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Wednesday, 1 January 2014

Egypt: Day 1 - The Great Pyramid of Giza


The Great Pyramid of Giza, Egypt | www.rambleandwander.com

While planning for our trip to Egypt, JC and I had looked at Google map and decided on Le Meridien Pyramids because of its location. We were looking for a rated hotel that is close enough to Pyramids of Giza area so that we could actually walk from the hotel to the pyramids. (We are cheapskate like that, heh heh!) The Oberoi Hotel, which is the closest in this case, was out of question because of their premium room rate. So we settled on Le Meridien as it’s the second closest.

The plan to walk to the pyramids from the hotel however went out of the window the moment we went downstairs and asked the concierge for his recommendation and direction.

The guy did not recommend us walking. Instead he recommended us to rent a car with a driver from the car rental company that is located in the hotel lobby. Maybe he thought because we’re staying at the hotel, we would be able to afford the car rental. Yeah, right! Nevertheless we both still went to the car rental counter and checked the rate for a half-day trip to the pyramids. There, we found out that, after splitting the cost between the two of us, the rate is not as expensive as we had initially thought. It’s still within our budget, so much so that in the end, not only we decided to rent a car with a driver for a half-day in the morning, we also decided to go for their VIP (front seat) package for the evening’s Light and Sound Show at the pyramids – something which we hadn’t planned on doing in the first place!

It wasn’t long before we were travelling in the comfort of a private car towards the pyramids. Luckily we had arrived at the entrance area just before a busload of tourists did. We bought the tickets (EGP60 for entry to the general area, and another EGP100 to get inside one of the pyramids) and soon after, we parked our car not far from the pyramids. 

The Great Pyramid of Giza, Egypt | www.rambleandwander.com

View of the Great Pyramid from near where the car was parked

I got out of the car and just stood there gawking at the Great Pyramid, the oldest and largest pyramid that was built thousands of years ago as the final resting place for the pharaohs. The last survivor of the seven ancient wonders of the world, it was also the tallest man-made structure for almost 4 thousand years. Although the pharaohs of these pyramids in Giza might not be related to the pharaoh in the story of Prophet Moses (peace be upon him), they still somehow reminded me of the story.

We climbed the Great Pyramid a bit to get to the entrance for our tour inside the pyramid to see the pharaoh’s final resting place. No cameras are allowed inside so we had to leave our camera at the entrance. The climb inside was not fun. I had imagined that for such a big structure, the “stairs” area inside would at least be spacious and airy if not a walk in the park. But nooo… the passage has to be small and narrow with low ceiling to boot to make sure that all those who are climbing to approach the resting place of the pharaoh have to crouch down throughout the climb as a mark of respect to the pharaoh. 

So we climbed and crouched without knowing how far more we have to go. Well, they don’t exactly have a signboard saying “The King’s Chamber, 1 km ahead” in there, do they? At times, we’d pass by those who were walking down on their way back and who gave encouragement for us to keep going. In between, we complained about our aching back, the stairs and everything else that came to our mind.

And then we got there. The resting place of the pharaoh.

We stretched up, took a breather and took in the view of the room that is known as the King’s Chamber. The room, with its granite walls, is relatively small. It made me wonder if it really was a king's chamber. The only thing that is inside the room is an empty granite sarcophagus. 

It wasn’t long before I heard someone asked, “What? Is that it??”



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12 comments:

Comments and feedback are always appreciated. So do leave one or two if you have the time. Thank you!

  1. Still, the feeling of seeing and entering the ancient wonder of the world must be amazing, right? I hope I will manage to visit the Pyramid before it disappears as other ancient wonders of the world. But do I need to get my stamina in place before visiting? From the look of it, it sounds hard to enter the resting place! Haha

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    1. Yes, that's true. I felt "good" and "meh" at the same time, haha!

      Re stamina, not really, although it could help, I guess. I had the problem because I'm quite tall so had to mostly crouch throughout the passage. As long as you don't have any back problem or are claustrophobic, you should be okay.

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  2. Right after reading your entry, the next thing that I did was googling on "sarcophagus". Yeap, I know, low vocab. :D

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    1. Alamak! Sorry, haha! I thought of adding another line to describe the sarcophagus but decided against it. Maybe I should have, huhu! Anyways, low vocab? I don't think so-lah :)

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  3. Interesting journey. The history and the mystery of it have captured imaginations for centuries.
    I hope one day I will be there to witness one of the most famous attractions of the world.

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  4. I would react the same way like that someone after climbing and walking for that many a distance only to see an empty sarcophagus. I would be expecting the pharoah dancing and celebrating our arrivals.

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  5. I definitely will visit pyramid one days when I am still young and energetic. Thank you for sharing.

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  6. what.... itu je dalam chamber tu? hahaha

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    Replies
    1. Hahaha! Yup! Sila la panjat masuk dalam tu nanti ya! Hahaha!

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