Why Visit Valley of the Kings
Valley of the Kings: The Mystical Ancient Egypt’s Royal Tombs
Nestled in the arid hills of Luxor, Egypt lies the Valley of the Kings, a vast and mysterious burial ground for the pharaohs of the New Kingdom period. It is one of the world’s most significant archaeological sites and attracts visitors from all over the world. In this travel blog, we will explore the history and wonders of this awe-inspiring destination.
The Valley of the Kings is a UNESCO World Heritage site that was used as a burial ground for over 500 years, from the 16th to the 11th century BC. It was chosen by pharaohs such as Tutankhamun, Ramses II, and Hatshepsut as a final resting place for their mummified remains and treasured possessions. The pharaohs believed that the gods would judge them based on their deeds in life, and their tombs were constructed to reflect their power and wealth.
The valley is home to 63 tombs, although not all of them are open to the public. Many of these tombs were plundered in antiquity, but some remained hidden until the 20th century. The most famous tomb is that of Tutankhamun, discovered by British archaeologist Howard Carter in 1922. The discovery of Tutankhamun’s tomb is considered one of the most significant archaeological finds of the 20th century, as it revealed a wealth of information about the life and times of the pharaohs.
Visiting the Valley of the Kings is a fascinating and humbling experience. The landscape is stark and barren, but the tombs are incredibly ornate and detailed. Each tomb has its own unique style and artwork, with intricate hieroglyphics adorning the walls and ceilings. Some tombs have deep shafts leading down to hidden chambers, while others have multiple rooms and passageways. The tomb of Ramses VI is particularly impressive, with its long descending corridor and beautifully painted ceiling.
It’s essential to note that only a few tombs are open to the public at any given time, and photography is strictly prohibited inside the tombs. Visitors are not allowed to touch the walls or artifacts, and guides are on hand to provide information and prevent any damage to the ancient structures.
The heat in the valley can be intense, and it’s important to bring sunscreen, water, and a hat. Comfortable shoes are a must, as there is a fair amount of walking and climbing involved. The best time to visit is in the early morning or late afternoon, when the temperature is cooler and the crowds are smaller.
Aside from the tombs, there are other fascinating sights to see in the Valley of the Kings. The Colossi of Memnon, two towering statues of the pharaoh Amenhotep III, guard the entrance to the valley. The Temple of Hatshepsut, a beautifully restored structure dedicated to the famous female pharaoh, is located nearby and is well worth a visit.
In conclusion, the Valley of the Kings is a must-see destination for anyone interested in history, archaeology, and ancient civilizations. It’s a place that inspires awe and wonder, and the sheer magnitude of the tombs and their intricate details is a testament to the power and ingenuity of the pharaohs. A visit to the Valley of the Kings is a journey back in time, and an experience that will stay with you forever.
Here are ten interesting facts about the Valley of the Kings:
- The Valley of the Kings is located on the west bank of the Nile River, opposite the modern city of Luxor in Egypt.
- The valley was used as a burial ground for pharaohs and their consorts from the 16th to the 11th century BC, during the New Kingdom period of ancient Egypt.
- The first tomb in the valley was built for pharaoh Thutmose I, and the last tomb was constructed for pharaoh Ramesses XI.
- There are currently 63 tombs in the valley, although not all of them are open to the public.
- The most famous tomb is that of Tutankhamun, which was discovered by British archaeologist Howard Carter in 1922.
- Tutankhamun’s tomb was the only one found nearly intact, with its treasures and artifacts untouched by looters.
- Many of the tombs in the valley were decorated with elaborate paintings and hieroglyphics that depict scenes from the pharaohs’ lives and their journey into the afterlife.
- The tombs were constructed with elaborate security features to protect the pharaohs’ remains and their treasures from robbers.
- The tombs were also designed to be elaborate and complex, with hidden chambers and false passageways to confuse and deter thieves.
- The valley is still an active site for archaeological research, with new discoveries and excavations being made regularly.
There are several reasons why visiting the Valley of the Kings is an important and worthwhile experience:
- Historical Significance: The Valley of the Kings is one of the world’s most significant archaeological sites, and visiting it offers a glimpse into the ancient world of the pharaohs.
- Cultural Education: The artwork and hieroglyphics inside the tombs provide a wealth of information about ancient Egyptian beliefs and customs.
- Unique Experience: Visiting the Valley of the Kings is a once-in-a-lifetime experience, as the tombs and their contents are not found anywhere else in the world.
- Awe-Inspiring Scenery: The stark and barren landscape of the valley, juxtaposed with the intricate and ornate tombs, is a sight to behold.
- Personal Growth: Visiting a place with such a rich history and cultural significance can broaden your perspective and deepen your understanding of the world.
In summary, visiting the Valley of the Kings is an opportunity to connect with ancient history, learn about a different culture, and witness breathtaking scenery. It is a valuable experience that can broaden your horizons and deepen your appreciation for the wonders of the world.