egypt
Giza - Pyramids
Giza -
Inside the pyramids at Giza - At Giza, kids will never forget going inside the pyramids of Cheops (Khufu), Chephren and Mencerinus. The ramps leading down into the pyramid are kid size (an adult has to bend over). Inside, you emerge into the galleries, some with very high ceilings. The sensation of being inside these huge piles of stone is unforgettable.
Khufu's Boat Museum (Solar Boat Museum) - In addition to all the stuff inside his great pyramid, Cheops funerary goodies included two full size "sun boats" to ferry the pharaoh through the afterworld or across the heavens. In the museum, you'll see an amazing reconstruction of one boat, re-assembled from over 1200 pieces.
Ride donkeys, camels or horses around the pyramids - It sounds tacky, but do yourself a favor. Rent horses (or donkeys) for an hour or two. On horseback you are less likely to be approached by all the souvenir sellers and self appointed "guides." Most importantly, you can ride in the sandy area northwest of the pyramids where there are no roads and no tour buses. The kids said, "It's the best way to see the Giza pyramids."
Sphinx Sound and Light show - Your kids may find the narrative boring, but the very cool lighting effects are sure to please. Also, it begins early in the evening and there is something wonderful about seeing the pyramids in the dark.
Editor's note - Giza is a circus. Sometimes I wanted to make all the souvenir sellers and camel drivers just disappear. A sense of humor helps. When I'd been accosted for the gazillionth time, "Want to ride a camel?" and I'd replied, "We've ridden camels and they aren't comfortable," one guy wittily responded, "Want to buy a camel." The kids loved the idea.
Saqqara (Sakkara) - Saqqara is close to Cairo, but light on tourists. The Step Pyramid is impressive in its own way, and it has a large sandy area like a giant sandbox for the kids to play in. Around the back (north) of the Step Pyramid, find the peek hole in a stone "shed" to see a full size statue of Zoser inside.
At Saqqara, our favorite tomb was the Mastaba of Ti. There we saw a live scarab beetle. Our guide caught it in a plastic bag and asked if we wanted to take it home. Very appealing, but you can't bring insects back in into the U.S.
Dashur - Dashur is just a little further than Saqqara, and worlds away from the flurry of Giza and Cairo. The Red Pyramid is as large as the Great Pyramid of (Cheops) at Giza and the interior rooms are very impressive. My son said, "We squeezed through a narrow stone doorway and came out into a room. Not just any room, but a huge stone room with vaulted ceilings that looked like it has upside down steps in it. I stared there for awhile with my nose and mouth hanging open, just staring."

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