How to Cruise the Nile River in Egypt?

The Nile cruise in Egypt is a unique experience full of both adventure and relaxation. Sailing on the Nile River has its charm that helps you to chill out and get rid of the daily stresses and boost your energy. There are many Nile cruise programs in Egypt starting from the north at Cairo to the south at Aswan. Book your Nile cruise with

But how can you cruise the Nile?

There are 3 ways to do a Nile cruise in Egypt: felucca, riverboat, and the huge Nile cruisers. Surely, they differ in accommodation, cost, program, and duration of the cruise.

This difference offers you a variety of tours, just need to choose the suitable one for you.

1. Felucca


“Felucca” is an Arabic word for the conventional wooden sailboat, which has no motors and moves only by the wind. Felucca was once the major vessel used by Egyptians on the Nile.


It is usually a small boat that can accommodate only ten passengers.

Duration of the tour

The lack of facilities in Felucca makes its rides short, as it often lasts for a few hours or only one day.


The Felucca ride is a cheap way of cruising on the Nile, also you can easily reserve the whole seat to have a private cruise at a reasonable price.


Felucca has no facilities or cabins, only some wooden benches to sit on, and you will be provided with cushions and blankets if you need them.

Advantages of the Felucca ride:

  • It is the most adventurous kind of Nile cruise because its small size makes you very close to the water and you easily feel the motions of the boat.
  • Its short duration enables you to do a Nile cruise beside your other programs.
  • It is the Cheapest way for cruising on the Nile.
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  • Never miss watching the sunrise and the sunset when you are at the heart of the Nile.
  • Have a felucca ride to visit the nearby islands in Luxor and Aswan.
  • Relax and enjoy nature and calmness.
  • Have your lunch from the traditional Egyptian cuisine while cruising by felucca.
  • You can book a fishing tour for half of the day.

2. Riverboat (Dahabiya)


If you want to spend a longer time on the Nile, the Dahabiya will be a good choice. The “Dahabiya” refers to an Egyptian riverboat that has been used for transportation on the Nile since the pharaonic period. The name “dahabiya” means “golden” in the Arabic language, and it acquired this name from the golden color of those boats in older times.

Dahabiya has a middle size between the small felucca and the huge Nile cruisers. This kind of riverboat hasn’t a motor so it moves slowly on the Nile.


Typically, most Dahabiyas have 10 cabins with only single or double beds, which can house 20 passengers at maximum.


The Nile cruise by Dahabiya is the most expensive one, but it is really worth it.


The duration of cruises by this kind of riverboat frequently lasts from 2 to 5 days.


  • It is provided with all the necessary facilities and a few cabins.
  • The deck is usually occupied by restaurants, where you can enjoy meals from Egyptian cuisine among the tranquil nature.
  • There are also some inner spaces for dining on cold nights.
  • Cabins have their bathrooms and facilities.
  • Some dahabiyas follow the Nubian style in furnishing and decorations, to offer you a completely authentic experience.
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Advantages of the dahabiya:

  • Dahabiya offers you more privacy as it has only 20 passengers at maximum.
  • If you seek calmness and relaxation, dahabiya will be your perfect choice because of its slow movement and low accommodation.
  • It has the authentic atmosphere of Upper Egypt.


  • Watching the astonishing nature around you.
  • Don’t forget to take some fabulous photos.
  • Relax and hear the sounds of birds and water.
  • You can enjoy having your meal on its deck.
  • Visit the main sightseeing at the stops of the cruise.

3. Nile cruisers


It is the most popular way of cruising the Nile, these Nile cruisers are huge ships with all the luxurious facilities of hotels so it is called “floating hotels”.


Nile cruise ships typically have a large number of rooms usually around 60 rooms, they also have luxury suites.


It is cheaper than the Dahabiya Nile cruise, but it has a wide range of prices and facilities.


its journey starts from 3 days to 10 days or 15 days on some long cruises.


There are many programs for the Nile cruise by those floating hotels, but the most interesting one is that from Luxor to Aswan.

Also, some programs include sailing from Cairo in the north of Egypt to Aswan, this long cruise may last up to 15 days.


  • The cabins are equipped with all facilities you may need like: an LCD tv, a mini bar, a bathroom, and an air conditioner.
  • The floating hotels have classy restaurants, and the meals menu differs from one ship to another but most of them serve delicious dishes from Egyptian cuisine.
  • Besides, they have a pool on the sun deck of the ship.
  •  other facilities like a spa, gymnasium, kids club, and gift shop could be found in the luxurious Nile cruisers.
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Best activities to do through your Nile tour:

In addition to the activities like relaxation on the sun deck, watching nature, and taking photos, there are many other amusing things you can do while you cruise in a luxurious floating hotel like:

  • Swimming in the pool on the sundeck at the heart of the Nile is really amazing, don’t miss it.
  • You can have a massage or a steam bath.
  • Sipping your favorite drink on a sun lounger and having a sunbath.
  • The package of this type of Nile cruise usually includes visiting the prominent monument along the way of the journey.
  • A hot air balloon ride in Luxor is an optional activity in the Nile cruise but it is worth doing.
  • If you are doing your cruise in Luxor, it is a good chance for visiting the islands of upper Egypt.
  • Many ships offer different entertainment programs and traditional parties.

Finally, there are various ways to cruise the Nile which offer you a wide range of prices, and also vary in the facilities and duration of the cruise. Feluccas offer short Nile cruises at cheap prices. The huge Nile cruisers enable you to have long Nile cruises with all the facilities you may need.

The Riverboat is a more expensive way, but it is more private and calmer.