali Mosque, Cairo Citadel Our tour continues to the Coptic Quarter, centerpiece of Old Cairo, where we visit the Christian and Jewish Quarters of the Old City, the Abu Serqa Church, the Ben Ezra Synagogue, the Citadel of Mohamed Ali, built on the remains of a Crusader-style fortress dating from the time of Saladin, and Sultan Hassan Mosque which was built from the alabaster cover stones of the Pyramids of Giza in 1369. Return to our hotel in Cairo for dinner and overnight. Breakfast, lunch & dinner provided.

Step pyramid of Zoser, Necropolis of Sakkara Thursday, January 13: Memphis, Sakkara, Giza, Overnight Train. We drive along the Nile this morning to the ancient capital of Memphis. Though most of the city has been destroyed by time, the magnificent Alabaster Sphinx and the mammoth statue of Ramses II remain. We continue to the Necropolis of Sakkara, City of the Dead, where we view the famous Step Pyramid of King Zoser, Pyramid of Teti, Mastaba of Kagemni and the Wall of Cobras.

Sphinx and Pyramids at Giza We continue to Giza where we see the Pyramids of Cheops, Chephren and Mycerinus, the Solar Boat, and the mysterious Sphinx and Valley Temple. Continue to the railroad station in Giza to board our overnight train to Aswan. Our accommodations are in private sleeping compartments, and dinner will be served on board. Breakfast, lunch & dinner provided.

Unfinished obelisk, Aswan Friday, January 14: Aswan. After breakfast aboard the train, we'll begin our touring in Aswan. Our visits include the High Dam and the lotus shaped monument to Soviet-Egyptian cooperation, where you'll enjoy a wonderful view of Lake Nasser. We continue to the unfinished obelisk. Fractured during cutting and abandoned, this work of art shows how these magnificent monuments were painstakingly hewn by hand and polished to a glassy smoothness.

Philae Temple on the Nile On to Philae Island, one of Egypt's most impressive sights before being flooded after the first Aswan Dam was built. The new site represents a complete restoration of the original. Transfer to our cruise ship for embarkation and dinner. Accommodations: MS Tulip. Breakfast, lunch & dinner provided.

Temple of Ramses, Abu Simbel Saturday, January 15: Abu Simbel, Edfu. Early morning flight to Abu Simbel of Ramses II, one of the most moving and thrilling sites in all of Egypt. Here at the limits of Upper Egypt, Ramses II built his temple in honor of Harmakhis, guardian of the Gates to the Nether World, Amon-Ra, Solar God, Ptah, God of Creativity, and Ramses II himself. After our tour, we'll fly back to Aswan to board our cruise ship and continue sailing to Edfu. Breakfast, lunch & dinner provided.

Temple of Horus, Edfu Sunday, January 16: Edfu, Luxor. After breakfast, we visit the Temple of Edfu, a Greek-built monument to Horus, the falcon-headed son of Osiris. It took about 200 years to complete this temple, which has helped fill in many gaps of knowledge about Pharaonic architecture that it imitates. Return to the ship for lunch aboard as we sail to Esna. Cross Esna Lock and sail to Luxor. Breakfast, lunch & dinner provided.

Valley of the Kings, Luxor Monday, January 17: Luxor. This morning we explore the West Bank of the Nile including the Valley of Kings. For nearly 500 years (16th – 11th century B.C.), pharaohs and powerful nobles were buried here, in at least 63 royal tombs that were hewn into walls of the valley, some into the sheer rock.

Tomb of King Tutankhamun
Tomb of King Tutankhamun
The area has fascinated and attracted outsiders since at least Roman times (one tomb contains graffiti from visitors in 278 B.C.). Archaeologists and Egyptologists have labored here since the eighteenth century, continually uncovering more long-lost chambers, including the famous tomb of Tutankhamun in 1922, which you'll visit.

Mortuary temple of Queen Hapshepsut near Luxor Continue on to the Valley of the Queens, the Tombs of the Nobles, Medinet Habu, the great Funerary Temple of Ramses III, and the impressive Deir El Bahari mortuary temple of Queen Hatshepsut, an architectural wonder built into a looming cliff face. Next, you'll visit the Colossi of Memnon, two massive seated statues depicting Amenhotep III that are 3,400 years old. The colossi stand about 60 ft tall and weigh about 700 tons each, made from quartzite sandstone quarried near Cairo over 400 miles away. Breakfast, lunch & dinner provided.

Great Hypostyle Hall, Karnak Temple Tuesday, January 18: Luxor, Esna. This morning we visit the Temples of Karnak and Luxor. Karnak is possibly one of the most overwhelming monuments of the Pharaonic legacy, with work carried out on the temples over a period of 1500 years. The Luxor Temple is strikingly graceful and was added to over the centuries by Tutankhamun, Ramses II and others.

Ramesses II Colossi in the Luxor Temple Luxor was the site of the ancient Egyptian city of Thebes, the great capital of Egypt during the New Kingdom, and the city of the God Amon-Ra. In 1580 B.C., Pharoah Ahmos drove the invading Hyksos from Lower Egypt, and Luxor gained in stature and wealth, becoming a grand city of luxurious palaces, huge temples, large gardens, as well as an important diplomatic and trade center of the ancient world.

This afternoon we'll enjoy a change of pace as we take a carriage ride into the countryside and visit the Coptic Christian village of Ngaa el Syagh. We'll return to our ship to continue sailing to Esna. Breakfast, lunch & dinner provided.

Kom Ombo on the Nile

Kom Ombo columns  Photo by Rémith
Kom Ombo columns   Photo by Rémith
Wednesday, January 19: Edfu, Kom Ombo. This morning we'll sail to Edfu. After lunch, we'll visit Kom Ombo, where we'll explore the Temple of Kom Ombo, unique in all of Egypt and shared by the two gods, Sobek and Haroeris. Breakfast, lunch & dinner provided.

Feluccas on the Nile, Aswan Thursday, January 20: Aswan. Sail to Aswan this morning. Visits this afternoon by felucca include Elephantine Island, where we find the ruined Temple of Khnum, the work of many pharaohs down to the Ptolemies and even the Romans. We'll also view the Agha Khan Mausoleum and the botanical gardens of Kitchener Island. Take advantage of an optional camel ride to San Simeon Monastery and Qubbet el-Hawa Tombs. Enjoy our final night aboard our Nile cruise. Breakfast, lunch & dinner provided.

Cairo Tower and Gezira Island Friday, January 21: Aswan, Cairo, Roda & Gezira Island. This morning, disembark from our cruise and transfer to the airport for the short flight to Cairo. Our touring in Cairo begins with a visit to Roda Island, which contains on its northern reaches the Manial Palace. On to Gezira Island with its parks and El-Borg, a 600-foot tower offering a marvelous view of Cairo and the Nile from its observation deck. Later we'll visit Sadat's Tomb.

Khan el Khalili bazaar, Cairo End the day with a visit to the fascinating Khan el-Khalili Bazaar. Breakfast, lunch & dinner provided.

Saturday, January 22: Cairo/USA. Say a reluctant goodbye to Egypt as we transfer to the airport early this morning to board our return flight to the USA, arriving in New York later this afternoon. Breakfast provided.

Destination FAQs

Included Features

  • Round trip flights from New York via EgyptAir, including airport departure taxes from the USA & Egypt (flight schedule)
  • Accommodations in 5-star hotels and Nile Cruise with private bath
  • Breakfast, lunch & dinner daily
  • Sightseeing in private touring coach escorted by Egyptologist/guide, including all entrance fees to places visited and all domestic transportation within Egypt
  • Air tour to Abu Simbel
  • Transfers, hotel taxes and porterage at airports and hotels
  • Tips and visa fees
  • Specially prepared Study Guide including comprehensive bibliography
  • Comprehensive travel insurance

Tour Prices, Fees & Options

Per person prices, from New York (JFK), including tips, visa fees & travel insurance.

Double occupancy $3975
Single occupancy + $795
Payment by credit card + $120


Please download the reservation application and fax or mail it to us, together with your $300 per person deposit. Fax to: 215-572-9803. Mail to 500 Old York Road, Suite 200, Jenkintown, PA 19046.

Acrobat PDF fileReservation application PDF

For additional information, please contact:

Dr. Steven Derfler
Educational Resources
1691 Highland Parkway
St. Paul, MN 55116
Tel: 651-592-3688
Fax: 651-690-2188

About your tour host, Dr. Steven L. Derfler

Dr. Steven Derfler
Dr. Steven Derfler
An international educational consultant, public speaker, archaeologist, historian, researcher, teacher and writer, Dr. Derfler has been uncovering the histories of ancient civilizations for over 30 years. Tracing the development of western religions from their roots in the Middle East and Eastern Mediterranean countries, Dr. Derfler brings insight to current political and social events, bridging the past with the future to promote greater understanding between people from different faiths and walks of life.

Dr. Derfler is associated with institutions both in the Midwest and Israel. In the Upper Midwest, he teaches as a professor at the University of Wisconsin River Falls. International institutions include Tel Aviv University's Institute of Archaeology, the Israeli Antiquities Authority, and The Negev Museum of Beersheva. In addition, he has served as a scholar-in-residence at Oxford University, England.

His commentaries can be found in such publications as the St. Paul Pioneer Press and The American Jewish World. His research has been published by the Israel Exploration Journal, Tel Aviv Journal of Archaeology, Hadashot Archaologiot, Atiqot, Middle East Review, The ARAM Journal of Oxford University, The University of Minnesota Press and the Edwin Mellen Press. He has developed educational tools, including videos and CD ROMs, that are widely used throughout North America and the Middle East.

Dr. Derfler directs study tours to Egypt, Morocco, Greece and Turkey, and Israel/Jordan.