Francesca Fiorani, Professor and Associate Dean for the Arts and Humanities

Mahmoud Nawar, Tour Leader

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$4,195 per person, double occupancy, land only.

$4,595 per person, double occupancy in an outside cabin on both cruises with economy class round-trip airfare from Boston, New York, plus $602 airline taxes and fees, which are subject to change until final payment is made.

$4,995 per person, double occupancy in an outside cabin on both cruises with economy class round-trip airfare from Charlottesville, VA, plus $602 airline taxes and fees.

A limited number of single rooms are available for a supplement of $1,195 to the per person, double occupancy rates.

Business Class upgrade on round-trip Trans-Atlantic flight: $3,195 per person.

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Accompanied by an expert Egyptian guide, this journey through antiquity begins in storied Cairo. Visit the acclaimed Egyptian Museum, Memphis’s open-air museum, splendid Sakkara, and the astounding Pyramids of Giza with their Great Sphinx. In Abu Simbel, you embark on a fascinating three-night Lake Nasser cruise through ancient Nubia. Stop to admire the outstanding temples of Abu Simbel – host to a dramatic sound-and-light show, Amada, Wadi el-Seboua, New Kalabsha, and Philae, and tour the massive Aswan High Dam. Then you depart Aswan on a classic four-night Nile cruise, sailing aboard a traditional felucca; visiting Kom Ombo’s unusual temple and Edfu’s remarkably preserved Temple of Horus; and exploring Luxor’s splendid temples and statuary on both banks. Conclude your tour with further exploration of Cairo, including the exotic Khan el-Khalili bazaar and Old Cairo. Discover fabled Petra, ancient Jerash, and Amman with an optional 5-day/4-night Jordan post-tour extension.

Program Highlights

  • Marvel at Cairo’s ancient sites: the Great Pyramids, the Sphinx, Memphis, Sakkara
  • Tour fascinating Old Cairo and the renowned Egyptian Museum
  • See the dramatic temples and enjoy a sound-and-light show at Abu Simbel
  • Take a Lake Nasser cruise through the ancient Nubian homeland
  • Call on Aswan’s temples at Kalabsha
  • Visit the massive Aswan Dam
  • Embark on a classic Nile River cruise and sail on traditional feluccas
  • Explore the temple complexes at Karnak and Luxor, the “world’s greatest open-air museum”


Francesca Fiorani, Professor and Associate Dean for the Arts and Humanities

Francesca Fiorani writes, lectures and teaches on Renaissance art. The author of The Marvel of Maps. Art, Cartography and Politics in Renaissance Italy (2005), she is mainly interested in the intersections of art, science and technology in the early modern period. Her writings explore Renaissance practices that bridge between artists’ training and university education, the visualization of knowledge, the status of images in Renaissance philosophy and art theory as well as the relations between science and religion.

In recent years Fiorani has focused her research on themes relating to observation, experience, optics and Leonardo da Vinci, especially his lifelong project of transferring his observations of the natural world from geometrical diagrams to paintings and drawings (and vice versa).

Fiorani is a keen explorer of the application of modern technology to art history. Combining her longstanding interest in art, science and technology with her current research on Leonardo da Vinci’s optics, she created the digital publication Leonardo da Vinci and His Treatise on Painting. Published in 2012 and dedicated to the legacy of Leonardo da Vinci’s art theory in Renaissance and Baroque Europe, this publication provides innovative research tools for visual and textual analysis. Graduate students in art history routinely collaborate to this ongoing project.

After completing her Ph.D. in Art History at the University of Rome “La Sapienza”, she joined the Art Department at the University of Virginia, where she teaches graduate and undergraduate courses related to her research interests.

She is the recipient of honors and awards from numerous institutions, including the John Simon Guggenheim Memorial Foundation, the Harvard University Center for Italian Renaissance Studies at Villa I Tatti, Florence, the American Council for the Learned Societies, the Getty Center, the National Endowment for the Humanities, the Folger Institute, the John Carter Brown Library, the Herzog August Bibliothek, Wolfenbüttel, Germany, and the Warburg Institute , University of London.


Mahmoud Nawar, Tour Leader

Egypt Guide Mahmoud NawarMahmoud Nawar has been leading tours for over 20 years. He is fluent in English and speaks some Spanish. He has a Master’s degree in Egyptology from Helwan University in Cairo and is currently working on another Master’s from Fayoum University, south of Cairo. He enjoys meeting travelers, making friends and showing guests the treasures of his country.


DAY 1 - Monday, October 7

Depart U.S. for Cairo, Egypt

DAY 2 - Tuesday, October 8

Arrive Cairo

We arrive in the Egyptian capital and transfer to our hotel. As guests’ arrival times may vary greatly, we have no group activities or meals planned.
Fairmont Nile City

DAY 3 - Wednesday, October 9


After a morning briefing, our full-day tour begins at the acclaimed Egyptian Museum, the world’s greatest repository of ancient relics. Then we tour the Citadel of Saladin housing the alabaster Mosque of Mohamed Ali. Tonight we enjoy a welcome dinner at a local restaurant.
Fairmont Nile City
Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner (B,L,D)

DAY 4 - Thursday, October 10


Today’s tour starts at the open-air museum at Memphis, Egypt’s first capital (3100 BCE). We continue on to the necropolis at Sakkara then to the astounding Pyramids of Giza, the wonders of antiquity that have drawn visitors for millennia. Here, too, we encounter the enigmatic Sphinx, whose leonine body and human face were carved from a single piece of limestone.
Fairmont Nile City

DAY 5 - Friday, October 11

Cairo/Abu Simbel/Embark Lake Nasser Cruise

Early this morning we fly south to Aswan then continue by coach across the edge of the Sahara to Abu Simbel. We board our Lake Nasser ship in time for lunch, then visit the temples and colossal 65-foot-high statues of Ramses II and his wife Nefertari that were dismantled and moved to higher ground during the construction of the Aswan dam. Tonight we watch a dramatic sound-and-light show at Abu Simbel.
M/S Prince Abbas

DAY 6 - Saturday, October 12

Lake Nasser Cruising – Kasr Ibrim/Amada/Wadi el-Seboua

Early risers can watch the sun climb over the temples at Abu Simbel before we sail to Kasr Ibrim, the last remaining Nubian settlement in its original location. From the sun deck we learn about this ancient site (it’s forbidden to go ashore here), then sail to Amada, followed by Wadi el-Seboua.
M/S Prince Abbas

DAY 7 - Sunday, October 13

Lake Nasser Cruising – Valley of the Lions/Aswan

This morning we visit the striking avenue of sphinxes in Wadi el-Seboua’s “Valley of the Lions”
then cruise to Aswan.
M/S Prince Abbas

DAY 8 - Monday, October 14

Disembark/Aswan/Embark Nile Cruise Ship

We set out early this morning to visit New Kalabsha, site of the largest freestanding Nubian temple, which was relocated here for the construction of the Aswan Dam. We return to our ship for breakfast then bid farewell to the crew as we embark on a tour of the Aswan High Dam. Next we visit the imposing temple to Isis on Agilkia Island before boarding our Nile cruise ship. This afternoon we embark small feluccas, replicas of ancient Nile sailboats, for a relaxing sail. Back on board our ship tonight we enjoy the Captain’s welcome cocktail party.
M/S Sunray

DAY 9 - Tuesday, October 15

Nile Cruising – Kom Ombo/Edfu/Luxor

This morning we sail to the ancient trading town of Kom Ombo, with outstanding Nile views from the Temple of Sobek. After returning to our ship, we sail on to Edfu where we explore Edfu’s Temple of Horus, Egypt’s best-preserved temple (built between 237 BCE–57 BCE). We return to our ship for lunch as we sail to Luxor (our final sail), enjoying a quiet afternoon on the Nile. A belly dance performance accompanies dinner tonight.
M/S Sunray

DAY 10 - Wednesday, October 16

Nile Cruising – Luxor/West Bank

Known in antiquity as Thebes, Luxor boasts vast temple complexes, tombs, and statues dating from 2755 BCE that represent the pinnacle of Egyptian architecture. Today we explore the West Bank, site of the haunting Valley of the Kings, where 34 royal tombs feature magnificent paintings; the Valley of the Queens; and the Temple of Hatshepsut honoring one of the few female pharaohs. We also see the massive Colossi of Memnon, two 64-foot-high statues of Amenhotep III that once guarded the gates of his mortuary temple.
M/S Sunray

DAY 11 - Thursday, October 17

Nile Cruising – Luxor/East Bank

Today we tour Luxor’s East Bank, home of Karnak, the greatest temple complex of them all, whose ruins stretch for more than a mile to connect with Luxor. Built over a period of 1,500 years, Karnak boasts a breadth and diversity of buildings not seen elsewhere. We also explore
Luxor Temple, whose builders included Tutankhamun and Alexander the Great. Here, at the Great Court of Ramses II, we see the ancient obelisk whose twin presides over Place de la Concorde in Paris.
M/S Sunray

DAY 12 - Friday, October 18


We have the choice to rise very early to see the West Bank from above on an optional hot air balloon ride. We disembark our ship later this morning and transfer to our hotel. This afternoon we tour the Luxor Museum, housing relics discovered at the site. Dinner tonight is on our own.
Steigenberger Nile Palace

DAY 13 - Saturday, October 19


We fly to Cairo today, where this afternoon we visit Khan el-Khalili bazaar.
Fairmont Nile City

DAY 14 - Sunday, October 20


This morning we encounter Old Cairo, the district where early capital cities once stood. We visit 5th-century St. Sergius Church, the Coptic church of el-Mauallaqa, and Ben Ezra Synagogue, built in 882. Mid-day we return to our hotel where tonight we enjoy a farewell dinner.
Fairmont Nile City

DAY 15 - Monday, October 21

Depart for U.S.

Very early this morning we transfer to the airport for our return flight to the U.S.

Post-Tour Extension
Jordan: Petra & Amman, October 21-25, 2019

5 days/4 nights

$1,595 per person, double occupancy
Single supplement: $395

Included in Extension Price: Air transportation Cairo/Amman; 4 nights’ accommodations: 2 nights in Petra at Mövenpick Resort Petra (Superior First Class); 2 nights in Amman at Kempinski Hotel Amman (Superior First Class); 9 meals: 4 breakfasts, 2 lunches, 3 dinners; Extensive included sightseeing: Madaba (City of Mosaics), Mt. Nebo pilgrimage site, full day at Petra, Amman’s Roman theatre and Citadel, Roman ruins of Jerash; Services of an Odysseys Unlimited Tour Director; Private motorcoach transportation; Gratuities for dining room servers, airport and hotel porters, and all drivers


  • Cairo – Fairmont Nile City
  • Abu Simbel/Lake Nasser Cruise – M/S Prince Abbas
  • Nile cruise – M/S Sunray
  • Luxor – Steigenberger Nile Palace
  • Cairo – Fairmont Nile City


32 meals: 13 breakfasts, 10 lunches, 9 dinners

Program Fees

$4,195 per person, double occupancy, land only.

$4,595 per person, double occupancy in an outside cabin on both cruises with economy class round-trip airfare from Boston, New York, plus $602 airline taxes and fees, which are subject to change until final payment is made.

$4,995 per person, double occupancy in an outside cabin on both cruises with economy class round-trip airfare from Charlottesville, VA, plus $602 airline taxes and fees.

A limited number of single rooms are available for a supplement of $1,195 to the per person, double occupancy rates.

Business Class upgrade on round-trip Trans-Atlantic flight: $3,195 per person.

Price Includes:

  • 13 nights’ accommodations
  • 7 nights aboard Deluxe and Superior First Class ships
  • Extensive sightseeing as described, including all entrance fees
  • Meals as listed
  • Services of a Tour Director
  • Private motorcoach transportation throughout
  • Luggage handling for one bag per person
  • Gratuities for local guides, dining room servers, airport and hotel porters, and all drivers

Price Does Not Include:

  • Airfare when purchasing a Land Only package
  • Costs of passports and visas
  • Personal expenses such as beverages, laundry, room service, and meals not specified
  • Airport transfers when purchasing a Land Only package
  • Communication charges
  • Optional sightseeing
  • Gratuities to your Tour Director and shipboard personnel, which are at your discretion (suggested gratuities: $10-$15 per traveler, per day for the Tour Director, and an additional $10-$15 per person, per day in total to cover all shipboard services).

How to Register

Ready to register? The best way to do this is by phone so that we can ensure we are meeting all of your needs. Please call us at 866-765-2646, or e-mail cavaliertravels@virginia.edu with your contact information and the best time to reach you.

A deposit of $500 per person is required to reserve your spot. Final invoicing will be done approximately 110 days prior to departure. Final payment is due 95 days prior to departure.

Deposits can be made by personal check or credit card. Our tour operator, Odysseys Unlimited, Inc., reserves the right to cancel any reservation that are not paid in full at any time after final payment is due. If you make your reservation after the final payment date, payment in full will be required upon reservation.

Early registration is encouraged as space is limited.

General Terms & Conditions

General Terms & Conditions

Please read this information carefully, as payment of a $500 deposit per person represents your acceptance of the following Terms and Conditions.

Cavalier Travels reserves the right to use photos that might include you in marketing materials and other purposes unless you specify otherwise.

Payment Schedule: A deposit of $500 per person confirms your reservation. The balance of your invoice is due 95 days (July 4, 2019) before departure.

Included in Tour Price: Round-trip air transportation from specific cities; 13 nights’ accommodations: 6 nights in Superior First Class and First Class hotels, 7 nights aboard Deluxe and Superior First Class ships; extensive sightseeing as described, including all entrance fees; services of an Odysseys Unlimited Tour Director; private motorcoach transportation throughout your trip, including shore excursions; luggage handling for one bag per person; gratuities for local guides, dining room servers, airport and hotel porters, and all drivers.

Cancellation, Refunds, and Changes: If you must cancel your trip, the effective date of cancellation will be upon the University of Virginia’s receipt of your written notification. Refunds for cancellations are subject to the following per person charges: cancel 95 days or more before departure: $200 charge; cancel 94-65 days before departure: 50% of tour price; cancel 64-30 days before departure: 75% of tour price; cancel 29-0 days before departure: no refund. If you make any changes to your reservation from 94 to 30 days prior to departure, Odysseys Unlimited, Inc. will apply a $100 per person administrative fee, in addition to any fees or penalties imposed by third parties. Changes are subject to availability and cannot be guaranteed. If your reservation changes from double occupancy to single occupancy for any reason, you will be charged the single supplement. No changes are allowed within 30 days of departure.

Upon reservation, you must provide your full legal name as it appears on your passport, as well as your date of birth and gender. In the event an airline ticket is issued with incorrect information you have provided, you will be responsible for charges associated with the ticket’s reissue.

Responsibility: The liability of the University of Virginia, as sponsor, and Odysseys Unlimited, Inc., as tour operator, is strictly limited. Odysseys Unlimited, Inc. purchase transportation, hotel accommodations, and restaurant and other services from independent suppliers not under our control. We serve only as agents for these suppliers in securing tour arrangements, and therefore will not accept responsibility for wrongful, negligent, or arbitrary acts or omissions of these independent contractors, or of their employees, agents, servants, or representatives. The University of Virginia and Odysseys Unlimited, Inc. are not liable for injury, damage, loss, accident, or delay that may be caused by events not within our control, including, without limitation, acts of terrorism, war, strikes, the defect of any vehicle, or the negligence or default of any third party. All coupons, receipts, and tickets issued are subject to the terms and conditions specified by the air carriers, cruise lines, and other independent suppliers. We will make every effort to operate our tours as planned, but we reserve the right to make itinerary changes as necessary. If unforeseen circumstances require us to change a hotel, we will select alternative accommodations of the same or better quality.

Health and Medical Issues: We request that you be in good health to participate in this University of Virginia tour. There is a considerable amount of walking, and you must be able to get on and off motorcoaches and boats on your own. We regret that we cannot offer individual assistance; in such cases you must be accompanied by a companion who will assist you. Please note that many of our itineraries, for reasons beyond our control, cannot accommodate wheelchairs. Please call or e-mail us to inquire and we will do our best to answer any questions you may have. We reserve the right to remove anyone whose physical or mental condition, in our opinion, compromises the operation of the tour or detracts from the enjoyment or safety of the other passengers. In that event, Odysseys Unlimited, Inc. and the University of Virginia assume no financial responsibility for any unused portion of the tour.

Air Transportation – Important Information: Odysseys Unlimited, Inc. includes in its tour price round-trip economy air from designated gateway cities, and contracts with those airlines the company feels provide the level of service, routings, and value necessary for your entire trip. While another airline may offer a more direct connection, it may be at a price unavailable at the lower group rates. You will receive your preliminary air schedule approximately 2½ months prior to departure. Please note that seat assignment on your international flight is usually done at airport check-in. Odysseys Unlimited, Inc. is unable to guarantee any seat assignments. Due to the nature of tour operator tickets, other restrictions apply, including, but not limited to, frequent flyer mileage accrual, stopovers, alternate travel dates, upgrades, and airline taxes and fees. If you prefer to make your own travel arrangements, Land Only is available on most tours. Since international and domestic air schedules are subject to change at any time, we recommend that if you choose to make your own airline reservations, you do not purchase non-refundable tickets or those with high penalties for changes. If you choose to make your own air arrangements, Odysseys Unlimited, Inc. shall not have any liability for any loss resulting from cancellation of this tour or changes in this tour.