A Travellerspoint blog

SAFAGA, EGYPT

Red Sea Riviera


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Beautiful as the snorkeling is said to be in this area of the Red Sea, we left it all behind and embarked on a 12 hour excursion to Luxor and the Valley of the Kings. The farmers we passed along the canal live in mud brick houses and rely on their donkeys for transportation just as much as their ancestors ever did.

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Sugar cane is their chief crop – the extra stalks are dried and piled on roof tops to provide insulation from summer sun, and eventually extra fuel.

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Wow. Lunch on the banks of the Nile! The harsh mountains in the background, the lush valley and the ancient river, the riverboat and felucca sailing by – priceless!

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These guys are priceless, too. Actually, they were not. They don’t pose for free.

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Cameras are not allowed in the Valley of the Kings, the tombs of the Pharaohs. Believe me when I tell you that the paintings and the hieroglyphics we saw are incredible! We visited four of the tombs, all of which had been cleverly concealed to thwart grave robbers (not concealed enough, as it turned out).

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The Temple of Queen Hatshepsut is a short drive away. She was the only female pharaoh in history.

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Luxor dates back to 3500 BC. It was the richest city of the ancient world and the former capital of Egypt. We visited the Temple of Luxor with an expert guide, who is, justifiably, extremely proud of Egypt’s contributions to civilization.

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The raised relief of the 18th century BC – preserved by the sands of time and now uncovered for all the world to admire..

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Ed is standing on the road of the Sphinx. The “magic hour” of golden afternoon sun was the perfect time to visit the Temple area.

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As we left the ruins of antiquity, present day scenes leapt back into life. What a gift – to be able to see and appreciate both.

Posted by Swenigale 03:37

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