Although most people opt for a skiing trip in February, I think we'd had enough of all the snow in England that Egypt was a very welcome sunshine break! Most days consisted of getting up early in the morning (around 6am) to go and see the ancient temples and artefacts whilst avoiding the blisteringly hot desert sun. After lunch, we'd then return to our lovely little Nile cruise boat after lunch to soak up the sun. It's a hard life, I know.
I found that structuring the day like this was really beneficial because I was able to soak up as much as possible about the ancient world without being completely drained by the heat. Aside from that, I was absolutely taken aback by the sheer quantity of ancient artefacts: from beds to make-up, to diaries and love letters from thousands of years ago - mostly in great condition.
I am humbled and privileged to have been able to see hugely important parts of history because some people will live their whole lives without seeing them. For instance, there are currently plans to build a replica of Tutankhamen's tomb for tourists to visit because the water vapour from the tourists' breathing is creating too much humidity in the tomb. Having said this, at the moment there aren't many tourists because of all the political disturbances. Although this is creating huge financial problems for Egypt, we did enjoy the almost exclusive access and the lack of queuing!
The sphinx was a lot bigger than I expected!
|As you can see, its still possible to see even the colours that the ancient |
Egyptians painted on the temples, let alone all the carvings and hieroglyphs.
Who knew that paint could last so long?!
|Admittedly, we did stay a pretty luxurious hotel when we were|
in Cairo, for safety reasons more than anything of course! However, we really
enjoyed ourselves there - living the life of VIPs!
It seems that the situation is better in the South, for example in Luxor and Aswan. The banks of the Nile are lush and fruitful and the weather was great too. Although it is a poorer area, it was much more tranquil and beautifully rural but without the hustle and bustle of Cairo. There are millions of different aspects of the ancient civilisation to be seen, and it's a shame that the wonders of the ancient world have been suffocated by the hubbub of the industrialised modern day world.
Despite this, I think ancient Egypt would be the first place I would go to if I had a time machine...