PRIVATE EDITION - limited to 18 guests only.
This is the most exciting tour to Egypt ever offered. Visit the Land of the Pharaohs together with the most famous archaeologist in the world – Dr. Zahi Hawass. Meet the former First Lady of Egypt – Mrs. Jehan Sadat in the residence of Egypt's late president Anwar El-Sadat. Find out many amazing facts on archaeology from the Egypt’s Head of Antiquities – Dr. Mostafa Waziri, the person currently responsible for all the antiquities and archaeological sites in Egypt. With Archaeological Paths you will experience Egypt like no one else. You will stay in a 5-star hotel and on a luxury Nile Cruise ship, taste delicious local cuisine and embrace the unique Egyptian culture.
The Royal Tour offers private entrances to the entire Giza Plateau and Luxor Temple outside of opening hours. Only with us you will get exclusive access between the paws of the Great Sphinx, place closed to the public! Thanks to the special permission from the Minister of Antiquities you will discover the Tombs of the Pyramid Builders in Giza, an active excavation site. For the very first time Archaeological Paths will provide you with a camera permit. Thus, in the Valley of the Kings and in the Egyptian Museum in Cairo you will be able, at no extra cost, to take your own photos.
February 8-21, 2019
March 11-24, 2019
October 11-24, 2019
November 10-23, 2019
Dr. Zahi Hawass
There is no better person to lead you through the fascinating history of ancient Egypt than Dr. Zahi Hawass. For over 20 years he held all the keys to the Egyptian antiquities. First, as the Secretary General of the Supreme Council of Antiquities, and then as the Minister of State for Antiquities. During our tour Dr. Zahi Hawass will join our group for sightseeing of the most important sites in Egypt. Thanks to his experience and expert knowledge which he will share with us in front of the world's greatest monuments, you will learn the secrets of Egypt like no one else.
Moreover, you will take part in the private multimedia lectures by Dr. Hawass who will show you his latest and the most exciting discoveries made recently in Egypt! He will focus on his research, including the mysteries of Tutankhamun, the search for the grave of Queen Nefertiti, new findings in the Valley of the Kings, and the search for the tombs of Cleopatra and Mark Antony. Dr. Hawass will also discuss his work on the pyramid complex at Giza and include biographical anecdotes and personal experience gained during many years of his scientific activity.
Dr. Hawass: I invite you to join me with Archaeological Paths company to tour Egypt and to see the wonders of the pharaohs. I'm joining these tours. I will tell you about the discoveries that I made in the last 20 years. You will be able to visit many unique sites that actually very few people can see. I will take you to the Luxor temple at night while the temple is lit. We will enter between the two paws of the Sphinx alone and see the smile of the Sphinx. You will visit my great discovery, the Tombs of the Pyramid Builders. It is called the most important discovery of the 20th century because for the first time we could learn about the people who built the Pyramids. No one can tour Egypt like this. Except for you – when you come and join me. You’ll be treated like royalty. This is why we call it the Royal Tour!
Our 14-day itinerary has been carefully designed by Archaeological Paths' team in cooperation with Egyptologists and Dr. Zahi Hawass himself to provide you with a comprehensive tour throughout Egypt's fascinating history. We begin with the oldest monuments of the ancient Memphis necropolis and the Great Pyramids of the Old Kingdom. We continue the tour chronologically on the Nile cruise to discover the monuments of the Middle and New Kingdoms.
Starting from the ancient Thebes, today known as Luxor, we will see Karnak and Luxor temples, the great mortuary temple of Hatchepsut and the tombs of the Pharaohs in the Valley of the Kings. While sailing down the Nile we will visit breathtaking Edfu and Kom Ombo temples, and reach Aswan to discover the Philae temple beautifully located on an island. Finally, we will see the magnificent temple of Abu Simbel guarded at the entrance by enormous statues of Ramses the Great. The tour also includes a visit to the modern Cairo and sightseeing of the Grand Egyptian Museum.
Thanks to very special arrangements with the Ministry of Antiquities Archaeological Paths offers private access to Egypt's greatest monuments and sites closed to the public:
- the private entrance to the Giza Plateau (outside of opening hours)
- the private entrance to the Great Pyramid of Khufu (for our group only)
- the Great Sphinx enclosure (entrance to the Sphinx area, closed to the public)
- the Tombs of the Pyramid Builders at Giza (closed to the public)
- the private entrance to the Luxor temple (outside of opening hours)
The Royal Tour includes exclusive participation of our special guests:
- private sightseeing with Dr. Zahi Hawass
- multimedia lectures and Q&A sessions with Dr. Zahi Hawass
- a visit to the residence of Egypt's late president Anwar El Sadat and a lecture by Jehan Sadat, Egypt's former First Lady
- lecture by Dr. Mostafa Waziri, the Secretary General of Egypt’s Supreme Council of Antiquities
Archaeological Paths will provide you with a camera permit. This will allow you, at no extra cost, to take your own photos on sites where the permit is required:
- the Valley of the Kings, in 3 different tombs
- The Egyptian Museum in Cairo
This tour is once in a lifetime opportunity. With Dr. Zahi Hawass, Mrs. Jehan Sadat, and Dr. Mostafa Waziri as our special guests, your experience of Egypt will be unforgetable!
Day 1 - Arrival
Arrival at Cairo International Airport. A representative of the Archaeological Paths will welcome our guests at the airport and transfer them to a luxurious 5-star hotel in Giza, situated near the pyramids. After the check-in at the hotel our guests will have time to relax and then enjoy their dinner in the hotel's restaurant. Overnight stay at the hotel.
Day 2 - Saqqara & multimedia lecture with Dr. Zahi Hawass
After breakfast, there will be an organizational meeting with the Archaeological Paths’ representatives. During our first day of sightseeing we will go to Saqqara to see the Step Pyramid of King Djoser. It was constructed 4700 years ago by the legendary architect Imhotep and was the first pyramid ever built by the Egyptians. "Maybe this is the most impressive place on Earth. The birthplace of architecture" – Dr. Zahi Hawass. This over 200 feet high monument is the oldest pyramid in the world! Nearby the pyramid we will visit the tombs decorated with impressive reliefs and paintings. Our sightseeing will end at Saqqara with a visit to the Pyramid of King Teti which boasts one of the oldest pyramid texts ever discovered.
In the afternoon we will return to our hotel to welcome Dr. Zahi Hawass who will give the first of his multimedia lectures. He will summarize 20 years of his work on the Egyptian antiquities. He will focus on his research, including the mysteries of Tutankhamun, the search for the grave of Queen Nefertiti, new findings in the Valley of the Kings, and the search for the tombs of Cleopatra and Mark Antony. After the lecture, our special guest will answer your questions. Next, Dr. Hawass and all our guests will take part in a special dinner held in the hotel’s restaurant.
Day 3 - Dashour, Memphis & Pyramid Builders' Tombs with Dr. Zahi Hawass
After breakfast, we will go to Dashour to see two pyramids built for Pharaoh Snefru which belong to the oldest, largest, and best preserved in Egypt, built between 2613 and 2589 BC. The Bent Pyramid answers many questions on how the Egyptian pyramids evolved. Its unusual angle makes it one of the most unique and recognizable pyramids in Egypt. During its construction Egyptians changed its angle. Perhaps because of the awkward angles in the Bent Pyramid, Snefru ordered to build another one nearby, and so the Red Pyramid that we will have a chance to enter is the elegant precursor to the Great Pyramids at Giza.
After visiting the pyramids, we will see the ruins of Memphis, the former capital of Egypt. In Memphis we will stop at the museum to admire a giant statue of Ramses II (about 35 feet in length) carved from monumental limestone.
After lunch you will visit another great attraction available just for our company's guests. Together with Dr. Zahi Hawass we will visit the Tombs of the Pyramid Builders at Giza (2500 BC). It is one of the most important discoveries made by Dr. Hawass over the course of his career. The Pyramid Builders' Tombs are closed to tourists due to the ongoing archaeological excavations, however, our company has received a special permission to enter this area together with Dr. Zahi Hawass.
Dr. Hawass: I will take you to see my great discovery, the Tombs of the Pyramid Builders. It is called the most important discovery of the 20th century because, for the first time, we could learn about the people who built the pyramids. Thanks to this visit you will know how the Ancient Egyptians built the pyramids. It was my dream to discover the tombs of the workmen who built the pyramids at Giza. I always say that this discovery is even more important than the tomb of King Tutankhamun, because there we found mainly gold, but the tombs of the Pyramid Builders reconstructed our history. It is an extremely important discovery, because it shone a new light on the Ancient Egyptian civilization.
Day 4 - Giza Plateau with Dr. Zahi Hawass & special lecture with Mrs Jehan Sadat.
In the morning, when the entire Giza Plateau remains closed to all other tourists, Archaeological Paths’ guests will have an exclusive access to this iconic site. Thanks to a special permission from the Ministry of Antiquities you will see both the three Great Pyramids and the Great Sphinx privately. These monuments were built around 2500 BC by the pharaohs of the Old Kingdom.
Dr. Zahi Hawass will be waiting for us between the huge paws of the Great Sphinx. Other tourists can see the Sphinx from an observation terrace from a distance, but our special permission will let us enter the Sphinx enclosure which is always closed to the public. Dr. Hawass will tell us about his research on the Great Sphinx and the mystery of the Pyramids. We will also have a chance to learn about the newest project on scanning the Great Pyramids in search for hidden chambers which is run under the direction of Dr. Hawass. Dr. Hawass: You will hear about the secret doors in the pyramid. You will hear about tunnels under the Sphinx. You will know, for the first time, how the pyramids were built!
Next, we will have private access inside the Great Pyramid of Khufu, the only one of the seven wonders of the ancient world that is still standing today. What is more, the guards will open two additional chambers for us which are normally closed to the public – the Queen’s chamber and the Subterranean chamber. After sightseeing the Great Pyramid you will be granted a special admission to enter the Solar Boat Museum where you will see the Khufu's boat that symbolically helped the pharaoh to go from the living world to the afterlife.
Another highlight awaiting us on that day will be the meeting and lecture by Egypt's former First Lady Mrs. Jehan Sadat at her home located by the Nile River. It will be a unique opportunity to see the residence of Egypt’s former president - Anwar El Sadat. Madam Sadat who effortlessly advocates for her husband’s ideals of peace will tell us about her life as the First Lady, the world’s current situation, and about her lifelong goal – the world peace. After the lecture, Madam Sadat will answer all of your questions. The meeting will allow you to understand Egypt's modern history better and to get to know the most distinguished Woman of Egypt in person. Madam Sadat will also invite you for a treat in her home.
Mrs. Jehan Sadat: I invite you to my home to see where president Sadat used to live and meet the leaders of the world. You will see a part of history. We lived here for more than forty years. I would love to speak to you about my life and our work for peace. It's a legacy which I'm very proud of. When you go to Egypt, you have to take a tour with Dr. Zahi Hawass. He is the best in our country to have with you on your trip and to tell you about the history of Egypt. Nobody can say it better than Zahi Hawass. You will enjoy your stay here and, believe me, you will come back again. You have to visit Egypt!
Mrs. Jehan Sadat is a world famous figure, the wife of Anwar Sadat the late Egyptian President and the Nobel Peace Prize winner. Egypt's Former First Lady has devoted her life to public service and supports many initiatives to improve the life of Egyptian citizens worldwide. She has promoted literacy and founded Egypt's Wafa Wal Amal (Faith and Hope) Society for handicapped war veterans and civilians, the first and largest rehabilitation center of its kind in the Middle East. Her mission today is to maintain her husband’s legacy and keep his memory alive, so the future generations will know that Egypt’s President Anwar Sadat was a man of peace. At the same time she continues to deliver her own views on civil rights and importance of the family. She has become an outspoken advocate for peace in the Middle East and worldwide. She is a recognized hero of anti-war initiatives globally who highlights the issues of primary education for the Muslim youth to empower them by providing sufficient tools, knowledge and competence.
See the video below showing our guests admiring the Egypt's most important site with us - Giza Plateau outside of opening hours. See how our guests enjoyed the Great Sphinx with Dr. Zahi Hawass and meeting Egypt's First Lady - Mrs. Jehan Sadat. Enjoy watching and join us in Egypt!
Day 5 - Flight to Luxor - Karnak temple & special lecture with Dr. Mostafa Waziri, Egypt's Head of Antiquities
In the morning we will fly from Cairo to Luxor. In Luxor we will check-in on a luxury 5-star cruise ship, our floating hotel. This 8-day Nile Cruise features various stops and site visits including all the most impressive monuments from the time of the Pharaohs. Our 5-star Deluxe Nile cruise ship offers modern sun deck, pool, spacious lounges, bar, gym, spa, open-air and fine dining restaurants. So, there will be plenty to do while sailing. Cruising the Nile on such a luxurious ship is always one of the best memories our tour participants take with them home from Egypt. At the same time cruising is the most convenient and comfortable way to travel from one place to another.
On that day we will visit the famous Karnak temple. It is the largest temple in the world. Located on the east bank of the Nile, in the neighborhood of a sacred lake, Karnak was not a single temple but a complex of temples, halls, enclosures and obelisks. For over two thousand years from Middle Kingdom (ca. 2040–1780 BC) to Greco-Roman times (ca. 332 BC to 400 AD) it was continuously modified, expanded, and rebuilt.
During the visit you will be joined by Dr. Mostafa Waziri, Egypt's Head of Antiquities. Dr. Waziri as the Secretary General of the Supreme Council of Antiquities is responsible for all the archaeological sites in Egypt. He will meet you at the Karnak temple complex and introduce you to the archaeological discoveries that have been made in Egypt recently. He will also share the current research news and plans for the future with you.
Dr. Waziri: I know that you are different from everybody else. I’m going to call you the lovers of Egypt. Come and visit Egypt. No country in the entire world can compete with the culture and heritage that we have in Egypt. What you can see above the ground in Egypt does not represent more than 40% of what may still lay hidden underneath the sands of Egypt.
It will be my honor to give a lecture to explain recent work and discoveries in Egypt. I’m very proud that I have joined different archaeological missions. We have a lot to discover every year. Some of our new discoveries are already published, and some are not. So it is going to be my turn to explain what we discovered in the last couple of years, last couple of months and even last couple of days. That’s what I’m going to present during this tour. Come and visit Egypt and you will never forget this tour for the rest of your life. Come, the lovers of Egypt.
Day 6 - Valley of the Kings
After breakfast we will start sightseeing of the west bank of Luxor. Our tour will start with a motor boat ride across the Nile to see the highlight of Luxor – the Valley of the Kings.
The Valley of the Kings, located on the west bank of the Nile in Luxor, has been the royal cemetery for 62 Pharaohs. There, we will access some of the most renown tombs. Our visit will also include the admission to the King Tutankhamun’s tomb. Undeniably, the valley is one of Egypt's most important treasures. What is more, Archaeological Paths will provide its guests with a camera permit allowing them, at no extra charge, to take photos.
When we return to the ship the rest of the afternoon will be free for leisure. Our guests can enjoy the sundeck and the stunning views of the Nile landscape while sailing to Edfu.
Day 7 - Edfu and Kom Ombo temples
In the morning, our cruise ship will take us to Edfu to see its marvelous temple. The Edfu Temple is the best preserved ancient temple in Egypt dedicated to the falcon god Horus. It was built in the Ptolemaic period between 237 and 57 BC. When we return to the ship we will cruise towards Kom Ombo where we arrive in the late afternoon.
We will visit the Ptolemaic Kom Ombo Temple. It was built during the reign of King Ptolemy V (ca. 205 to 180 BC). The Ptolemies constructed the Temple of Kom Ombo to worship the two gods, Sobek – the crocodile god and Horus – the falcon god. After visiting the site we will return to the ship for dinner and then we will start sailing south towards Aswan.
Day 8 - Aswan
After breakfast, we will start the sightseeing of Aswan. Our day will begin with a drive to the Unfinished Obelisk which is the largest known ancient obelisk and is located in the ancient stone quarry. It is nearly one third larger than any ancient Egyptian obelisk ever erected. If it were finished, it would have measured around 140 feet and weighed nearly 1200 tons.
Next, we will take a motor boat ride to the Temple of Philae beautifully located on an island and dedicated to Isis the goddess of health, marriage, and wisdom. Philae was considered as one of the burial places of the god Osiris, so the island was a sacred place for Ancient Egyptians. The temple consists of monuments from various times extending from the Pharaohs to the Caesars.
After returning to the ship and having lunch we will relax while cruising the Nile by a motor boat to the Nubian village. Small boats will take us through the narrow passages of the Nile. Before we arrive to meet the local Nubians to visit their houses and experience their way of living, we will admire the beauty of Egyptian nature and stunning views on the Nile.
Day 9 - Abu Simbel
The second day in Aswan will start with a journey to the majestic Abu Simbel Temple. The temple is one of the most imposing, impressive, and iconic symbols of Ancient Egypt alongside the Great Pyramid and the Great Sphinx. Abu Simbel temple was originally carved out of the mountainside during the reign of Pharaoh Ramesses II in the 13th century BC as a lasting monument to himself and his queen Nefertari.
Day 10 - Sailing back to Luxor & the temple of Luxor with Dr. Zahi Hawass
In the morning our cruise ship will leave Aswan and head back to Luxor. You will have a relaxing day to spend on the beautiful sundeck while sailing. You will admire and enjoy the views on the Nile: flourishing green areas, desert in the distance, farmers at work, and picturesque villages. Our guide will be available on the sundeck to answer all the additional questions you may have.
We will reach Luxor in the evening. Dr. Zahi Hawass will come on board to welcome us. You will be able to share your impressions with Dr. Hawass during the dinner.
Next, we will have the extraordinary privilege to visit Luxor temple privately with Dr. Zahi Hawass. Thanks to a special permission from the Minister of Antiquities we will enter the temple outside its opening hours. The temple will be beautifully lit just for our group! Dr. Hawass will tell us more about his archaeological research and his discoveries in Luxor.
Luxor temple is one of the most beautiful Ancient Egyptian temples located on the east bank of the Nile. The city known today as Luxor (ancient Thebes) was founded in 1400 BC. For centuries Thebes was the capital of Ancient Egypt.
Day 11 - The Temple of Hatchepsut, Colossi of Memnon, Deir el-Medina
Another very exciting day in Luxor will start with a visit to the temple of Queen Hatchepsut and Deir el-Medina with the tombs of the workers who built the Valley of the Kings.
- Temple of Queen Hatchepsut, Deir el-Bahari
The Temple of Deir el-Bahari is one of the most characteristic temples in Egypt. It was built of limestone not sandstone like most of the other funerary temples of the New Kingdom. Hatshepsut was the first queen to rule over Egypt in ancient Egyptian history (ca. 1473 to 1458 BC). Although many people, including royal family members, objected the idea of having a lady ruling over Egypt she, through her many achievements, proved them wrong. Hatchepsut became one of the most important and successful rulers of Egypt.
- The Colossi of Memnon
The Colossi of Memnon are two massive stone statues of Pharaoh Amenhotep III. They have sat in the Theban necropolis across the river Nile for 3400 years. The original function of the Colossi was to stand guard at the entrance to Amenhotep's memorial temple – a massive cult center built during the pharaoh's lifetime, where he used to be worshiped as a god-on-earth.
- Deir el-Medina
It is a worker’s village (now an archaeological site), home to the artisans and craftsmen of Thebes who built and decorated the royal tombs in the nearby Valley of the Kings and Valley of the Queens. Deir el-Medina is one of the most important archaeological sites in Egypt because it provides a wealth of information on everyday life of people who used to live there.
Day 12 - Flight to Cairo, multimedia lecture with Dr. Zahi Hawass
We will fly back to Cairo. After lunch and free time we will take part in the second multimedia lecture by Dr. Zahi Hawass. He will take us again on a fascinating journey of research and excavations he has conducted in Egypt over the last 20 years. He will also discuss in more detail his plans on the new great findings and forgotten artifacts. The lecture will also be a summary of your Royal Egypt Tour. After the conference, there will be time for questions and discussion. Next, Dr. Hawass and all our guests will take part in a dinner held in the hotel’s restaurant.
Day 13 - Tour of Cairo
After breakfast, we will start the sightseeing of Cairo, the capital of Egypt. We will visit the Egyptian Museum in Cairo - one of the most important museums in the world. It contains the world’s largest collection of pharaonic antiquities. We will see the famous Tutankhamun exhibition with the golden mask of the boy king. The visit will also include the additional admission to the Royal Mummy Room that holds mummies of the greatest and most important kings of Egypt. During a visit to the Egyptian Museum Archaeological Paths will provide you with a camera permit that will allow you to take your own photos inside the museum!
After lunch we will drive to the Saladin Citadel and Mosque of Muhammad Ali. The Saladin Citadel which dates back to the twelfth century is an Islamic fortress built to unite the city and protect it from Christian crusaders. The Mosque of Muhammad Ali was built on the summit of the citadel in the first half of the nineteenth century.
In the evening, during our farewell dinner, we will celebrate the two weeks of our exciting adventure.
Day 14 - Departure from Cairo or *1-day add-on to Alexandria
It is the last day of our tour and time to say goodbye to Egypt. After breakfast we will transfer you to the Cairo International Airport. You will leave Egypt with new experiences, memories and beautiful photographs. Archaeological Paths will do everything to ensure that its guests will have the time of their lives during this once-in-a-lifetime tour.
*For the clients who would like to prolong their stay in Egypt, we organize a special 1-day add-on to Alexandria. Its price includes one additional night in our hotel in Giza (day 14/15). The add-on tour to Alexandria is a one-day tour. It will start early in the morning after breakfast with a 3-hour drive in an air-conditioned bus from Cairo to Alexandria. There, we will visit all the major sites including the Library of Alexandria, the catacombs of Kom ash-Shuqqafa, the harbor of Alexandria, and the place where the famous Pharos Lighthouse was once standing. The lighthouse was one of the Seven Wonders of the Ancient World. In the evening we will return to our hotel in Cairo for overnight stay.
Optional Israel & Jordan Add-ons
If you would like to see more than just one beautiful country during your journey abroad you can join our add-ons. Before your Royal Egypt Tour we offer a 5-day pre-tour to Israel, the Holy Land. After the Egypt tour, you can fly with us to Jordan for a 5-day post-tour which includes the legendary city of Petra, beautiful Wadi Rum Desert, and the Dead Sea. Contact us for details.
- ISRAEL 5-day add-on (Pre-tour, before the main Egypt tour): Explore the City of David and the ancient desert fortress of Masada. Discover Jerusalem through the eyes of Jews, Muslims, and Christians. See the birthplace of Jesus Christ and delve into the story of the sacred land to all religions. To see our Travel Brochure for Israel add-on CLICK HERE.
- JORDAN 5-day add-on (Day 15-19, after the main Egypt tour): The tour includes the legendary city of Petra, a UNESCO World Heritage Site and beautiful Wadi Rum Desert with mysterious prehistoric petroglyphs and ever-changing landscape of otherworldly rock formations. You will take a relaxing dip in the Dead Sea and visit Mount Nebo from which Moses saw the Promised Land. To see our Travel Brochure for Jordan add-on CLICK HERE.
Price per person:
11 985 USD for double room (deposit is only 1600 USD during booking!). If you are traveling alone, you can share a room with other tour participant. If you would like to have a single room, the single supplement costs an extra 1270 USD.
- $1600 deposit during booking.
- Full payment is due two months before the tour.
Group limited to 18 tour guests; Dr. Zahi Hawass as our special guest; Five Star Accommodation - 6 nights in Five Star hotel in Giza (near the Great Pyramids), 7 nights onboard a Five Star Deluxe Nile Cruise Ship; Domestic flights during the tour (Cairo - Luxor; Luxor - Cairo); 3 meals a day – breakfast, lunch and dinner; All sightseeing tours; bottled water during the sightseeing; English speaking guide; English speaking tour leader; Transfers in air-conditioned buses; Reception at Cairo International airport; Airport Arrival & Departure transfers; Government taxes; Private entrance to the Great Pyramid of Khufu; Private entrance to Luxor temple; Special entrance to the Sphinx Enclosure; Special entrance to the Pyramids Builders Tombs at Giza; Health Insurance (to download the Terms and Conditions of travel insurance click here).
International flights to/from Cairo in Egypt (we can help you with booking); Visa cost (visa is only $25 and issued on arrival at Cairo airport).
In order to book your place on our Royal Egypt tour you should download the registration form: CLICK HERE. Please, print it out; fill in and sign; then scan and send to our e-mail address. You can also register online. Click below on Book Now button and follow the instructions.
Next, make the deposit payment to book your place on the tour. Since the number of places is limited, we encourage you to book this tour as soon as possible. Please, contact us if you have any questions.
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USA phone: 917-719-1974
UK phone: +44 (203) 026 65 03
Other countries: +1 917 719 19 74
Telephone: the phone contact is available 5 days a week – Monday to Friday – during our office hours: 8am-4pm EST (Eastern Standard Time/New York Time).