Music & Dance Tour to Egypt

Join us for two weeks out of this world and into the magic of Middle Eastern music and dance in its own home

  • Visit all of Cairo's major tourist attractions.
  • Shop, ride the camels, smoke the 'shisha' and relax by the nile
  • Attend Raqia Hassan's "Ahlan wa Sahlan" dance festival AND/OR study your favorite instrument with top instructors from the College of Arabic Music in Cairo
  • Relax in the Northern Shore, swim in the Mediterranean Sea and experience the quiet of the desert.
  • Visit Alexandria's main tourist attractions and tour the Alexandria library.
  • Several "off the beaten path" trips, excursions and surprises!!
  • All hotel accomodations are 5-stars!!!
  • See Egypt with a native dancer who knows where the best deals are, how to navigate the Egyptian culture and social interactions and loves to travel and bridge the gap between cultures and people!! This year, she will take you to her HOME TOWN OF ALEXANDRIA
Frequently Asked Questions
Date :
June 24th to July 8th 2008
Itinerary :
Tuesday June 24: Depart the U.S.A.

Wednesday June 25: Arrive at Cairo airport to be met by our tour guide and transferred to the Hotel. Relax for the evening.

Thursday June 26: Tour Cairo! Visit the Great Pyramids of Giza and the Sphinx. Optional camel ride. Visit Salaheddin Citadel and Mohamad Ali Mosque. Evening in Khan El Khalili bazaar. Shopping.

Friday June 27: Visit the step pyramid of Sakkara in Memphis. Visit the Egyptian Museum of Antiquities. Evening Gala dinner at "Ahlan wa Sahlan" Dance Festival.

Saturday - Thursday June 28 - July 3: Dance, dance, dance at "Ahlan wa Sahlan" Festival at Mena House Oberoi. Musicians take private or semi-private classes at the College of Arabic Music.

Friday July 4: Take bus from Cairo to the Northern Shore. Day at leisure. Swim, snorkel, relax.

Saturday - Sunday July 5 -6: Two full day excursions to Alexandria. Visit Montaza, Alexandria Library, Fort of Quit Bay, Anfushi Tombs, Pompei's pillar, the Graeco-Roman Museum and much more. This is Hala's home town, so we'll go to town, literally :-).

Monday July 7: Back to Cairo. Check in hotel. More shopping. Dinner aboard a Nile cruise boat with a dance show and Tannoura dance (whirling dervish).

Tuesday July 8: Check out and transfer to the airport for a flight back to the USA.

Price :

Advance reservations must be received before April 8th 2008. A deposit of $500 is required with registration. After April 8th, 2008 the balance is due in full.

  • Total amount due by April 8th 2008 : $1829.00 per person.
Registration :

Space is limited (we take small groups). Please register early to avoid disappointment.
There are 3 easy options to register for this dream trip...

  • Online : register and guarantee your space today with our easy online form
  • Email : email for an email pre-registration form
  • Mail : print out our registration form, fill it in and mail it to Hala Dance with your check
What is included in the price :
  • All transportation within Egypt including optional group excursions.
  • 5-stars Hotel accomodation in double occupancy rooms. If you are traveling alone, we will arrange for you to share the room with someone of the same sex. Single supplement is also available for travelers who want private accommodations.
  • All breakfasts and specified meals. All entrance fees to museums,ancient sites, boat trips, sightseeing excursions as set forth in the itinerary.
  • Personal meet and greet service by our tour agency at Cairo Airport including assistance clearing customs and transportation to hotel and back on day of departure to the USA
  • Fully escorted for all included tour activities by a tour guide. You will have the services of knowledgeable English speaking guides on all included siteseeing tours in Egypt.
Not included in the price :
  • Specific dance and/or music classes attended during "Ahlan wa Sahlan" festival, you get to select those from a menu of classes offered and pay for them separately
  • Lunch and dinner unless included in a group event. Daily breakfast is included in the price
  • Cost of obtaining a tourist visa to Egypt, tips, gratuities, any taxes or fees either in the US or Egypt related to the import or export of goods for personal or business use
  • Air fare from your city in the US to Cairo and back. We will gladly assist you in obtaining cheap air fare once you let us know your exact itinerary.
  • Air travel, passport and visa fees, travel insurance, inoculations and vaccinations, any expenses prior to arrival in Egypt, meals not specified as being included, any beverage such as mineral water, soft drinks or liquor, room service, valet, laundry, telephone calls, tips to your drivers/guides and escorts which are not included and left to your discretion.
Related Links :
Frequently Asked Questions:

How much is the airfare?
Depending on where you are flying from. Many people have favorite airlines, frequent flyer miles, side trips to other places, special deals that they prefer to use so we leave airfare as an option. We'll be happy to arrange airfare for you if you let us know where you want to fly from and the dates of your departure and arrival (if they are different from the tour dates)

When will we know the class schedule for the "Ahlan wa Sahlan" Festival so we can select classes? How does it work and how much do they cost?
On the first day of the Ahlan wa Sahlan festival, June 27, we get the schedule, select classes and pay for them. They are $60 - $90 for master classes (3 hrs each) and $35 for folkloric classes (2 hrs each). They only accept cash (dollars & euros). There is a requirement to register for at least 3 classes total if you want to attend the festival evening shows.
The closing gala is $60. Some teachers sell videos and CDs. These are anywhere from $10 to $30 each.

How much should I budget for food/tips/extras?
Meals & tips:
Food is very cheap in Egypt and the exchange rate is currently $1 = L.E. 5.56. Breakfast is included and it's a full breakfast buffet with LOTS of food (so you can easily skip lunch). You can get a very good filling meal for the equivalent of $3 - $10. Tipping is not required and it's typically to round up the numbers.

Side trips & excursions:
We typically include optional side trips and excursions depending on the group dynamics and what people want to do. They range anywhere from $10 to $100 depending on the duration and what's involved (dance shows, extra desert safaris, extra shopping trips,...etc)

Completely up to your budget. With the exchange rate, you'll find LOTS of cheap good quality goods to buy. From costumes to jewelry to spices to everything else you can imagine. It's good to make a budget and stick to it

What if I arrive in Cairo at an inconvenient time? do I have to find my way to the hotel?
No matter when you arrive, you'll be met at the Cairo airport. That's why we need to know your flight details.

What airlines fly into Egypt?
Almost ALL major European and Asian airlines fly into Egypt.

Once paid and if I have to cancel, how much will I forfeit and what would be the final date to withdraw?
Final date to withdraw completely: April 8th.
After April 8th and before May 20th, you may find a replacement (someone else to go in your place and pay you the money). If an emergency happens and you absolutely have to cancel and cannot find any replacements, you forfeit $800 of the $1829.
As for the airline ticket portion, most travel agents will give you the option of purchasing travel insurance. You pay extra and if you cannot go for medical reasons, you get a partial refund (exact amounts vary depending on the airline). No refund will be allowed on unused tour services. In the unlikely event that it becomes necessary to change or cancel any part or all of the tour, we reserve the right to do so. If we cancel the tour a full refund will be issued.

Will my family be able to reach me when I'm in Egypt?
Yes, we provide you with the phone numbers of the places we are staying once they are booked. Internet email can be accessed in all the places we go to in Egypt so they can keep in touch with you by email as well.

What's the weather like in Egypt in June/July?
Very hot! It's best to bring light colored, cotton, baggy and loose clothes for the outdoors. Suncscreen and hats are highly recommended. The nights are cool and comfortable. Most Egyptians start going out after dark in the summer time and shops are open till 2:00am and later.
Because the summer is hot in Egypt, we spend the last part of the trip on the beach. The Mediterranean Shore is at least 10 degrees cooler than Cairo and we stay at one of the best resorts there right on the beach. In Cairo, all the dance activities are indoors in air-conditioned rooms. When we're outdoors, a hat, sunshades and sunscreen will do the trick. With all the new things to see and absorb, you won't have time to worry about the weather :-).

What kind of clothes should I bring with me? do women have to cover up?
You can dress pretty much the same way you would dress in public in the USA. You want to bring light cotton baggy clothes for the hot outdoors, fancy evening wear for the dance shows and parties at night, dance class attire for classes (all classes are in air-conditioned rooms), swim wear for the beach and the pool, hat, sunscreen, comfortable walking shoes and/or sandals (the streets are not always evenly paved) and only a very light jacket just in case. Very casual wear during the day and outdoors but you can get very fancy for the parties and dance shows if you so choose.

Will I be able to drink the water and eat Egyptian food?
Yes, all the hotels we stay at are top 5-star quality so their food and water are safe to eat and drink. You can buy bottled water and almost all western consumer goods everywhere in Egypt. When you eat outside tourist establishments, you might want to avoid raw vegetables and fruit that cannot be peeled. Our guides will be happy to assist you if you have any questions.

What other options are there besides a double room?
If you want a single room, it cost extra as follows:
In Cairo before and during the festival: $150 extra
Throughout the whole tour: $300 extra.
If you can find people to share a triple room with you, then the price drops by $25 per person.

When are lunch and dinner included?
Dinner is included in the Opening & Closing Galas of the festival and on our Nile Cruise on the last day. The Opening Gala is included but the Closing gala costs an extra $60.

How much does it cost to get a visa to Egypt?
The Egyptian visa costs anywhere from $15 to $20. It is highly recommended to get the visa BEFORE you leave the USA to avoid delays in the Cairo airport. It can take up to 1 month to get the visa so you want to apply ahead of time. Expediting it is possible but it will cost more. The Egyptian Consulate's website has detailed information about obtaining a visa.

Do you have other questions or concerns that are not addressed above? please contact us and we'll be happy to assist you!