An enthralling exploratory adventure to the untraveled Nile of the Kushite Kings!
If solitude and a deep sense of history call to you, embark with us on this unique MTS trip to Sudan, Egypt’s vaster and less tourist-trodden neighbor to the south. Despite five millenia of Coptic, Muslim, and Kushitic civilizations, and Sudanese hospitality renowned the world over, much of this complex country—one of Africa’s largest—remains unexplored. We offered our first-ever trip here just one year ago, and we can take you where few travelers have stepped. You’ll marvel at the evocative ancient pyramids of the kingdom of Meroë, the painted tombs of El Kurru, the holy mountain of Jebel Barkal, and the stunning temple of Soleb, richly decorated with hieroglyphics and bas-reliefs. You’ll travel to remote villages for meaningful encounters with the local tribes, and venture into the spectacular Nubian desert for three nights of camping under the stars. Join MTS for a true insider’s perspective on this amazing land—it won’t stay isolated or undiscovered for much longer.
12 days of archaeology, cultural touring, camping
- Explore the fascinating country of northern Sudan, recently split from it's new neighbor South Sudan.
- Discover the splendors of the ancient Kushite kingdom—more pyramids than Egypt, with far fewer tourists!
- Immerse yourself in the local heritage with visits to pristine archaeological sites, beautiful desert landscapes, colorful tribal markets, and whirling dervish performances
- Get off the grid with three nights of comfortable camping in the Nubian desert
Duration: 12 days Start Location: Khartoum End Location: KhartoumDownload Detailed Itinerary
Day 1 : Khartoum
Arrival in Khartoum anytime today. You will be met by your MTS guide at the airport and transferred to the group hotel.
Day 2 : Khartoum, Whirling Dervishes
Today we visit an excellent archaeological museum, have lunch on the Nile, wander the vast Omdurman Souk, and visit the tomb of Sufi leader Ahmed Al Nil at sunset to witness the amazing Whirling Dervishes. Overnight in Khartoum.
Day 3 : Khartoum to the Western Desert
We travel north through the Western Desert, stopping at one of the local "chai houses" or "tea houses" before reaching Wadi Muqaddam with its many acacia trees. We overnight in our wild camp among the sand dunes.
Day 4 : Old Dongola & Nubian Villages
We visit the archaeological site of Old Dongola before heading into the Nubian Desert, visiting Nubian villages scattered among sand dunes and palm trees, perhaps stopping for spiced tea in one of their homes, or sharing a meal. Overnight camping in the desert.
Day 5 : Temples of Sesibi & Soleb
We cross the Nile by ferry, then drive north to the temples of Sesibi and Soleb. Soleb temple is covered with hieroglyphs, bas-reliefs and columns reminiscent of Egypt's Luxor temple. Overnight in a traditional Nubian house near the temple of Soleb.
Day 6 : Sebu and Tombos
We now head south through the desert and pass the Third Cataract and visit the rock engravings in Sebu before camping out under the stars near the quarries of Tombos.
Day 7 : Kerma to Karima
Today we visit the ancient mud-brick city of Kerma before crossing the Nubian Desert to Karima, a small town located at the foot of Jebel Barkal. Overnight at the Nubian Rest House.
Day 8 : Karima - Jebel Barkal & the Necropolis of El Kurru
Today we visit the base of Jebel Barkal, where we explore the ruins of a temple dedicated to the god Amon. We also visit the ancient city of Napata, once the Nubian capital; the pyramids at Nuri; and the painted tombs in the village of El Kurru.
Day 9 : Nile Cruise to Nuri
After breakfast, we wander through a local market, where the local tribes come to hawk and buy their wares. We also take a leisurely cruise down the Nile, where we get the chance to view Sudan's agricultural life before embarking on an easy walk around the pyramids of Nuri. We return to the Nubian Rest House for dinner and overnight.
Day 10 : Bayuda Desert to Meroe
We'll depart Karima and cross the Nile again and enter the Bayuda Desert. Here we search for Dorcas Gazelle and the Bisharin nomads, who live in this harsh desert environment. After a picnic lunch in the desert, we cross the Nile for the last time at the town of Atbara. We spend the night in at our permanent tented camp in Meroe.
Day 11 : Meroe
Today we visit the pyramids at the Royal Necropolis and explore the ruins of the Royal City of Meroe, where excavations are still underway and waiting to be documented by archaeologists.
Day 12 : Naga and Mussawarat
We'll explore the colorful local market in the village of Shendi before visiting two important archaeological sites today: Naga, where we find various temples and bas-reliefs from the Meroitic period, and the ruins of Mussawarat, another important city during the first century B.C. Then we will drive back to Khartoum, where day use rooms will be available at our hotel until 9pm. Most flights depart late this evening.
DATES: Best time to go: February, November Departures: Nov 14 - 25, 2013
$5,095 (6-14 members)
Corinthia HotelKhartoum, Sudan
The Corinthia Hotel Khartoum is a five-star hotel in central Khartoum, the capital of Sudan, on the meeting point of the Blue Nile and White Nile and in the centre of Khartoum’s commercial, business, and administrative districts.
Meroe Tented CampSudan
Meroe tented Camp is located 142 miles north of Khartoum overlooking the beautiful pyramids of Meroe. Accommodation consists of 22 twin-bedded tents, tastefully furnished. Each one has its own private bathroom hut with shower and toilet. The Camp is located 2 miles from the Royal Necropolis. Each tent is equipped with a veranda with two comfortable chairs to relax in front of the astonishing view of more than forty pyramids. The tents have electricity produced by solar power. A restaurant building is nearby. The Camp is managed by an Italian manager.
Nubian Rest HouseKarima, Sudan
The Nubian Rest House is a charming small hotel built in the typical Nubian style just at the foot of Jebel Barkal, the holy mountain of the old Egyptian and Nubian Pharaohs. It is surrounded by a large private enclosure, with a nice garden and leisure area. Each room is characterized by a unique Nubian door and has its own private bathroom and a pleasant veranda. The decor and finishing have been carefully selected. They come mainly from Italy and provide an elegant yet rustic charm. A reception, a restaurant and a living room with decorated walls complete the wonderful setting.
Properties shown are representative of the accommodations we use on this trip, may not be inclusive of all accommodations we use, and are subject to change.
Expert leadership is the key to an exciting, unforgettable experience. Our trips feature gifted leaders for whom leading trips is a true vocation. Besides showing you wonders you’d never find on your own, they make sure everything runs smoothly and safely without a hitch. They are knowledgeable about all aspects of your trip, and take great pleasure in sharing their insights with you. More than just guides, they positively elevate your experience by being teachers, companions, and the best of friends. You’ll be in good hands with them every step of the way.