I cast off and watched upper Egypt slip away as I cruised to my next port of call, majestic Luxor. On arrival, I headed up the stunning Avenue of Sphinxes.
I was amazed by the sheer volume of famous monuments around Luxor. Often referred to as the “world’s greatest open-air museum,” it was all about indulging in a cultural feast. I got a close look at the gigantic stone statues of Colossus of Memnon – towering above the landscape at 18 metres high.
After the Colossus of Memnon, I visited the Temple of Hatshepsut (who was the most successful female pharaoh, reigning longer than any other woman). Usually this site is just flooded with tourists. As you can see from my photos, not another soul is present! Again, traveling during the August heat and recent resignation of the prime minister turned out to be a fantastic time to travel around Egypt.
Soon after, it was time to experience the afterlife and the city of the dead with a tour of the Valley of the Kings. This spectacular site is where King Tut is buried and where most visitors were gathered. The visit was surreal, but unfortunately I was brought back to reality pretty quickly . . .
All of a sudden, I felt dizzy from the intense heat. I could not gather my breath and made my way back to the exit in a delirious shuffle, muttering “excuse me, excuse me,” breathlessly as I tried to get through a throng of people. It was walking up the steps that people gave one look at me and finally got out of the way. I had one hand over my mouth and the other on the railing pulling me up as quickly as possible.
Unfortunately, I didn’t quite reach the top when I barfed on the steps leading to King Tut’s tomb. Obviously my lingering food poisoning attacked me at the most inconvenient time, as usual. Everyone went quiet and a man directly in front of me selling postcards observed me with horror.