One of our intrepid travellers, Huey, travelled on the 'Best of Egypt' 14 day accommodated trip which started on the 5th December 2010 in Cairo, and wrote us a daily diary! Here is the first part of her series of diary entries....
Day 1 - Cairo Meeting up with our tour leader, Dave, at Havana Hotel in Mohandisseen was a breeze - we got briefed about the paperwork required (travel insurance, passport copies etc) & met our fellow travelers over some beers & dinner - all ready to embark on the adventure of a lifetime together tomorrow!
Day 2 - Cairo (Egyptian Museum, Pyramids of Giza & Sphinx) The first day of the trip cannot begin in a better or grander way - the morning will be well-spent in the huge Egyptian Museum where some of the more important & famous artifacts & Pharaoh mummies are stored.
Our Egyptologist guide was invaluable in explaining the history background & stories behind the artifacts & major historical events of this ancient civilization where he gave us a quick lowdown on the key artifacts and a thorough introduction to the most important boy-king of all time, Tutankhamun. His various treasures & of course, his infamous 110kg pure gold death mask were all on display for us to marvel at.
Some of the other highlights at the museum are also the Royal Mummies Room (entrance LE100) & the Animal Mummies Room, which is very fascinating to see mummies from millennia back still in great state of preservation. After lunch, it is the moment all have been waiting for - the Great Pyramids of Giza! As we approached the Giza plateau, which is only at Cairo's city fringe, the amazement of finally seeing the giant structures cannot be described with words. As we walked towards the Great Pyramid of Khufu, the sheer scale of it all just kept us speechless as we pondered how ancient Egyptians had the intelligence, knowledge & means to put together such majestic structures which still remain standing after 4,000 years.
The camel ride across the Giza plateau where the Step Pyramid of Saqqara is visible from afar is also an experience not to be forgotten. Riding the camel which the people of the desert have used for centuries while approaching the Pyramids certainly made us feel like we've travelled back in time, to those ancient days where Gods & Goddesses were beyond divine, to inspire construction of the Great Pyramids.
We visit the Sphinx next, which is also equally awe-inspiring considering how it was carved out of one solid block of sandstone! Of course, with the Pyramids as its backdrop, our pilgrimage to the classic Egyptian icons were complete. However, there are many more amazing sights that await us for the next 2 weeks!
To find our more about overland trips in Egypt and the Middle East contact the OverlandingAfrica.com team or post your comments below.