LUXOR CONFERENCE

Day 1 – Monday 1st February 2016
Fly London to Luxor with EgyptAir and on arrival we take our private transfer to the first-class Old Winter Palace, Garden Pavilion Wing, for seven nights on room and breakfast basis.

Day 2 – Welcome to Luxor
Our conference opens with welcome tea and coffee in the Horus room set in the gardens of the Winter Palace and we will hear first from a guest speaker from the Ministry of Egyptian Antiquities. This will be followed by Hourig Sourouzian who will tell us all about the latest work at Kom el Hetan. Hourig will be joined by colleague Nairy Hampikian who will tell us about protection of this precious site.  After a lunch break we will visit Luxor Museum and Luxor Temple, including the Avenue of Sphinx and the Mosque of Abu Haggag. (B)

Day 3 – Tombs and Temples
We take our private motor launch across the Nile to the West Bank, and on arrival head to the village of Deir el Medina, where we look at the private homes and the beautifully decorated tombs of the artisans and craftsmen who built the tombs of the great pharaohs. We have included a visit to the lovely tomb of Pashedu, the Ptolemaic Temple and the Great Pit. We move on to Medinet Habu, Mortuary Temple of Ramesses III before walking to the small but newly restored temple of Qasr el Aguz. This afternoon, Director of the University of Basel Kings’ Valley Project, Susanne Bickel, will reveal all the work being undertaken by the project since discovery of the tomb now known as KV64. After refreshments we will hear from another member of Susanne’s team. (B)

Day 4 – West Bank  Projects
Again we cross the Nile to the West Bank and today we head to Kom el Hetan the vast temple of Amenhotep III that is currently undergoing extensive excavation. We will meet with Hourig Sourouzian who will show us around the site and give us all the latest information on recent finds. Next we head to the Kings’ Valley where we have tickets for three tombs open on the day. We will meet up with Susanne Bickel who will walk us through the side valley being investigated by the team. We will see the position of non-royal tombs and learn how the tombs in this area were looted, forgotten and re-found. Next we visit a local project in New Qurna, the Balady Handicraft Centre, where local ladies have an opportunity to learn to weave and embroider in traditional ways. We have lunch at the Moon Valley Restaurant.  Next we will meet up with Dr Kent Weeks to see his continuing work with a Library on the West Bank,  the first library of its kind in Upper Egypt. (BL)

Day 5 – The Temple of Amun
A full morning at Karnak, the Precinct of Amun and we explore all the major features of the temple including the spectacular Seti war reliefs, the Sacred Lake, the Festival Hall, the vast Hypostyle Hall and the newly cleaned Khonsu Temple. We include  entry to the lovely Open-Air Museum with the newly reconstructed chapels of Hatshepsut. Next, the newly opened Temple of Mut, the consort of Amun, with time to walk around the kidney shaped sacred lake and the small Ramesses III temple. After a lunch break at the hotel we will meet for two fascinating talks. First we will hear from Laurent Bavay of the Belgian Mission in the Theban Necropolis who will tell us about his work that has led to finding and  conserving the remains of a pyramid on the West Bank. After refreshments we will hear from Renee Friedman, Director of the Hierakonpolis Expedition, who will report on her latest seasons work so that we are ready for our visit of the site tomorrow. On booking this tour AWT will automatically provide your subscription to be a Friend of Hierakonpolis for the year. (B)

Day 6 – Hierakonpolis
We see the cemetery of the predynastic rulers of this vast site and the graves of the menagerie of animals they kept, as well as the remains of the food factory and the brewery that serviced their funerary cults. We also visit the ceremonial enclosure of Khasekhemwy, known locally as the ‘Fort’, the oldest freestanding monumental mud brick structure in the world. We will see the niched ‘palace-façade’ still showing traces of white plaster after four and a half thousand years. A rare chance to see first-hand the ongoing conservation project at the site and learn about the plan to stabilise the South Wall. Our driving team will prepare a picnic lunch for us back at the dig house where we can look at the latest finds and learn first hand how the team studies the wide range of materials coming from the excavations. We drive back to our hotel mid-afternoon. (BL)

Day 7 – West Bank
Again we cross the Nile to the West Bank where we visit Deir el Bahri and the magnificent temple of Hatshepsut before we have another AWT special. We have a private permit to enter the tomb of Senenmut, architect of Hatshepsut’s temple. This rarely opened tomb, although unfinished, has an astronomical ceiling with star maps. Next, we plan to meet up with Laurent Bavay at his site at the tombs of the Nobles. We see for ourselves the remains of the pyramid close to the tomb of Amenhotep, a deputy overseer of seal-bearers. Laurent will explain his work at the site before we visit the nearby tomb of Sennefer, known as the ‘Tomb of Vines’. Then, to the richly decorated tomb of the Vizier Rekhmire. We have arranged lunch at the Moon Valley Restaurant before we return to the Asasif Tombs of Pabasa and Kheruef. Our day ends at Dra Abu el-Naga where we enter the brightly coloured tomb-chapels of Roy and Shuroy and the newly opened tomb of Amenemopet. (BL)

Day 8 – Monday 8th February 2016
After breakfast we take our private transfer to the airport for our direct EgyptAir flight to London arriving early afternoon. (B)

Why not stay on for ‘Luxor Explorer’ at an additional £1,995

B=Breakfast – L=Lunch – D=Dinner

 

LUXOR CONFERENCE

DEPARTURE DATE  Monday 1st February 2016

TOUR CODE AWLC010216

 

STANDARD HOLIDAY PRICE: £2,485

SINGLE SUPPLEMENT: £145

LAND ONLY DISCOUNT: £440 (If you arrange your own flights)

 

AWT's 'Single Supplement Guarantee' means that we only charge you what we are charged ourselves - we do not 'mark up'!