Preview more pages from our Northern Africa Edition



OCT 26-30, 2008

Post Conference Tour Features Luxurious Upper Nile Cruise 

(September 12, 2008, New York, NY)… Egypt's bustling metropolis of Cairo, founded in the 6th century by Arab settlers and now a city of 16 million, will showcase its ancient sites as well as its modern pulse to delegates at the American Tourism Society's (ATS) Fall 2008 Conference, October 26-30.

The Egyptian Tourist Authority is hosting  ATS's first-ever conference in that country.

ATS Virtual Tour Previews Conference and Destination Egypt

Delegates to the ATS conference will be able to log on to the ATS web site ( and, for the first time, take a virtual tour of the conference venue &endash; this time, getting a taste of "Egypt &endash; Nothing Compares."

Phil Otterson, Executive VP, External Affairs, Tauck World Discovery and ATS President said  "We are pleased to debut this cutting edge website technology with the Egyptian Conference because the destination itself, and our conference headquarters at the brand new Sofitel Cairo El Gezirah Hotel, are so spectacular. We hope to heighten the excitement and interest of the delegates as well as attract new members through the Virtual Tour."  Don Reynolds, ATS Executive VP and Dave Spinelli, Global Web Solutions and an ATS Board Member, were responsible for creating the ATS website Virtual Tour.

"Egypt, although most famous for its ancient archaeological sites,  is also a constantly evolving destination, with new hotels, infrastructures and attractions, " said Sayed Khalifa, Director, Egyptian Tourist Authority in New York. "We are looking forward to having the opportunity to show the ATS delegates, even those who have visited Egypt previously, both modern and ancient Cairo, including our newly opened historical sites. We hope that this ATS conference will result in new and expanded tour programs to our country."

The ATS conference headquarters, the luxurious  5-star Sofitel Cairo El Gezirah Hotel, is located on the Nile and within walking distance of the Egyptian Museum.

Sightseeing Highlights for ATS Delegates

During the three -day conference, which will be jam-packed with key tourism industry sessions, conference delegates will also be taken to see some of the famous sights and sounds of Cairo, including  The Egyptian Museum, the Citadel of Salah El-Din, Mohammed Ali Mosque, the Khan El Khalily Bazaar, a shopper's paradise, and  the Pyramids and the Sphinx, part of a World Heritage Site region, and the only original Wonder of the World still standing. 

The Egyptian National Museum       

      A world-class museum, the Egyptian National Museum contains over       100,000 articles of jewelry, paintings, sculptures and other artifacts of the country's history. Especially noted for its holdings of ancient Egyptian art, the museum has invaluable displays from each era of Egyptian history.  A special tour for ATS delegates will enable them get a close look at many of the artifacts found in the King Tut Tomb, most of which have never been on display in the US.          

The Pyramids at Giza and the Sphinx                                                          

Over 4,000 years ago, the mummified bodies of three great Pharaohs were brought down the Nile and buried in the Giza Valley, now part of a World Heritage Site. It was believed that the Kings would then journey from there to the eternal afterlife. The largest and oldest of the three is Cheop's Pyramid, known as the Great Pyramid, the last survivor of the original Seven Wonders of the World. Kefren's Pyramid, is on higher ground with its limestone cap still intact. Mykerinos' Pyramid, the smallest of the three, makes up for its size with fine funerary and valley temples. Also part of the region named a World Heritage Site is the Sphinx, with the head of a lion and the body of a Pharaoh.

Post Conference Five-Night Product Development Cruise on the Nile

The ATS post-conference Product Development Tour will be a luxurious Nile Cruise. Delegates will have the opportunity to view  Egypt's splendors from the comfort of the deck, and then disembark to more intimately experience the unparalleled sights of these exceptional ancient cities.

Fly from Cairo to Luxor to board the river cruise boat M.S.Jasmin. In Luxor, the tour includes a visit to The Valley of the Kings, the majestic resting place of Tutankhamen and many other Pharaohs. The delegates will then explore  the vast ancient complexes of courtyards, colonnades, chambers and sites of temples that make up the Temple of Luxor, including the imposing Colossi of Memnon. Also experience the Temple of Karnak, which includes Hypostyle Hall, said to be the largest temple area in the world. It is also famous as the site of Queen Hatshepsut's 97 foot-tall obelisk.

The boat will make stops at Esna, to see the Temple of Edu, (the best preserved of all Pharonic ruins) and Komo Ombo, where the splendid temple of Komo Ombo is located, and finally to Aswan. 

In Aswan, a tour by felucca (small sailboat) around Elephantine Island, and the Botanical Garden provides yet another glimpse of Egyptian life and culture. The last day of the cruise ends with a tour of Aswan, including the High Dam (built by the Soviet Union after the US and Britain refused the project), the unfinished obelisk and the Temples of Philae, dedicated to the revered goddess Isis.

In Aswan, there is the option to fly back to Cairo and stay at the Fairmont Heliopolis or take another optional tour to Abu Simbel, where the famous temple built 3,500 years ago by Ramses is located. To save this marvel from inundation when the High Dam was built, the temple was cut into 2,000 pieces (about 40,000 tons) and moved 90 feet higher, then reassembled.

All ATS conference tours and land arrangements are being handled by Wings Tours, the official ATS Conference Ground Operator,

Egypt Air Takes You There

Egypt Air, the official ATS conference carrier, will be offering special rates for ATS delegates. As it enters a new era of expansion, Egypt Air is now a partner in the Star Alliance.

For more information on Egypt visit

About ATS - Bringing the World Together

The American Tourism Society (ATS) was established in 1989 by a group of US tourism industry executives.  It is a nonprofit, nonpolitical travel industry organization focused on transformational destinations, whose membership includes tour operators, hotels and resorts, international airlines, cruise lines, Government Tourist Offices, meeting and incentive planners, travel agents, tourism educators and public relations and marketing firms dedicated to promoting, developing and expanding high-quality, reliable travel between North America and the ATS destination areas: the Baltics, Central and Eastern Europe, the Mediterranean / Red Sea Region and Russia. ATS holds semi-annual meeting and trade shows hosted by different destination countries each year; has a website

For ATS Conference Registration and to take a Virtual Tour visit; for more information  contact Don Reynolds,  212.893.8111, Fax 212.893.8153;  email: