Luxor on the River Nile in Egypt is mysterious, historic and most of all bewitching. Once you visit you will be hooked on this city with its sense of early civilisation existing side by side with modern life.

The Nile offering the very lifeblood of the settlement and showcasing a way of life that has existed for thousands of years. Lively by day the night time brings a serenity, the evenings being the perfect time to relax and enjoy the sights as the sun sets over the Nile. Luxor offers all the culture you could ever want, amongst some of the friendliest people you could ever meet. Luxor is the holiday destination that will stay with you forever.

Overlooking the River Nile is the imposing grandeur of the five star Winter Palace. The interior is a haven of finery and marble, beautiful rooms and imposing corridors give this hotel a sense of the genteel times gone by. An iconic building, this hotel has stood the test of time to remain amongst the best in the city.

At the other end of the scale is the basic but clean and friendly Princess Hotel. Just five minutes from the main railway station this centrally placed budget hotel is a new build that is fast becoming the backpackers favourite. With a breakfast included in the unbelievably low price, this budget hotel with it’s lovely roof terrace is certainly one to check out.

For the best location head to the Maritim Jolie Ville Kings Island, located on Crocodile Island this hotel complex may be huge but it also has a sense of space, peace and calm. Everywhere you look the views are amazing. The Jolie Ville Hotel offers the perfect location to sip cocktails as the sun sets over the glorious River Nile.

The food tends to centre around seasonal wholesome dishes; garlic, olives, spices, fruits and nuts are year round staple ingredients with fresh fish also readily available. The unprocessed foods remind you that sometimes the best dishes are the simplest. Alcohol is rarely served in the local restaurants but is generally available when dining within one the plentiful hotels.

For an authentic dining experience visit the Salahadeen, part of the Sharia Salakhana Mara Hotel Complex. The twenty five dish aptly named ‘Feast’ banquet is the real taste of Egypt with customers encouraged to eat in the traditional way of using their hands rather than cutlery.The views from the Jamboree restaurant roof terrace on the East Bank are unmissable, serving inexpensive snacks the location more than compensates for any shortcomings in the menu.

The New Royal Fish serves excellent fresh fish. Simply grilled local fish served with rice or salad makes this is the restaurant of choice for the locals. Located on Sharia Televizyon this small restaurant is considered to be the finest fish restaurant in the city.

Take a trip across the Nile to visit the West Bank either on the local ferry of as part of an organised tour. The first sight that greets you is the twin Colossi of Memnon, these giants once standing at the entrance to the largest temple in the ancient city of Thebes – now no more than ruins. Further into the West Bank is where you will find the Valley of the Kings, with it’s magnificent tombs of ancient Royals. Each tomb is different with a sense of mysticism and of a culture buried in time.

Nobody should leave Luxor without having seen at least one Egyptian Mummy. The Mummification Museum in the city, not only has ancient Mummies on display, but it also has in depth information about the process and the tools used. Mummified animals are also prominently displayed as they were often buried in the tombs to accompany the deceased on their way to the afterlife. Absolutely fascinating if not a little grisly.

To really appreciate the views over Luxor, it’s isolation within the desert and the ever changing sand scape take an early morning hot air balloon trip. Readily available these short journeys give you a completely new perspective on the beauty of this ancient city.

As much of Egypt is desert the climate tends to be very hot and dry. The summers can be scorchingly hot with the midday sun best avoided. To soak up the culture the best time to sightsee is during the months of November to February although the temperatures are still high the evenings can feel quite cool and pleasant in comparison.

As a Muslim country Ramadan is always observed (usually during the month of July), travel at this time might be subject to certain restrictions and tourists are asked to be respectful in their dress.