THE MOST CORRECT REVIEW

28 February 2023 Travel time: with 17 February 2023 on 26 February 2023
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The beginning of the story I would like to start more with a description of the process of choosing a resort than a hotel for relaxation.

Do you love Egypt the way we love it?

Yes, of course, and who doesn't like to relax?

Therefore, when choosing a resort, we proceeded from the fact that since we began to find ourselves in photographs in Sharm El Sheikh of other tourists and on advertising booklets, that is, we were already lit up, so we decided to try something new:

Hurghada is the oldest and largest seaside resort in Egypt, located 500 km from Cairo. The resort consists of three parts: the old city of El Dahar, the new city of Sakkala and coastal hotels, stretching for 40 km outside the city ("New Hurghada"). The beaches in Hurghada are sandy, the entrance to the sea is gentle.

Marsa Alama is located 240 km, El Kuzeir - 120 km south of Hurghada, on the Red Sea. For recreation, this resort is attractive due to its dry climate and warm Red Sea.


In this zone, the wind rose is favorable, in which the heat does not seem so exhausting. Also, the Abu Dabbab reserve in Marsa Alam is a bay where lovers of marine fauna from all over the world seek, because it is here that the famous sea cow is found.

Our choice fell on Hurghada, because it was a winter trip, and at this time too strong winds and exit from the sea will guarantee hypothermia.

In addition, Marsa Alama is a young resort and once you get to the hotel, there is a high probability that you will find yourself hostage to the hotel territory, since there will be only desert and sea around for many kilometers. But what about unsupervised trips to the shops in search of souvenirs and a look at all the nearby restaurants in alphabetical order in order to taste fish soups and various ways of cooking marine reptiles?

That's why we chose Hurghada - the hotel is located in the city itself, the first line and from Hurghada there were excursions to the long-desired Temple of Karnak in Luxor, the Mortuary Temple of Hatshepsut in Deir el-Bahri.

The total cost of a ticket from Odessa is about 32.000 hryvnia for two (about $400 per nose).

Let's just say, OVERALL TRIP GRADE: 5 (EXCELLENT).

It's easy to get from Odessa - find a minibus at the railway station to Chisinau, departure in the afternoon, everything is fine, go through customs between Ukraine and Moldova, during which you, together with customs officers, look through the contents of the suitcases of your co-travellers, as, in fact, they look at your content, while there will be no stop at the border at the Duty free shop, and then after three or four hours you are at the Chisinau airport, where your vacation begins about five hours from the time of departure from Odessa.


TIP for traveling to the airport - do not pack your bags too much, you will still have to open it and since there will be no stop to buy fuel for a trip to Duty free at the border, so it is better to buy alcohol at home before the trip. Another option for a tourist delivery method, in addition to a trip by minibus, is to order a comfortable taxi for about $ 150 per car. Therefore, if there are four of you, and not like there are two of us, then feel free to order a taxi both when departing and when returning back.

MARSHTUTK OVERALL RATING: 4 (GOOD), cheap and not very long.

So, Chisinau International Airport is the largest in Moldova and serves its capital. It is developing dynamically and today it is a fairly modern complex, which has been recognized several times as the best among the CIS countries. The airport in Chisinau is distinguished by pleasant and high-quality service.

Inside, you can use free internet, have a bite to eat in one of four cafes, go to many Duty free shops with tobacco, alcohol, perfumes and other branded and high-quality products. At the airport, you can also buy souvenirs, which do not differ much in price from those that can be found in the city. In the lounges, you can comfortably wait for your flight, and timely information messages will not let you be late.

We don't know why there is an opinion that the airport is small - it is quite compact, the infrastructure is well thought out and the area of ​ ​ Duty free shops pleases, which has a fairly good selection.

TIP regarding the time of your stay at the Airport - because during our holiday in Egypt there was a tax on alcohol $13 per bottle and the prices themselves in Egypt are exactly twice as high as ours , then, if necessary, it is better to buy strong drinks at the Chisinau airport so as not to overpay upon arrival in Egypt.

And the second advice - do not waste time asking the airport staff how to find a place to smoke, since you can’t smoke on its territory, and you can’t find a modern IQOS Lounge Zone at Chisinau International Airport, so feel free to you can go for a smoke break on the street, where, by the way, you can’t smoke anywhere either.

Since we had a late night flight, and we arrived by bus on schedule long before midnight, we decided to smooth the wait a bit - we bought eye drops (pictured).


By the way, the cost of packing suitcases at the airport is about 10 dollars per suitcase, but since nothing of value was found after customs inspection, we decided to save on this service.

TIP in general regarding packing your suitcase at home before leaving: because no matter how you promise yourself not to buy dust collectors in Egypt and spend your accumulated money for working time before vacation only on cocktails, massages, excursions and so on, you still don’t have anyone cheat and buy not necessarily junk, but very necessary souvenirs, but which will surely provide you with extra pounds in excess of the allowed weight of one suitcase, which should not exceed 20 kilograms. In our case, a twenty-eight kilogram suitcase at the check-in counter at the Hurghada airport cost us 50 Euros when flying back to Odessa - they take ONLY cash (no cards) and ONLY only Euros.

OVERALL SCORE OF CHISINAU AIRPORT: 5 (EXCELLENT).

A night flight with eye drops was imperceptible for us, but the total travel time, including the bus tour from Odessa, has already begun to affect, so if there is an opportunity to go through an accelerated procedure at Hurghada airport, it is better to pay and rush to the photo session on the street literally 5 - 200 photos under palm trees and urgently sleep on the bus, waiting for the delivery of all tourists to nearby hotels until you are unloaded.

King Tut Aqua Park Beach Resort 4 *, Hurghada - an all-inclusive resort hotel, located just 5 km from Hurghada Airport, they promise free wifi, there is a small water park with a swimming pool on the territory heated water, its own access to the sandy beach in a small bay.

This Hotel is located on the territory of another hotel Sphinx Aqua Park Beach Resort 5*.


That is, two hotels have the same infrastructure and a common beach. Clean well maintained area. Everything is lit up at night. There is a hookah bar near the beach, but due to COVID-19 restrictions, it does not function. There is a small zoo with a parrot and a monkey, which, tired of tourists, closes its eyes with its front paw, an unfortunate animal. There is a playground and several swimming pools, one of which has slides. A camel in a hat, hung with a beautiful braid, walks along the beach, wandering into the territory of the Hotel, on which you can ride for not very big money. The hotel has its own hammam and massage services. Also at the Hotel, third-party managers offer natural oils and creams for sale, as well as the services of a professional photographer.

TIP when checking into a Hotel - do not be afraid to participate in an interactive role-playing game with the manager: “I'll give you a dollar, and you show me another room. ". In this Hotel, information on the cost of additional services, including relocation to another room, including to a neighboring hotel, is posted immediately at the front desk and, what is most interesting, does not go into the pocket of the staff, but is paid to the Hotel cash desk. We, after examining several options, including a room with a view of the trash can near the construction site, settled on the option of settling on the first floor of a neighboring hotel with access to the pool. This service costs $60, but we got another bonus - this is a second large king-size bed.

NUMBER

After paying the relocation fee, we got a very bright, clean Room 1008 on the first floor of the Sphinx Aqua Park Beach Resort 5* Hotel with access to the pool.

Fresh, clean linens. Cleaning once a day. For a $1 extra cleaning fee, the attentive and polite manager Yaser will delight you with daily origami of African wildlife from towels and local flora, starting with standard swans and taking into account the number of days and nights of your vacation up to exotic fauna like crocodiles and elephants.

There is also a free safe in the Room, which pleases.

There is also a working refrigerator and a kettle that does not turn off by itself and will grunt indignantly until you unplug the wire from it from the outlet.

Well, the problematic front door, the electric lock, which, if you don’t slam the door with all the nonsense that has accumulated before the holidays, will moan and creak something all night, scaring you with incomprehensible sounds.

A small shower with the obligatory replacement of shampoo and soap as it decreases. Here you can advise not to be lazy and immediately go to the pharmacy in front of the Hotel and buy their local soap and shampoo from Vatika.


TIP on arranging life near the Room - you can immediately ask the cleaning manager (cleaner) to bring sunbeds right under the exit from the Room and put them in front of the pool.

Then you will always have your personal sunbeds in front of your Room, and if it is windy on the beach or just too lazy to go to the sea, you can simply crawl from the Room directly to your sunbeds in front of the pool. It is also worth noting here, as they say, the difficulties of translation or the peculiarities of the mentality of the Egyptians, so you must immediately explain to the manager that you need these sunbeds not only today, but for the whole vacation, otherwise you will look for him every day and ask each time to bring sunbeds again.

Well, about wifi is it paid or free as promised, you can forget - there is none or practically none in the Room, and the money to replenish the mobile phone will run away like the waters of the Nile, so decide for yourself - or not much worry about internet expenses (we spent up to 300 UAH in two days) or be patient until you return home and then stick to Facebook and Instagram!

OVERALL RATE OF THE ROOM: 5 (EXCELLENT).

POOL IN FRONT OF THE HOTEL ROOM

Pool in front of the Room with clear and ice water. It is worth noting that on the territory of two heated hotels there is only one pool at the King Tut Aqua Park Beach Resort 4 * Hotel, where the water park slides are located.

Our Pool near the Hotel Sphinx Aqua Park Beach Resort 5 * was naturally unheated, but given the strong wind on the sea, it was very comfortable near it and basically we basked in the sun near it.

In front of the Pool, as well as on the beach, sellers of juices, beer and nuts will constantly ply. At first it may seem that the prices are too high, but in general we settled on freshly squeezed juices for $3 and beer for $2.5.


By the way, regarding local alcohol, we do not advise you to take something from them, with the exception of beer, if you do not know what kind of drink it is. In the Hotel itself, all drinks are absolutely disgusting, even beer is impossible to drink - they make some kind of burda, diluting their beer with sweet water. However, you can find very good drinks in local shops, for example, if you walk from the Hotel towards the port (Marina), then after 10 minutes on the right side you will see a wonderful shop Drinks, where for 90 pounds ( 3 dollars) you can buy a fairly acceptable local gin and Egyptian beer 0.5 liters for 1.5 dollars. TIP - look at the beer packaging for information about the degrees of the drink - they like strong beer right up to 15% alcohol, be careful!

We remind you that Egypt is a Muslim country, so you can't even buy beer in supermarkets and small grocery stores.

Both on the beach and near the Pool there will be offers from local barkers for excursions and other services such as massage or hammam. You can immediately pay attention to the difference in prices for everything from the official and the partisans. By the way, we always advise paying more attention to offers from the guide, although they are always more expensive than from unofficial tour operators, but in this case, we, as seasoned tourists, decided to take excursions from the partisans, and arrange massages and a trip to the hammam ourselves - to choose where we like, and not just agree with what is.

Advice on how to relax calmly and brush off obsessive sellers at the beginning of the vacation - we, of course, as newcomers were pale pink targets against the background of the tanned bodies of vacationers.

Therefore, in the first hours of trying to relax on the beach or in front of the Pool, we listened to a short course in the history of Hurghada and Egypt, a list of all the services of the Hotel and all kinds of excursions that were almost organized exclusively for us. Therefore, as soon as the tan began to approach the usual color for a stay of at least 5 days and 4 nights, they began to lag behind us. Therefore, the TIP - upon arrival immediately sunbathe and do not give a chance to distract you from a well-deserved rest!

OVERALL POOL RATING: 5 (EXCELLENT).

FOOD

The food in the restaurants of the Hotel did not meet our expectations. When choosing a Hotel, we got acquainted with the reviews of tourists, and there were even very recent ones - just a couple of days before our arrival. But it turned out that the food in the Hotel is not very tasty and not satisfying.


The situation with food in the Hotel was ridiculous - we were approached by tourists who had been living in our Hotel for a week with a request, as experienced travelers, to take them to a restaurant to eat deliciously, because the food in the Hotel left much to be desired. Objectively, on the first day of checking into the Hotel for lunch, we were offered fish with a very strange unpleasant smell of mud, and in the evening, of everything that was on the table, only french fries were edible. Therefore, there is one or even two way out - to move the place of lunch and dinner to the nearest restaurants near the Hotel or in the evenings to change restaurants in the center of Hurghada or the port (Marina). We went with the second option and tried different dishes at dinners in different restaurants in Hurghada.

OVERALL HOTEL FOOD RATING: 3 (BELOW AVERAGE).

BEACH

The Hotel Beach, as promised, has a smooth sandy entrance to the sea. On the Beach itself there are free sun loungers, but without the thick mattresses that we are used to, for example, in Naama Bay in Sharm El Sheikh. The water was quite cool, but once you fearlessly go into the sea, you don’t want to go out. The water is crystal clear. And since there is a small reef on the beach, there were not as many living creatures as we would like.

It was also a little windy, even cool, although the locals assured us that from the beginning of March the air temperature would rise sharply to 30 degrees and the water in the sea would also become warm. In general, as we understand there is no spring in Egypt. At the end of February, when we were there, it was still winter, and from the first of March it was immediately summer.

OVERALL BEACH RATING: 5 (EXCELLENT).

GUIDE FROM THE TOUR OPERATOR

The funny thing is that for the first time in all our trips to all the countries where we were, this time the Guide did not come to meet us. At first, we were glad that there was an agreement that the guide made an appointment for us on the first day of arrival.

That is, having served this duty in the form of a mandatory meeting with the Guide, we will be free. But to our surprise, the Guide did not come at the appointed date and time. The event was postponed to the next day, and since we had already purchased all the excursions from the partisans, the meeting with the Guide was a few minutes, like, hello, everything is clear to you, ok, goodbye.


As a result, we were not constantly at the Hotel all the time: there were excursions for the whole day, exits to the city, such as going to restaurants or hamams, but in general we had a positive impression of the Hotel and staff. Separately, it is worth noting the very attentive managers at the reception of the Hotel, because, as we understood, due to a decrease in the flow of tourists, there were also reductions in hotel staff and maybe tour operators in Egypt, so when new ones are hired now, their quality suffers drastically.

Therefore, for example, against the background of communication with our Guide from the tour operator, the level of knowledge and polite communication of the Hotel staff made us very happy, especially the manager Olesya - she will be your permanent assistant on any issues, she is a great fellow!

OVERALL RATING OF THE HOTEL: 4 (HARD FOUR), everything needs to be considered as a complex. Would we recommend this Hotel? Yes, for this money.

SOUVENIRS

Our story about souvenirs can be divided into two sections or even three. For example, those souvenirs that relatives and friends are waiting for her - this is the time. Plus, buy yourself something memorable, from the places where you were - that's two. Well, you definitely need something else for yourself, without which you can’t do it at all.

In the end, what relatives ordered, like medicines, leather slippers or a blanket, turned out to be easier to find than anything else.

Now the dollar exchange rate to the Egyptian pound is about 30, at the same time, the ADVICE is better to buy and pay for everything in pounds, since prices for many things have remained the same, but the exchange rate seems to have grown. Although the locals complain that prices in pounds are constantly rising. By the way, maybe even more often than we expected, to our surprise, sellers refused to take dollars and asked for pounds for purchases.

In general, things are not going very well with souvenirs in Hurghada and on excursions, where they were at the Karnak Temple in Luxor, at the Mortuary Temple of Hatshepsut in Deir el-Bahri and the Valley of the Kings.

In the shops that are near the Hotel or in the center of Hurghada, including on the famous Sheraton Street, prices are, to put it mildly, slightly overpriced and there is not the variety that we are used to, for example, on the Old Market Square in Sharm El Sheikh or Soho.

And in general, the quality of goods, including jewelry, was not pleasing.


As for the offers of souvenirs during excursions, there is one frustration: with a small selection, less than even in the shops near the Great Pyramids in Giza, here any stone craft, like a scarab beetle the size of a fingernail, costs at least 20 dollars.

Therefore, what can be advised is the standard sets of medicines in pharmacies (Farmacia), there is something that should not hurt anyone. Very good painkillers for burns. Good tips for keeping your hair healthy. Very good ointments of black cumin and ostrich fat for joints. It's also a good idea to buy the so-called camel milk.

And you can also advise black cumin oil, as a drink - prevention from colds. Separately, we highly recommend Amigraine ADCO headache pills (pink packaging) - just a magical remedy.

There are also standard cosmetics kits, sunscreens, tea and sweets, and you can also buy inexpensive canned tuna and Egyptian jam. For example, it is easier to buy food in supermarkets such as Senzo Mall, Carrefour or Best way.

In the shops near the Hotel, in our opinion, frank junk. We chose only $7 sunglasses and silver beads charms on a Pandora bracelet as a memento of the trip, and that's where our choice ended.

Moving around Hurghada is very convenient by taxi, the cost is around 5 dollars one way, which is 150 pounds at the rate, but we mostly traveled on their minibuses at 2 pounds per trip.

About the Egyptian minibuses, it must be said separately - this is something special: no one closes the door behind them, 1.5 of its volume is stuffed into it and to get out you have to shout your stop, they rush around the city like racing donkeys at competitions and honk endlessly, in general, we recommend it to everyone: savings and impressions!


Street Sheraton in Hurghada is the main artery of the bustling resort town that connects the Marina promenade and the historical center of the city, the famous El Dahar. It is always very noisy and busy here. The street, 15 meters wide and 3 km long, allows you to easily organize the movement of vehicles and pedestrians. All the way from the beginning to the end of the street you will constantly meet various: restaurants, cafes, snack bars, shops, souvenir shops, hookahs with soft landscaped terraces.

IMPORTANT - in Egypt there are no such rules as traffic rules, so be very careful when crossing the street, because passing cars will not pay attention to pedestrians at all!

Here on Sheraton Street you can find good knitwear from local factories, but there is very little men's clothing, mostly women's dresses, jeans, jackets, etc.

You can pick up a good set of 3 or 4 things for about 600-700 pounds (that is, within 20-25 dollars).

Well, as it was said, there are no souvenirs on excursions to the Temple of Karnak in Luxor and the Mortuary Temple of Hatshepsut in Deir el-Bahri. You will be shown several shops with alabaster products, where prices start, as already mentioned, from $ 20 per unit.

Therefore, in this situation with souvenirs, or rather with their absence, on the way back we had an excess of only some 8 kilograms per suitcase, which cost us 50 Euros at Hurghada airport.

PHOTOSHOOT AT THE HOTEL

It must be said right away that since we almost always refused offers to take photographs or video recordings on our excursions, which we later regretted, therefore we began to order them at regular events, respectively, now we immediately agreed to the offer of a photo shoot with a professional photographer, who works at the hotel. We definitely affirm that this service should be ordered by everyone. On two models (like us) will get about 100 photos. There is no mandatory rule that you need to take all the photos directly - you can choose. We took everything. And we advise you - you will not regret it. In addition to your beautiful bodies and incredibly beautiful faces, the photographer will offer themed clothing options and find photo locations for unforgettable photos that will not only delight you, excite your memories, but practically guarantee the delighted cries of your social media followers.


In short, we could not resist and ordered such a gift for ourselves. By the way, our feat prompted other travelers, after viewing our photos, to a similar correct decision - to also order a photo session, but for themselves. Photos are transmitted electronically via a link that will be sent to your email with access to them within 2 weeks, so there will be enough time when you return home from vacation to download them to your personal computer or mobile phone and start making happy friends and family by sending photos personally or by posting on social networks!

OVERALL SCORE OF THE PHOTOSHOOT AT THE HOTEL: 5+ (FIVE WITH A PLUS).

SELF ENTERTAINMENT

HAMAM

Hamam services are also available at the Hotel, but we decided to choose our own. We opted for Sondos (Turkish Bath and Spa) hammam. Among the proposals there are programs lasting 2 or 3 hours.

We chose the Cleopatra program, which includes a relaxing massage. The impressions are the most pleasant, both from the equipment of the hammam itself, and from the procedures themselves. For those who have not been to the hammam, we recommend that you go, but for those who have been, you understand us. By the way, a pleasant difference from the hammam, for example, in Naama Bay, here, after the work of the massage therapist, there was no thick layer of oils left after the procedure, and at the same time, a wonderful lightness and energy were formed for the whole vacation. This hamam has an additional service - if you wish, you can take a few photos for memory for $ 5. Everything is very decent and beautiful. We remind you that the hammam is done at the beginning of the holiday, and not at the end - otherwise, with active movements, the master will wipe off all the tan from the body with a kesa (hamam mitten).

WALK TO THE FISH MARKET


In the center of Hurghada there is a Fish Market, where, in addition to getting acquainted with raw seafood, they can offer you to cook them. One kilo of shrimp costs $10 (£ . 300). The market itself is small, you can go once, especially where you will not see such a variety of fish, crabs and other shrimps. There are also several fish restaurants in European and local Egyptian styles nearby. At the entrance to restaurants there will definitely be a showcase where there is a sea of ​ ​ u200bu200bproducts on ice, which you will be offered in the form of a variety of dishes. The cost of a typical lunch or dinner for two will be about 10 or 15 dollars (300-400 pounds), which will include, for example, dishes such as the famous Egyptian soup for tourists with crabs, shrimps and other arthropods, fried fish, a side dish - usually french fries and drinks: juice or water.

Beer is usually not on the restaurant menu and the waiter runs to the nearest grocery store to get it. And this beer will not be cheap. We got a £ . 300 lunch and paid another £ . 500 for beer.

OVERALL ASSESSMENT OF THE FISH MARKET AND RESTAURANTS: 5 (EXCELLENT).

WAYSIDE IN HURGHADA MARINA BAY

Promenade in Hurghada Marina Bay is the most beautiful and cleanest place in the city. Its length is relatively small (about 1 kilometer), a walk from one end to the other with a quiet step will take no more than 15 minutes. There are many restaurants overlooking the bay.

It's also nice to watch the sunset. There are countless snow-white yachts parked along the Embankment, against which you can add wonderful photos to your photo album.

OVERALL RATING OF THE WATERWAY IN HURGHADA MARINA BAY: 4 (GOOD).

TOURS

Among the excursions, you should always divide them into those offered by your personal guide from the tour operator and local partisans for half the price. In the already proposed ones, separate those that are aimed not at your entertainment, but at extracting extra money, if any.

Therefore, we immediately discarded everything that is free, for example, trips to a leather factory or a state market with fixed prices, since we had already bought this free cheese earlier and almost bought goods on such excursions, where everything three or even four times the price.

We were only interested in excursion to the Temple of Karnak in Luxor and the Mortuary Temple of Hatshepsut in Deir el-Bahri.

These excursions have accompanying trips to the shops with souvenirs and there is a VIP offer with an additional excursion to the Valley of the Kings.

The cost of entrance tickets on the spot is 260.220 and 160 pounds, respectively.

As a result, we took a tour from the partisans for 45 dollars against its cost from the official for 90 dollars (the cost of entrance tickets is included in the cost of the tour itself).


The tour involves lunch, but we still recommend ordering a dry breakfast at the Hotel before the trip and, of course, be sure to take plenty of water with you.

The journey begins with boarding the bus and picking up tourists from different hotels around Hurghada for 2 hours. If it were possible to take a taxi and catch up with the bus, then we would have done so, since we were picked up first and our journey automatically increased by these two hours. The trip itself to the destination takes about 4 hours and here are the first impressions.

Words of course, what we saw is impossible to convey.

KARNAK TEMPLE

Karnak is an ancient Egyptian temple located on the east bank of the Nile River in Thebes (modern Luxor). It covers over 100 hectares, covering an area larger than some of the ancient cities.

The temple of Karnak was known to the ancient Egyptians as Ipet-su, which means "most chosen places" in Egyptian. This is a city of temples built over 2000 years ago and dedicated to the Theban triad - the supreme god Amon-Ra, his wife Mut and son Khonsu. Thebes was once the capital of ancient Egypt. The Egyptians called this city Waset, in the Bible it is mentioned under the name No, and Homer in the Iliad calls it "the hundred-gate Thebes. "

The large, boldly designed complex at Karnak, the embodiment of the ambitions of many pharaohs, is one of the greatest building projects of ancient Egypt. During his reign, every pharaoh who wanted to perpetuate his name made his own changes. Putting your hand in the construction of Karnak is like putting your seal on the most revered religious sanctuary in the kingdom. For Karnak was the home of the gods, and its glory was to be extolled by all.


Pharaoh Ahmose I decorated the temple with cedar columns, precious utensils - incense vases, vessels and altars made of pink granite, lapis lazuli, malachite, gold and silver. Large-scale construction began here during the reign of Pharaoh Thutmose I. The rebuilding of the temple was led by the outstanding ancient Egyptian architect Ineni, but the monumental column hall built by him was not preserved - it was destroyed as a result of subsequent alterations.

Under the 18th Dynasty pharaohs, the successors of Thutmose I, the temple at Karnak continued to be built and expanded. Great work unfolded here during the time of Queen Hatshepsut, by order of which the columned hall was dismantled, and instead erected a thirty-meter-high “obelisks of Queen Hatshepsut”, carved from Aswan granite. They were decorated with electrum finials, an alloy of gold and silver.

This "house of the gods" of gigantic proportions was one of the most ambitious projects of ancient Egypt in the era of the pharaohs. The complex includes 10 giant pylons, temple premises, chapels and an alley of sphinxes. Colossal columns and statues, halls and pylons, and all these huge stone structures contain a huge number of intricate figures.

The Temple of Amun is an elongated rectangle. It is surrounded by a massive wall, to the gates of which two roads lead, one from the side of the Nile, the other from Luxor. Both roads are framed by two rows of sphinxes with the heads of rams (the ram is the symbol of the god Amun). You can get into the territory of the temple and its interior through ten pylon gates, built in the form of massive portals with two monumental towers tapering to the top - on the sides. These pylons are a kind of milestones in the construction of the temple: each of them was erected during the reign of one of the pharaohs.

At one time, cedar masts stood on pylons with flags fluttering on them.

The columns of the "Hall of Annals", located along the main axis of the temple, are crowned with either a lotus flower or a papyrus flower. These are the heraldic emblems of Ancient Egypt: the papyrus was considered a symbol of Lower Egypt, and the lotus - Upper. The smooth trunks of the columns are completely covered with reliefs of ritual and historical content, hieroglyphic inscriptions. It is from the temple in Karnak that the ancient Egyptian tradition originates to perpetuate the military prowess of the pharaohs in monumental relief compositions.


The ceiling and ceiling paintings imitated the blue of the sky dotted with golden stars. Today, there is no trace of the roof, and the remains of the hall are in the open air. The walls and columns of the hypostyle hall were covered with numerous colored reliefs, the total area of ​ ​ which was 24.3 thousand square meters. m.

Gold glittered on the walls and columns, thin leaves of which covered the details of the columns and reliefs. Never before have ancient Egyptian temples been decorated with such splendor.

One of the most interesting sights of Karnak Temple is the Alley of Sphinxes. This is a wide road, on both sides of which there are sphinxes with the heads of rams. Once the alley led to Karnak from the Luxor Temple (in the center of modern Luxor). During the ancient Egyptian annual Opet Festival, the statues of Amun, Mut and Khonsu were put on display, they could be seen in this alley.

THE TEMPLE OF HATSHEPSUT'S DEPARTMENT

The Temple of Hatshepsut, towering in the desert valley of Deir el-Bahri, is one of the most outstanding monuments of ancient Egyptian architecture. However, this is not surprising, because the sovereign ruler of Egypt herself was a well-known and very outstanding figure. Being the daughter of Pharaoh Thutmose I, almost immediately after the death of her father, she married her brother and became one of the most influential personalities of the royal court. Hatshepsut came to power a few years after her marriage.

The Temple of Queen Hatshepsut, known locally as the Most Holy of the Sacred or Djeser Djeseru, is the grandiose mortuary sanctuary of the first female pharaoh who ruled Egypt during the New Kingdom. The construction of this unique sanctuary, which fell on the second half of the 15th century BC. e. , lasted for 9 years (from 1482 to 1473). Today it is part of Deir el-Bahri, an archaeological complex of mortuary tombs and temples, located on the western side of the Nile, and is under state protection.


The mortuary temple of Hatshepsut at Deir el-Bahri, with a faç ade width of at least 40 m, is carved into the rock. The main architectural feature of this monumental structure is 3 terraces located one above the other, each of which housed an open courtyard, covered rooms with pilasters and sanctuaries hidden in the depths of the mountain.

The connecting link that united the tiers into one whole was the so-called ramps. These are sloping roads that served as stairs and divided the temple into 2 equivalent parts - southern and northern.

Earlier, various plants were planted on these terraces and entire ponds were built. Now there is no trace of them, however, as well as from the huge T-shaped pools, as well as the huge exotic garden, laid out in front of the very entrance to the sanctuary. But the snow-white colonnade, made of local sandstone, has been perfectly preserved. With its harmony and grandeur, it resembles even older Dorian columns.

The upper tier of the Temple of Hatshepsut in Deir el-Bahri (Luxor) served for the main religious rituals. At the time of its foundation, the entrance to the portico was guarded by majestic statues of the queen, who accompanied visitors in numerous underground halls. There were at least 2 hundred of them.

Moreover, each of the monuments presented here personified the ruler in 3 different images - the sphinx, the pharaoh and Osiris. Many of these statues have been restored. Currently, most of them have been moved to the Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York and the Egyptian Museum in Cairo.

On both sides of the central courtyard of the third terrace there are 2 important sanctuaries - the parents of the pharaoh and Amun-Ra, considered almost the main pride of the entire temple complex. This building was crowned with a giant portrait of the queen, made in the form of a sphinx. Unfortunately, after the death of Hatshepsut, it was destroyed, but during her lifetime it could be seen even from ships sailing along the Nile.

VALLEY OF THE KINGS

Since we purchased a VIP trip, our tour included one more trip, namely to the Valley of the Kings.

And those who bought a non-VIP trip will go to the Valley of the Queens.


However, despite your VIP trip, you will still not be taken to the tomb of Tutankhamen, since the ticket there costs an additional 10 dollars.

The majestic pyramids of the pharaohs of the Ancient and Middle Kingdoms were ruthlessly plundered by contemporaries almost immediately after the burial of the nobleman. Therefore, the monarchs of the New Kingdom decided to build their tombs in a quieter and more protected place. A suitable gorge was found in the desert among the mountains near the ancient city of Thebes (now Luxor), the place was called the Valley of the Kings.

Starting from the 16th century BC. e. , the gorge was used as a royal necropolis for 500 years.

Scientists consider the Valley of the Kings one of the most significant sights on the planet, so in 1979 the area became a UNESCO site.

Egyptologists began to explore the first tombs in the 18th century. Subsequent excavations showed that the Valley of the Kings did not escape the fate of the tombs in Giza - black archaeologists have been working here for a long time.

Even though the necropolis in the Valley of the Kings was guarded by a special detachment of warriors, robbers still found an opportunity to sneak into the tombs.

BANANA ISLAND

At the end of the main excursions, you can be offered another scam for those who do not want to wait a couple of hours for the bus - a trip to Banana Island.

In other words, if the guide accompanying you does not drive you like a mad steam locomotive along all the columns and obelisks on excursions, then you, having calmly spent an extra 20 minutes in each place, will eventually arrive at the time the bus leaves back to Hurghada.

But, knowing this, the guides will rush you back to the bus stop as soon as possible so that you have 2-3 more hours left before departure, so that it would be easier to persuade you to pay another 10 dollars for a new excursion.

Loading tourists is carried out in small boats, and the first ones from the coast are a kind of pontoon, after passing through which you will get to the last one and on which you will be taken to Banana Island along the Nile River.


The very trip along this great river, which gave life to an entire civilization, will already give a lot of vivid emotions. And the island itself is an extremely picturesque place, a real banana paradise, allowing you to take a fresh look at the familiar fruit.

Bananas have been growing on the fertile banks of the Nile Valley since ancient times. The ancient Egyptians willingly ate it thousands of years ago. Once on the island, tourists will learn a lot of interesting things about how bananas actually grow, admire the luxurious flowering of these perennial herbaceous plants. However, there are other representatives of the flora on the island: mangoes, tangerines, sugar cane, spices and mint.

During the tour, tourists are allowed to pick bananas and taste them. According to reviews, these fruits have nothing to do with bananas from the supermarket. They have a rich taste and aroma, although they do not look as presentable as their store competitors. The island is also home to animals that tourists can photograph: crocodile, turtles, monkeys and less exotic cats and white mice.

We don't know what about turtles and monkeys, but the crocodile obviously caused our excitement and did not move, that we even began to worry about his state of health.

But the fruit sets on the boat itself were not only a wonderful decoration of our trip, but also from what was not eaten, it was neatly packed for each tourist on the way back.

Returning back from the excursion to the Temple of Karnak and the Mortuary Temple of Hatshepsut takes the same four hours plus the time to transport tourists back to the hotels of Hurghada, although this time they were transported much faster than on the road - in about 45 minutes.

The result was a departure at 4 am and, accordingly, a return to the Hotel at about 11 am.

TOTAL SCORE OF THE EXCURSIONS: 5 (FANTASTIC).

As a result, we had three days left at sea and trips to nearby restaurants, when the entourage did not matter much, and most importantly, the availability of fresh dishes.


TIP - there is a Restaurant opposite the Hotel across the road on the left hand side which we highly recommend: low prices and everything is very fresh and tasty. For example, two fish soups and 400 grams of fresh grilled shrimp will cost you just £ . 300 ($10).

According to the rules of the Hotel at 12 noon, we would have had to wait a long time to get on the bus at 7 pm, so we applied for the late check-out service, which cost us only $ 20 and again the cost was paid not into the pocket of the manager, but to the cash desk of the Hotel. Moreover, the extension of the check-out from the Hotel automatically gave us the right to be present at lunch and dinner, which was very handy, since the departure time was around 11 am.

The trip back was not much different from the trip in that direction, however, despite our desire to stay in Egypt again, we were driven by the desire to return home to distribute souvenirs to relatives and friends as soon as possible and, of course, share our impressions of the trip with the community.

It's worth admitting that on this journey, the unshakable rule worked again: Oh, I would like two more days and three hundred bucks! ", but as they say in one movie: "daddy says that it is unworthy to taste only joys - the soul is improved by suffering ... ".

So, summing up all that has been said, I would like to note that the main essence of the narrative in this Review is as follows:

«Travel: the money will return, but the time will not! ".

By the way, do you need prices? We have them:

$ 1 – Hotel Room Cleaning

$ 2.5 - beer at the Hotel

$3 - juice at the Hotel

$3 - gin at the shop near the Hotel

$5 – Massage at the Hotel

$5 one way taxi in Hurghada

$ 5 - the cost for overweight at Hurghada airport for one kilogram

$5 - women's sunglasses in Hurghada

$ 5 - the cost of photo services in the hammam

$10 - a kilo of shrimp at the Fish Market in Hurghada

$10 - quality textiles (jackets, trousers)

$10 - silver bracelet charm in Hurghada

$ 10 - the cost of packing one suitcase at the airport in Chisinau

$10 - a bottle of black cumin oil at the Pharmacy

$15 - lunch / dinner at a restaurant in Hurghada

$13 is a tax on a bottle of alcohol in Egypt

$20 - extended check-out at the hotel from 12 noon to 5 pm


$22 - men's sunglasses in Hurghada

$45 – excursion (at the partisans)

$ 50 - total cost for overweight at Hurghada airport for one suitcase

$60 hotel transfer

$ 60 - photo session at the Hotel

$90 – excursion (at the official)

$150 - taxi between Odessa and Chisinau

$400 package

P. S.

a gift to the reader - here is a decoding of Egyptian hieroglyphs, thanks to which you can make your own cartouche and find out its meaning, enjoy!

Translated automatically from Russian. View original
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