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Trip to Egypt – Moving out of Cairo without visiting the Pyramids and the Sphinx, going off to Aswan – Part 4




In the previous post on my trip to Egypt (Visit to Saladin Citadel and Khan el Khalili bazaar), I had written about a visit to the wonderful Khan el Khalili bazaar. After this, the trip had been planned in such a way that we were to proceed without actually visiting the Pyramids and the Sphinx for now, with the visit planned for later in the trip after we had done with visiting many of the other places of interest such as Luxor, Aswan Dam, Abu Simbel, etc. So, soon after visiting the market, we moved toward the airport (we had already checked out from the hotel in the morning), since we had a flight to Aswan planned in the evening.
The trip to Cairo airport took the same amount of time, around 1-1.5 hours in the Cairo traffic, and the trip to Aswan was in a much smaller plane (seating maybe something like 60-80 passengers). The flight was not very long, and there were no refreshments during the flight.

Photo of the sunset skyline as taken from a place above Aswan in Egypt
Photo of the sunset skyline as taken from a place above Aswan in Egypt

The wing of a place in the sky over Aswan, with brilliant colors of sunset
The wing of a place in the sky over Aswan, with brilliant colors of sunset

And then we reached Aswan, where there was again somebody from Sakkara travels to pick us up (with a total of 8 people, including 2 kids and 2 elders, such guidance was a luxury that we needed). They took us to the hotel, called the Basma Hotel in Aswan (reviews), and we checked in.

Basma Hotel in Aswan in Egypt - view of the sloping entrance to the hotel from the road
Basma Hotel in Aswan in Egypt – view of the sloping entrance to the hotel from the road

Basma Hotel in Egypt - a view of the front porch and the structure
Basma Hotel in Egypt – a view of the front porch and the structure

Basma Hotel in Aswan - the front entrance of the hotel

Basma Hotel in Aswan – the front entrance of the hotel

Basma Hotel in Aswan - Tourist vehicles parked in the driveway
Basma Hotel in Aswan – Tourist vehicles parked in the driveway

Basma Hotel in Aswan - view of the slightly small lobby from a higher position
Basma Hotel in Aswan – view of the slightly small lobby from a higher position

Basma Hotel in Aswan - beautiful stained glass window near the lobby of the hotel
Basma Hotel in Aswan – beautiful stained glass window near the lobby of the hotel

Basma Hotel in Aswan - view of the inside of the hotel room
Basma Hotel in Aswan – view of the inside of the hotel room

Basma Hotel in Aswan - a view of the beautiful swimming pool with chairs all around
Basma Hotel in Aswan – a view of the beautiful swimming pool with chairs all around

Basma Hotel in Aswan in Egypt - view of the outdoor dining area with a great view
Basma Hotel in Aswan in Egypt – view of the outdoor dining area with a great view

Basma Hotel in Aswan - view of the river Nile and its bends along with greenery
Basma Hotel in Aswan – view of the river Nile and its bends along with greenery

Basma Hotel in Aswan - hotel staff at the reception handling guests
Basma Hotel in Aswan – hotel staff at the reception handling guests

Basma Hotel in Aswan - view of neighboring burial ground (1 Km away)
Basma Hotel in Aswan – view of neighboring burial ground (1 Km away)

Basma Hotel in Aswan - view of hotel rooms from the swimming pool
Basma Hotel in Aswan – view of hotel rooms from the swimming pool

Basma Hotel in Aswan - view of the city of Aswan from the front of the hotel
Basma Hotel in Aswan – view of the city of Aswan from the front of the hotel

Basma Hotel in Aswan - view of Nile, church, and many boats on the river
Basma Hotel in Aswan – view of Nile, church, and many boats on the river

The hotel was fairly fine, located on a small hill at seemingly one end of the main road that runs through town. While moving from the airport to the hotel, the kids were positively hungry, and there was a need for them to visit a McDonald restaurant (being fond of burgers and chips like other children), but the McDonalds was at the other end of the town, and the tour guide and vehicle was not willing to take us for this distance (a black mark in the otherwise comfortable services provided by Sakkara Travels). So, once we reached the Basma Aswan Hotel, we asked for a taxi to take us up to the McDonalds (right on the riverfront), and come back after 30 minutes once the kids had been satiated. The McDonald’s in Aswan was very busy, being crowded with teenagers. Eventually, we ordered the required amount of food for kids, ate a bit ourselves, and took some for the rest of the family at the hotel.
The plan for the next day was to do a visit to the world famous temple of Abu Simbel (actual description and details will be in the next post of this series). Because of the isolated location of Abu Simbel (located 280 KM from Aswan, towards the border), and to prevent any problems in terms of security, there are only 2 trips that are allowed to Abu Simbel per day. One trip starts early morning at 4 AM, for which you need to reach a common location at around 3:30 in the morning, and the other trip starts at around 11 AM. When I say that only 2 trips per day are allowed, it means that convoys head out at these teams, with a number of buses and other vehicles moving on the same route escorted by police vehicles (this is a controlled route, you cannot take a vehicle and start driving to Abu Simbel on your own). Because of the timing at which we had reached, as well as a general state of inertia, we decided that we do not want to take the early trip, and instead go in for the 11 AM one. This also necessitated a change in the arrangement after that, since we had to check out of the hotel in the morning, and check in along with our luggage to the cruise ship, which would take us from Aswan to Luxor. So, we decided to carry out luggage first thing in the morning to the ship, then do a bit of local sight-seeing and use the ship as a place to keep luggage while we do more places to see in Aswan (some of the places to see in Aswan were the Unfinished Obelix, the High Dam, and of course, the trip to Abu Simbel).
Some comments on the Basma Hotel in Aswan. We found the hotel overall very comfortable, with clean room, clean washrooms, and decent food in the morning buffet. The hotel also gives a good view in the morning, with immediate surroundings that seem open (and also a view of the city). The size of the hotel is fine, the rooms did not seem cramped, they had a nice swimming pool, and overall a nice place for the rest we needed.

Location of Basma Hotel, Aswan, on Google Maps:


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Route from Cairo, Egypt to Aswan, Egypt on Google Maps:


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