Egypt is not just about the Pyramids and their grandeur and all that comes with their history and their tale in time. The country is the cumulative history of civilization and its build up for thousands of years. It is a combination of histories of not just the Egyptians but the first Greeks and Jews as well. The country of Egypt in all its ancient flamboyance goes beyond the boundaries of the pyramids of Giza and into other cities that flank the Nile. There are a few more places to see and experience in Egypt that most touring agencies won’t take you to, but I can bet my money on these because they will provide you with experiences like no other.
Luxor and Karnak:
Egyptian cities have an aura of mystery to them anyway and the cities of Luxor and Karnak are excellent examples of the same. Luxor and Karnak have the most beautiful temples for the Egyptian gods that the people of that civilization couldn’t imagine life without because that time, life wasn’t just life but death was a major part of life and hence the belief in the afterlife and the gods leading the pharaohs through that phase. This belief and such a system can be seen totally backed by, at the temples in Luxor and Karnak, in the south of Egypt. The temples at Luxor and Karnak are not just architecturally aesthetic or pleasing to the eye but they are brilliantly executed for that time and they have a lot of symbolism as they are a place where the god Amun Ra of the ancient Egyptian faith was worshipped. These temples were made by a lot of pharaohs over the years and the fact that they are still standing and in a good condition is a commendable effort in itself and that is why any tourist still feels the greatness of those times. Standing among the pillars as one dares to click pictures of all the pillars towering oneself, one gets the feeling that human life is small and the afterlife and the world of the pharaoh is larger than life and hence should be carved in stone, their stories told in an eternal fashion.
The Valley of the Kings and the Temple of Queen Hatshepsut:
The Valley of the Kings is a mass burial site and has been recently uncovered due to archaeological findings. These graves or rather, tombs were being looked for, for the longest of times and when they were finally found, it was a surprise to have found them all in the same place. All great rulers of most of the dynasties were buried in this location and hence the name, The Valley of the Kings.
The best way to view the valley though, is from the top and hence, the authorities have done a pretty decent job of setting a service up like no other. They have a hot air balloon service. This is actually the best and the most adventurous way to view the entire landscape but the view, is guaranteed the best you’ll ever see. The beauty of the view and the thrill of the ride is a whole new experience in itself and hence, cannot be missed. The pilots who fly the balloon inform you about the view that you are looking at and the rising sun compliments it all as you see the Valley of the Kings wrapped in a golden hue. This ride truly is the one to consider and even though a little heavy on the pocket, it guarantees a surreal experience.
The Temple of the great Queen Hatshepsut, who was a queen-king to be honest, still stands and is unbelievably beautiful. The queen’s son did destroy most of the huge sculptures in an act of pure revenge yet the main structure and the sanctum sanctorum still stand, aweing us all to this day. The Temple marks the shifting times in history where women like Hatshepsut took control and was an iconic ruler and inspiration for women all around. Though her original identity was always under a mask because of the male dominant society, she still ruled and conquered and negotiated like a proper and smart ruler and hence is still an icon for women and her temple is a source of inspiration for young girls.
The port city of Alexandria is one of the most scenic ones in the country. It has the world’s biggest library and hence, has records going centuries back. Alexandria, does have an influence of the Greeks and their architectural style and hence the name too. The city and the sea link of sorts that it has is the perfect material to go for a drive on any day. The weather in Alexandria is also almost always good. The people are not just native Egyptians but people from all over the world come here to study and stay because of the way the city is. The vibe of Alexandria is different compared to the other traditional cities. It is modern and is more culturally sound and accepting.
Raas El Barr:
A lot of people don’t know about this little town which is present on the road to Alexandria, which is the Cairo-Alexandria desert road, by the way. This place is geographically very important as it marks the meeting of the Nile with the Mediterranean Sea. This town is a small, drowsy town and the only attraction might be the meeting of the river and the sea and the lighthouse. But early mornings at Raas El Barr are truly unreal. This is a place every person going to Egypt must go to and explore because if looked carefully, it has a lot to offer.
So we come to an end with the Egypt chronicles. But don’t you worry, the country has a lot more than this to offer the one who decides to travel and explore this ancient and mysterious land if he must, upon his will.