Tuesday, March 20, 2012

Egypt – Where it all begins

Egypt is the perfect destination for a family holiday amid all the culture, adventure and exotica. Enjoy a city experience in ancient Cairo, a romantic cruise down the Nile, a luxurious indulgent experience in Alexandria, an adventurous desert experience in Bahariya and an idyllic beach and water experience with varied  water sports like deep sea diving, yachting and snorkelling in the Red Sea.

Egypt, the land of the Pharos, is one of the oldest vacation spots in the world visited by the early Greeks and Romans.  But Egypt is much more than Pyramids and monuments.
Cairo, a mega global city and the capital of Egypt, is known as the city of a thousand minarets for its multitude of Islamic architecture. Set in the backdrop of the magnificent Pyramids of Giza, the Valley Temple and the Sphinx, Cairo offers an incredible city life experience complete with shopping, leisure and nightlife activities. From ancient temples, tombs, Christian churches, Muslim monuments, Antiquities Museum to the famous Khan-el-Khalilli market bustling with a plethora of Egyptian artifacts, spices, perfumes, gold, silver, carpets, brass, leatherwork, fabrics, ceramics and other wares, Cairo is a shopper’s paradise. 

Alexandria, called the "The Pearl of the Mediterranean", is the second largest city in Egypt and has an atmosphere that is more Mediterranean than Middle Eastern. Located 225 km from Cairo, it is a Greco-Roman city founded by Alexander the Great. In ancient times, the city was known for the Lighthouse of Alexandria (one of the Seven Wonders of the Ancient World) and the Library of Alexandria (the largest library in the ancient world). A thriving and cosmopolitan city, Alexandria is today the hub of archaeological treasures including the Citadel of Qait Bey, Ras el-Tin, a royal fortress overlooking the Mediterranean Sea and the city; Roman Catacombs with a fascinating mix of Roman and Egyptian iconography; Pompey's Pillar constructed in honor of the Emperor Diocletian in AD 297; and the magnificent Roman theatre.  
A luxurious cruise of the Nile is an experience of a lifetime. Board the cruise at Aswan to see the many beautiful cities alongside the River Nile. Visit Kom Ombo that stands on the bank of the Nile between Edfu and Aswan. A beautiful old city, it houses the 180 BC Kom Ombo Temple dedicated to the two Gods Sobek and Haroeris. Edfu is home to the Temple of Horus, built during the reigns of the Ptolemies between 237 BC and 57 BC. The cruise also halts at the famed Deir el Bahari - a complex of mortuary temples and tombs, the temple of Hatshepsut, the Valley of the Kings and Colossi of Memnon.
From a relaxed cruise to the thrill of the desert. Hop onto a 4x4 vehicle and drive on the Bahariya desert road towards the Bahariya Oasis. Then towards the Black and White Deserts whose landscape is dominated by dozens of small black-topped mountains. The ground is overlaid by colourful limestone and basalt from the Eocene period. Drive onward to reach the Farafra Oasis, the smallest oasis in the Western Desert, and the setting of the ancient town of Qasr al Farafra. The desert experience is truly thrilling. 

The Red Sea, where the desert meets the ocean, is truly one of the most exotic and fascinating natural seascape environments on earth. The underwater wonder of the Red Sea remains a living tapestry of vibrant corals and exotic fish. The warm waters of the Red Sea are ideal for many varieties of rare fish and coral reefs, which can be observed through glass bottom boats. There is nothing to beat the thrill of experiencing the depth of the reef and the abounding marine life to be found there. Visit Hurghada or Mersa Alam to experience the Red Sea and its fabulous activities. Relaxing at the beach, lazing in the pool, yatching in the sea, snorkelling in the coral reefs or enjoying the exciting night life are among the many options.
Experience Egypt, the cradle of civilization, on an exotic and unforgettable holiday with Mercury Travels

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