This work describes a number of journeys made to different monastic settlements in the Thebaid and in Lower Egypt during the winter of 394-395 by a party of seven persons; the writer is one of them. Apparently, they went directly by the to Assiut (Lycopolis), which seems to be the southernmost site that they reached. They stopped at several monastic sites and visited many monks, especially in the district of Oxyrhynchus. They reported on such famous monks as and Apollo.

They visited Kellia and probably . The majority of scholars agree that Rufinus translated the Latin text of the monachorum in Aegypto from a Greek origin. Like the Lausiaca, this work served as a pilgrimage itinerary. It had a profound impact on the spread of the fame of throughout Europe. A number of versions in Syriac and Armenian had been preserved; in Coptic, only five leaves from a Sahidic codex have survived.