Tuesday, October 26, 2010
Saturday, April 21, 2007
Come on lets take off your country and fly to Egypt , voooo !
1- The location: as you can see on this map : Egypt enjoys a strategic location in the northeast corner of the African continent. Egypt shares its boundary with Mediterranean Sea in the North, Sudan in the South, Israel and Red Sea in the East and Libya in the West. Egypt has played a major role in transportation between the continents of Africa, Asia and Europe due to its important geographical location.
lol if you found some little boys kidding with you, dont feel bad, this is not bully, they are just happy to see you and they are welcoming you !
The map of Egypt:
Cairo and Giza - Alexandria - Luxor - Sharm el Sheik - Hurghada - Aswan and Nile River
NOW Lets go to Cairo and Giza
Places to visit in Cairo and Giza
1-THE GREAT PYRAMIDS IN GIZA :
The ancient pyramids of Giza have withstood the ravages of time and are the only three survivors among the Seven Wonders World. For millions of people, the Giza pyramids embody antiquity and mystery. The site is directly accessible from Cairo by the 11 km long Sharia al-Ahram (Pyramids Road). Climbing the pyramids is now forbidden and it is undoubtedly very dangerous. Though going inside is quite safe, anyone suffering from claustrophobia should avoid it.
This is the oldest and largest of the Giza Pyramids, of the IV Dynasty pharaoh Khufu better known as Cheops - who probably reigned between 2589 and 2566 BC. Called the "Glorious Place of Khufu " by the ancient Egyptians, it originally stood 140m (roughly 480ft) high and measured 230m along its base, but the removal of its casing stones has reduced these dimensions by 3 mt. The pyramid is estimated to weigh six million tons and contain over 2.3 million blocks whose average weight is 2.5 tons (though some weigh almost 15 tons). Visitors are allowed inside the structure daily via an opening created by the treasure-hunting Khalif Ma'mun in 820, some distance below the original entrance on the north face (now blocked).
Sited on higher ground, with an intact summit and steeper sides, the middle or Second pyramid seems taller than Khufu's. Built by his son Khafre (known to posterity as Chephren), its base originally covered 214.8 sq mt. Classical writers such as Pliny believed that the pyramid had no entrance, but when Belzoni located and blasted open the sealed portal on its north face in 1818, he found that Arab tomb robbers had somehow gained access nearly a thousand years earlier, undeterred by legends of an idol "with fierce and sparkling eyes", bent on slaying intruders. In March 1993 an explosion inside Chephren’s pyramid, probably caused by a bomb, injured several tourists.
Situated on a gradual slope into undulating desert, the smallest of the Giza pyramids speaks of waning power and commitment. Though started by Chephren's successor, Menkaure (called Mycerinus by the Greeks), it was finished with unseemly haste by his son Shepseskaf, who seemingly enjoyed less power than his predecessors and depended on the priesthood. Herodotus records the legend that an oracle gave Mycerinus only six years to live, so to cheat fate he made merry round the clock, doubling his annual quantum of experience.
Another story has it that the pyramid was actually built by Rhodophis, a Thracian courtesan who charged each client the price of a building block (the structure is estimated to contain 200,000 blocks). In any event, no subsequent pyramid ever matched the standards of the Giza trio.
Watch the Pyramids Live
This legendary monument is the first large, royal statue known in ancient Egypt and is one of the world's most significant monuments. A colossal 240 ft long and 66 ft high, it lies in the old kingdom quarry, carved from a core of solid bedrock and completed with masonry. Conventional archeology credits Chephren with the idea of shaping it into figure with a lion's body and a human head, which is often identified as his own, though it may represent a guardian deity.
3-Pyramids of Saqqara :
The largest archeological site in Egypt, today is the Square, pronounced "sa' 'ahrah". Its name probably derives from Sokar, the Memphite god of the dead, though Egyptians may tell you that it comes from saq, the Arabic word for a hawk or falcon, the sacred bird of Horus.Besides the pyramids and mastabas seen by visitors, Saqqara has an incalculable wealth of monuments and artefacts still hidden beneath the windblown sands. In 1986, the tomb of Maya, Tutankhamun's treasurer, was discovered, stuffed with precious objects. Yet aside from Zosers Pyramid, the site was virtually ignored by archeologists until Auguste Mariette found the Serapeum in 1851. The highlights are Zoser's funerary complex, the serapeum, and two outstanding mastabas.
4- The Egyptian Museum :
The Egyptian Museum was first built in Boulak. In 1891, it was moved to Giza Palace of "Ismail Pasha" which housed the antiquities that were later moved to the present building. The Egyptian Museum is situated at Tahrir square in Cairo. It was built during the reign of Khedive Abbass Helmi II in 1897, and opened on November 15, 1902 .It has 107 halls. At the ground floor there are the huge statues. The upper floor houses small statues, jewels, Tutankhamon treasures and the mummies.
The Egyptian museum comprises many sections arranged in chronological order :
1-The first section houses Tutankhamon’s treasures.
2-The second section houses the pre-dynasty and the Old Kingdom monuments.
3-The third section houses the first intermediate period and the Middle Kingdom monuments.
4-The forth section houses the monuments of the Modern Kingdom.
5-The fifth section houses the monuments of the late period and the Greek and Roman periods.
6-The sixth section houses coins and papyrus.
7-The seventh section houses sarcophagi and scrabs.
A hall for the royal mummies was opened at the museum, housing eleven kings and queens.
More than a million and half tourists visit the museum annually, in addition to half a million Egyptians.
Watch this SLIDE to see some pieces from the Egyptain museum
5- The Cairo citadel :
One of Cairo's major attractions, the massive Citadel complex dominates the city skyline. Built on a limestone spur by Salah al-Din (Saladin) in the 12th century, most of its features are associated with Mohammed Ali, the early 19th century leader who freed Egypt of the Mameluke yoke. The Citadel offers fantastic panoramic views of Islamic Cairo in a castle setting rich in history. Perhaps its most famous tale is of Mohammed Ali inviting 470 Mameluke leaders to a feast in the Citadel palace, only to have them trapped in a narrow passageway upon leaving and slaughtered by his men. Legend says only one Mameluke escaped by leaping the walls on his horse.
Legend has it that Salah ad-Din chose the site for its healthy air. The story goes that he hung pieces of meat up all around Cairo. Everywhere the meat spoilt within a day, with the exception of the Citadel area where it remained fresh for several days. But in reality this location provides a strategic advantage both to dominate Cairo and to defend outside attackers. Salah ad-Din had come from Syria where each town had some sort of fortress to act as a stronghold for the local ruler so it was only natural that he would carry this custom to Egypt.
Within the Citadel complex are the following attractions:
Mohammed Ali Mosque :
Designed by the Greek architect Yussuf Bushnaq, The Mohammad Ali (Alabaster) Mosque in the Citadel was begun in 1830 (finished in 1857) in the Ottoman style by Mohammad Ali Pasha, ruler of Egypt, and founder of the country's last dynasty of Khedives and Kings. The mosque is the Tomb of Mohammad Ali and is also known as the Alabaster Mosque because of the extensive use of this fine material from Beni Suef. Its two slender 270 foot minarets are unusual for Cairo. From the arcaded courtyard, visitors have a magnificent view across the city to the pyramids in Giza. Just off the courtyard is the vast prayer hall with an Ottoman style dome which is 170 feet above. The parapet to the southwest offers a good view of the Sultan Hassan and Ibn Tulun Mosques and of Cairo itself. Perhaps because of its location, it is one of the most frequented Mosques by tourists.
The Bab al-Azab :
protected the original entrance to the Citadel and was rebuilt in 1754 by Abd el-Rahman Katkhuda, from which the brass-bound wooden doors date. The gate's notoriety spawns from a single but decisive action by Mohammed Ali, the early 19th century governor of Egypt.
When Mohammed Ali came to be ruler of Egypt, the Mameluke factions still controlled much of the country and resisted much of his authority under their ancient baronial rights. On the excuse of a big celebration for his son Tusun, he invited the leading Mameluke lords to attend, implying that he wanted to come to terms with them.
On March 1, 1811, five hundred Mamelukes chiefs led by Shahin Bey marched in the military procession of Mohammed Ali's celebrations as one of his rearguard contingents. As they rode out of the Citadel down the narrow little hill to the gate of Azab, which opened out into Roumaliya Square, the huge doors of the gate were suddenly slammed shut in front of them, so that they were trapped in a narrow defile with high walls on either side and a detachment of Albanian soldiers behind. There was little chance of escape, as Turkish soldiers high atop the walls poured down a merciless fusillade. In one swoop, Muhammad Ali ended the long domination of the Mamelukes in Egypt.
The Kasr (Qasr) El-Gawhara or Jewel Palace:
originally Mohammad Ali Pasha's headquarters. Here, Muhammad Ali waited while his forces trapped, and put an end to the Mamluk beys by massacring most of their leaders as they were leaving the Citadel .its an example of the best early 19th century Ottoman decoration and architecture. Its collection includes 19th century royal portraits, costumes and furnishings. Constructed in 1814, it includes a small garden leading to a mosque with one of the more interesting eccentricities being the Watch Hall where the shape of a watch has been used to decorate the walls.
The Military Museum:
located in the Citadel, contains a collection of weapons and costumes illustrating warfare in Egypt from ancient times. Notable are its artifacts of the 1956 Anglo-French-Israeli attack.
Suleyman Pasha Mosque :
The Suleyman Pasha Mosque is located behind the military museum in the Citadel. Sometimes called the Sariya el-Gabal Mosque after the Fatimid saint Sayyid Sariya whose tomb is located at the eastern end of the surrounding wall, this mosque was built by an Ottoman governor named Suleyman Pasha in 1528. It is both Egypt's first cupolated Ottoman mosque and its most beautiful example of this style. It is located in a small, walled garden which is entered by way of a courtyard with arcades topped by small cupolas. The single minaret is tall and slender and hence of traditional Ottoman style. Within the prayer hall, there is a large central cupola and three demi-cupolas, all richly decorated with floral and geometric motifs, and the fine marbled mihrab shows Mameluke influence. Here, the inscribed names of God, Muhammad, Abu Bakr, Umar, Uthman and Ali serve to remind the Sunni sect of their religious heritage. Several other rooms are surmounted by cupolas and decorated with 19th century nave designs.
An-Nasir Mohammed Mosque:
the best preserved Mameluke building and was once the principle mosque within the Citadel. Constructed in 1335 by Sultan an-Nasir Mohammed as a congregational mosque, it has two unique minarets topped in a pincushion design with glazed faience decoration and is all that remains of the Sultan's massive building program within the Citadel. There are two entrances to the mosque. One entrance was used by the soldiers, and is in the form of a trilobate arch, while the other, used exclusively by the Sultan, has an inscribed arch decorated with stalactites. Within the mosque, there was once marble panels, but these were removed by Sultan Selim I and sent to Istanbul in 1517. Within the arcaded courtyard, many of the columns were derived from pharaonic, Roman and Byzantine buildings, but seem to fit together suprisingly well as a whole. The restored qiblah has a large dome, and the wooden ceiling and stalactites make this mosque well worth a visit.
The Carriage Museum:
within the Citadel, is housed in the building once used as the British Officers' Mess during the colonial period. It has a collection of eight carriages, including that of the Khedive Ismail used when he opened the Suez Canal in 1869 and a golden state carriage presented to the Khedive by Napoleon III. In fact, most of the carriages date from this period.
Watch this SLIDE for some photos for the Citadel complex
It is an ancient shopping area, The suq (which is the Arabic name for bazar, or market) dates back to 1382, when Emir Djaharks el-Khalili built a big caravanserai (or khan) right here. A caravanseri was a sort of hotel for traders, and usually the focal point for economic activity for any surrounding area. This caravanserai is still there, you just ask for the narrow street of Sikka Khan el-Khalili and Badestan.
As for the suq, you can easily grasp most of its charm and possibilities by wandering about. You do not need a guide, not even a guide book. Should you get lost, just keep going in one direction, and you will quickly come out of the maze.
Shopping is almost compulsory in Khan el-Khalili. Since the decline in Western tourism to Egypt in recent years, prices in Khan el-Khalili has dropped, but the intensity of the shop keepers has increased. The golden rule is, check the range of goods and prices in several shops before you buy, keep your head calm and stay friendly. And remember: you should never feel that you insult or disappoint a seller by not buying.
There are items you should check out here, and items you better avoid. Clothes are cheap, spices are of good quality and affordable, souvenirs of just as good quality as in the hotel lobby, but at a better price. Jewellery is a matter of taste, some might find the work a bit too crude, and the colour of the gold might be to goldy for some. The perfume shops sell copies of virtually all international Western perfumes.
While all of Khan el-Khalili is an attraction, there are some local sights. The most treasured for visitors is Fishawi's cafe, which you can count on being open when you get there: It has been continuously open, day and night, for more than 200 years. Its interior is charming, claustrophobic but with mirrors almost everywhere!
located on Gezira Island (Zemalak) just north of the Museum of Modern Art. This 187 meter tall tower, in the form of a latticework tube that fans out slightly at the top, is said to imitate a lotus plant, and ranks only fourth among the worlds highest towers. It is made of granite, the same material often used by the ancient Egyptians, and is about 45 meters taller than the Great Pyramid at Giza. it has restaurant that rotates at an almost unnoticeable speed.
The best time to visit the tower, also known as Borj al-Qahira, is at sunset, when millions of twinkling lights come to life. From here, one can make out on a clear day the easternmost extent of Cairo , where the dark gray buildings run up against the cliff face of the Muqattam Hills. Looking west, the pyramids mark the limits of the city and the start of the desert. Below, the Nile River flows serenely north to the Mediterranean, seeming to slice Cairo in two. To better facilitate the view, there are also telescopes.
Posted by EGY-REDS at 9:25 PM