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Felucca Nile Cruise in Egypt

Our adventures cruising on the River Nile for two days on a traditional Egyptian Felucca.

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Felucca sunset on the nile

“So let me get this right. We are sailing down the crocodile infested River Nile on a tiny sailboat for two days. We have to camp in the sand dunes. And there is NO toilet or washing up facilities on board?”

Okay first impressions weren’t great.

Don’t get me wrong, we love to camp. Plus I love water and have basically grown up on or in it my entire life. So when we had the opportunity to chose between a 5 star cruise boat or a traditional sailing felucca there was no contest. Felucca it was!

Felucca on the River Nile

Luckily my first impressions proved to be a little off… The Nile is NOT crocodile infested on the section that we were sailing on and we would be sleeping under the stars on the deck of the felucca rather than in the sand dunes.

And we loved every minute of it.

With the wind gently blowing along the River Nile stretching the sail tight and a guide at the helm all we had to do was lie back and relax.

The guides did everything from guiding us, keeping us entertained with stories and songs, to preparing simple meals on board consisting of falafel, pita bread, hummus and fruit for lunch and dinner.

Lunch on the Felucca

We didn’t have to lift a finger unless it was to turn a page or reach for another bottle of beer. With a book in one hand, a beer in the other and only 6 of us enjoying the relaxed pace it was more luxurious in my mind than any 5 star floating hotel.

The snapping of the rigging lines in the wind and water lapping at the sides were the only sounds as we zigzagged our way upriver. For a whole day we followed a flotilla of other feluccas. Our only stops were when someone wanted to stop for a pit stop in the bushes!

As the sun slowly began to melt into the horizon line we pulled up alongside the rest of our tour group for the evening festivities.

Felucca sunset on the nile

Dosed up on the pungent smell of mosquito repellent and shisha pipes we danced to the beat of the Nubians traditional and not so traditional songs. The roaring bonfire in the sand dunes to kept us toasty warm and threw flickering shadows across the Nile.

Lying back on our felucca gazing up at the twinkling milky way far above us with the occasional shooting star it couldn’t get much better than that.

Cole is one half of New Zealand's leading adventure travel blogging couple who have been wearing out their jandals around the world since 2009. He loves any adventure activities and anything to do with the water whether it is Surfing, Diving, Swimming, Snorkeling or just lounging nearby on the beach. You can follow Cole on Google+. Or consider following us via RSS Feed, Twitter, Facebook and subscribe to our Newsletter.

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36 Comments

36 Comments

  1. Sophie

    February 10, 2012 at 1:06 PM

    Such a meditative and and mystical experience, sailing up the Nile, isn’t it… the slight breeze, the smell, the sounds

    • Cole

      February 10, 2012 at 2:02 PM

      When did you do it Sophie? It really was a relaxing way to spend 2 days and in the middle of the tour it was nice just to chill out away from all the crowds.

  2. Sam

    February 10, 2012 at 2:27 PM

    Wonderful little sailing boat. Makes me want to go sailing again.

    • Cole

      February 11, 2012 at 12:17 PM

      Where do you go sailing Sam?

  3. Dayna

    February 10, 2012 at 5:03 PM

    This. Sounds. Unreal! What an incredible way to experience the Nile, I especially liked the part about not working hard and only having to reach for another beer. Would love to try this someday.

    • Cole

      February 11, 2012 at 12:18 PM

      I hope you guys get to experience it Dayna! Just remember if you ever have the chance to choose then go for the felucca 🙂

  4. Laurence

    February 11, 2012 at 10:05 AM

    That looks like a wonderful experience. I took a ferry ride across a lake in Africa once, which was about as close to something like this that I’ve done. It was a big lake, so sleeping was part of the deal.. but there were a few more passengers 😉

    • Cole

      February 11, 2012 at 12:20 PM

      Haha what lake was it Laurence? Was it quite a rough ferry as in no facilities? Sounds like an adventure!

  5. Bobbi Lee Hitchon

    February 12, 2012 at 4:13 AM

    Never done this. Still haven’t been to Egypt, but you guys are making me want to visit more and more! What an amazing experience.

    • Cole

      February 12, 2012 at 11:51 AM

      Thanks Bobbi! I hope you do get to visit soon as it is an amazing country.

  6. Natalie

    February 12, 2012 at 9:14 AM

    I would choose the traditional boats as well. You still did not say what you did for the toilet though? 🙂

    • Cole

      February 12, 2012 at 11:50 AM

      Haha all we could do was use the bushes. It was okay for a guy as we could just, well you know, but Adela said it was a lot more annoying!

    • Cole

      February 13, 2012 at 11:16 AM

      Thanks Hazel 🙂

  7. Hazel

    February 12, 2012 at 8:56 PM

    So happy you had a good time! There is something magical about lazing the days away on a felucca on the most famous river in the world! I would recommend anyone and everyone to try it at least one time!

    • Cole

      February 13, 2012 at 11:16 AM

      Thanks Hazel! We would definitely come back and enjoy it all over again. Would be great if we could do a multi-day trip on it 🙂

  8. Nomadic Samuel

    February 13, 2012 at 7:07 AM

    I would so love to do this! 🙂

    • Cole

      February 13, 2012 at 11:12 AM

      It was amazing Sam. Hope you get a chance 🙂

  9. Laurel

    February 13, 2012 at 12:00 PM

    What a fun, relaxing way to sail down the Nile. I would love to do this!

    • Cole

      February 13, 2012 at 2:05 PM

      Hope you get the chance too Laurel!

  10. Angie Away

    February 13, 2012 at 12:51 PM

    I had the same misgivings about the felucca experience at first… roughing it is not really my thing. BUT, I ended up absolutely loving it. Would do it again in a heartbeat. Sounds like I’m not the only one =)

    • Cole

      February 13, 2012 at 2:06 PM

      Glad you chose to do it as well Angie. We were really glad that we did!

    • Cole

      February 14, 2012 at 5:06 PM

      It was great having a day to just lie back and chill out on the tour rather than the usual hectic running around visiting all the sites!

  11. thetravelchica

    February 16, 2012 at 6:24 PM

    This looks like a fantastic time!

    • Cole

      February 17, 2012 at 9:40 AM

      It really was Stephanie 🙂

  12. Laura

    February 18, 2012 at 6:39 PM

    What an amazing experience!

    • Cole

      February 19, 2012 at 8:53 AM

      Have you done anything similar Laura?

  13. SHABL Rob

    February 18, 2012 at 7:51 PM

    Have never been but now I’m interested. The first photo is stunning.

    • Cole

      February 19, 2012 at 8:53 AM

      Hope you get to head over there soon Rob. It is a fantastic place.

  14. Cheryl

    February 21, 2012 at 11:31 PM

    It’s basically my dream to do this one day! And cool you enjoyed it so much. 🙂

    • Cole

      February 22, 2012 at 12:47 PM

      Hope you get to enjoy it as well Cheryl. It was a beautiful setting.

  15. Joe W

    February 24, 2012 at 6:45 PM

    awesome! I dont think I considered a trip to the Nile personally but after looking at your journey it really makes me want to experience something similar,you guys keep having fun 🙂

    • Cole

      February 25, 2012 at 11:27 AM

      Thanks Joe! The Nile is a fantastic place and so peaceful. Hope you make an adventure there soon!

  16. Mark Lukes | Eastern Eurotours

    February 18, 2014 at 2:02 PM

    Such an amazing time with just yourself and with the nature. Great tip if you want to relax yourself and to think some of the things clearly. I must try this! Good thing that you share it. Thanks!

  17. Zenny Morag

    October 13, 2014 at 7:47 PM

    Nice post! Your posted information and pictures are very interesting. Egypt is one of my favorite countries around the world . A few months ago, I was on the cruise along the Nile valley. My nile cruise experience was fulfilling. I hope I got a second chance to visit this wonderful place again and again.

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Adventure Travel

A Beginners Guide To Camping

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There are lots of different options when it comes to time away –  city breaks; adventure holidays or a leisurely escape by the pool. Another popular choice is camping. Whether it’s getting away from it all for a long weekend with friends or having a week’s holiday, camping is a great choice. There are some things you need to know and essentials you should take so we’ve put together a few tips to help you along the way.

Booking a pitch

One of the first things you should do when considering camping is to book a pitch within your chosen campsite. There are thousands to choose from. Some campsites have more amenities than others. You may want a club for the kids or evening entertainment. Some campsites even have indoor pools and gyms. Once you have narrowed down what you want you can make your booking. Be aware that not all pitches come with electricity available so check that out too. Once you have booked, you can start getting all the essentials you need for your forthcoming adventure!

Choosing the right tent

There are loads of different tents on the market these days.  Comfort is important as is space so finding something within your budget that ticks all the boxes can take time. If you are fairly tall you might want to look for a tent that accommodates extra head height. If you have children there are options to have separate bedrooms as well as living areas. Air tents are becoming increasingly popular these days so if you don’t want to spend hours pitching a traditional tent with poles, that might be the right option for you. They come with inflatable air tubes that are pumped up. A few ropes to hold it down and that’s it. Some can be erected in minutes leaving you more time to go and explore your surroundings and start your holiday.

Eating and drinking

One of the great things about camping is cooking and eating outdoors. There are lots of different camping stove options available depending on the size and type you want. There is no point in making lots of delicious food and having nothing to eat it with, or on. Melamine or enamel plates and cups are a good idea as they won’t break and a good set of cutlery is a must. There are lots of different camping utensils available which are compact and thus easily stored. Assuming you have an electricity source on your pitch, an electric coolbox is also a great idea for camping. You can keep foods fresh and drinks cold.

Relax

Whether it be taking the kids to the on-site park, having a few drinks with friends, or going for a long walk, there is always plenty to do when camping. Check out the local area online in advance so you have a rough idea of where you want to go once you arrive. The most important thing is to relax and enjoy the fresh air and beautiful surroundings.

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Adventure Travel

What to Expect from your First Safari Holiday

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When it comes to overseas experiences, it’s difficult to beat the appeal of safari holidays. Done right, they offer up a chance to look at wildlife as it was meant to be: roaming free! While we might instinctively associate the term with the Serengeti, you can actually find safaris in every region on the planet, meaning that there’s something available whatever your budget, and however fit or unfit you are.

Before you head off on a safari adventure, however, it’s worth doing a little bit of preparation to ensure that you’re ready for the trip. Your tour operator should keep you informed of some of the more crucial preparatory steps, but there are other little surprises that you’ll want to make yourself aware of before setting out.

Insurance

When you’re travelling, you’ll need to be appropriately insured. And nowhere is this more so than on an African safari. Many lodges will not allow you to take part in any safari activities if you aren’t insured – they simply can’t afford to take the financial risk. Play it safe, and print out a copy of your details so that you can prove that your insurance is valid.

Water

At many lodges, it’s actually safe to drink the tap water. But sometimes, this isn’t the case. Make sure you ask in advance. If you aren’t so lucky, you’ll get bottled water instead. You’ll need to use this when brushing your teeth. Don’t be tempted to open your mouth when you’re in the shower, either!

Food

On most safari trips, food is rarely a problem; you’ll get three meals a day, in a variety of evocative locations. Most lodges are all-inclusive, meaning that you won’t need to pay extra for your food and drink – but again, it’s worth checking in advance if you don’t want to get burned.

Clothing

There’s an element of truth to the image of the western tourist dressed entirely in khaki. The colour does help you to blend in, and thereby get a bit closer to the animals. If you’re travelling in winter, you’ll need a few jumpers to cope with night-time, while in summer you’ll need to be protected against the occasional shower.

Vaccinations & Tablets

If you’re heading to an unfamiliar part of the world, you’ll need to ensure that you don’t contract an exotic disease. This means getting vaccinated ahead of time. Your doctor might need several weeks’ notice in order to arrange the vaccinations, so make speaking to them a priority.

In Africa in particular , the most pressing danger is malaria. If you’re travelling with very young children, then you might prefer to head to a non-malarial part of the continent. Malaria tablets must be taken regularly, and come with side-effects that must be managed. Read the instructions carefully, and get into the routine of taking them at the allotted times. You don’t want to miss a single dose!

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Adventure Travel

Take A Moment and Go Visit Iceland Today

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We have all been quite busy this year, but have we stopped and taken a breather? We made new year’s resolutions, stuck to a couple of them, made some progress, and stayed relatively healthy.

But the fact is that we like, the fictional character Walter Mitty might be bogged down by our many day to day cares. Tunnel vision, myopic attitudes, and more significant concerns take us away from our dream of exploring fascinating places and countries such as Iceland or other Nordic countries.

We might indeed hesitate and put these trips off to another day. Yet, we know that the things that we keep out of our sight, stay out of our mind. When we push something to tomorrow, it rarely happens.

We continue to look forward to the endless tomorrows that will bring more joy than today.

Wise people reminded us of the importance of carpe diem, that notion of seizing the moment and grabbing life by the horns, thus, basking at the moment.

Don’t delay travel in style with a service such as Voyage Privé, and you will be delighted by your decision.

Remember that we only have concrete evidence of having one life, we must live it in the best manner possible.

Have Fun and Add A Little Flair To Your Year

The year is coming to a close. When was the last time that you did something fun and worthwhile? When was the last time you did something that you can be proud of and can remember for decades to come? For most of us, the answer might surprise us. The memories are distant and might be a bit far off.

Take the Nike mentality, and do it, book a flight to an exotic and delightful place like Iceland.

Iceland offers plenty of activities, scenery, and opportunities for the wandering spirit. We’llWe’ll talk about just a few of these fantastic places that you must visit in the beautiful Nordic nation of Iceland.

Must-See Destinations in Iceland

The Blue Lagoon

The Blue Lagoon is a natural spa. The locals dubbed it the “spa of the volcanic earth.” The natural landscape allows weary travelers to rest, disconnect from their devices, and connect with the beauty of nature.

Travelers may indulge in luxurious experiences and enjoy great dining, events that are undoubtedly much needed in our always-on, digitally connected lives.

Remember to dine at the Lava Restaurant and lounge at the Silica Hotel or the Retreat Hotel.

The Gullfoss

Bask in the breathtaking beauty of the Gullfoss. Remember that the Gullfoss Waterfall is one of the most beloved waterfalls all over the world. Additionally, the Gullfoss is open to the public and is free for all to see and immerse themselves from a safe distance. Millions of people have gone to this waterfall to have a glimpse of this wondrous beauty, and you deserve to go as well.

Asbyrgi (Shelter of the Gods)

Do not forget to visit and hike in Asbyrgi. Many tourists come here and set up camp to have a little peace of mind in the general turbulence of the world. Asbyrgi is surely idyllic and is one place you must have on your to-do list.

We have only scratched the surface on the beautiful experiences in Iceland, book your trip today, stay for a while.

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Meet Cole and Adela

Cole and AdelaWe have been wearing out our jandals (Kiwi for flip-flops) on our travel adventures around the world since 2009. We think our blog is thought provoking and a little witty. But we have been proven wrong before. Find out more about us here...

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