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Feluccas at Luxor

A felucca (Arabic: فلوكة‎) is a traditional wooden sailing boat used in protected waters of the Red Sea and eastern Mediterranean including Malta, and particularly along the Nile in Egypt, Sudan, and also in Iraq. Its rig consists of one or two lateen sails.

They are usually able to board ten-some passengers and the crew consists of two or three people. Despite being made obsolete by motorboats and ferries, feluccas are still in active use as a means of transport in Nile-adjacent cities like Aswan or Luxor. They are especially popular among tourists who can enjoy their quieter and calmer mood than motorboats have to offer.


San Francisco's feluccas

Feluccas at Fisherman's Wharf in 1891.

Americans are largely unaware of the fleet of lateen-rigged feluccas that thronged San Francisco's docks even before the construction of the state-owned Fisherman's Wharf in 1884. They were built by southern Italian immigrants (who called them "silenas"). The light small maneuverable feluccas were the mainstay of the fishing fleet of San Francisco Bay. "These workhorses featured a mast that angled, or raked, forward sharply, and a large triangular sail hanging down from a long, two-piece yard" as John Muir described them.

See also


  • Muscat, Joseph (2003) The Gilded Felucca and Maltese Boatbuilding Techniques. Pubblikazzjonijiet Indipendenza, Malta. ISBN 99932-41-45-8

External links


Travel guide

Up to date as of January 14, 2010
(Redirected to Felucca cruise on the Nile article)

From Wikitravel

This article is an itinerary.

A felucca ride is a great way to experience the life source of Egypt: the Nile.


A felucca is a traditional wooden sailboat and relies on wind and river currents for propulsion. It can be a slow experience, but that's half the point. All meals will be taken on the boat, and you sleep on the boat when night temperatures can drop dramatically.


The most convenient place to begin a felluca boat trip is Aswan. The felluca trip will be personally arranged with a boatman. They leave whenever they are available for your convenience. Contact the boatmen on the Corniche and make personal arrangements. It is best to have a sleeping bag with you to use to keep warm at night (this is especially important in the winter - it can be very cold at night) otherwise you can ask your boatman to help you purchase a blanket in a local market.

If you are a solo traveler, you can approach your hostel or a middleman on the corniche and ask to join a group. Be assertive that you will not ride with more than 8 people plus crew; anything more is going to be pretty tight for sleeping. Six or seven is preferable. The trip shouldn't cost much more than 60LE per night.

A possible better solution is to get three or four people together (ask around at your hostel) and approach the felucca captain directly. Make sure that you are dealing with the captain himself and not a middleman; many middlemen troll the corniche and act like captains. You will likely be able to negotiate a price that's better for everyone.

Ask to see the boat and decide for yourself whether or not you are comfortable with the boat and the captain. If you ask about the boatman from a hotel - they will take a commission, so it is cheaper to work directly with the boatmen.

The arrangements will include food, and transportation from Edfu to Luxor. The three day trip will include a tour of a Nubian Village, stops at Kom Ombo, and Edfu.

Get in

Bring a sleeping bag for sleeping on the boat, because it gets cold. Drinking water is a good idea, along with any other beverages or small snacks you may want. Sun screen is a good idea, as the sun on the water is intense even in winter.


The traditional felucca ride sails for three day and two nights to Kom Ombo, then minibus service runs to Edfu and on to Luxor. A one day trip on the felluca is possible, but it will only be a round trip, and a short visit to a local village. If you have a group together, you could also try a two-night trip to Edfu, or even more.

  • Captain Cook, +002 010 1333 855 (). Captain Cook, or Hamdy, is a friendly, Nubian felucca captain based in Aswan. He can usually be found around the New Abu Simbel Hotel. Even if you are not interested in taking a felucca cruise or a trip for a few hours, he is a good contact to have and very honest.  edit
  • Captain Habibi, +2 010 1194356 (). Captain Habibi is a reliable felucca captain based in Aswan. He can usually be found at the Isis Hotel on the Corniche.  edit
  • Captain JJ Jamaica, [1]. The most famous captain  edit

Stay safe

Bring xerox copies of your passport to give your fellucaman, they need copies to get a license from the police for taking tourists down river.

Get out

Transportation to Aswan from Luxor includes train, and airplane. Convoys have been eliminated, so travel is easier. Getting from your felluca trip to Luxor will be provided by your boatman. Sometimes travel from the river to Edfu is on local buses, which is lots of fun.

This is a usable itinerary. It explains how to get there and touches on all the major points along the way. An adventurous person could use this article, but please plunge forward and help it grow!

1911 encyclopedia

Up to date as of January 14, 2010
(Redirected to Database error article)

From LoveToKnow 1911

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