Tombs and temples in Luxor

Trip Start Apr 27, 2010
Trip End Ongoing

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Flag of Egypt  , Nile River Valley,
Saturday, July 31, 2010

We spent our first evening in Luxor on a romantic sunset felucca cruise up the Nile that didn't make me feel like a third wheel at all. We briefly stopped at a banana plantation, then made our way back down river as the sun went down.

The next day we took a motor boat down a few miles to visit the Karnak temple where we saw statues, hieroglyphs, and obelisks in various states... Some amazingly well preserved while others in rough shape.

Next up was the museum which was full of better preserved statues, many of which had been found in the nearby Valley of the Kings. Also cool were a couple mummies and some ancient bows and arrows. Unfotunately no cameras are allowed. After about an hour there we braved the heat again (45+) and made our way home.

The next day we headed out to the Valley of the Kings, an area where many tombs, some belonging to pharoahs, have been uncovered. Our ticket let us choose three to visit so we started with the one that had the most people. We finished there and decided that we would complete our ticket with the two furthest tombs away which were pretty much empty. This was good and bad - as much as I enjoyed not being surrounded by tourists, the empty tombs made us easy targets for the guys hanging around to show us prime picture spots then demand money.

The tombs themselves were fairly interesting although it would have been cooler if they still had more of the treasures that were found inside. The hieroglyphs were pretty sweet - it's amazing how much colour has remained. The best one I saw was walking snake that could fly and has four heads. Again it was too bad they don't allow cameras. Next up it was the workman's village for more tombs and ruins, then back home to cool off.

On our final day in Luxor we woke early to take a two hour camel ride alongside the river then back through the local village. It was pretty easy-going and I didn't find it uncomfortable until the last 15 minutes. The following night we took the overnight train to Cairo. Turns out our guide booked us on one that foreigners aren't allowed to take, but a friendly policeman made sure we got on without issue.
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