Port Said Overview by Horse-Drawn Carriage
Transport in Horse-drawn Carriage
Tour Participation Requirements
Connecting the Mediterranean Sea to the Red Sea has been the quest of pharaohs, kings, and conquerors for centuries. There are tantalizing clues to an ancient "Canal of the Pharaohs," which, unlike the modern and direct canal, wound its way across the desert to the Nile and then to the Mediterranean. It's said that Cleopatra sailed it in style.
The vision for the modern canal began with Napoleon Bonaparte after he conquered Egypt in 1798. But his surveyors miscalculated when investigating the canal's feasibility, showing the Red Sea to be at least 30 feet higher than the Mediterranean. That locked up plans until 1854, when the Suez Canal Company was formed and planning got underway.
Port Said celebrated the grand opening in 1869. Despite a $100-million price tag, labor shortages, a cholera outbreak, and ongoing political disputes with the British, the 101-mile-long canal was finally open. You'll see the famous waterway that forever changed international shipping by cutting out the long and hazardous voyage around Africa's southern coast.
As your GoBe guide tells you, the Suez story isn't over. The canal is a major source of revenue for Egypt, with tolls from about 50 ships collected every day (that adds up to around $5 billion annually). A new and ambitious expansion plan is enlarging the canal – and its revenues, which are expected to double by the early-to-mid 2020s.
This lady was finally put on a pedestal
In 1869, as the Suez Canal neared completion, French sculptor Frederic-Auguste Bartholdi envisioned a lighthouse to guide ships into the canal. He pictured a colossal 90-foot-tall woman holding a massive torch – an idea he couldn't sell to the Egyptian government. But he didn't give up. His vision eventually became a reality when the Statue of Liberty was unveiled in New York Harbor in 1886.
Full refunds issued for cancellations made 7 full days prior to the date and time of requested services. Cancellations made within the 7-day and 72-hour window will receive a 50% refund of purchase total. Purchases are non-refundable inside of 72 hours.