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7 Day Nile Cruise Gebel El Silsila (3rd Day)

Meow Pussy Cats

19th September 2011 (Our 3rd day on the River Nile)

Today was a more relaxing day as we sailed on towards Edfu. Gebel EL Silsila is a rarely visited site that was used for centuries as a quarry for the construction of Egypt’s most glorious temples. You can still see some shrines cut out of the rock. The cut out shrines were dedicated to the pharohs across the dynasties. The Gebel El Silsila also has a small chapel from the time of Hatshepsut. Some of the rocks have great big holes through which ropes were used to lower the cut stone down to the boats on the river Nile. You can see in some of the pictures how thick each cut was, some of them looked like a cheese cutter had cut through them.  It is truly amazing how they managed to move such big stones onto the Nile, and then were used to construct beautiful temples. Also there is never a shortage of local people who will pose for your pictures for a small price.

Some of the locals posing in one of the shrines at Gebel El Silsila

Gebel El Silsila

You can still see the colours on the ceilings inside the rock cut shrines at Gebel El Silsila

Some of the locals showing us the big holes in the mountains

After visiting Gebel El Silsila  we sailed down the Nile and stopped at an island and had an el fresco lunch. We then sailed further down the Nile and stopped at an island called Fawaza. On this island we had an Egyptian barbecue. It was definitely lazeez gidan (very delicious). None of the bigger cruise boats stop at these islands.

El fresco lunch on the Nile.

Some staff from the Hadeel getting the Egyptian barbecue ready

Here are some of the pictures of Gebel El silsila and the el fresco barbecue.

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Meow bye for now

The Hadeel Dahabiyya 7 Day Nile Cruise 2011 (1st Day)

Meow Pussy Cats

We visited Egypt a few weeks ago in September 2011. The trip was fantastic and we had such a great time that I thought I would do a review on the sail boat that we travelled upon down the Nile in style. The small sail boat is called Hadeel Dahabiyya. The Hadeel Dahabiyya has 8 cabins but while we were there, only 2 cabins were booked so there was only one more couple, us,  12 members of staff and our guide. The staff were brilliant and soon become our friends as we travelled down the Nile. We booked through a company called Audley Travel. They have lots of experienced people who can give you first hand advice on your holiday.  They are very friendly and will build you a  tailor-made  itinerary in the best way possible.  This is the link to Audley Travel www.audleytravel.com

This is the Hadeel Dahabiyya.

Hadeel Dahabiyya

The Hadeel has a lower and upper deck. A  jacuzzi on the lower deck  and a swing seat on the upper deck. It is a very spacious sail boat. It has sunbeds and shaded areas. The inside of the sail boat is air-conditioned. Travelling along the River Nile on this boat was brilliant. Many other ships and boats passed and took pictures of this very beautiful little quaint  boat. The Hadeel truly stood out on the Nile as it didn’t look like the other cruise ships, it looked more like a big felucca. Small boats like the Hadeel often stop on islands that the other boats don’t stop at. We stopped to have an al fresco lunch and a barbecue. If you want to cruise down the Nile in style then I recommend the Hadeel Dahabiyya sail boat.

The upper deck of the Hadeel Dahabiyya

Lower deck on the Hadeel Dahabiyya

Inside of the Hadeel Dahabiyya

We Stayed at the Movenpick Hotel in Aswan. This hotel is located on the famous Elephantine island.  The sail boats and ferries dock on the other side of the river to the Movenpick.  The thirteenth floor of this hotel, which is a bar and restaurant, had a fantastic panoramic  view of  Aswan a  Nubian village and the Botanical Gardens. We boarded the Hadeel Dahabiyya early on Saturday morning 17th September 2011. Once we met the manager, our guide for the next 7 days and some of the staff we were ready for our first sight-seeing. We caught a river ferry to the Nubian village, and the Hadeel Dahabiyya stayed moored at Aswan.

Movenpick Hotel in Aswan

As we went along the River Nile we saw the Cataract Hotel located on the city side of the Nile.  This is where Agatha Christie stayed and wrote her novel Death On The Nile.

The Cataract Hotel

We travelled through a nature reserve on the way to the Nubian village and our guide knew all the different types of birds. Unfortunately he told us so many names that I can’t remember them all now, but we took pictures and it was as if the birds had been told to pose for us.

Nature Reserve along the River Nile

Nature Reserve along the River Nile

Elephantine Island get its name  because the rocks and stones look like elephants.

Elephantine Island Aswan

At the Nubian village we visited one of the houses which was made up for tourists.  The house was made to show the way a Nubian family  lived with paintings on the walls and hanging baskets to keep food fresh.  The only thing that just didn’t seem right was the modern electric cooker and the fridge in the kitchen. The old man holding the crocodile was from one of  the first generations of  Nubians to be moved from the Lake Nasser area.

Nubian man with a crocodile

The Nubian Village

Once we came back from the Nubian village and got back to the Hadeel, we met the other couple who were travelling with us on the Nile journey. We had lunch out on the lower deck and then we all went to the Temple of Philae.

The Temple of Philae, like Abu Simbel, has been moved from its original site when the Nile was dammed and Lake Naser created.  The construction of the High Dam meant that the temple would be completely submerged, along with several other key Nubian monuments. UNESCO launched a block by block relocation of the temple to dry land.

Philae Temple

After this visit we had tea, cake and biscuits on the sail boat and then after dinner we went into the local market in Aswan to practise our bartering skills.

The boat started to move down the Nile the next morning.

Here is a slide show with some pictures taken on this fabulous first Day on on the Hadeel Dahabiyya.

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Thanks for visiting

See you soon

Meow bye for now.

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