Tough Boats of Egypt

Holly Morris travels back in time to explore some of the most spectacular ancient Egyptian tombs and temples along the banks of the river Nile in Egypt. 

Beginning the journey from the beautiful city of Aswan in the far south of Egypt, Holly sails downriver on a traditional felucca sailing boat.  The first stop is Daraw village, home to Egypt’s remarkable camel market where up to 100,000 camels a year are sold after making the month-long trek through the desert from the Sudan.  After sleeping overnight on the felucca’s deck, Holly’s next stop is the magnificent temple at Kom Ombo, dedicated to the ancient Egyptian crocodile god, Sobek.  Sacred crocodiles were once worshipped in the temple, and the temple’s museum contains over 20 mummified crocodiles that were found buried nearby.

From Kom Ombo the journey continues downriver on one of Egypt’s most historic and beautiful boats, a 1920s paddlewheel steamship called ‘The Sudan’. Retaining its original steam pistons and paddle wheels in full working order, it’s a fabulous relic of the golden age of travel on the Nile.  After stopping to visit two more spectacular ancient temples at Edfu and Esna, Holly finally arrives at the Sudan’s final destination – the ancient Egyptian capital, Luxor.

As the journey draws to a close, Holly visits both the famous Temple of Luxor, and the Tomb of Tutankhamun, ending her trip by sailing into the sunset on a historic, 19th century Ottoman-era dahabeya – part sailboat, part rowing boat.  Rowing the dahabeya is tough work and a spectacular end to a wonderful journey.


With thanks to:

Egyptian Tourism Authority


“The Sudan”

“The Vivant Denon”

Sonesta St George Hotel, Luxor

Marsam Hotel, West Bank, Luxor 

Basma Hotel, Aswan