Note: The information presented here is an abbreviated version of our formal General Information for Tours to Egypt. Its purpose is solely to give readers a sense of what might be involved if they take this tour. Although we do our best to make sure what follows here is completely accurate, it should not be used as a replacement for the formal document which will be sent to all tour registrants, and whose contents supersedes any information contained here.
TRAVEL TO EGYPT: United States citizens will need a valid passport and a tourist visa. Citizens of other countries may need a visa and should check their nearest Egyptian embassy. Please read the Important Travel Information for Participants on Sunbird Tours.
EGYPT MAP AND COUNTRY INFORMATION: You can view maps of Egypt in the University of Texas series here. The size of the map can be adjusted by clicking on the lower right corner of the map. You can review the U.S. Department of State background notes on Egypt here.
CLIMATE: It is generally warm to hot and dry in Egypt in March/April. Temperature ranges from lows of 50-60°F at night to daytime highs of 70-100°F. Only on Mount Sinai is it cooler, and overnight temperatures can be down to 32°F. Our rooms are heated but if you intend to walk up the mountain to experience dawn you should come prepared. (That’s why most visitors stay overnight). Rain is unlikely. Most days are hot and sunny but periods of cloudiness can occur with the passage of frontal systems. Very occasionally a wind can spring up (the Khamasin). This keeps temperatures pleasantly cooler, but can cause brief sandstorms in the desert.
PACE OF TOUR AND DAILY ROUTINE: The Egypt Birds and History tour has been redesigned to cut out many long driving days. The drives from Cairo are only about two hours, the longest ones (the Sinai, Hurghada-Luxor, Aswan-Abu Simbel) twice that. The roads are properly surfaced (we have cut out all rough tracks requiring four-wheel drive vehicles) and we shall be using the same comfortable small coach throughout. On the longest drives we shall be breaking the journey for short walks (not only to stretch our legs but also to look for birds and sites of historic interest). Occasionally the authorities insist on escorted convoys, for example at El Fayoum, between Safaga and Luxor, and between Luxor and Marsa Alam.
This tour is not a strenuous one, but a fair amount of general walking is required; in a number of places we will walk on flat, stony desert and up rocky valleys. The walks we do are all short and easy, over level terrain—usually no more than saunters of a few hundred yards—and in sight of the vehicle.
HEALTH: The Centers for Disease Control recommend vaccinations including Hepatitis A, typhoid, boosters for tetanus-measles-diphtheria, and polio for adult travelers who have received a primary series with either inactivated poliovirus vaccine (IPV) or oral polio vaccine (OPV); they should receive another dose of IPV before departure. Please consult your physician well in advance of the tour for advice about these and other preparations to be made, and visit the website of the CDC for updates.
ACCOMMODATION: Throughout the tour we’ll be staying in good-quality hotels, usually the very best. All rooms will have a private toilet and a bath or shower.
TRANSPORT: Transportation will be by private coach with local driver.
SMOKING: Smoking is not allowed in the vehicles or when the group is gathered for meals, checklists, etc. If you are sharing a room with a non-smoker, please do not smoke in the room. If any site where the group is gathered has a stricter policy than the WINGS policy, that stricter policy will prevail.
GENERAL INFORMATION AND CONDITIONS OF WINGS TOURS: Please take a moment to read the WINGS General Information and Conditions. This section contains important information about how we conduct tours, e.g., what is included in the tour price, refund and cancellation policies, pace of the tours and other information that will help you prepare for the tour.
ADDITIONAL INFORMATION: A more complete General Information for Tours to Egypt will be sent to each registrant on receipt of their booking. Final information with instructions for meeting the group, hotel addresses, etc., will be mailed about three weeks before trip departure. Other news will be communicated as necessary. If you have any questions, please let us know.
Updated: July 2008