TRIP OF A LIFETIME THROUGH EGYPT WITH MARA

After two decades of diving into the wonders of Egypt, I’ve finally lined up my personal tours for 2024.  It took a bit to sort out because of the new private access we are allowed to monuments, which, while exciting and wonderful, comes with a rather high price tag.  Also, some people want to relax on a Nile cruise while taking in the sites in Upper Egypt, while others don’t.  In addition, getting places on the better cruise boats presents a challenge due to demand, so it’s a bit exclusive.  You can see why settling on the itinerary and package prices was challenging.

There are three trip variations, and for the lucky people who find my website in time, I am offering a good early bird discount on each option until 2 March 2024.

Before you check out the itinerary,

LIMITED TIME EARLY BIRD BOOKING OFFERS:

Early bird booking offer available from February 4 until March 2, 2024

GROUP TRIP OPTIONS and PRICES

  • Option A: Basic tour, no cruise, and no private visits for US$2,650.   Early bird price US$2,450.  Arriving 11 May Cairo and ending in Aswan on 22 May
  • Option B: Basic tour with cruise, no private visits US$3,150.  Early bird price US$2,950.  Arriving 11 May Cairo and ending in Aswan on 22 May
  • Option C: Basic tour with private visits, no cruise US$3,935.  Early bird price  US$3,735.  Arriving 5 Oct Cairo and ending in Aswan on 16 Oct
  • Option D: Basic tour, with private visits, with a cruise US$4,435.  Early bird price US$4,235.  Arriving 5 Oct Cairo and ending in Aswan on 16 Oct
  • Option E: Basic tour, no cruise, and no private visits for US$2,650.   Early bird price US$2,450.  Arriving 16 nov Cairo and ending in Aswan on 27 nov
  • Option F: Basic tour with private visits, no cruise US$3,935.  Early bird price  US$3,735.  Arriving 16 nov Cairo and ending in Aswan on 27 nov
  • Option G: Basic tour with private visits, with a cruise US$4,435.  Early bird price US$4,235.  Arriving 16 nov Cairo and ending in Aswan on 27 nov

These prices are based on two people sharing the accommodations; unfortunately, we have to charge a single supplement for solo travelers wanting private accommodation.  However, if a solo traveler is willing to share with another solo traveler in the group, then there is no single supplement.  

  • The normal prices quoted above are not guaranteed to remain fixed.  They are the prices I am offering at the moment but the Egyptian economy may cause me to increase the prices as the year progresses.  However, to secure a place on any of my tours a deposit is required at the time of booking and that will guarantee no price increase for you.
  • The offers is subject to T&C and availability, E and EO.

5 nights and 5 days tours in Cairo

4 nights at Mara House in Luxor incl 3 days tours

  • Abydos and Dendera – the absolute best temples in all of Egypt and are not included by most other tour operators.
    • Private time in the Osirion and Initiation Chamber.  I haven’t written on my website about the Osirion as it has been strictly off limits in the last few years.  But many years ago I was able to secure access for some of my groups.  I am so glad the option of private time there is now possible
  • West Bank – 5 sites – full details here
  • Karnak and Luxor Temple – some information here

3 days tours in Aswan

  • Esna, Edfu and Kom Ombo
  • Philae
  • Overland to Abu Simbel

If you take the option to add the four night Nile cruise to the itinerary, the schedule will be 5 nights in Cairo, 2 nights in Luxor, 4 nights on Nile Cruise, 1 night in Aswan.  You will still visit all the sites listed in the itinerary, with the exception of Esna Temple, with the group.

Included:

  • 12 nights accommodations
    • 5 nights Cairo
    • 4 nights Luxor
    • 3 nights Aswan
  • Hotel taxes, fees & service charges
  • All transfers
  • 11 breakfasts
  • Sightseeing per itinerary in air-conditioned vehicles
  • Services of Egyptian Egyptologist guide throughout the trip
  • Accompanied by Mara as Tour Manager throughout the trip
  • All travel permits and entry fees to all the sites listed in the itinerary, including entry to the Great Pyramid itself and Sphinx viewing enclosure, which is usually not included in tours offered by others.
  • Exposure to Egyptian culture and life style at all opportunities

Not Included: 

  • international flights are not included in the price, but we will endeavor to secure the cheapest flights for you once we know your nationality and what city airport you will be departing from.
  • flights from Cairo to Luxor and Aswan to Cairo, which we cannot price or book until the group is complete as then we secure the cheapest price at the time.
  • tipping, which is expected, and my guide on that is here, “Tipping in Egypt” .
  • food and drink, unless specified.

The following extras can be added to the itinerary for an additional cost:

Extra tours in Cairo are best added at the beginning of the itinerary, but an extra tour to Alexandria is best added at the end of your trip.  For the extra tour days, you would get better value for your money by combining visits to more than one site per day.  If planned wisely, it is possible to get more than two sites in on any given day without stress or exhaustion.

  • Manial Palace and Nileometer
  • Aisha Fahmy Palace
  • City of the Dead and the Tombs of the Mohamed Ali Dynasty
  • Civilization Museum
  • Alexandria can be an overday from Cairo, or you can choose to spend a night or more there.

I want your trip to Egypt with Mara to be among your most treasured travel memories so please let me know what your passions, interests and bucket list are for Egypt.  I will endeavor to accommodate you in every way possible.  Email me at maraegypt@gmail.com and avail of the early bird discounts.

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41 Comments

  1. Fantastic tour with Mara and her Associates
    My husband and I went on a small group tour with Mara of Mara House Luxor.  We had a marvelous time with seasoned, knowledgeable guide Mohamed and fantastic, miracle worker tour manager Ahmed.  We are usually solo tourists, so it was a pleasure to have everything taken care of, including the transportation and tickets to all the sites, and the luggage handling.  In addition, we were provided with local information and tips on how to not be taken advantage of when we decided to venture out on our own.

    Ahmed is acquainted with the people who work at the sites we visited, so he knew exactly who could provide a safe, reliable service, especially for the camel ride at Giza and the horse carriage at Edfu.

    His wonderful contacts got us front row seats at the Sufi Dance performance we went to, enabling me to take fabulous photos of the event. If we wanted to buy a specific souvenir, he knew exactly where we could obtain it and provided very helpful bargaining tips so we could get the item at a fair price.

    Mohamed knew every crook and cranny of the sites we visited and could answer questions about the history of every site we visited. This enabled us to keep ahead of the other tour groups because he could guide us to parts of the sites where it wasn’t so crowded. He did his best to educate us about everything we saw even though we weren’t the best pupils at times!

    We were lucky enough to sit with Mara during meals on the cruise, and she regaled us with many entertaining stores of her extensive experiences running a guest house in Egypt.

    We wished that we would have had more time at Mara House itself, because it is so peaceful and beautifully decorated, but we had to get back to our real lives and work obligations. We really enjoyed the one night we had there, and all the drinks and snacks are very reasonable priced compared to the hotel and cruise ship.

    In addition, we were offered the famous feast, which was absolutely fantastic. The breakfast at Mara House was just as good, and it was included in the package. If you are looking for a wonderful, hassle free tour of Egypt you can’t go wrong with Mara House Luxor.

    Couple.  USA.  Nov 2019 Mara House Group Trips Reviewed on TripAdvisor 11 Dec 2019


  2. This woman has put together the Egypt trip of a lifetime! I am forever grateful my cousin found this tour, I cant put into words how happy my family and I are (aged 22-41). Our lives have been enriched and refreshed. We just finished the 14 day tour this November.

    Everything was perfect – the accommodation (hotel, ship, Mara House) all fine quality, the destinations (hidden treasures without tourists), the service/care given to each individual, the educational guides through each location. Wow, wow, wow. I cant fault it.This was exactly the holiday I needed from my busy/stressful life.

    Traveled with family. Australian. Nov 2019 Mara House Group Trips Reviewed on TripAdvisor

  3. I joined a small group tour during Nov 2019 with Mara House tours. Everything was taken care of in such a great way. The tour included a wide variety of experiences. The tour manager Ahmed and tour guide Mo really spoiled us with many surprises and were always available to support us in any way needed and more! Ensure that your tour include a stay over at Mara House in Luxor for at least two nights for a special Egypt experience.

    I felt safe at all times. The security in Egypt is of very high standard. Apparently recently voted second best in middle east and eight in the world. They also have a special Tourist Police unit which is very visible and caring towards tourists.

    Do yourself a favour and visit Egypt with Mara from Mara House to plan and organise your tour.

    Traveled solo with Mara House Nov 2019 Group Tour – Reviewed on TripAdvisor

  4. We are just finishing our tour of Egypt with Mara, Ahmed and the team. What an amazing tour it has been. Thank you so much for looking after us and showing us Ancient Egypt, medieval Egypt and modern day Egypt. You have given us a holiday of a lifetime. Diane and Frank Abbley

    Traveled as couple with friends. Booked the Mara House April 2019 Group Tour. Reviewed on Tripadvisor.


  5. We have just finished touring Egypt with Mara from Mara House Luxor finishing with dinner at Mara House. Mara and her tour manager Ahmed as well as her local guides have been exceptional in their knowledge of Egypt and their inhabitants over the last few thousand years. Information has been spot on as well as their stories along the way. We have seen some things that others would never have seen. I am so grateful that we found Mara on the internet. Her tours are small and we have made some lasting friends with her and the lovely people in the group. Hotels have been great and the trip down the Nike so beautiful. Thank you Mara and Ahmed for being so fastidious in your arrangements leaving nothing for us to worry about – everything has gone to plan. We would not hesitate to highly recommend this tour with anyone interested in travelling to Egypt.

    Traveled as couple with friends. Booked Mara House April 2019 Group Tour, Reviewed on Tripadvisor

  6. So glad we went with the Mara house team for our first trip to Egypt. Ahmed is the superstar of logistics and took care of everything we needed. The guides (both Mohammad’s) were so knowledgeable about all things Egypt and taught us so much. The sites were amazing and the people were friendly, what more could you ask for on vacation. If you have been curious about visiting Egypt – definitely go and don’t hesitate to plan through the Mara House team.

    Traveled as couple. Booked the Mara House April 2019 Group Tour. Reviewed on Tripadvisor.

  7. Well what can I say. This trip for my wife and I has been awesome. The team at Mara House have also been awesome. From our initial first contact with Mara House throughout the trip and sadly it’s conclusion has been absolutely exceptional. Mara and her team have done everything in their absolute power to take any stress or hassle away from us so we can sit back and truly enjoy Egypt. Stunning place with its history and culture has certainly broadened both our horizons about the country and this wouldn’t have been possible for us without the Mara House team. If we do return to Egypt, Mara House will be the first phone call.

    Traveled as couple with friends. Booked the Mara House April 2019 Group Tour. Reviewed on Tripadvisor.

  8. The Trip of a Lifetime! My wife and I just returned from a wonderful 11-day trip to Egypt. What made this trip so amazing was Mara and her outstanding team (Ahmed, Mohammad & Mo!), who made Egypt, its fascinating history (from ancient to modern) and its wonderful & friendly people, come to life!

    All the arrangements were perfect; from Mara’s delightful, informative and stress-free itinerary, the 4-star accommodations, easy in-Country flights, our soothing 4 night Nile cruise, great food, great small-group fellowship (there were only 10 of us!), and of course Egypt’s HISTORY! And the whole time, everywhere we went, Ahmed and his team cared for us just like family.

    When we tell our friends where we went, and about everything we saw and did, and how reasonable the cost, they’re astounded! This has to be the BEST VALUE/MOST AFFORDABLE all-inclusive Egypt tour available from anyone!

    If you want to experience Egypt, we give our highest recommendation to Mara House! You won’t be sorry!

    Travelled as oouple. Booked the Mara House Nov 2018 Group Tour. Reviewed on Tripadvisor.

  9. Egypt/Luxor/Aswan trip Oct 3rd-Oct14th 2018

    We spent 11 days last month with Mara Tour and her excellent staff (Ahmed, Mohamad from Cairo and Mohamad from Luxor). Thanks for the team for all excellent information and keep us all safe all the time, especially Ahmed who was on call at all times.

    We learnt a lot about the ancient history of Egypt up all the way to Islamic, Christian era and modern times. We will definitely come back when they have more tombs/pyramid opens for tour! Great job guys!

    Jacky H Traveled as couple. Booked Mara House Oct 2018 Group Tour. Reviewed on Google Maps 5 Nov 2018


  10. Mara is the Best You Can Do in Egypt!
    Mara House in Luxor (do a Google search to book direct on her website) is scrumptiously decorated in traditional style and features huge suites with kitchenettes. It really feels more like a comfortable home than a hotel. The delicious “Salahadeen Feast” there was the best and most authentic food I had in my entire time in Egypt – homemade by her chef!

    For anyone wanting to fulfill their dream of visiting Egypt, I highly recommend Mara for a safe and hassle-free experience. She is an Irish lady who spent many years living in Egypt and therefore has a unique perspective; she gives us the trustworthy tours she wished she first had as a visitor. My trip definitely went above and beyond my expectations!

    During the 11-day group tour we visited several cities in Egypt (Cairo, Luxor, Aswan, etc) and it was smooth-running and thrilling from start to finish! The Itinerary covered all the highlights of Egypt and more, from the Pyramids and the Valley of the Kings to lesser known wonders such as the Christian and Medieval Cairo communities. It was an unexpected bonus to be so completely awed and impressed by the amazing architecture and history from different eras!

    Mara made sure everyone’s preferences were heard and the Itinerary was graciously adjusted according to need and group consensus. I loved and really benefited from this perk!

    Mara’s attentive presence and the knowledge of her outstanding and personable manager Ahmed Hasanein let me be fully immersed in Egypt without juggling any tedious logistics. It really made a difference that we stuck with the same Egyptologists every day: Mohamed Haider (in Cairo) and Mohamed Ahmed (in Luxor), both were enthusiastic and eager to explain the history of places we were visiting, and answer all the questions we had.

    It makes a HUGE difference seeing all the sites in Egypt in person vs just reading about it from afar (and dreaming about going “someday”). NOW is the time to visit Egypt and booking through Mara is the best you can do!

    Mara Group Trip – Reviewed on TripAdvisor

  11. Outstanding Tour of Egypt

    Just back from the October Small Group tour by Mara House, in a word outstanding. As an experienced independent traveler had some concerns about doing a group tour however our group of 12, plus Ahmed (tour manager) and accompanying Egyptologists, helped make the trip.

    The tour covered all the major sites and more, providing an insight into the life of past and present Egyptians. While we saw pyramids and the tombs of kings we also saw tombs of the nobles and common workers. We covered both Islamic and christian Cairo. Favorites being Saladin’s Citadel and the church the holy family hid out in for 3 months.

    At times it felt like we were VIP guests, getting access to sites either first (inside the great pyramid) or almost the only visitors to an area. A great tour run by great people.

    Reviewed on TripAdvisor – Travelled as a couple – Booked Mara House Oct 2018 Group Tour. Review Deleted by TripAdvisor on 25/10/2018

  12. THE ONLY WAY TO SEE EGYPT!

    I have always wanted to go to Egypt. By accident I ran across Mara House while looking for another trip elsewhere. This was the best accident I have ever had! Unbelievable!

    My first concern was safety. Mara put my mind at ease right away and told me it was very safe. Right she was – I NEVER once felt unsafe or the least bit uneasy. The Egyptian people are so wonderful. They are friendly and always willing to help no matter what you need. A nice place to eat, directions, or just crossing the street.

    My husband and I went on an 11 day tour – This is a small group tour which started in Cairo, went to Luxor, then Aswan with a Nile cruise.

    Ahmed was our tour guide/manager. He was amazing!!! Ahmed met us at the airport with a smile on his face which never left for the entire 11 days. He took us to the Steigenberger Hotel in Cairo and made sure we were checked in and our luggage was in our room.

    The next day we started our amazing/unforgettable adventure. We did it all 🙂 Valley of the Kings- King Tut’s Tomb, Seti Tomb; Giza – went into the great pyramid up to the King’s chamber and had a camel ride, saw an ancient boat, and the sphinx.. Valley of the Queens – Nefertari Tomb … Cairo – Sufi dance, Garbage City, Cave Church, Abdeen Palace, City of the Dead… Edfu, Kom Ombo, Aswan – Philae, Nubian Village, held crocodiles, went into a classroom for kindergarten; what adorable children. We saw countless temples and tombs – We went to Antiquities Museum which was amazing.

    I could go on for hours talking about how wonderful this trip was and everywhere we went; but it was Mara’s guide, Ahmad who made it special. We were never out of Ahmed’s sight. He went out of his way to make sure our trip was something special and unforgettable – he succeeded!

    There are also two Egyptologists – Mohammad and Mohammad (Mo). They had so much information on each place we visited. Both were amazing and so sweet. The three of them really made you feel like you were family. It was like you knew them for years after meeting them.

    Bob and I were so comfortable at all times. I could really go on for hours telling you about how wonderful this trip is – but you have to experience it to really appreciate how great this trip can be. Don’t wait – Egypt is ready for tourists and going with this tour group is the only way to go.

    Reviewed on TripAdvisor -Travelled as a couple – Booked Mara House Oct 2018 Group Tour – Deleted by TripAdvisor 25.10.2018

  13. Amazing Egypt Tour for 11 days

    As a first time solo traveller, I must admit I was extremely nervous, but knowing I was being part of a group helped make me at ease.

    The Tour manager Ahmed was absolutely wonderful, no job was to small, his multitasking abilities are exceptional.

    The 2 Tour Guides whose names are both Mohammed were in my opinion fantastic, and the knowledge they have is unbelievable. I can honestly say I think I have input overload.

    To be in a group for the tour was also by far the best way to see and explore Egypt’s beautiful and fascinating history. It was just so breathtakingly stunning.

    Thank you very much for putting on these tours, I am truly grateful. I now have wonderful memories of a country that’s been on my bucket list my whole life.

    Reviewed on TripAdvisor – Traveled solo. October 2018 – 11 nights Mara’s Group Tour. Deleted by TripAdvisor 25.10.2018

  14. Great value, fantastic staff.

    We recently completed a large group trip. Our group Manager Ahmed is very organized and super easy to communicate with. Both Egyptologists Mohammad A. and Mohammad H. were very knowledgeable and always willing to answer our questions and appeared to really enjoy their work. We had excellent drivers and saw so many more sites then expected and more then were promised. This trip is great for history buffs and the value you get for money spent is amazing. Egyptian culture, particularly the tipping and shopping were hard to get used to but Ahmed was very patient with us and gave us guidance whenever needed.

    Reviewed on TripAdvisor – Travelled as a couple – Booked Mara House Oct 2018 Group Tour – Deleted by TripAdvisor 25.10.2018

  15. Ten Days in Egypt
    We spent ten days in Egypt this month with Mara and her excellent staff which included Ahmed, who was on 24 hour call for anything we needed, and Amer, her delightful cook at Mara House.

    Our tour was great value for the money we paid and included all the sights promised, from Cairo to Luxor to Aswan. We saw many temples and tombs and Mara and her team did their best to keep us ahead of other tour groups by carefully coordinating our visit times. The hotel rooms were basic but good and breakfasts at the hotels and on the cruise were plentiful.

    We came away with a great understanding of Egypt’s history and culture – Ancient, Islamic, Christian and modern. The tour vibe was casual and comfortable.

    We always felt safe as Mara and her team coordinated with the security men assigned to us and always knew where we were. We learned an amazing amount in a relatively short period of time!

    Reviewed on TripAdvisor. Booked Mara House Sept 2018 Group Tour.

  16. Great value for Egypt

    We did our tour with this company. We were met at the airport at 4.30am by the smiling caring tour manager despite the fact that he’d been transferring people since midnight.

    Our hotel was amazing and Ahmed, our tour manager, arranged for us to get into our room by 7am! Not many places will do that for you. Mara, the owner of the tour company, met us all before the tour started to explain how things would be.

    We spent 4 days in Cairo and then a relaxing cruise on the Nile from Luxor to Aswen. Here we got to have dinner at Mara House which was amazing! The Egypologists, Mohammed and Mohammed, we’re both amazing. They had so much information to share and were so pleased to do so.

    Ahmed, what an amazing man! He was soooo helpful. I got a bit sick with an upset stomach and he regularly checked on me, making sure I was well hydrated and up to the next bit of the tour. He even escorted us back to the airport at a ridiculous hour of the morning! Nothing was a problem for him. Every request, he forefilled. He was waiting at our hotel about one hour before pick up every day! Apart for the history of Egypt, Ahmed is the jewel in the crown of this tour. Thank you Ahmed. Your professionalism was greatly appreciated!

    We thoroughly enjoyed the trip. The fact that the group is small is fantastic and would happily give it a 5* plus rating.
    Thanks Mara House Luxor

    Reviewed on TripAdvisor. Travelled with Mara’s Group Trip Sept 2018

  17. Touring Historic Egypt

    We toured with Mara and her amazing tour leader Ahmed and guides, both called Mohammed. The organisation of the tour was meticulous but allowed for minor variations to suit the group. Additional activities were added where possible including a felucca ride in Aswan.

    We especially enjoyed the temples in Abydos and Dendera which are seen by very few groups. We were also taken inside the pyramids and some rarely opened tombs in the valley of the kings which were amazing.

    The hotel accommodation was great, and a dinner in Mara House a highlight of the trip.

    Reviewed on TripAdvisor. Travelled with Mara’s Group Trip Sept 2018. Deleted by TripAdvisor 25.10.2018

  18. The tour with Mara was a great way to experience Egypt!
    There’s no doubt we saw the most amazing number of extraordinary things – Mara’s view is we will only be here once so she puts in as much as possible. It was full on, with generally long days with lots in them but I really feel as though I’ve been immersed in experiencing Egyptian history and culture, put together by someone who does tours because she loves Egypt and wants others to love it too.
    The hotels have been outstanding, the cruise ship was fine (although about C grade by European cruise ship standards), the guides were great and I learnt a lot, and the organisation was generally good, except for a few times when things were derailed by the Egyptian way of doing things, and Mara stepped in and got them sorted out.
    The only thing we missed was Abu Simbel, but there were no flights at all from Aswan that day, and after all the temples we’d seen, no-one really wanted to do a seven hour round trip by minibus, getting up at 3 am, for an hour there.
    I would have preferred one less day in Cairo and an extra day in Aswan, so we could have done both the Philae/Nubian Village visits on one day and Abu Simbel either by plane or minibus on another.
    I’m really pleased I’ve seen Egypt and that I did it with Mara. It would be difficult, frustrating, uncertain, and scary to see Egypt without doing it with a good tour company. You would be driven insane, miss a lot and take ages to do it.
    I’m a solo female traveller and Mara and her team took out all the worry and the hassle and I had a great time.
    Thanks Mara!
    Reviewed on TripAdvisor. Travelled with Mara’s May Group Trip 2018. Deleted by TripAdvisor 25.10.2018

  19. Many thanks to Mara and her very friendly and professional team for an absolutely incredible egypt experience. The knowledge of her guides was first class and the way Mara and they explained the amazing history and stories of Egypt from the ancient pharaonic period through to the present day was very entertaining and easy to understand. The logistics of the trip from Cairo to Luxor to Aswan could not have gone more smoothly. We felt safe, secure and relaxed during the whole tour. The hotels we stayed in and the Nile cruise boat were of a very high standard.

    Mara bent over backwards to make sure that all our specific needs were catered for and the itinerary was flexible enough to ensure that we always came first. We really enjoyed the more personable approach from Mara and her team that was possible with a smaller tour group.

    Our trip to Egypt was unforgettable and exceeded all our expectations and then some. We highly recommend a Mara Egyptian tour.

    Linda and Andrew Fraser, Melbourne Australia. Travelled with Mara’s May Group Tour 2018. Reviewed on TripAdvisor. Deleted by TripAdvisor 25.10.2018

  20. A truly awesome experience!!
    Mara and her band of fantastic helpers made our trip to Egypt an unforgettable one!
    The history and architecture are truly beyond belief. No photo really really does the place justice. The chaos of Cairo just added to the appeal for us.
    Logistically a small tour is by far the best way to see this amazing place. The difference with Mara’s tour is that we visited no shops or places where the guides received commissions for us purchasing items.
    We found flexibility and friendliness were the norm from Ahmed, Amer and the two Mohameds.
    Karen and I thoroughly enjoyed our trip to Egypt and have no hesitation in recommending Mara’s tour!!
    Bill and Karen Chernishoff. Travelled with Mara’s May Group Tour 2018. Reviewed on TripAdvisor. Deleted by TripAdvisor 25.10.2018