As a child I dreamed of the Pyramids and the desert. Wasn't looking forward to organizing this journey through majesty? of Ancient Egypt, a dip in history, in a civilization? which has made their tracks indelible. I was expecting strong emotions, but what do I carry with me? much more? ...
The waiting? finished! We leave on an afternoon flight just after work. The impact with Cairo? shocking, a dip in the shades? of ocher, of green, between deafening horns coming from tuk-tuk, taxis and cars Ritmo and 127.
We arrive at the hotel near the pyramids and here begins a parallel journey, the one among the flavors of the culinary expression of Egypt: bread, turmeric, cumin, soups, falafel .....
Wake up early, our guide? a very nice Egyptian gentleman who speaks perfect Italian who structures the day's tour back in time: Giza plateau, Memphis - the capital of Egypt during the Ancient Kingdom, necropolis of Saqqara.
The arrival under the pyramid of Cheops? unexpected, takes your breath away, truly one of the seven wonders of the ancient world. And here, turning around, Chefren - the tomb of Keope's son - and Micerino - grandson appear. After walking through the plain on the back of a camel we arrive in front of another wonder: the Sphinx, the majestic sculpture with the body of a lion and a human head.
Memphis and Saqqara, two open-air museums, Memphis with the huge statue of the megalomaniac Ramses II, Saqqara with the ancient pyramid of Djoser. While we were here we had the opportunity to visit Mehu's tomb, which had remained secret for 80 years and opened to the public a few hours earlier, a masterpiece of colors to immerse yourself in.
Shall we have lunch in a fantastic Egyptian restaurant, in the shade of the palm trees that rise between the blue of the Nile? the bright yellow of the desert.
The Cairo museum needs no description, should you visit it to cross the folds of time and be amazed at it? what civilization? Egyptian? managed to invent, build, pass on.
Cairo has three souls: that of the pharaohs, the Islamic and the Coptic. If the first day? was dedicated to the west, for the Ancient Egyptians the place dedicated to the tombs, where the sun sets on the second day? for the east, for the city? alive, the adjective pi? indicated, why? Cairo never sleeps. At dawn teems with life, the hours are marked by the song of the Muezzin, at sunset the colors turn into pastels, the evening passes between a karkad ?, guava juice and narghil ?! The Saladin Citadel offers a unique view over the city, as well as hosting the Mohammed Al? Mosque. From here, we pass to Coptic Cairo, the Christian soul of the capital. Do not forget the papyrus museum and the? Factory? some carpets!
To end the day, you have to get lost in the Khan el-khalili market, where among spices, characteristic bars and historical arches you cross the most? ancient bazaar of the country.
The departure ? before dawn, plane to Luxor to start a unique experience: the Nile cruise. The contrast between the teeming vegetation and the barren desert? a breathtaking sight.
The visit today? dedicated to the east bank. The Karnak Temple? majestic, it begins with the avenue of rams, to cross the hall of columns and arrive between obelisks that soar and the giant statue of Khepri, the sacred scarab representation of the Sun at its rising.
At sunset we move to the temple of Luxor, which combines paganism, Islam and the Christian religion. ? an exciting visit, the first illuminated pylon, the statues of Ramses, the papyrus capitals, the mosque that it controls from above and the Roman sanctuary.
At 7.30 in the morning there are already? 38 degrees: the god Ra illuminates the landscape made up of infinite expanses ...
The fifth day begins with the temple of Hatshepsut, considered by scholars to be one of the best pharaohs in Egyptian history. The temple ? carved into the rock, the steep wall that breaks through the blue of the sky acts as an amphitheater for a series of large terraces with columns. Absolutely not to be missed.
The day continues with the Valley of the Kings and Queens, an almost extra-terrestrial landscape, the tomb of Ramses VI astonishing.
The navigation continues encountering vendors on small boats that, with an aim that is the envy of basketball players, try to sell clothes, carpets and tablecloths by throwing them from their boat to the ship: one way? of trade on the fly, waiting to be discovered! Before arriving in Edfu, you have to go through the Esna lock, a magnificent work of engineering to tackle 7 meters in altitude!
Once in Edfu, with a gig we reach the temple dedicated to Horus, simply magnificent and we continue to the temple of Kom Ombo, where we also visit the museum with the crocodile mummies, really impressive!
The navigation continues to arrive in Asswan in the evening.
This ? a full day, unforgettable Abu Simbel, on the border with Sudan. The journey is as good as the destination: you cross the desert at the first light of dawn, a unique emotion. Abu Simbel? the icing on the cake, the temple of Ramses II carved into the rock on the shores of Lake Nasser,? majestic with its 30 meters high. Even more? spectacular for the two feats that it preserves: the miracle of the sun, which illuminates the faces of the pharaoh, of the God Ra and Amun Ra twice a year and the work of moving the temple in order to safeguard it from rising waters following the construction of the Asswan Dam.
Another visit that can not? to miss ? that to the Nubian village, which is reached by a small boat that stops on a small beach where you can? swimming in the cold waters of the Nile - a unique experience, seeing water birds such as the ibis up close, letting yourself be carried away by the current of the river, the contrast between the cold water, the boiling sand and the warm wind ...
The evening can not? than ending with a walk to the Asswan market: spices, silver, souvenirs, bread and a thousand other bazaars that never sleep.
Our trip to Upper Egypt ends with visits to Asswan: the granite quarry with the huge unfinished obelisk, the stop at an alabaster processing center, with unique artifacts, the High Dam, the perfume factory. Particularly fascinating is the explanation of the guide on the use of essences in ancient times and today and in aromatherapy.
The last visit, before going to the airport for the return to Cairo,? to the temple of Philae, which was also moved following the raising of the dam. The temple literally rises from the waters and? reachable only by small boats ... absolutely not to be missed.
On the last day we enjoy the last sunrise in Cairo, the city? from the atmosphere of? A thousand and one nights ?, the city? of the contrast between the ancient and the modern. We allow ourselves to be warmed by the sun, trying to put in order memories, emotions and the faces of the many people we met before returning to Italy. ? was a unique trip, a super recommended tour, for those who want to live an experience that you bring with you? history, kindness, hospitality. You have to enjoy every meter of this land so? special.