Experienced riders on a trail ride in Egypt

Depths of the Desert

Embark on an Egyptian adventure on this unforgettable journey through time. Discover some of the most famous sites in Egypt on board the beautiful Baladi and Arab horses. On this riding holiday you will be exploring three different destinations – Cairo, Luxor and Fayoum. Ride deep into the heart of the desert where sprays of golden sand will cloud up behind you as you gallop past ancient ruins and unique temples and tombs. This active horseback holiday is ideal for riders keen on having a very authentic and adventurous experience.
Book now Print the details for this ride
Trail Riding
10 days/6 days riding -
From £0
Open to non-riders

From the horse’s mouth

  • Depths of the Desert
    December 2020 Clémentine aged 31
    I initially booked the Depths of the Desert holiday with Ride Egypt and ended up staying an extra 7 days because I just couldn’t bear to leave! This was truly a life changing holiday for me. I was the only person on the riding holiday due to some last minute COVID related cancellations. Emma, Mohamed and Saber made me... Read all
  • Horse and rider near Cairo, the Great Pyramid of Giza
    Discover the wonders of Egypt on horseback
  • Riders approaching the pyramids in Egypt
    Riding to the Great Pyramids in Cairo
  • Multiple riders cantering along the desert in Egypt
    The horses on this holiday are renowned for their stamina
  • Two people exploring a landmark in Egypt
    Explore beautiful landmarks full of history
  • Horse and a field of flowers in Egypt
    Explore the area around Luxor on horseback
  • Two riders galloping along a desert in Egypt
    Enjoy thrilling canters in the desert
  • Two riders on horseback near Luxor, Egypt
    Your holiday will take you to Luxor as well
  • Hot air ballons ascending in the sky in Egypt
    A holiday filled with adventure!
  • Trail riders and horses in Egypt
    Explore Egypt from horseback on a trail ride

Itinerary

Highlights

- Discover three incredible destinations in one holiday – Luxor, Cairo and Fayoum
- Enjoy a variety of adventures and activities – riding, of course, but also a couple of tours on 4x4 vehicles
- Witness the Great Pyramids of Giza and the mythical Sphinx
- Be immersed in the Egyptian culture, history, food and people
  • Day 1 1 : HOME - CAIRO

    Fly to Cairo. Flights are not included but can be arranged upon request. Transfer to your accommodation for the night. Dinner is not included tonight.
  • Day 2 2: Giza Ride & Fayoum Introduction

    After a late breakfast, you will meet the team and horses before beginning a spectacular trail ride to the 7th wonder of the world- The Giza Pyramids. The team will dress your horse in the impressive traditional protection necklaces and bridalwear before you set out towards the Pyramids and Sphinx. As you canter across the golden sands you will catch your first glimpse of the monumental tombs. Dismount from your horses and explore on foot the spectacular structures and chambers where the Pharaohs were buried. After an exciting morning, enjoy a delicious lunch at a local restaurant before heading back to the hotel.
    At the hotel you will pack up and get in the transfer headed to Fayoum.
    You will arrive in time to enjoy a sunset ride through the picturesque villages of Tunis.

    Dinner and overnight at a guest house.
  • Day 3 3: Wadi El Hitan’s Magic Lake

    Today you will be heading to the Magic Lake. This intriguing lake changes its colours several times, depending on the time of day and the amount of sunlight it receives. The surrounding area is ideal to enjoy long canters. You can also take some time to swim or just relax by the beautiful waterfall.

    Dinner and overnight in the guest house.
  • Day 4 4: Full Day Ride with Desert Dinner

    Today you will drive around 20 minutes with the horses to start your riding adventure in the heart of the national park. The scenery is picturesque and goes as far as he eye can see, it is the perfect place for you to enjoy plenty of fun canters and gallops.

    Dinner and overnight in the guest house.
  • Day 5 5: 4 x 4 Safari at Wadi El Hitan - Non-riding day

    Swap your saddles for a 4x4 and drive through the dunes towards the Whale Valley, home to invaluable fossil remains of the earliest, and now extinct, suborder of whales, Archaeoceti. These fossils represent one of the major stories of evolution; the emergence of the whale as an ocean-going mammal from a previous life as a land-based animal, about 37 million years ago. This is the most important UNESCO site in the world for the demonstration of this stage of evolution.

    Late afternoon we will drive by car back to Cairo. Overnight at the guest house.
  • Day 6 6: Speedy Giza Trail & Flight to Luxor

    Today you will have your last ride in Cairo by the Great Pyramids before having lunch and flying to Luxor late in the afternoon.

    On arrival into Luxor, you will be met by your guide and transferred to your accommodation for the night, situated on the west bank of the River Nile.
  • Day 7 7: Pharaohs Temples Trail

    Today, after a short tuk-tuk ride (or walk) through the village, you will arrive at a local home. This is a relaxed morning with “the family” at their home where you will learn about the Egyptian way of life, how they grow their own food, why they prefer to build homes from mud instead of concrete and of course the wonderful cooking techniques that stem back thousands of years. You might even pick up a few words of Arabic!

    In the afternoon, you will get back in the saddle and set off on your next adventure retracing the steps of two powerful Pharaohs: Seti I and his son Ramses II. This ride will take you deep into the Valley of the Kings. Later today, you will be able to explore the Mortuary Temple of Seti I and Remasseum.
    The artwork and architecture commissioned during Seti’s rule is rich and no expense was spared – the attention to detail is evident within his mortuary temple. It also includes a royal palace and a chapel for Ramses I. Ramses II like his father was one of the greatest Pharaohs in ancient Egyptian history. He is often regarded as the greatest, most celebrated, and most powerful pharaoh of the New Kingdom. His successors and later Egyptians called him the “Great Ancestor”.

    This evening enjoy a delicious meal prepared at home by a local chef.
  • Day 8 8: Valley of the Kings & 4×4 Safari Dinner - Non-riding day

    Today you will be making your way through the Valley of Kings to visit some unique tombs chosen by your guide, including the tomb of Thutmose, which is the earliest constructed in the Valley.

    During Egypt’s New Kingdom (1539-1075 B.C.), the valley became a royal burial ground for Pharaohs such as Tutankhamun, as well as queens, high priests, and other elites of the 18th, 19th, and 20th dynasties. The tombs are evidence of elaborate preparations for the next world in which humans were promised continuing life and pharaohs were expected to become one with the gods. Mummification was used to preserve the body so that the deceased’s eternal soul would be able to reincarnate in it in the afterlife.

    Late morning you will be picked up by a vehicle to head towards the Valley of the monkeys to visit the Tomb of Ay. This tomb was rumoured to be built for Tutankhamen originally but instead he was buried in a much smaller tomb due to his early and unplanned death.

    Have lunch at a local restaurant before heading home for a few hours to relax. At around 4pm you will be picked up by 4 x 4 and head into the desert where you will visit hidden caves. We advise you wear good hiking shoes so you can watch the sunset from the top of the mountains!

    After sunset you will drive a little further into the heart of the desert where locals have been preparing dinner over a fire. After a wonderful dinner you will leave the desert and return to the accommodation.
  • Day 9 9: Land of the Pharaohs

    In the morning you will be taking a closer look to the Egyptian way of life in the country side. Later on, ride through the Valley of the Kings towards the top of Mount Thebes where you will enjoy panoramic views of Luxor.
    Lunch will be served at a local restaurant before your trail home takes you past the Colossi of Memnon, two massive stone statues of the Pharaoh Amenhotep III who reigned in Egypt during the Dynasty XVIII. This is a wonderful opportunity for photos together with your horses.
  • Day 10 10: LUXOR - HOME

    Flight back home from Luxor airport

    If you are interested in a sunrise hot air balloon tour this morning, please enquire for details.

Dates & prices

Price details

No departure for this destination. Please contact our travel advisers for more information.
- International and domestic flights are not included, but can be booked upon request. You will need to arrive in Cairo, a domestic flight between Cairo and Luxor, and depart from Luxor.

- Rates are per person and based on two riders sharing a twin or double room.

- The group is made of 2-15 riders maximum plus local team.

- Single room supplement: £400. Not applicable if willing to share.

- Transfers: not included and invoiced before you go for a total of £60/€70/$80 per person. Cairo Airport Meet and Greet: +£35/€40/$45 per person (to go through immigration and find your driver)

- Hot air balloon over Luxor: guideline is around £135/€150/$170 per person (payable locally)

- Children aged 8+ are welcome on this ride provided they match the riding requirements. Families with children will be offered "family weeks" independent from our normally scheduled weeks that are tailored for adults and solo riders. Please contact us for more details.

There is a small entry fee to the temples that may feature on your visit. Prices payable locally:

East Bank:
Karnak Temple – 100le
Avenue of Sphinxes – Free
Luxor Museum – 100le
Luxor Temple – 100le
Mummification Museum – 100le
West Bank:
Valley of the Kings – 150le
Seti I Tomb – 1000le
Tutenkamun Tomb – 200le
Carters House – 60le
Hatshepsut Temple – 80le
Colossi of Memnon – Free
Habu Temple – 60le
Stone Factory – Free
Valley of the Queens – 150le
Tomb of Queen Nefertari – 1000le
Nobles Tombs – 80le
Workers Tombs – 80le

Cairo:
Cairo Museum: 60le admission
Royal Mummies Room 100le
Centennial Gallery 10le.
Please Note
The itinerary may be modified at anytime for security reasons, meteorological or events beyond our control such as blocked roads, rivers in flood, drought, strikes and local holidays. Equus Journeys, our local partners and their local guides will always strive to find the best solution and will alter the itinerary as needed.
The names of the hotels and accommodation are given for information only and depending on availability, they may be modified without notice and replaced by another of a similar standard.

Price includes

Support Team

English-speaking horse guide

Logistics

1 horse equipped with saddle and bridle per rider
1 support vehicle
A team of grooms

Inland transport

Land transfers mentioned in the programme

Meals

Full board accommodation in guesthouses or hotel
Mineral water

Price doesn't include

Meals

Beverages and personal extras
Dinner on day 1, lunch and dinner on the last day

Transport

International flights
Return airport transfers
Domestic flight from Cairo to Luxor

Extras

Tips to the local team - $100 given on the first day to the guide
Entry fees to sites mentioned in the itinerary (around £30-50)
Hot air balloon over Luxor (£135 per person)

Insurance

Cancellation and travel insurance are not included in the above listed price. Please note that insurance is mandatory. We recommend taking out an insurance policy as soon as your trip is booked to cover you in case of cancellation
Visas and personal purchase. You will have to purchase a tourist visa at the airport (around £20)

Optional

Accommodation

Single room supplement
We are currently updating our dates and prices they will be online soon. If you want details of this holiday, please do not hesitate to contact us.

Equestrian info

Horses

You will find three types of horses: Arab, Arabian Cross and Baladi. They are renowned for their stamina and are ideal for long distance rides in the Egyptian desert. Each location has its own stable so you will be riding different horses during the trip.

Minimum riding ability

Minimum riding ability

You must be a rider of at least an intermediate level, meaning that you must be comfortable on a horse at all paces (walk, trot and canter) and you must be used to riding in open spaces and over different types of terrain. The horses are sensible and well mannered but they are fit and forward-going, not suitable for novice riders.


There is a maximum rider weight of 90kg/ 14st/ 198 lbs.

Pace

The main pace of the trail is the walk, with good opportunities for trots and canters. You can spread out in the desert in Cairo, where there are plenty of open spaces, but riding in Luxor is mostly on tracks and therefore in single files.

Please remember that the hours in the saddle are not long and there are some non-riding days as well.

Tacking ability and participation

The horses are groomed and tacked up for you. You can help with this (in Luxor especially) but this is not mandatory.

Trip conditions and Requested experience

Reasonable health and fitness levels are required. Please note that some of the days are non-riding days: this holiday is designed for you to embrace the Egyptian culture, their local customs and ancient history.

Equestrian equipment

English or Endurance tack.
Treeless and Western saddles are also available. No saddlebags.
We recommend our riders to wear a helmet to the correct standard and you should bring your own to ensure a proper fit.

Travel info

Comfort

In Cairo: you will be offered a 2-3* hotel based on availability.

In Fayoum: You will be staying at Villa Nile House, a charming guest house built in an oriental style with traditional materials. Each room is full of character and has a private bathroom, air-conditioning, a TV, and Wi-Fi access.

In Luxor: Standard guesthouse next to the stables. You will enjoy a host of traditional home cooked meals and our local chef’s delights will be available each day. There is a small garden and a swimming pool is available to use at a neighbouring hotel.



Meals

All meals are provided for on this riding holiday.

Breakfast: Pancakes, juice, bread, cheese and eggs, tea and coffee.
Lunch: salads, falafels, rice, aubergine, grilled chicken.
Dinner: hot meals (tajines with chicken, meat or fish), rice, salads, mussaka

Water and soft drinks are provided.

Climate

Hot temperatures are common all year round. Temperatures generally range from 18-25C during winter and spring. This ride does not run in the summer as it is way to hot for riders and horses. Rain is not common, and blue skies with sunshine is the norm every day.

Even though the day temperature is usually very hot during the day, it will become much cooler at night once the sun has set. For this reason we recommend you take some warmer clothes to keep you warm during the evenings and nights.

Guide and local team

Your main guides are Mohammed and Emma, accompanied by their team. They speak English and Arabic collectively. Your hosts and drivers all speak English.

Tips

Tipping in Egypt is a way of life. It is considered a norm to leave small tips in services you have received, such as restaurants, hotels, drivers, tour guides, etc. A tip envelope of $100 (or the equivalent amount in euros or GBP) will be given to your guide on day 1 and distributed during the week to cover all of the tips mentioned above. This way you don't have to worry about currency exchange and wondering if you should have tipped or not.

Packing list

Head
- A riding helmet is strongly recommended. We recommend you take your own to ensure the right fit.
- Sun hat when not riding
- Sunglasses-with a cord attached so they don't fly away when galloping.
- Buff or bandana for protecting your neck and face from the sun and dust.

Upper body
- Thermals (long or short sleeved)
- Long sleeved shirts to provide protection from the sun.
- T-shirts
- Lightweight fleece or jumper.
- Light waterproof jacket- although it doesn't rain much Egypt, it is better to be prepared.

Legs
- Lightweight riding trousers or jodhpurs. We recommend riding in them at home to ensure they won't rub during your holiday.
- Casual clothes for the non-riding days (jeans or walking trousers)

Hands and Feet
- Comfortable riding boots. We recommend short boots with half chaps but you may take long chaps or long boots.
- Lightweight shoes or trainers for the non-riding days.
- Several pairs of socks
- Gloves - your hands are particularly exposed to the sun, wind or rain whilst riding

Nightwear
- Pyjamas

Other useful items:
- Swimsuit
- Camera and high capacity memory card. Spare battery
- Bumbag for carrying your camera and small items whilst riding
- Water bottle (2 litres or 2 x 1 litre)
- Ear plugs (for light sleepers)
- Swiss army knife or equivalent (in your Check-in Luggage!!!!)

Medical kit
- Sunscreen and lip balm - should be high factor
- Insect repellent - a must in Egypt, please take a high quality spray
- Any medication you regularly take
- Blister plasters in case of any rubs
- Antiseptic cream, plasters, aspirin, anti-histamine, insect-bite salve etc...
- Spare prescription glasses/contact lenses
- Eye drops
- Imodium or similar anti-diarrhoea medication
- Re-hydration sachets
- Antiseptic wipes
- Hand wash gel

Our Recommendations

- Backpacks cannot be worn whilst riding. We recommend a small bumbag or a coat with pockets so that you can carry small items with you during the day (passport, camera, sunscreen, lip balm etc)
- Any liquids in your hold luggage, such as shampoo, moisturizer, over 100ml should be decanted into small, clear, plastic ziplock bag. We recommend biodegradable washing products where possible.
- In your hand luggage take any valuables, such as your camera, ipod, ipad etc.
- Travelling in your riding boots and carrying your hat and some riding clothes is highly recommended - then if your luggage goes astray you are still able to ride!
- We recommend taking a copy of your passport and insurance documents with you in case you lose your originals

Visa & Health

Formalities

British passport holders travelling to Egypt normally require a visa.

For visits of up to 30 days, you can get a visa on arrival by cash payment. The visa fee is US$25 at approved bank kiosks within airport arrival halls, before reaching immigration counters. There’s no need to buy a visa from an agent. In many cases agents will charge more than US$25 for a visa. If you’re harassed by an agent, report the incident to the tourist police in the airport terminal.

Alternatively you can get a visa from an Egyptian Consulate outside Egypt before you travel.

Your passport should be valid for a minimum period of 6 months from the date of entry into Egypt.

Source: https://www.gov.uk/foreign-travel-advice/egypt

Addresses of consulates

  • Ambassade d’Egypte
    56, avenue d'Iéna
    75116 Paris
    Tél. : 01.53.67.88.30
    Fax :
    paris_emb@mfa.gov.eg
  • Ambassade en Egypte
    29 Sharia al-Giza (Gizeh)
    BP 1777 Le Caire
    Tél. : +20(2)570 39 16
    Fax : +20 (2) 571 02 76
  • Ambassade d'Egypte
    Avenue de l'Uruguay 19
    1000 BRUXELLES
    Tél. : +32 (0) 2 663 58 00
    Fax : +32 (0) 2 675 58 88
    eg.sec.be@hotmail.com
  • Ambassade d'Egypte
    Elfenauweg 61
    3006 Bern
    Tél. : +41 31 352 80 12/13
    Fax : +41 31 352 06 25

Health

Contact your GP around 8 weeks before your trip to check whether you need any vaccinations or other preventive measures. Country specific information and advice is published by the National Travel Health Network and Centre, and useful information about healthcare abroad, including a country-by-country guide of reciprocal health care agreements with the UK, is available from NHS Choices.

Some prescribed and over the counter medicines available in the UK are considered controlled substances in Egypt and can’t be brought into the country without prior permission from Egypt's Ministry of Health; if you arrive in Egypt without this permission and the required documentation, the medication will not be allowed into the country and you may be prosecuted under Egyptian law; if you're travelling with prescription medication you should carry a medical certificate from your GP confirming that the medication has been prescribed for a medical condition.

Medical facilities outside Cairo and other major cities and resorts can be basic and in case of emergency you are advised to seek treatment in Cairo or the nearest town/city. Make sure you have adequate travel health insurance and accessible funds to cover the cost of any medical treatment abroad and repatriation.

You can find a list of most commonly used hospitals in Egypt on the British embassy website

In an emergency dial 123 and ask for an ambulance. You should contact your travel company and your insurance/medical assistance company promptly if you are referred to a medical facility for treatment.

There are reports of some hotel doctors overcharging for treatment and medicines. Examine your bill closely and challenge excessive charges. Pharmacies outside hotels will often supply medication at lower prices.

Access to specialised treatment for psychiatric illness is limited and may not be available outside major cities.

Source: https://www.gov.uk/foreign-travel-advice/egypt/health

Insurance

It is a condition of your booking with Equus Journeys that you have travel insurance which covers you for the riding activities to be undertaken. Your travel insurance should cover you for medical expenses and repatriation. Your guides will require your travel insurance details before they allow you to ride and may refuse to let you ride if you cannot provide them. You should take your insurance documents with you.

Voltage

In Egypt the standard voltage is 220 V and the frequency is 50 Hz. In Egypt the power plugs and sockets are of type C and F (two prongs)

Budget and money

The Egyptian pound is the currency of Egypt. It is divided into 100 piastres, or ersh

Telephone and jetlag

Time zone: GMT+2
Phone code: +20

Customer reviews

Customer reviews

All of our reviews are real, honest opinions from riders who have recently travelled with us. Upon their return, our riders will receive an email inviting them to share their experiences from their trip. Good or bad, each review will be published on our website, provided that they respect our editorial guidelines.
  • Clémentine aged 31 SAN FRANCISCO 1 trip
    December 2020
    I initially booked the Depths of the Desert holiday with Ride Egypt and ended up staying an extra 7 days because I just couldn’t bear to leave! This was truly a life changing holiday for me. I was the only person on the riding holiday due to some last minute COVID related cancellations. Emma, Mohamed and Saber made me... Read all
    • Horses
    • Programme
    • Accommodation
    • Local guide