Next day we visited the Valley of the Kings. Its really incredible…unfortunately, no pictures were allowed. It is in a barren area of mountains of limestone and absolutely no vegetation. But in this valley there are thousands of tombs buried…most of which have not been discovered yet. Several of these tombs have been discovered by mistake. When a new King takes power one of the first things they do is commission the creation of their own tomb…life after death was an obsession. They take years to carve into the mountain and they vary in size…but all have a long passage way from the entrance and several small chambers off the passage way that leads to the burial chamber. It is difficult to imagine the amount of work that went into these as all along the long passage way and in each chamber the walls and ceilings are covered in hieroglyphics that tells the story of the person buried in that tomb.
There was only one queen who had a temple built so we stopped and saw Queen Hatshepsut’s Temple. She had an awful step son who had here killed so he could rule and then he defaced everything that honored her.
After an exhausting day exploring Luxor, we packed and went to the train station to get onto our transport to the Aswan. At last, at about 7:45 pm, the train pulled up and we on board, squeezing through the narrow seat with 20 kg bags in tow and Egyptian men smoking in rail bogies like chimneys. We arrived at Aswan around 11 and was transferred to the hotel. The tour guide here convinced us to drop Abu Simbel trip as it was planned very early next day morning. Instead he managed to squeeze in Nubian museum, Philae Temple and High dam in the schedule.
Next day morning, we visited Nubian museum where we could see lot of ancient egyptian monuments including a mummy. Next stop was to Agilika Island to see the Philae Temple. This temple, was relocated as part of the Aswan High Damn project. We took the flight back to Cairo and next day morning was our flight to London.
Overall, Egypt was incredibly interesting! They are simply the greatest monuments I have ever seen. I doubt whether anything my generation build will be left standing and be admired in the year 7500 AD.
Life is never dull…unless you let it be!