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Vouchers
Accepted
Holiday type
Small group holidays
Small group travel is not large group travel scaled down. It is modelled on independent travel – but with the advantage of a group leader to take care of the itinerary, accommodation and tickets, and dealing with the language. It’s easy to tick off the big sights independently – but finding those one-off experiences, local festivals, travelling markets and secret viewpoints is almost impossible for someone without the insider knowledge gained from years in the field. If you’re heading off on a gap year your, perhaps – but for those with a two-week holiday, a small group tour will save valuable planning time.

The leaders are not guides – they’re not there to shepherd you around. Instead, they’ll let you know which local restaurant serves great value food – without running the risk of travellers’ tummy. They’ll allow you to avoid hour-long queues at train stations and attractions.

We like to think of small group travel as the Goldilocks option. It is independent travel without the fuss, worry and bunk beds – and organised travel without the coaches. And it’s cheaper than a tailor made tour. It’s sits somewhere in the middle – and we think it’s just about right.
What are the main benefits?
Big experiences
Have big, life-enriching experiences that would be impossible to organise without lots of time and insider knowledge.

Simplicity
Make the most of your holiday time by letting someone else do the hard work and boring logistics!

Peace of mind
Small group tours take care of the security aspects – and provide a safety net should anything unexpected happen.
Who is it ideal for?
Travellers who are short of time
If you don’t have three months to spend exploring, small groups trips let you cover more ground in less time. Your days are not spent queuing for tickets or finding hotels – so you can squeeze more into your holiday.

Solo travellers who’d like company
Likeminded travel companions plus peace of mind for those travelling alone. Single supplements are usually available – providing privacy if you want it.

Less confident travellers
Stray from the tourist trail without worrying about getting lost, and meet local people without dealing with the language barrier.
Mythbuster
“I won’t get any privacy!”
Couples and friends have private rooms, and you can choose to eat alone or not. Single supplements give solo travellers their own room.

“There won’t be any free time”
Free mornings or afternoons let you explore on your own, or just relax.

“The accommodation will be basic”
Trips are as high or low end as you like. Though off the beaten track destinations won’t have luxury hotels, this is all part of the adventure.

“I won’t like the other travellers!”
Tour operators try to create groups with a similar demographic – age, families, activity levels... Chances are, you’ll even make new friends.

“Will we be following an umbrella?”
No.
Meet a group leader
As well as taking care of all the day-to-day practicalities, your group leader is the one who will turn your trip into an adventure. Leaders are extraordinary characters – the kind of person who has spent 14 Christmas days on the slopes of Mount Everest, runs marathons wearing tiger suits to raise funds for their conservation and thinks nothing of leading an overland trip in Sudan or Afghanistan. Fearless and inspiring, group leaders are as important as the destination itself.

Meet a local guide
No matter how experienced your group leader, they can never make up for the knowledge gained from a lifetime in the destination. That’s why many of our trips work with local guides around the world – who invite you into their homeland with pleasure. As well as doing crazy things like climbing Kilimanjaro 100 times, they also donate their time to local projects supported by travellers – such as rebuilding Sri Lankan villages following the 2004 tsunami.

Responsible tourism

As the pioneers of responsible tourism, we screen every trip so you can travel knowing your holiday will help support conservation and local people.

Environment
This company has operated on responsible tourism values since its inception. From an environmental perspective, our initiatives extend from our company offices to our tours. A local green energy provider powers our head office and stores; we encourage cleaner transportation methods for staff; and purchase all supplies from a local green business supplier. Our office is as paperless as possible and our brochures use 100% PEFC certified sustainable paper.

Community
Supporting communties is and always has been at the heart of our tours. We provide business opportunities to local people by employing local guides and tour operators. The majority of accommodation used on our tours are small-scale, locally-owned hotels. Our tours mainly use public transportation wherever possible and are small in size to keep our impact on fragile sites and communities as minimal as possible. We monitor the sustainability of our tours through traveller evaluations in order to allow for continuous improvement. We support the local economy and business initiatives by visiting locally-owned shops, restaurants, and markets on our tours.

Many tours incorporate community projects as a way of supplementing community income and supporting community development projects. In 2003 we founded a non-profit organization as a way for our travellers and our company to give back to the people and places we visit. We develop community projects around the world in the areas of health, education, small business development and environmental conservation. Funds are raised through traveller donations and fundraising. The company pays all administration fees which means that 100% of each individual donation goes directly to the community projects. Each year, we continue to support and develop new partnerships with more community projects and community-based tourism initiatives worldwide, in Latin America, Asia and Africa. On most tours, you have the option to visit a project as part of your trip.

Environment
Tour leaders provide travellers with information about local environmental issues in their respective regions, and provide suggestions of how we can best protect the local environment and culture. To reduce the amount of waste created on tours, tour leaders also encourage travellers to use refillable water bottles instead of disposable plastic, cotton tote bags, reusable batteries, etc. We also include destination-specific information in our guidebooks, which are provided to each traveller including information particular to the local culture and environment and tips on how to be a responsible traveller.

On this trip:

Low Impact Accommodation: The accommodation used on a trip can make the difference between local people receiving many benefits or none at all. It can also mean huge impacts or minimal impacts on the environment. On this trip 2 of our nights are spent sleeping in more unique and economical accommodations. First is the sleeper train. Accommodation on the sleeper train is in comfortable twin-share bunk-bed compartments with lockable doors. The beds convert into seats when not in use and luggage is stored under the bottom bunk. The sleeper train doubles as both an overnight accommodation and a method of transportation as well instead of traveling by plane, which not only saves money, but leaves minimal environmental impact, and we always try to use transport that creates fewer emissions. The second unique accommodation available to our travelers is the Felucca. Feluccas are very basic traditional Nile sailboats and make for an extremely relaxing and enjoyable way to travel down the river. You sleep on the deck of the boat that has mattresses and blankets that are provided. This style of accommodation provides business to locals who operate Feluccas while providing us with a truly one of a kind experience.

Low Impact Transportation: Egypt has lots of options for getting around making less of an impact. We always try to use transport that creates fewer emissions. We will ride the sleeper train, camels also known as “Egyptian Mercedes”, a felucca, donkeys, and walking, only taking planes and charter buses when needed. Getting around as the locals do not only allows you to experience the culture on a deeper level, but the same way it is at home, using alternative methods of transportation is the most sustainable way to go!

Supporting local businesses, culture and world heritage: There are a multitude of opportunities to support local businesses on this trip. From the colorful markets to the bustling food stalls and cafes amid craft bazaars, the choices for eating and handicrafts are endless and the money is staying in the local economy - a vital way for tourism to make a positive impact. Activities that take you to markets, locally owned restaurants, and towns are vital to the local peoples’ ability to truly benefit from tourism. Our style of trip, travelling and eating with the locals, puts you right at the heart of Egyptian culture. People in rural communities, especially in developing countries, often lack access to the economy due to their location, lack of funds, or ability to market their products. Visitors offer them the chance to supplement their income whether it’s simply by buying handicrafts, or eating a meal at a family-owned restaurant, this trip makes contributing to the local economy part of the adventure. Here are some optional activities that can be incorporated into this trip for some real cultural immersion and learning experiences:

• Pyramids of Giza – While once located in remote desert, they now touch the suburbs of modern Cairo. No matter how many photos or documentaries you have seen, your first glimpse of these marvels of the ancient world will take your breath away. As a qualified Egyptologist, your tour leader is able to expertly explain the facts and myths behind these three mammoth works of art. You will also visit the mysterious Sphinx with its lion’s body and man’s face. Time permitting there might be the chance to see inside one of the two smaller pyramids, take a ride around the pyramids on camel back or visit the fascinating Solar Boat Museum with displays on one of the pharaoh’s funerary barges - it may just be the oldest boat in existence!

• Cruise the Nile – In the afternoon we board a local boat known as a felucca, to explore this area of the Nile from the water. Crossing to the West Bank, it's time to board our camels for a short hour-long ride to view the ruined sixth century monastery of St. Simeon. Once again boarding our felucca, we sail past the Agha Khan Mausoleum and make a stop at the botanical gardens on Kitchener Island. Later, we visit a Nubian village, where we'll take a walk around the community before enjoying a traditional dinner at a local home.

• The City of Edfu – In the middle of a bustling village, Edfu Temple is the most completely preserved temple in all of Egypt and thus fascinating to wander through. On arrival in Luxor this afternoon, we check-in to our hotel and the remainder of the afternoon is yours to explore. Why not hire a horse and carriage (calèche) and take yourself off for an orientation tour. Perhaps take a wander through the bazaar or just relax at a cafe with a small, strong local coffee.
Community
Climate

3 Reviews of Budget Egypt tour

4.5 out of 5 stars
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Reviewed on 06 Jan 2019 by

1. What was the most memorable or exciting part of your holiday?


Travelling on the Felucca and The Valley of the Kings.

2. What tips would you give other travellers booking this holiday?


Felt very safe in Egypt.

3. Did you feel that your holiday benefited local people, reduced environmental impacts or supported conservation?


Yes particularly enjoyed the food in people’s homes.

4. Finally, how would you rate your holiday overall?


Excellent.

Reviewed on 30 Dec 2016 by

1. What was the most memorable or exciting part of your holiday?


Seeing the tombs and how the colors are so vibrant after thousands of years

2. What tips would you give other travellers booking this holiday?


Everything is super cheap. I could get a full meal for under $1. But be prepared to be hassled everywhere. Literally everyone is trying to sell you something. Never pay more than half of what they initially offer you- at a max.

3. Did you feel that your holiday benefited local people, reduced environmental impacts or supported conservation?


Yes. We played soccer with some kids and bought them a new ball because
theirs was flat: that helps the local people.

4. Finally, how would you rate your holiday overall?


I loved it. I'd never move to egypt but I've taken tours similar to this before
and Michael was by far the best guide. He was friendly, put up with some of
our dumb ass questions with a smile on his face (someone asked him, among other things, what kind of birds Egypt has and they asked if camels drink water) and was super helpful. He even bought ice cream for some people who correctly answered egyptian history questions. He was personable, affable, relatable, kind,
and a whole host of other adjectives. The only bad part is all the locals who hassle you. The food also messed my stomach up a little bit.

Reviewed on 11 Apr 2016 by

1. What was the most memorable or exciting part of your holiday?


Getting to see all the wonderful sights, ancient temples and treasures, sailing down the Nile and meeting local families in their homes.

2. What tips would you give other travellers booking this holiday?


Be prepared for a packed itinerary and early starts. Take a sleeping bag liner for the felucca trip.

3. Did you feel that your holiday benefited local people, reduced environmental impacts or supported conservation?


Yes, we ate twice with local families plus trips were made with local contacts, boat owners and donkey owners!

4. Finally, how would you rate your holiday overall?


Excellent trip - covered all the highlights in a week

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