One of the best things about living in this part of the world is the fact you can pretty much take for granted that whatever you plan, the sun will be shining. So imagine my reaction when I woke up on Friday to the patter of rain and the rumble of thunder. Normally this is quite exciting but that afternoon we had a Nile Cruise booked for a large group of us!
I packed a bag for all eventualities- sunscreen, sunglasses, a scarf and umbrellas and ordered an Uber. By this point the sun was shining and it was beautiful however, as we headed into Cairo the storm clouds gathered and soon it was pouring down. Our Uber driver continue driving at about 100kmph with his windscreen wipers barely working, squeezing between cars. At several points we were aquaplaning and Greg had to repeatedly tell him to slow down as we could hardly see. The ring road had turned into a tributary for the Nile and visibility was next to zero. Then, we started to slow down and came to a stop. We’d broken down on the ring road in a storm among flash flooding! I got the umbrellas out and we stood in the mini river trying to flag down a white taxi which soon came to our rescue and quickly got us to Dokki where our yacht was sailing from.
We made it on board in the nick of time and after completing the paperwork to say we supplied our own alcohol we set sail. The yacht was lovely and spotlessly clean.
The area at the back became our bar with tables and chairs but to be fair we spent the majority of our trip at the front taking in the views and beautiful weather.
The captain asked for a phone which he hooked up to their speakers so we had our own sound track and the staff were very efficient (perhaps too efficient!) at coming around topping up our drinks and remembering all our orders. The service was excellent.
We sailed towards Maadi, past the small islands dotted along the Nile and took in the changing scenery. It was absolutely wonderful.
Before long we were sailing back towards dock and at this point I really regretted not booking a 3hr trip! We sailed past the feluccas which were just heading out to capture the sun set.
As we docked we were reminded to collect what little remained of our alcohol, paid for the trip and, slightly tipsy, jumped into cabs to carry on our evening at the BCA in Kattameya.
By far this is one of the best experiences we have had in Cairo. From the initial email inquiries to the staff on the actual day they were very professional, friendly and relaxed. As I’ve mentioned the yacht was very clean (including the bathrooms) and the staff were discrete but always on hand. If you want to sail the Nile in a way that’s memorable for the right reasons I’d definitely recommend Yacht Christina. We paid 1450LE for the yacht for 2hrs and split the cost between all of us to include a tip. We didn’t bother with food as we were eating out afterwards but they can provide catering and, even if you’re just bringing drinks, they provide glasses/ice free of charge. Soft drinks can be bought on board at 5LE each and I really liked the fact they didn’t over-inflate these prices. Everyone agreed it was a perfect couple of hours. There were 17 of us and it still felt comfortable although it holds a maximum of 25 people. It is a perfect way for a group of family, friends or colleagues to relax taking in the wonderful views on the majestic Nile.
- the photographs of the yacht are from the website