Great Egyptian pyramids in Giza
Archaeologists have already found 118 pyramids in Egypt, but only three of them are proudly referred to as "Great". They are in necropolis on the Plateau Giza near the city of the same name. They will be discussed in this review.
Prices and other information in this article are updated in September 2020. There is an important point about prices! In order to support tourism during the coronavirus pandemic, the government temporarily reduced prices for attractions by double. We do not know whether this action will act at the time of your visit to the pyramids. We hope that.
Pyramid complex in Giza
These pyramids served as the tomb of the Troy Pharaohs of the IV dynasty of the ancient kingdom of Egypt – Heops, Hefren and Mikherina. They ruled from about 2600 to 2480.N.NS.
We know little about these rulers, most of the information reached us from the Greek historian of Herodotus and the Egyptian Manephon. And the names of the rulers are also Greek, and in Egyptian their named Hofu, Hafra and Mencarura.
Of course, necropolis Giza consists not only of pyramids. Around each of the three assfirsters there is a whole burial complex consisting of many objects.
Among the secondary structures, tourists notice primarily the "pyramids of the queen". Near the pyramids of Heops and Micheerin of them three, and next to the pyramid of Hefrena just one. The first archaeologists who studied the necropolis of Giza believed that the governors of rulers were buried in these small pyramids, hence the name. Later, scientists understood that their wife and sisters, and the daughters of Pharaoh could be resting here, but the name remains.
Next to each pyramid is a memorial temple designed to serve the cult of the deceased Pharaoh, because after death the ruler was deified. In these memorial temples, priests served, all in a row were not allowed here. All three memorial temples are preserved to our time, but in different degrees of preservation.
Other constructions called "temples of the valley" were intended for public prayers. Of the three such temples, only two – Hefren and Micheryina are now preserved, and the Temple of Heops now lies under the neighboring village of Namella El Samman.
Around the pyramids you can also find "boat pits" – special underground structures where the Pharaoh boats were stored in a disassembled form. The pyramids of Heops and Hefren are five of them, and the Pyramid Micheer has not yet found any. Two "boat pits" are not even opened by archaeologists.
In the east of the pyramid, Hefren near his "The Temple of the Valley" there is a giant figure of a large sphinx, a famous no less than the pyramids themselves.
In addition to these structures, there are some more tens of other tomb on the garment plateau. Moreover, archaeological excavations are still underway, and every year archaeologists find something new and interesting.
Necropolis size – approximately 1.5 per 1.5 kilometers. In the west of the pyramid of Hefren there is another area of archaeological excavations, which is not part of the necropolis, but very interesting for historians. This is the "village of workers", where the builders of the pyramids lived. The word "village" is called conditionally, because there were up to 30,000 people lived here, it was a fairly big city for that era.
Where is the necropolis Giza
If you ask about this guides or ordinary Egyptians, the opinions are shared. Some say that the pyramids are located in the city of Giza, and others that in the city of Cairo, since Giza became part of Cairo. Who is right? In fact, all right, and now I will explain why.
In Russian, the word "Cair" is called three geographical objects at once. The first is the city "Cairo". Giza and Cairo are two different cities on the left and right banks of the Nile River.
The second is Mukhafase (province) "Cairo", which is also located on the right bank of the Nile and includes the city of Cairo and the surrounding.
The third is the city agglomeration "Cairo", which includes cities: Cairo, Giza, Schubra El Hayim,. October 6, Heliopol and a few more dozen small cities.
English-speaking tourists are somewhat simpler, in English these geographical objects are divided. The city is called "Cairo City", Province – "Cairo Governorate", agglomeration – "Greater Cairo". But in Russian, all these objects are called "Cairo", hence different opinions about finding the Plateau Giza.
so. Necropolis Giza is located in the city of Giza in agglomeration "Cairo", El Giza Province, Egypt.
How to get
If you are going to an organized excursion to the attractions of Cairo, then you will be brought here on the excursion bus.
If you arrived in Cairo on your own, it is best to use a taxi. The final cost of the trip will depend on the distance, and although the taxi in Egypt is cheap, the trip can "fly to a penny".
You can save, if you use the Metro Cairo and get to the station "Giza" to the second (orange) branch. From the station to the Giza Plateau about 10 kilometers, the trip will cost about 30-35 Egyptian pounds, if you drive across the meter.
Theoretically, you can get from the metro station to Plato Giza on buses 900 and 997, for tourists, buses are considered not safe. It is better to take a taxi, as it is inexpensive and safe.
What’s the cover charge
Entrance to the territory of Necropolis Giza – 200 pounds. On this, you can walk here at least every day everywhere, except for several places.
The entrance to the pyramid of Heops costs an additional 400 pounds, in the pyramid of Hefren, it costs another 100 pounds and a museum of solar roams – another 100 pounds.
For participants in organized excursions in the price of the tour only includes the entrance ticket, visiting the interior of the pyramids and the museum is paid separately.
The entrance ticket can be bought at the checkout of the northeast entrance to the necropolis Giza. The ticket must be kept all the time staying on the plateau, it will be needed in some cases.
From 8-00 in the morning to 17-00 pm. In winter – from 8-00 to 16-30. During the month of Ramadan – from 8-00 to 15-00.
How much time planning
If you want to see all interesting on the territory, then spend all day. If you want to only get around the pyramids, take a picture and look at the sphinx, then the pairs of hours are enough.
Heops Pyramid (Hufu)
The biggest Egyptian pyramid from ever built. Height – 139 meters, base length – 230 meters, faces inclination angle – 51.5 degrees. Total 2,583,000 cubic meters, it is composed of 2.3 million stone blocks, the total mass of which is almost 6 million tons. In antiquity, its height reached 146.5 meters, and the stones were folded in 210 levels (only 201 levels remained).
Of course, the figures awake imagination, given that it was built 4600 years ago. However, some historians adhere to the opinions that in the center of the pyramid there is a mountain that fills up to 50% of the volume of construction. That is, the ancient Egyptians simply laid down the mountains, which strongly simplified the task.
Hope’s pyramid is often confused with a neighbor – a pyramid of Hefren, which is located on a hillock of 9 meters high in the center of the plateau. The photo on the right shows three pyramids of Giza and the names are indicated.
Climbing the pyramids to the very top is categorically prohibited. To do this, you need to receive a special permission of the service of the antiquities of Egypt. However, tourists rise to 3 or 4 tiers up, the protection for this does not respond.
The strongest impressions of tourists get, standing next to blocks. At the lower level, they reach the height of human growth. Tourists think: "How such blocks of the Egyptians have dragged up to the upper tiers of the structure?"
In fact, the size of the blocks decreases with each level up. In the lower layer of block sizes – 1.5×1.5×1.5 meters and weight – up to 10 tons. At the top levels, blocks of approximately 0.5×0.5×0.5 meters size and weight 1-1.5 tons.
In antiquity, the pyramid of Heops looked at all wrong. It was completely lined with a beautiful white limestone from the tour area, which is 20 kilometers east of Giza across the Nile River.
This cladding was constantly melted on building materials, and now it was not at all on the surface of the pyramid of Heops. From this white limestone built all the ancient Mosques of Cairo.
Read in our main article in detail. "The Pyramid of Cheops".
Pyramid Hefrena (Hafra)
The second sizes of the pyramid in Giza has a height of 136.5 meters, height in antiquity – 143.5 meters. The length of the base is 215 meters, the total volume is 2.2 million cubic meters.
The main feature of this pyramid – cladding remains on her top, although a little. Looking at the top, you can try to imagine how the giza necropolis looked in antiquity, as the pyramids shone in the sun.
Two lower levels (as high up to 3 meters) were lined with red granite from Aswan. It was considered a real luxury.
The second interesting moment for tourists – the memorial temple of the pyramid of Heff is very well preserved. In ancient times, this temple fell asleep with sand, and dug him only in 1853. It was here that they found several statues of Pharaoh Hefren (Hafra), and we now have an idea of his appearance.
For comparison, we don’t know almost anything about the appearance of the pharaoh of Heops, the archaeologists found only one of its statuette with a height of only 7.5 centimeters, and the features of the face on it are unclear. This ivory figurine was found in Abidos and is now exhibited in the Cairo Museum.
Read in our main article in detail. "Pyramid Hefrena".
Pyramid Micherina (Mencaurs)
The smallest of three. Height – 61 meters, in antiquity – 65.5 meters. The length of the base is 108.5 meters, the volume is 235,000 cubic meters.
Tourists she is interested in two nuances. The first – on the lower tiers there is a facing. It is amazing how it was not removed by building materials. When the facing persists at the upper levels, it is clear that the cutters just did not get to the top. And how the facing did not remove on the lower? Mystery. The only reasonable version – the pyramid fell asleep with sand, and the miningers of building materials simply did not notice this facing.
The second point is a big "scar" on one of the faces. Presumably, he remained from the attempt of the Arabic Sultan al-Aziza (son Salah Ad-Dina), who decided to disassemble the great pyramids in the hope of finding inside the treasure. His attempt was fraught with fiasco, and this scar – the result of this attempt.
Read in our main article in detail. "Pyramid Micherina".
In the east of the pyramid, Hefren stands a huge statue of sphinx – creatures with a body of lion and a man’s head. Its length is 73.5 meters, width – 19.3 meters, height – 20.2 meters.
The first part of the tourist program has a large sphinx – it is to make a photo about it like you see on the right.
Previously, on the same tourist program and ended, because close to the large sphinx tourists were not allowed. Now you can already approach him close and see the Memorial Steel at his feet.
Sphinx pays a lot of riddles and questions: "Whose person has his face?"," What is his feature?"," Who and when he broke his nose and beard?". These secrets should talk in detail in a separate article.
Read in our main article in detail. "Big Sphinx".
Inside the pyramid of Heops
For 400 Egyptian pounds can be descended into the funeral chamber of the pyramid of Heops. The number of visitors is limited – 300 people per day. If you set the goal to get into the tomb of Heops, we recommend to come to the necropolis Giza in the morning, otherwise you can "fly" with tickets.
At about noon, tourist buses with excursion groups begin to approach, and tickets may not be enough tickets. Inside tourists launch in small groups, and at the entrance will have to wait.
Inside visitors, a narrow corridor length about 40 meters leading under a slight angle down, then about 50 meters more than 50 meters – a similar corridor at an angle, and already behind him is the most interesting – "Big Gallery".
"Big Gallery" is a corridor about 2 meters wide and 8.5 meters in height. Having achieved this corridor, many tourists sighs with relief, because here you can finally get angry. It looks great, lighting is organized from below-up, and visually seems to be the walls go up in the sky.
Length of a large gallery – 47 meters. Right behind her is the burial chamber of Pharaoh. When tourists enter it, they are surprised that there is nothing in it, except for the outer stone sarcophagus.
Here immediately remembers the phrase from the classic Soviet comedy: "Everything is already stolen to us". And indeed, the pyramids loiled in the first transition period – about 2200 D.N.NS. Even mummy robbers did not leave.
Inside the tourists hoped to see the inscriptions on the walls, but also there is a disappointment. The famous "Pyramids" texts began to apply on the walls at V dynasty, and the Great Pyramids were built by the pharaohs of the IV dynasty.
As a result of all the above points, many tourists emerge from the pyramid completely disappointed and flawed about in vain spent time and 400 pounds.
If you do not want to pay and tweer through narrow passages
There is another way to get into the real Egyptian pyramid. From the east of the pyramid of Heops, there are three small pyramids, and in one of them you can get completely free of charge and without compulsory fitness. At the entrance you need to show the guard your entrance ticket.
What else to look at the Plateau Giza – Sunny Faith Museum
In most ancient cultures, various items sent to the afterlife that could be useful late. Of course, no one will stop the Chinese emperor Qin Shihuana, he took a terracotta army with him in the afterlife – 8,000 clay soldiers. But also to the Egyptians in this regard, than be proud.
The ancient Egyptians were concerned about the problem of transport in the afterlife and buried together with the pharaoh whole ships.
In 1954, underground storage facilities were found next to the pyramid of Heops. In these caches were real river ships disassembled.
The first of the found ships raised to the surface, or rather it part – 1224 parts. This "prehistoric lego" was collected more than 10 years.
The result is now exhibited in a special "solar turkey museum", located next to the pyramid of Heops. Subsequently, archaeologists have found hundreds of such caches and ships throughout Egypt. But it is this rooke that is preserved better than all.
There are still disputes on the function of this ship. According to the main version – on this boat, Pharaoh had to swim across the sky, like the God of RA.
What else to look at the Plateau Giza – Light Show
If you are attentive during an excursion in Giza, you will notice everywhere powerful floodlights. In the photo on the right they are shown.
Spotlights are used for light show. It looks very beautiful, pyramids and sphinx are highlighted, and the laser rays show pictures telling the history of Egypt.
The show passes 3 times in the evening in different languages, there is a version in Russian. Presentation can be watched for free if you settle in the hotel in Giza in the room overlooking the Giza Plateau. From Cairo, they arrange excursions, tourists will be brought to Gizu to the right moment, and after the show turn back to the hotel.
What else to look at the plateau Giza – the village of Workers
Naturally, builders had to live somewhere. For these purposes, there was a special village in the west of the pyramid of Heops. Considering that about 30,000 people lived here, it is rather a city than the village.
Unfortunately, buildings are preserved here. For tourists an interesting little, but this place is gigantic interest for archaeologists and historians.
There was a huge number of interesting artifacts. Animal bones proving a rich diet of builders, clay products and beer cans. All this shows us the main thing – the pyramids were built by ordinary workers, and not slaves, as was customary to be considered recently.
Tourists will be useful to look at it as a real proof that the Great Pyramids really built people, and not aliens from space.
The pyramids are really huge, and many tourists can not believe that ancient people could build. How can you deliver here and install such giant stone blocks in the amount of 2.3 million pieces?
In fact, it is real. Historians conducted reconstructions, and nothing supernatural here.
Blocks are really large, but only at the base, the higher the tier, the blocks are less.
It was not necessary to transport them, as the limestone was mined right here – on the Plateau Giza.
Block processing also did not imagine complexity. Limestone – soft stone, and it can be grinding it with copper tools or, which is even better, of more solid stone.
But what is really worth surprising, it is facing the pyramids. Blocks from the White Tour Limestone were brought about 20 kilometers, while moving through the Nile. Red granite was delivered from Aswan, and this is almost 1000 kilometers along the river.
What else to read about the pyramids
– The very first pyramid is in Sakcara necropolis. Read about it in the article "Joser Pyramid";
– Two more famous pyramids are in Necropolis Dakhshur. Read about them in the articles "Loars of Pyramid" and "Pink Pyramid";
Successful trip to Giza, and read our other interesting articles about Egypt (Links below).
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