Cruising down the Nile River from Luxor to Aswan when we were in Egypt was a wonderful experience. Obviously there were the temples that we visited along the way, but just cruising on the Nile was relaxing and wonderful. It was a great way to beat the heat and most of the cruise ships have a pool on the upper deck to help you cool off. The shoreline is covered with tropical trees and plants, but the desert is clearly visible not far in the distance. It is amazing how narrow the actual vegetation actually is and how hard life must be for those people who live along the banks.
As the ship cruised down the Nile, children would run to the shore and wave at the passengers excitedly. Other times, we saw children swimming and splashing near the shore, doing their best to get out of the heat as well. Occasionally we would see some boats with fisherman, but the ship usually sailed in the afternoon and was docked in the morning, so we weren’t on the water when most fisherman would be out. Although we saw plenty of feluccas in Cairo, most of the boats, other than other cruise ships, were much simpler.
Seeing the Temple of Kom Ombo in the afternoon after we left Edfu, was truly incredible. We could see the temple columns off in the distance as we rounded one of the river bends and it loomed larger the closer that we came to the dock. Other than the many sunsets that we saw, the temple was probably the most fascinating sight that we saw. We spent four days and three nights on the cruise and every day brought different and yet similar views of the shoreline.
For anyone visiting Egypt, we would recommend taking a cruise down the Nile River. The cruises go both directions, either from Luxor to Aswan or from Aswan to Luxor. It is possible to do the tour by land, but we feel that if you have the time, going by ship is far better. We were fortunate that our tour company booked us on one of the nicer cruise ships and we enjoyed our time onboard very much.