Extremely famous for its pyramids, Egypt captivates the imagination with its intoxicating legends and myths which attracts travelers from all over the world to explore its beauty. One of the richest source of the ancient Egyptian history, the Valley of the Kings situated on the west banks of River Nile, opposite Thebes (modern Luxor), in the Upper Egypt, is the burial ground of many an Egyptian pharaohs (kings) from the 18th, 19th and 20th dynasties.
The intimidating rock cut tombs are an archaeological wonder and have their own stories and legends to share about the pharaohs of the New Kingdom period between 1550 – 1069 BC, who chose this isolated valley dominated by the pyramid shaped mountain peaks.
(image courtesy youtube.com)
Visiting the rock cut tombs with its ornate decorations is the highlight of the trip as you witness the painstaking effort that went into creating and preserving these wonders. Many thought that the 62 tombs discovered at the valley before 1922 were the only representation to be found n the valley, until a new tomb of a boy king named Tutankhamun was discovered in 2005.
PAINTING INSIDE KING RAMESSES III TOMB ( image courtesy pinterest.com )
Some of the best tombs to be visited are tombs of Ramesses vi, Ramesses iii and that of Horemheb.
TEMPLE OF HATSHEPSUT: One of the most extraordinary architectural achievement in Egypt, the Temple of Hatshepsut is a royal three tier mortuary temple built to honor Queen Hatshepsut.
TEMPLE OF HATSHEPSUT (image courtesy Memphis Tours)
A classic example of Egyptian architecture the temple took 15 years to complete. The temple is supported by a series of columns with the walls painted in colorful pictures of the queen in different stages of life. Dedicated to god Hathor, whose head with a cows ears is portrayed on some of the columns.
(image courtesy pt.dreamstime.com)
EYE OF HORUS: The Eye of Horus is an ancient Egyptian sky god which is a symbol of protection, good health and power. The Eye of Horus is in the form of a falcon with teardrop markings found below the eye. The eye represents goddess Wadjet who was intended to protect the pharaohs ( kings ) in their afterlife and ward off all the evils. Faith and belief in the Eye of Horus compelled the Ancient Egyptian and the Middle Eastern sailors to paint the symbol on the bow of ships to ensure that their sea journey was safe.
EYE OF HORUS (image courtesy Astral Light)
COLOSSI OF MEMNON: A mortuary temple located in Thebes in Egypt near the Valley of the Kings, from the New Kingdom during the 18th Dynasty is the Colossi of Memnon. The Colossi of Memnon is guarded by two majestic stone statues of about 20 meters in height, which are the only remains left of the ancient temple of King Amenhotep iii, which was destroyed in the massive earthquake that struck in 27 BC. The faceless rock giants have stood on the plain between the Thebes and the Valley of the Kings for the past 3,400 years.