I have been on ocean and river cruises before (Viking on the Danube just this summer; Seadream on the Amazon a couple of years ago) but this was probably the best cruise I've ever been on. The Tosca itself is a 2011 50-passenger, three-deck boat. The tours themselves were given by an Egyptian company. The boat was plush compared to the very spartan Viking boat we cruised the Danube with; unlike the much larger Viking boat, the Tosca had a pool (albeit unheated), lots of covered enclosure/beds on the top deck and a workout fitness room. Meals were absolutely great (breakfast and lunch were both buffet style) and the service was impecable.
The tour started in Cairo for a day visiting the Citadel, Mohammed Ali mosque and the Egyptian Museum. The next day, we flew to Luxor, visited the Karnak temple complex and then embarked. The next day we visited the Valley of the Kings tombs, then in the afternoon we started the cruise, going up and down the Nile, visiting various temples and various sites (the Nubian village near Aswan, the Aswan dam, tea a the historic Cataract hotel, etc). A flight to Abu Simbel was an option, which everyone took and it was worth the additional $ 290 per person cost.
Very professional, classy and friendly all the way around.
Abu Simbel must be seen to be believed. It's an additional $ 290 for the plane trip but worth it.
not worth it - I didn't even leave the bus
Massive temple complex in Luxor
smaller than Karnak but still impressive (especially at night, when we went)
One of the best exterior experiences but there's not much left inside the temple area
They only open six of the 62 temples at any given time (to minimize wear and tear). We visited three = 14, 34 and 2. Tomb 14 is outstanding. Tomb 34, the most difficult to access was not that great.
The Temple of Hathor in Dendera was a 45 min bus ride but well worth it. Kom Ombo, Temple of Philae, trip to the Nubian village at Aswan were all great. Visit to Aswan Dam not so much.