Thursday, March 31, 2011

Workers working on the hillside, on the limestone hills next to the Valley of the Kings, outside Luxor

Workers working on the hillside, on the limestone hills next to the Valley of the Kings, outside Luxor
When you look closely, you can see the various structures that show the restoration and excavation work ongoing at the limestone hills outside Luxor; there is always work happening there. It is recognized that there may be much more to find in the area, with tombs of some of the rulers of the period not having yet been found. Also, as the tombs of workers and nobles are found, they reveal more information of that era.
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Wednesday, March 30, 2011

Workers on the excavation and restoration team, working on the limestone cliffs outside Luxor

Workers on the excavation and restoration team, working on the limestone cliffs outside Luxor
Workers, part of the restoration and excavation team, working on the tombs on limestone hills outside Luxor. This is an active and ongoing effort to find more ruins, more tombs, with the prize being the tomb of another pharaoh, or that of a noble from the time of the pharaohs.
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Tuesday, March 29, 2011

Tombs on the limestone cliff outside Luxor, in Egypt

Tombs on the limestone cliff outside Luxor, in Egypt
Some tombs on the limestone cliffs outside Luxor, in Egypt. This area is famous for the Valley of the Kings, the burial chambers of more than 20 pharaohs over a period of 500 years (who could see that being buried in a pyramid meant that looters could break into their tombs and steal all the treasures inside).

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Monday, March 28, 2011

Work happening on some tombs on the limestone cliffs near the Valley of the Kings, outside Luxor

Work happening on some tombs on the limestone cliffs near the Valley of the Kings, outside Luxor
This is a view of some work happening on the limestone hills near the Valley of the Kings, outside Luxor, in Egypt. It was not clear to me whether these were the entrances to some tombs, or whether these were the offices of the workers of the site, and located pretty close to the Valley of the Kings.
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Sunday, March 27, 2011

There is always some work going on in the limestone mountains near Luxor

There is always some work going on in the limestone mountains near Luxor
Many times in the past, archaeologists have believed that all the excavation work has happened in the Valley of the Kings, and there are no further tombs that are to be found. However, everytime this has been thought of, there have been more tombs that have been found. As a result, there is always some amount of work happening in the area (it is possible that some tombs are not found because their entrances have been lost due to landslides or floods).
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Saturday, March 26, 2011

Closer view of the structure of the limestone cliffs, which allowed easy digging to form the burial chamber of pharaohs

Closer view of the structure of the limestone cliffs, which allowed easy digging to form the burial chamber of pharaohs
Unlike some other types of rocks such as granite which are very tough to dig into, limestone (along with a couple of other types of rocks) is much easier to dig into. This photo shows a cross section of the stones, which seems to indicate that the rock can be dug into more easily than others, and in fact, can even crumble fairly easily.
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Friday, March 25, 2011

Road from the Valley of the Kings, running through limestone hills, outside Luxor

Road from the Valley of the Kings, running through limestone hills, outside Luxor
The Valley of the Kings is a very popular tourist spot, located outside Luxor. The Valley of the Kings is so called because it is the place which became the favorite burial grounds for a number of pharaohs of Egypt, including the most famous Tutunkhamen, and the most prolific builder and strong leader, Ramesses II.
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Thursday, March 24, 2011

The limestone hills where the pharaohs dug their burial chambers, close to Luxor

The limestone hills where the pharaohs dug their burial chambers, close to Luxor
Outside Luxor, there is a region with a number of limestone hills. These are essentially soft rock, which can be dug into, and after the pharaohs saw how the pyramids were getting looted and the after-life of their ancestors were getting disturbed, they decided to become more stealthy, and decided to make their burial chambers by digging into these limestone hills.
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Wednesday, March 23, 2011

View of both statues of the Colossi of Memnon, with one of them being completely covered in scaffolding

View of both statues of the Colossi of Memnon, with one of them being completely covered in scaffolding
These are 2 magnificent statues, constructed around the period of 1350 BC. The statues were those of the pharaoh of that time, meant to be at the entry gates of a huge temple. However, over a period of time, the periodic flooding caused by the Nile totally destroyed the temple, leaving no traces behind. Even the statues have been damaged by various events including earthquakes.

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Tuesday, March 22, 2011

Tourist buses with a number of tourists at the Colossi of Memnon, outside Luxor, in Egypt

Tourist buses with a number of tourists at the Colossi of Memnon, outside Luxor, in Egypt
A photo showing the number of tourists at the Colossi of Memnon, an integral part of the tourist circuit around the Egyptian historic town of Luxor (Thebes in earlier times). Buses are the main medium of travel of tourists to this destination.

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Monday, March 21, 2011

Parking of tourist buses and vans right next to the Colossi of Memnon, outside Luxor, in Egypt

Green fields right next to the Colossi of Memnon, outside Luxor in Egypt
Like many other tourist destinations in Egypt, the site of the Colossi of Memnon, outside Luxor, is a well visited destination, visited by tourists who are visiting Luxor. In this photo, you get a view of the parking area, where there are a number of large tourist buses and vans.

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Sunday, March 20, 2011

Green fields close to the Valley of Kings in Egypt

Green fields close to the Valley of Kings in Egypt
The Valley of Kings, near Luxor, is an area of a large number of limestone hills, with burial chambers dug into them. However, pretty soon after leaving the area, we came across these green fields, looking beautiful and very serene.

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Green fields right next to the Colossi of Memnon, outside Luxor in Egypt

Green fields right next to the Colossi of Memnon, outside Luxor in Egypt
This is a depiction of the scene just next to the Colossi of Memnon, outside Luxor in Egypt. In the distance, you can see the limestone hills that are also used for burial chambers, and right to the left of the photo, you can see a part of the concrete platform where the statues of the Colossi of Memnon are located.

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Saturday, March 19, 2011

Tombs of nobles and family members of the pharaohs near the Valley of the Kings

Tombs of nobles and family members of the pharaohs near the Valley of the Kings
The Valley of the Kings was the second attempt by the pharaohs of Egypt to build their tombs. The original pyramids that were used by the pharaohs were looted soon enough, and were abandoned as a way to build their tombs. Then tombs were built into soft limestone hills and in a secret mode. These are the tombs of the nobles and others, near the Valley of the Kings.

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Tourists at the Colossi of Memnon just outside Luxor, in Egypt

Tourists at the Colossi of Memnon just outside Luxor, in Egypt
The Colossi of Memnon is a very popular tourist destination, located outside Luxor. In this photo, you get a view of tourists at the site, enjoying the sight of these 2 statues, which were made in the 14th century BC.

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Friday, March 18, 2011

Many cruise ships lined up on the River Nile in Luxor in Egypt

Many cruise ships lined up on the River Nile in Luxor
The cruise on the River Nile typically runs from Luxor to Cairo, or in the reverse direction. It is very popular, and there are a huge number of cruise ships that go on this path, carrying a large number of tourists - the tourists could be Egyptians or from outside the country. These are large ships, carrying tourists along the monument tour.

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Hot air balloon, visible through some high power wires, over Luxor in Egypt

Hot air balloon, visible through some high power wires, over Luxor in Egypt
This view was something that I really liked. There is something unreal about a hot air balloon, since it seems to hang in the air above the ground, without any binding or any obvious reason for hanging up in the sky. In this photo, you can see the hot air balloon, above the town of Luxor, across the Nile.
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Thursday, March 17, 2011

Portrait view of one of the statues of the Colossi of Memnon, covered with scaffolding

Portrait view of one of the statues of the Colossi of Memnon, covered with scaffolding
In previous photos, I have been showing images that relate to the statues of the Colossi of Memnon, a pair of statues outside Luxor that were meant to be the gate keepers for a huge temple complex. However, with the effect of the Nile, and due to stones being used by other pharaohs, there is nothing left of the temple complex.
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Wednesday, March 16, 2011

Detailed view of renovation being carried out at the statue at the Colossi of Memnon in Luxor, Egypt

Detailed view of renovation being carried out at the statue at the Colossi of Memnon in Luxor, Egypt
In a couple of previous photos, you would have seen the state of the statues at the Colossi of Memnon, including the complete scaffolding on one of the statues. In this photo, you can see a cross-section of scaffolding, as well as one of the people working on these repairs. The size of the statues seems huge when you consider one human being standing inside the scaffolding.
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Tuesday, March 15, 2011

Tourists standing in front of the twin statues of the Colossi of Memnon, outside Luxor, Egypt

Tourists standing in front of the twin statues of the Colossi of Memnon, outside Luxor, Egypt
The twin statues of the Colossi of Memnon are on the tourist circuit for all those who visit Luxor. These are huge statues, towering over human beings who seem puny in comparison. In their time, these statues must have been incredible, since they were the gate keepers for a huge complex, the temple of the pharaoh Amenhotep III (however, there is no trace remaining of the temple).
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Monday, March 14, 2011

View of the statue of the Colossi of Memnon, just outside Luxor, in Egypt

View of the statue of the Colossi of Memnon, just outside Luxor, in Egypt
A view of the large statue, part of the 2 statues called as the Colossi of Memnon. These were statues built approximately in the year 1350 BC, modeled on the pharaoh Amenhotep III. The interesting item about these statues was caused by a quake in the year 27 BC. Because of the cracks caused by the quake, the eastern statue was supposed to sing, with a sound coming around dawn. However this sound died down as some additions were done to the upper levels of the statue.
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Sunday, March 13, 2011

Total repair working happening on one of the statues of the Colossi of Memnon near Luxor in Egypt

Total repair working happening on one of the statues of the Colossi of Memnon near Luxor in Egypt
When you have so many remains of the past, there needs to be a lot of focus on repair and renovation. In this photo, you can see some examples of the type of renovation required. One of the entire statues of the Colossi of Memnon, near Luxor in Egypt, has been covered with scaffolding, for the purpose of repair.
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Saturday, March 12, 2011

The statues of the Colossi of Memnon, one of the 2 large statues depicting the Pharaoh Amenhotep III in the countryside surrounding Luxor, Egypt

The statues of the Colossi of Memnon, one of the 2 large statues depicting the Pharaoh Amenhotep III in the countryside surrounding Luxor, Egypt
This is one of the statues which is part of the twin statues called Colossi of Memnon. These statues used to be the entry to a large temple, which no longer exists. The statues have also gone through a long period of wear and tear, including earthquakes and so on.
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Friday, March 11, 2011

View of tombs of nobles in the cliffs outside Luxor

View of tombs of nobles in the cliffs outside Luxor
In the region of the Valley of the Kings (and Valley of the Queens), there are a large section of limestone cliffs. These were used to drill into and make tombs for the pharaohs, and in addition, there were tombs made for nobles and relatives of the pharaoh. In this photo, you can see these tombs, typically meant for nobles.
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Thursday, March 10, 2011

View of multiple hot air balloons in the countryside near Luxor in Egypt

View of multiple hot air balloons in the countryside near Luxor in Egypt
This is a view of many hot air balloons in the air above the countryside of Luxor, in Egypt. In a previous photo, I had shown a single hot air balloon, but to see how popular the concept of such hot air balloons are, you can see a number of such hot air balloons in a small section of the countryside. I was trying to frame this photo between trees on either side.
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Wednesday, March 09, 2011

Colossi of Memnon, one of the 2 large statues of the Pharaoh Amenhotep III in Luxor, Egypt

Colossi of Memnon, one of the 2 large statues of the Pharaoh Amenhotep III in Luxor, Egypt
This is a part of 2 large statues, of the Pharaoh Amenhotep III, with these statues being very old, from the period of around 1350 BC. These are huge statues, weighing around 700 tonnes, and being around 18 meters tall. Over a period of time, these statues have been damaged. There was a huge temple, for which these statues stood guard, but nothing remains of that temple today.
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Tuesday, March 08, 2011

View of Egyptian countryside as we head for Valley of the Kings in Luxor

View of Egyptian countryside as we head for Valley of the Kings in Luxor
The Valley of the Kings is one of the most famous tourist locations in the countryside surrounding the Egyptian city of Luxor. The Valley of the Kings is some distance away from the city, and was meant to be a more secretive resting place for the pharaohs, after they saw that the Pyramids could be looted.
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Monday, March 07, 2011

A hot air balloon flying over the Luxor countryside

A hot air balloon flying over the Luxor countryside
The historical town of Luxor in Egypt was once the capital of Egypt and is a prominent part of every tourist package for Egypt. There are many places such as the Valley of the Kings, Valley of the Queens, and other locations. Part of the fun of being there is to take a hot air balloon ride over the whole place and get a good view.
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Sunday, March 06, 2011

Belly dancer among passengers on the River Nile cruise ship

Belly dancer among passengers on the River Nile cruise ship
There was quite a crowd of passengers gathered to watch the belly dancer in action on the post-dinner belly dancing show on the Nile River cruise ship. However, it was soon clear that it was the local Egyptians who were most interested, with people from other nationalities slowly drifting away.
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Passenger dancing with belly dancer in the Nile river cruise ship

Passenger dancing with belly dancer in the Nile river cruise ship
One of the most famous cultural acts to come out of the Middle East is the art of belly dancing. So, when somebody goes on a planned package tour of Egypt, getting exposed to some hours of belly dancing is part of the overall package. In our case, it was while we were on the cruise ship on the river Nile.

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Saturday, March 05, 2011

A belly dancer gyrating inside a cruise ship on the River Nile

A belly dancer gyrating inside a cruise ship on the River Nile
Egypt is famous for belly dancing, and for belly dancers. In this photo, you can see a back shot of a belly dancer inside a cruise ship on the river Nile. It was interesting for some time, but was after dinner and we were sleepy, so we left without seeing the whole thing.

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Friday, March 04, 2011

A corridor, inside one of the cruise ship on the river Nile

A corridor, inside one of the cruise ship on the river Nile
A photo of the corridor inside one of the cruise ships on the river Nile. These are fairly large ships, with multiple levels, small dip pools on the top level, and a restaurant located on the ship.

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Thursday, March 03, 2011

A cat, drawn using laser light, on the walls of the Great Sphinx, as part of the sound and light show

A cat, drawn using laser light, on the walls of the Great Sphinx, as part of the sound and light show
As a part of the Sound and light show, the story of some of the most famous symbols of ancient Egypt are highlighted. The cat is a part of those symbols, and in this photo, you can see a cat drawn using lasers, on the wall of the structure of the Great Sphinx.

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Wednesday, March 02, 2011

The Great Pyramid, bathed in orange light, during the sound and light show

The Great Pyramid, bathed in orange light, during the sound and light show
During the sound and light show, the various pyramids are lighted up in different colors. In this photo, you can the Great Pyramid of Cheops, bathed in orange light. It looks very impressive.

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Two of the Great Pyramids, lighted at the same time, as a part of the Sound and Light show

Two of the Great Pyramids, lighted at the same time, as a part of the Sound and Light show
The sound and light show is pretty impressive, taking place in Gaza in the evening, right next to the Great Pyramids, and the Great Sphinx. In this photo, you can see the sound and light show lighting up 2 of the Great Pyramids, which are very impressive structures, and the effect is magical.

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Tuesday, March 01, 2011

A depiction of the young pharaoh Tutunkhamen, as a part of the Sound and Light show

A depiction of the young pharaoh Tutunkhamen, as a part of the Sound and Light show
A depiction of the face of the young king (pharaoh) of ancient Egypt, King Tut. This is done through lasers, marked on the structure of the monument, the Great Sphinx, as a part of the Sound and Light show.

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