Combining Egypt and Jordan into one trip may seem like a lot to some. However, this itinerary is here to show that if you have around 14 days of vacation to spare, this can be just enough time to get a taste of these fascinating countries in one go!
For our trip through Egypt and Jordan, we had spent a total of 13 days. However, 3 of these days were lost to travel (so, technically we only had 10 full days of exploring). If you can get better flight times than us (depending on where you’re traveling from), you can use these dates for exploring instead of sitting in an airport.
I would recommend a full 7 days in Egypt, and then you can decide how many days/what to see for your time in Jordan. I also recommend traveling to Egypt first and then Jordan. My reasoning for this is because Jordan is less chaotic/stressful to travel through + there’s the Dead Sea! I would do Egypt first before you get yourself too worn out, and then spend some time relaxing in Jordan.
Complete Jordan & Egypt Itinerary for 10 or 14 Days
Day 1 – Arrive in Cairo
Overnight in Cairo
Again, this will depend on your flight times how you can best use this day. We, unfortunately, only had enough time to get checked into our hotel and get some rest this day. However, if you get in early enough, you could do a half-day tour of Cairo or perhaps a sunset tour of the pyramids.
Day 2 – Pyramids of Giza + Cairo Museum or Saqqara
Overnight in Cairo
Seeing the pyramids right away is a better idea than saving it for the end of your itinerary. This is because the Pyramids of Giza will likely be the biggest draw point for coming to Egypt, right? And there is a chance that if your tour doesn’t go according to plan (like our tour snafu) or the pyramids close unexpectedly – due to a celebrity or politician visiting (it does happen from time to time), you’ll still have enough of a buffer to see them at a different time. (Click here for all my tips of visiting the Pyramids of Giza.)
Morning – Go to the Pyramids
Getting to the pyramids right away in the morning will help to beat the heat and the crowds. You’ll also get better photos from the panoramic viewing area, because of where the sun is. (*Note – the open time does vary depending on the time of year, be sure to check with your hotel or tour guide.)
Click here for more info on visiting the Pyramids of Giza.
Afternoon – Tour the Egyptian Museum or Saqqara + Memphis
Many tours combine visiting the Pyramids with the Egyptian Museum or Saqqara. This is entirely personal preference, of course. If I had to choose, I would say the Egyptian Museum in Cairo wins, hands down for me. (Especially if the brand new Grand Egyptian Museum is going to be open when you visit!) The amount of history crammed into that museum is simply astounding. However, Saqqara and Memphis are both interesting to visit as well. They are also relatively quiet places to visit if you’re looking to escape the crowds of tourists. (*Click here to read more about Saqqara, and click here to check out my tips for visiting the Egyptian Museum.)
Day 3 – Fly to Luxor for a Nile Cruise // Karnak + Luxor Temples
We had opted for a Nile River Cruise to see the remainder of the sights. This is not a must to see these places. You could, instead, take the train to these destinations or fly to Aswan and then to Luxor and take day trips to all of the places mentioned. (You can also read my full Nile River Cruise review to decide for yourself.) I will say, though, the cruise was a relaxing way to see all of the spots mentioned in the remainder of this itinerary.
Morning – Flight to Luxor + Nile River Cruise Check-in
For us, our cruise was leaving from Luxor (you could also depart from Aswan – depending on which days work best for your itinerary). We spent the morning at the airport and then getting checked into our cruise. We also spent a little time wandering around Luxor.
Afternoon – Explore Karnak & Luxor Temples
By about 3 pm that afternoon we set off with a tour group to explore Karnak and Luxor Temples in Luxor. They are must-see places! Karnak Temple is actually the second most visited sight in Egypt, the first is, of course, the Pyramids. Karnak Temple is also HUGE – so be sure to allow yourself at least a couple of hours to fully explore it. (Click here for more information about visiting Karnak and Luxor Temples.)
Day 4 – Nile Cruise // Valley of the Kings
Morning – Valley of the Kings
The Valley of the Kings is where for nearly 500 years (from the 16th to 11th century BC) the tombs for the pharaohs and nobles were made. They are all located underground in this valley so they would be hidden from looters…and now you can tour some of them! (Click here for more info.)
Afternoon – Traveling to Edfu via Your Nile Cruise or….
We spent the afternoon relaxing on our Nile River Cruise. However, if you opt not to do the cruise, you could spend this afternoon exploring more in Luxor. (There is also the Valley of the Queens to see!)
Another option is to go straight to Aswan now and take the rest of your day trips from there.
Day 5 – Nile Cruise // Edfu & Kom Ombo
Edfu and Kom Ombo are towns along the Nile River in Egypt that are home to 2 famous temples – The Temple of Horus at Edfu and the Temple of Kom Ombo. I, personally, enjoyed the Temple of Horus at Edfu – it was extraordinary to see and when we visited right away in the morning, there were hardly any tourists here. (Click here for more info on visiting these two places.)
For our Nile Cruise, we visited Edfu straightaway in the morning and then we visited Kom Ombo later that afternoon. If you opt to visit these as a day trip from Luxor or a day trip from Aswan, this will be an all-day tour.
Day 6 – Nile Cruise // Aswan Sightseeing
Morning – Temple of Isis (Philae Temple) + High Dam + Unfinished Obelisk
Aswan is a beautiful city located along the Nile River, and it is home to some very interesting places to visit! Out of all the cities we visited in Egypt, Aswan was, perhaps, my favorite. It was quite clean and modern and traffic was not as horrifically crazy as it was in most of Egypt. You can visit the Temple of Isis, which is actually located on an island and was built to honor the goddess Isis back in 690 BC. The High Dam (fed by the Nile River) is also not that far away…nor is the unfinished obelisk..which is the largest known ancient obelisk! (Click here to read more about all of these places.)
Afternoon – Relax or Do a Tour
You could spend your afternoon hanging about by the pool on your Nile River Cruise or your hotel or you could do an excursion. We visited the Nubian Village (you can click here to read my thoughts on that).
Another option is to take a sunset felucca ride and visit some of the islands in the area. (Personally, I think this would be the nicest option.)
Or you could see the Sound and Light Show at Philae Temple – which is supposed to be the best out of all of the sound and light shows.
Day 7 – Abu Simbel then back to Cairo then to Jordan
Morning – Abu Simbel
Abu Simbel is an absolute must-do if you are traveling to Egypt. This was honestly cooler for me than seeing the pyramids, and I have been dreaming about visiting the pyramids since I was 8! Abu Simbel is a village in Southern Egypt, near the border of Sudan. It is home to two massive rock-cut temples one for the great Egyptian ruler Ramses II and one for his chief wife, Queen Nefertari. (Click here to read more about visiting Abu Simbel.)
Afternoon – Flight or more time in Aswan or Cairo
Depending on how your flight works out, you could fly from Aswan back to Cairo and then to Jordan. Or you could spend another night in Aswan or Cairo and then fly out the next morning. (There is also a tiny airport in Abu Simbel – but flights are very few and far between!)
Day 8 – Arrive in Jordan
Overnight in Amman
With the way our flights worked out, this entire day was lost to travel. However, if you get a better flight time than we did, you could spend this day doing a tour of Amman.
Day 9 – Wadi Rum
Overnight in a Desert Camp
This morning you’ll want to wake up and get on the road to Wadi Rum. The sand in Wadi Rum is known for being the reddest in Jordan (colored by iron oxide). Wadi Rum looks so much like Mars – many movies have been filmed here for their otherworldly scenes such as The Martian, Rogue One: A Star Wars Story, Prometheus, Red Planet and…of course, Lawrence of Arabia – just to name a few.
Once you arrive, you could do a sunset Jeep tour or camel/horseback ride. Then, spend the night enjoying your Bedouin camp (there are tons of luxury options to choose from too – if you’re not a fan of camping). (Click here for more information on the camp we chose, and click here for more info on the Jeep Tour.)
Day 10 – Wadi Rum and Then Drive to Petra
Overnight in Petra (Wadi Musa)
Wake up bright and enjoy the sunrise from your desert camp. Then, you could take a hike in Wadi Rum, or perhaps do a different tour that you didn’t do the night before.
Drive to Petra and get settled into your hotel – I would also recommend getting to bed early. Tomorrow is an early start!
Day 11 – Petra
Overnight in Petra (Wadi Musa)
Petra deserves at least 1 full day of exploring. I would get up early, and get your tickets to enter just as the visitor’s center opens. (It opens at 6 am all year long.) This way, you’ll beat the crowds, and have a few hours to enjoy it before tour groups begin showing up. (Click here to read all of my tips for visiting Petra.)
Day 12 – Dead Sea
Overnight at a Dead Sea Resort
Morning – Drive to Your Dead Sea Resort
It’s a few hour drive to get from Petra to the Dead Sea.
Afternoon – Relax or Explore Mt. Nebo & Madaba
You could spend the afternoon relaxing at your Dead Sea resort or you could venture over to Mt. Nebo and Madaba for a half-day of exploring. (Click here for more info on Mt. Nebo & Madaba.)
Day 13 – Explore Northern Jordan – Jerash, Umm Qais & Aljoun Castle (or Extra Day of Relaxation at the Dead Sea)
Depending on whether or not you would like to explore Northern Jordan, or spend a day of likely much-needed relaxation day at a Dead Sea Resort – is entirely up to you! Northern Jordan does have some interesting sights to see – especially Jerash. You can click here to see my entire post on visiting these places and decide for yourself how you’d like to spend this last full day.
Day 14 – Flight Home
Head to the airport at least a full two hours in advance of your flight.
Hotels – Where We Stayed
While we were in Cairo/Giza we stay at the Marriott Mena House – which had incredible views of the Pyramids! It was also a very luxurious place to stay. You can click here to read my full review of staying here.
For the remainder of the time in Egypt, we were on our Nile River Cruise. Click here to read the full review.
While we were in Amman, we stayed at the Amman Marriott Hotel – and it was a fantastic stay! The staff, rooms and food onsite were all fabulous.
In Wadi Rum we stayed at the Mazayen Rum Camp – which was one of the best experiences we’ve ever had in our travels.
The Dead Sea we had used the beach at the Dead Sea Spa Resort – this was a bit of a walk to get to the beach from the hotel, but overall it was a nice resort.
Unfortunately, we made the mistake of not staying overnight in Petra, despite there being tons of great accommodation options.
*Click here to see all of my posts from Jordan
*Click here to see all of my posts from Egypt.
To check if your country requires a Visa for traveling to Egypt and Jordan, click here.
Something to consider…it’s a good idea, no matter where your adventure takes you, to have travel insurance. You never know what might happen! Some credit card companies do provide this service (check with yours), or you can get a quote from companies such as RoamRight.
If you have any questions at all about this itinerary – please feel free to ask in the comments section at the end of this post!
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