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Which Nile Cruise boat to choose

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Ashford, United...
Level Contributor
38 posts
22 reviews
Which Nile Cruise boat to choose

I would love to go on a Nile Cruise on a smaller boat than many of the brochures include.

I also do not want evenings of formal dressing for dinner, nor do I want Butlins on the water, any advice please. I will be travelling as a lone female.



Phoenix, Arizona...
7 posts
51. Re: Which Nile Cruise boat to choose

Thanks so much for your review Denise. I am scheduled to go on a three night/four day cruise on 1/8/13 onboard the Alexander the Great (around 35 room boat). In Cairo now. Haven't seen much, but headed out today to the Egyptian museum and Tehir square. Will fill you in when I have more info. Cheers.


West Country
Level Contributor
1,456 posts
66 reviews
52. Re: Which Nile Cruise boat to choose

Glad you had a good time. Unfortunately the lack of tourists only highlights the minor inconveniences and the hassle as more is expected from those who travel. As you say though the sites and sights more than compensate.

Level Contributor
1 post
11 reviews
53. Re: Which Nile Cruise boat to choose

We are lookimg to go on a Nile Cruise in March, haven't booked yet and don't want to go all that way for 'international cuisine' and no chance of trying anything local. I'd appreciate any advice/recommendations/avoids from those that have been on what to look for in choosing a boat .

Bridgwater, Somerset
Level Contributor
7 posts
17 reviews
54. Re: Which Nile Cruise boat to choose

Orchid/ Jasmine cruise with First Choice holidays. Smaller boat but much nicer cosier atmosphere. Hours entertainment every night in lounge, whirling dervish, belly dancer, African band and Egyptian night was fairly low key and fun with virtually no games and certainly no obligation to join in! Thoroughly recommend this cruise !!

Phoenix, Arizona...
7 posts
55. Re: Which Nile Cruise boat to choose

I am back from a three night, four day Nile cruise aboard the Alexander the Great. My experience was a little different because I have family living in Cairo, and they know a friend of the owner of the boat. We had a taxi driver (whom my family had used before) in Luxor, basically drive us around to the sites. He did not come in with us, but this suited us just fine (except it would have been nice for Karnak temple). Once we got to Aswan, we did have a guide who was quite helpful in explaining the sites.

The onboard experience was quite nice. I got bumped up to the room with the deck. I was grateful for this, because it was the only room with heat! My Mom's room was cool (there was a slight cold spell when we were there), but she liked it that way.

I found the food mostly just fair. Since we were on the boat with only three other people (Brazilians), everything was al-a-carte. Service was wonderful, I must admit. Be warned that all drinks (alcoholic and non-alcoholic) are at an additional cost. The boat does provide you 1 bottle of water/day in your room. It would have been nice (as other commenters have stated) to have a kettle in the room for a cup of tea or instant coffee in the morning.

Also suggested is to bring quite a few Egyptian coins. Not only are the hawkers brutal, but you are literally forced to walk by them, because they have put all the ticket offices (to the sites) at the end of the hawkers rows!

I must admit that after awhile, it gets tiring that everywhere you go, there is someone trying to insert himself into the situation to get money out of you. They'll grab your luggage without asking, try to point out things while in the temple (and expect money), as well as every bathroom entrance is manned with people with their hand out for a coin or two.

Once back in Cairo, we went to the Great pyramids and the Sphinx, as well as the Egyptian museum (unbelievable). We also made a stop in Tahrir square and walked around (1/12/13). There were protesters there, and tents set up, but we did not feel unsafe walking around.

Overall, well worth the trip!!!!

Denver, Colorado
Level Contributor
1 post
3 reviews
56. Re: Which Nile Cruise boat to choose

Where can I find honest reviews on the various Nile Cruise boats along with data as to size, age amenities, etc.? Am trying to get a short cruise from Aswan to Luxor Mid May.

Ashford, United...
Level Contributor
38 posts
22 reviews
57. Re: Which Nile Cruise boat to choose

Hi Natalie

Glad you had a great time. Your experience and thoughts on the nuisance hawkers are the same as my own. I am aware that there is an economic crisis and lack of tourists, but it is totally counter productive to them selling anything, you just want them to get 'out of your space'. I would have bought so much more, if there had been no aggressive hassling.

Letter in Sunday Telegraph travel section yesterday from someone visiting Abu Simbel, only 2 other people and 2 stray dogs on site. He was urging other tourists to visit Egypt as he felt totally safe, so did I.


Bolton, United...
Destination Expert
for Nile River Valley
Level Contributor
1,173 posts
18 reviews
58. Re: Which Nile Cruise boat to choose

Although there isn't a facility for reviewing Nile cruise boats, as one would with hotels, for example, there has been a very long running thread wherre people have been encouraged to post their experiences of the vatious boats they've travelled on. This can be found here:


Otherwise it's very much a case of using the search facility to look for, either, any threads that relate to Nile cruise boats, and picking out those which you feel are useful, or doing asearch for a specific boat.

Level Contributor
538 posts
59. Re: Which Nile Cruise boat to choose

Thanks for the review Denise, clearly, the entertainment was not for you. However, your review suggested that the majority loved it so why should the cruise boat change it?

London, United...
Level Contributor
3,208 posts
60. Re: Which Nile Cruise boat to choose

Julian C's observation (above) will be what the travel companies who organise the Nile cruises will act upon (or not) I think.

Although I understand, sympathise with and on some points agree with Denise P's critisisms of onboard entertainment etc., I fear that no matter how many letters she, or anyone else may write, nothing much will change any time soon.

I have been on a fair few Nile cruises spanning the last 20 years, most very good, but a couple horrendously bad, (resulting in many letters of complaint being written) but the last one I took followed pretty much exactly the same format as the very first one.

As with their 'hassle people to death' selling techniques, as wrong as they are, the Egyptians clearly think that they've 'got it right' and are doing things the best way and no amount of telling them will convince them otherwise.

So I think 'Butlins on the water' will be with us for many more years to come, but as Julian C points out, that is not a bad thing as far as many people are concerned.