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Climb the Mountain

Dominating the landscape of the West Bank of Luxor is our beautiful Theban Mountain. It is the fond nickname for the range of hills that holds all these famed treasures: the Valley of the Kings and Queens, the temple area of Deir el Bahari where Hatshepsut built her groundbreaking mortuary temple and a plethora of other tombs, temples and shrines on its hills and in its valleys. It is a daunting sight but also a tantalizing one, something inside all of us wants to conquer this mountain and aspire to its peaks. So let’s do it!

There are several paths up this mountain, and most of them have been in use since antiquity. The workers whose gifted hands crafted the spectacular scenes in the tombs of the Valley of the Kings and elsewhere, lived in a valley adjoining this mountain, and used to travel over its ridges to the places where they created their marvels. We can follow in their actual footsteps, and that is a very special experience when you give yourself the time to realise it! And because it is a bit of a climb, you will have that time, as you are catching your breath now and then… But it is a possible climb for almost everyone, even those of us not blessed with extremely sporty natures or lean physiques (like ourselves).

We start our climb at the famed temple of the female Pharaoh Hatshepsut. It’s a winding way up, and we pass some interesting tombs and natural formations on the way. Do wear sturdy shoes and watch where you step! Once we get to the top, we can feast our eyes on a breathtaking panoramic view of the Theban Valleys. All the temples are stretched out in front of us, and on a clear day you can see as far as the great Temple of Karnak all the way on the other side of the River Nile! As we make our way along the ridge, we have a stunning view of the cultivated lands on the edges of the Nile and the stark contrast of these lush fields with the dry desert landscape we find ourselves a part of, way up here. As we continue on, other temples come into view: the Ramesseum and Medinet Habu show their majesty as they dominate their surroundings. Maybe we’ll also find some natural fossils on our trek. Slowly but surely we make our way on the path of the ancient workers to the ruins of their village at Deir el Medina, the plan of which is perfectly clear from this height. As we start to descend there, we can catch a glimpse of a small shrine to the goddess Meretseger, She Who Loves Silence and the protectress of the Valley of the Kings, and then we will have lunch and some lovely cold drinks at a nearby café. A welcome repast after all that activity!

Price: 45 euros per person

Includes: set-up, transport, guided walk, explanation, lunch and drinks during lunch

N.B: please make sure that you wear appropriate clothing and shoes, and that you bring along enough water and sunscreen for the climb. If you have any health-conditions that may influence your performance on this trip, it is your responsibility and duty to notify us of those before booking.

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This Site Was Last Updated Tuesday, 05 August, 2008 3:26 AM (UTC+3: Cairo)


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