Saturday, December 04, 2010

THE VALLEY OF KINGS

LUXOR, EGYPT - FEBRUARY 2010

Visitors are not allowed to carry cameras to the Tombs' site. So, there is limited coverage of that part of the trip on the Valley of the Kings... We could think that the reason was that they would like to sell their own pictures and make some money out of that, which, of course, would be fair enough... No, there were no decent books of pictures to buy!! So, you keep the visual memories until your German friend (Alzheimer) attacks...


"MORNING BALLONS and the house of Howard Carter, the English archaeologist, noted as as the primary discoverer of the tomb of Tutankhamen"


"LAND OF THE DEATH - Tombs of Noblemen"


"HATSHEPSUT - Meaning «Foremost of Noble Ladies», was the fifth pharaoh of the eighteenth dynasty of Ancient Egypt and lived from 1508 B.C. through 1458 B.C. The Temple of Hatshepsut, located beneath the cliffs at Deir el Bahari on the west bank of the Nile near the Valley of the Kings, was designed by the architect Senemut and is dedicated to the sun god Amon-Ra"


"HATSHEPSUT - This was also the site of the Luxor Massacre that took place on 17 November 1997. Around 8:45 a.m., six assailants, armed with automatic firearms and knives, and disguised as members of the security forces massacred 62 people. With the tourists trapped inside the Temple, the killing went on for 45 minutes"


"PHARAOH"


"HAWK, HATHOR & THE SACRED COW"


"HEAD OF PHARAOH HATSHEPSUT - The Double Crown (North and South Egypt) and the traditional false beard have been stripped from the sculpture. It seems that many images portraying Hatshepsut were destroyed or vandalized after her death, allegedly «by Amenhotep II at the end of the reign of Thutmose III, while he was his co-regent, in order to assure his own rise to pharaoh and then, to claim many of her accomplishments as his» (Wikipedia)"


"HIGH RELIEF"


"PAINTINGS"


"HATSHEPSUT"


"HATSHEPSUT IN OSIRIAN POSES"


FACADE"


"THE COLOSSI OF MEMNON are two massive stone statues of Pharaoh Amenhotep III. Here we may see the left one as the one on the right was covered for restoration work"


"BACK TO LUXOR"

55 comments:

Trotter said...

Hi Everybody! As I mentioned it isn’t allowed to bring cameras inside the Valley of Kings; and they don’t have a decent book to sell... Thus there won’t be photos neither outside nor inside the tombs... During 500 years, Pharaohs and powerful Noblemen were buried there; for the time being, the most famous of the already known sixty three tombs is the grave of Tutankhamen, King Tut... We managed to control the long lines and visit four of the ten tombs that were open that day (18 of the tombs can be opened, but they are rarely open at the same time...). It was a terrific experience. Enjoy, drop a (much appreciated) line and have a great weekend!!

april said...

Wow, great. So you have seen all those wonderful statues and walls. Phantastic.

Sylvia K said...

Have always wanted to visit there, your photos, as always, are the next best thing! They're terrific! Thanks for sharing the beauty and the history! Have a great weekend!

Sylvia

Siddhartha Joshi said...

stunning images...so good to see these images. thanks for sharing.

am tempted to visit the place soon now :)

jen laceda said...

Thanks for sharing this! I love it when you pepper it with historical facts. Very interesting.

I do remember hearing in the news about the 1997 Luxor Massacre. It was a sad day for all of us.

SusuPetal said...

Hi Gil,

a time for reminiscing with your photos. It's hot in the Valley! And beautiful.

[G@ttoGiallo] said...

Paris weather being around 0-3°C... it feels good hopping to Luxor.

joo said...

Another place I would love to visit one day! Wonderful photos:)

Keats The Sunshine Girl said...

Fantastic pictures - I would dearly love to visit.

diane said...

What a shame no photos allowed of the tombs. The ones you have here are stunning. It is amazing that this is still able to be seen 1000's of years later.

leo said...

From Streets of Cairo to pyramids of khufu (and the sphinx of cos') to the pharaohs at Karnak and Luxor temple massacre. Ok I've made up for not visiting this site all these while :)It's like watching the Mummy and Transformer 2 all in one go. Yours is better definitely. As always awesome pictures and treasures. Where did I see similar statue recently ..oh yes - Universal Studio Singapore LOL, can't compete with the real thing!! Have a good week.

Lawstude said...

this is my kind of trip. i love the shots and i am sure there are more beautiful scenes that only your mind have captured.

Olivier said...

c'est vraiment impressionnant, j'aime beaucoup les photos avec les mongolfieres

eye in the sky said...

Hatshepsut is such a grand spectacle. And where were the hieroglyphics? Ah yes, no cameras inside.

"All things French" said...

I've just found your blog through Peter's Paris - & am so pleased .
I love travelling the world and learning the history and background of places - Bravo for your beautiful photos.
xx
Dianne

rochambeau said...

Hello Mr. and Mrs. T.
Thanks for taking us along. Your photographs of the tombs and the others of Egypt, reminds me that we are all just like little ants marching through time. Your photographs put Egypt into scale and give a new perspective.
Especially was nice to see the hieroglyphics!
xox
Constance

kasthurirajam said...

beautiful shots.

Cloudia said...

Aloha from Waikiki

Comfort Spiral

><}}(°>

Babli said...

Very beautiful architecture with marvellous sculpture. Spectacular shot. I would love to visit Egypt.
You are welcome at my new posts-
http://urmi-z-unique.blogspot.com/
http://amazing-shot.blogspot.com/

yyam said...

Wow! Lucky you! I would have love to visit! :)

Thanks for sharing the shots that you can take though...they are as always spectacular!!!:)

magiceye said...

that was a wonderful virtual tour of luxor
thank you

Nisha said...

There was no camera allowed, still you could manage with so many photos?
:-)

seema gupta said...

what an art and statues, just mind blowing. i would definately like to visit here. thanks for sharing

regards

hpy said...

This is indeed fascinating. And it may be good niot to have the possibility to take pictures. You have more time to look at everything this way.

Rajesh said...

Beautiful place. The carvings, sculptures and paintings are amazing.

indicaspecies said...

Your sense of humor about the Alzheimer attacks..haha..what can I say? Have a healthy and happy life Gil.

No pictures allowed inside the tombs, yet you have kindly posted so many other lovely pictures, thanks.

PS: I have taken that hot air balloon ride at dawn while in Luxor. It was wonderful!
~celine

Lynn@ The Vintage Nest said...

No camera or not, you did a fabulous capture! Did I see a scarab in the drawings? :)

Joseph Pulikotil said...

Hello,

I am fascinated and awed at the photos you have provided along with interesting information.

It looks like kings and queens and other influential people went out of their way to immortalize themselves despite the cost and effort and labor involved.They have left last a lasting impression on future generations to awe and wonder at the mighty things they did to impress the world by these gorgeous structures.

Best wishes,
Joseph

P.N. Subramanian said...

It was simply great. I could visualize every bit of it though I am yet to visit that great Country which beholds a great History.

Pietro said...

Hi Gil! A wonderful and unique tour, I've enjoyed a lot these nice pictures!
Have a very pleasant week ahead :-)

Ron said...

Very nice post. It's amazing how the monuments have stood the test of time.

A Lady's Life said...

Pretty amazing. I guess they want people to come to see for themselves so this way they make more money than from books and pictures.
I mean, you can't take it with you anyway.......or can you? Hmmm new philosophy topic.
I wouldn't mind a house built inside a mountain like that, so long as it didn't leak.lol

Cergie said...

Ma foi, tu as tout de même pas mal de photos et je ne crois pas que tu aies la mémoire qui flanche tant que ça... Si tu avais récolté du sable ? Tu aurais pu le faire dans tous les pays que tu as fréquentés.
J'aime beaucoup la statue toute bosselée et les restes de polychromie que l'on peut encore voir.

V Rakesh said...

Ah, the famed valley!

Imposing structures and impressive pictures! To think of how they built it back then - unbelievable!

Peter said...

As hpy says above, sometimes it would be good to forget the camera and just enjoy the moment. But, of course it would then be more complicated and time-consuming to transmit your impressions (writing, drawing...).

I'm happy a new friend found your blog via mine!

So, on the way back, heading for the Winter Palace?

Deslilas said...

C'est ecore plus fantastique que la section Egypte de notre Musée du Louvre qui m'avait beaucoup impressionnée quand j'avais dix ans.

alicesg said...

It's a waste not being able to take photos there. The place is so huge and beautiful. I guess one need a pair of good walking shoes.

lyliane said...

Ces photos me rappellent de merveilleuses vacances en 1992,avec ma maman.
Nous partons le 17 en Inde
Je vous souhaite de bonnes fêtes et à l'année prochaine.
Grosses bises.

BLOGitse said...

Great post again.
Greetings from snowy Helsinki. We have almost 50 cm snow now and the city is a mess but beautiful! :)
Don't know when back in Casa...more business to take care...Flu is better, my head feels like my own now :)

Mitr Friend - Bhushavali said...

You say these are 'Not much Photos'??? I relished it all so much!!! Thanks for the tour!!!
// until your German friend (Alzheimer) attacks...// - Lolz!!!!!
Nomads of Chennai
Fashion Panache - My 4" heels

Ash said...

Wonderful!!!

Pat @ Mille Fiori Favoriti said...

I am still amazed by the state of preservation of many of the tombs and statues, Gil. The paint traces on PHARAOH HATSHEPSUT's statue makes me imagine how it looked thousands of years ago.

M.Kate said...

Dear Gil, I was watching National Geographic yesterday and there was a show on Hatshepsut on how he changed the religious belief on praying to Amon-ra, their Sun king. This is such an interesting post and I tell myself that I must go visit this wonderful place one day! I think it is a must-visit for all.BTW, first time reading about a certain 'german' friend haha :) You are too funny, I dont think I like this German guy very much. Happy weekend.

juka14 said...

The Temple of Hatshepsut looks very nice, I'm very curious how it is inside. Hope I can see it one day.

Ola said...

great archeological experience. I belive the statues were renovated?

Trotter said...

Hi Folks! Maybe there was a misunderstanding here as the prohibition to carry cameras was effective only inside the Pharaohs tombs’ area and not on the grounds of the Hatshepsut temple; that’s why you still have pictures under the title Valley of Kings, which is much more tempting than the Temple of Hatshepsut, a name most people never heard of... ;)
Now, thank you for the comments! Thanks very much to the usual visitors that don’t give up (unlike, for example, Joy, Sue and Barb that left Blogtrotter Two alone :)), and also to the newcomers that shed light on this blog with their talent and intelligence...

Ingrid,
The paintings on the walls of the tombs are absolutely stunning; shame there is no chance to take a single picture!!

Sylvia,
It took me sixty years to get there, so don’t despair... ;) There will be always some time to make dreams come true...

Siddhartha,
If you have a chance, don’t miss... it will definitely be an amazing experience a trip to Egypt...

Jen,
If you show it just like that without the history it would be nothing more than stones and sand... ;).
The Luxor massacre was front page in almost all western newspapers and a great harm to travel to Egypt... Still nowadays you may see the measures that were taken to protect people visiting the site: actually there were guards equipped with machine guns on the top of the mountain...

Susu,
We were there in February, so the temperature was quite bearable; actually not more than 30º Celsius... ;)

G@tto,
Well, it seems you had some cold days over there for a while... We had lots of rain, some cold (+7º / +9º Celsius, minimum... which is cold for our standards... ;)) and even a tornado... This climate is getting crazy, and the anti-cyclone of the Azores is not fulfilling its job of protecting Portugal from the tropical storms coming from the Atlantic!! ;)

Joo,
With so many Poles going there every year, I’m sure you’ll be packing one of these days... But beware the sharks... if you go to the beach...

Keats,
You have surely been further away than you are; start packing: winter is the great season to get there... ;)

Diane,
It’s incredible how it managed to resist the elements... But the most incredible are actually the tombs, though many were robbed during the millenniums after the burial of the pharaohs... King Tut survived because he died young and it seems they lost control of the site of the tomb... But it seems that there are still other tombs to be discovered under the sand...

Leo,
Welcome back!! Now you had it all: Cairo, Pyramids, Sphinx, Karnak and Luxor... But there is still much more to come... ;). Thos guys are truly very good at fakes and stunts in Universal Studios, but nothing compared to the real thing, indeed... ;))

Trotter said...

Part Two:

Lawstude,
The best of it all were some of the tombs we visited; the paintings on the walls (the rest has been taken out either by robbers during centuries or by archaeologists more recently to place in museums...) were absolutely stunning!!

Olivier,
Les ballons d’air chaud (l’idée de les appeler montgolfières me semble un outrage à la mémoire du portugais Bartolomeu Lourenço de Gusmão, né au Brésil en 1685, qui a été le vrai père de l’aérostation…) étaient en air depuis le petit matin, mais je ne les ai pas pris car ça ne me semblait pas particulièrement intéressant… ;))

Eye,
There were hieroglyphs inside the tombs, but probably the most interesting are still to come in the next posts of further temples on the Nile River...

Dianne,
Thanks for your visit and first time comment here!! I’m glad to see that Peter’s blog further to being a huge success is also a source of visitors to Blogtrotter Two... ;)
If you love to travel the world, we are already two on the way... ;)

Constance,
That idea of little ants doesn’t please me too much... I think I would prefer some cicadas instead... ;).
I wonder where you managed to find hieroglyphs on this post. OK, here were some on the relief of the Pharaoh!!

Kasthurirajam,
Thanks for your visit and first time comment on Blogtrotter Two. Hope to see you commenting here often!!

Cloudia,
Aloha!

Babli,
Egypt is an easy destination; no trouble to get there, so start packing as the «good season» has just started... ;)
I will check your blogs; for nothing I would lose the chance to enjoy your new posts!!

Yvonne,
Lucky you are with all the talent and creativity that is embodied in you... I’m just travelling around, seeing items built by others... And some have neither your talent nor your originality... ;)

Magic,
My pleasure! There will be more free tours of the region to enjoy in the next posts on this blog...

Nisha,
OK! So, that is why I started by explaining where pictures weren’t allowed and where you had a chance to shoot... ;)

Trotter said...

Part Three:

Seema,
I’m glad you loved the post! As to visiting it there, you are probably closer to the location than I am... ;)

Hélène,
You raised an interesting issue. I had a friend that many years ago told me: «you can’t imagine how much I enjoy my trips now that I gave up photographing and filming... See much more things, and buy postcards to remember... I couldn’t make that step yet... ;)

Rajesh,
I probably wouldn’t use the word beautiful, except for the decoration inside the tombs, but it is definitely an impressive site; also for what it represents...

Celine,
Unfortunately, it seems we are spending much more money in investigating the way to keep men and women sexually active at the age of 80 and 90 than in the cure of Alzheimer. The small problem is that we’ll be perfectly fit; but we’ll have forgotten for what... ;)
I’m glad to hear that you enjoyed the hot air balloon ride; I was a bit concerned it could be some kind of tourist trap, as there was not much to see from above on that region...

Lynn,
I’m not sure there is a scarab on this particular post, but that wouldn’t be a surprise: the scarab was sacred in Ancient Egypt and usually linked to Khepri (known as "he who has come into being"), the god of the rising sun... All that also in Wikipedia!!

Joseph,
I’m glad you liked the post! By that time human dignity was a concept a bit away, to say the least, of everyday’s concerns and the existence of slave labour force was not an issue... No wonder that the powerful ordered whatever to their major glory...

P.N.Subramanian,
An incredible history and, in particular, a fabulous heritage of monuments of the glorious times...

Pietro,
I’m truly happy that you enjoyed the post! It is always good to see that the work one puts in anything made is worth while...

Ron,
It’s true that they stood there for some millennia... But sometimes they were covered with sand, so it was easier to preserve... ;)

Lady,
I’m not that sure; because if they had a good decent book to sell on the spot, people would have been there already (and paid for...), and then people would still buy the book as a souvenir, because the interior of the tombs (at least those I saw...) is truly awesome... ;)
A house like that would have too many rooms to clean... ;)

Lucie,
Mais les photos n’ont pas été prises à l’endroit des tombes, ni à leur intérieur… ;)
Pour la mémoire, je dois avouer quand même que ce n’est pas toujours facile à trouver la place où j’ai laissé mes lunettes… ;)
J’ai des amis, en fait amies…, qui récoltent du sable: elles en auraient assez là bas… ;)

Trotter said...

Part Four, and final for the time being...

Rakesh,
And deservedly so!! Fame is quite adequate for a place like that...
Amazing how they excavated that and how they managed to work deep in the tombs without electricity and without being able to burn anything deep inside due to the lack of oxygen... It seems they used a system of mirrors reflecting the sun light... Amazing!!

Peter,
That’s exactly what a friend told me some thirty years ago, but I never managed to give up... Anyhow, photos are better than video (easier and less demanding), and I just left video some years ago...
Great to have «All things French» here through you...
The Winter Palace is already on show? Shall we have a kir royale? It’s Sofitel nowadays... ;)

Daniel,
C’est vrai que la première impression que j’ai eu de l’Egypte a été au Louvre et ça m’a très fortement frappé… En plus il y avait le livre d’Histoire, mais là c’était Assurbanipal et les assyriens… ;)

Alice,
Where the place is huge you may take pictures… The problem is the tombs of the pharaohs, and those are far from being large, though much bigger than what you see nowadays… ;))

Lyliane,
J’espère que tu auras un tour magnifique en Inde et on attend bien sûr les photos que tu vas prendre… Des milliers, j’en suis sûr… ;)

Blogitse,
Hey, that is a long stay in the cold and in the snow; wanting to avoid Casa? Great that the flu is gone!!

Friend,
Wow! Welcome back; it took ages for you to discover Blogtrotter Two!! ;)
Well, I have no pictures of the fabulous interiors of the tombs... Though the gold treasures were no longer there (either robbed or in Museums... ;)), the experience was thrilling!!

Ash,
Great!!

Pat,
Maybe some of the monuments suffered a «small» restoration to be in the shape they look nowadays... ;) But you are right: all those temples in colours may have been a fantastic show!!

M. Kate,
It’s amazing that the National Geographic was issuing a programme on Hatshepsut the same time I was posting on the Lady Pharaoh!! After all you have to start packing for Egypt... Not much needed; it’s almost always warm, if not hot... ;)

Juka,
The main part inside (which is a rather small part) was closed for restoration works! ;)

Ola,
There must be some «maintenance» on those statues... ;))
Your profile picture at Kos is lovely!!

The Nomadic Pinoy said...

I was disappointed too that photos were not allowed inside the Valley of the Kings. Nevertheless, the experience of going inside the tombs were unforgettable.

For a different perspective, we took the early morning hot air balloon ride and flying above the Ramesseum and the temple of Hathshepsut was really the highlight!

Trotter said...

Nomadic,
It's a shame they don't allow pictures inside... :-(
I thought on the hot air balloon, but was in doubt whether it would be a tourist trap and gave up... Furthermore, it was too early... ;)

Ted Roth said...

What a wonderful tour of one of the most amazing places on earth. Maybe one day I'll get there. In the meantime, pictures help.

Trotter said...

Ted,
The Valley isn't quite impressive outside, but the interior of the tombs is absolutely stunning!

Joy said...

Such magnificent city. It's incredible that people can experience history so up close. Really amazing.

Many thanks for your patience, and for visiting Norwich Daily Photo and leaving your comment. Come visit again tomorrow!

Trotter said...

Joy,
It's magnificent and history is just around the corner...