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"Time & Space in the Temples & Pyramids"

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Niuserre Sun Temple
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Hatshepsut's Temple
Tel el-Amarna


Review by Rosanna F., PhD research scientist 
for aerospace materials company, San Francisco Bay Area, USA

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My tour with Ruth and Ehab of All One World Tours was a dream come true. I have been interested in Egypt since my teens. This tour was the first organized overseas tour I have ever taken. Ruth Shilling organized the tour in such a flawless manner that I could literally do nothing but have fun. Mealtimes, pit stops, shopping stops, and wonderful interactions with the people of Egypt were seamlessly worked into each tour day. Her small tour groups gain exclusive access to many big tourist sites as well as other sites that literally no one else gets to visit.

Ruth also arranged all the hotels and guides for me for an added week "on my own" in Egypt. If you want to see Egypt, this is the only tour to take. If you want to spend a week knocking back tall ones on a Nile cruiser, do not take this tour! We spent each day from early morning until dinner, and sometimes later, seeing the antiquities and museums, visiting Egyptian friends on farms and in their homes, and stopping to shop for traditional Middle Eastern items like alabaster, gold, and carpets.

It was such a perfect experience that I can't think of any way to improve on Ruth's expertise, and I am going back for another slightly different tour next year. Besides the awe of seeing the ancient sites up close, and having more than the perfunctory 30-45 minutes that most busloads of tourists get at the main sites (we had the entire Giza plateau to ourselves for several hours, including a private tour of the Great Pyramid!) I was most touched by Ruth's connection to the people of Egypt and how this was shared with the people on the tour. A good example was the time our shuttle bus encountered a group of children selling small baskets in Middle Egypt. She explained that hardly any tourists come to the area, so anything we purchased would be mean a lot to these rural families. I bought one item for about $1 from a small girl, and it has become one of my most cherished memories of the trip. We were also encouraged to bring clothing, hats, and other items to donate to various families that Ruth has gotten to know over the years. These experiences made the trip far more memorable than what a person would normally experience inside the "tourist bubble" that surrounds the larger, giant tour bus groups.

Another important point on Ruth's tour - she and Ehab take care of all the major tipping, and give clear instructions (and changed money for smaller bills) for places like rest rooms where we had to tip individually. This reduced the hassle-factor to almost nothing while on our planned route. I found out what a huge load Ruth has taken off us in this regard when I travelled on my own for a week and had to plan all the tipping and amounts myself. Ehab also watched over us like Horus the hawk and made sure the vendors at the various sites did not go overboard pushing their wares at us. I felt totally secure every minute I was in Egypt, thanks to the organized & watchful staff that Ruth works with. I signed up for the tour as a single, but Ruth set me up with the perfect roommate, who by incredible coincidence also planned to scrapbook every day's memorabilia, so we spent our after-dinner hours sharing in this enjoyable pursuit.

The worst thing that happened to me on the tour was a problem with the heater in the hotel in Middle Egypt - and this was solved by finding the super thick blankets in the closet! The boy leading my camel got into a fight with another boy, but this resulted in my ride on the camel lasting longer than the others' rides! There was really nothing of significance to complain about on this tour. It greatly exceeded my expectations, and I now eagerly await the chance to tour with Ruth and Ehab again.

Rosanna F.*
PhD research scientist for aerospace materials company, San Francisco Bay Area, USA

* Rosanna would be happy to speak with you by phone about her experience.  Please contact us to get her contact information.

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