Nile Cruises And The Cradle Of Ancient Egypt
By Dipika Patel
Holidaymakers visiting Egypt with a view towards learning more about the country's ancient past might want to take in many of the area's biggest historical sights at once on a Nile cruise.
The Nile was the main lifeline of the ancient Egyptians, attracting those looking for somewhere lush and fertile to settle down and ultimately giving rise to one of the most powerful civilisations.
A number of significant attractions can be seen on the banks of the Nile - the eerie and unforgettable Valley of the Kings is home to Tutankhamen's tomb, as well as the final resting places of some 60 other pharaohs, including Ramses the Great and Tuthmosis III.
Egypt's ancient rulers moved their tombs to
the valley after finding that grave robbers found it easy to home in on the more lavish pyramids used to honour the dead kings of Egypt in the past.
Visitors to Egypt will also find a number of architecturally stunning temples along the Nile, most notably the Temple of Luxor and the Temple of Karnak.
The Temple of Luxor was constructed by Amenhotep III for the purpose of hosting the Festival of Opet, although other rulers placed their own marks on the structure by adding to it over time. It is guarded by Ramses II's huge twin statues and is quite a sight to behold.
Even more impressive is the Temple of Karnak, which was the most important of all of the places of worship to be used during the time of the Theban dynasty. The temple is a massive complex comprising various obelisks, sanctuaries and pylons and is 1.5 km by 0.8 km in terms of area.
A cruise down the Nile is one of the most unique ways of seeing the fragments of ancient Egypt left behind by time and also one of the most convenient - there is no need to organise separate transport and accommodation for each leg of the journey from lower to upper Egypt and the warm climate means that there are plenty of sunbathing opportunities to be had on the deck in between sightseeing excursions.
Visit Virgin Holidays Cruises to book a Nile river cruise and other Egypt cruises.