Tuesday, May 03, 2005

Egyptian Museum

Egypt was a wonderful trip and for someone who enjoys just looking at something... a sunset, the Eiffel Tower.... the Great Pyramid was no different. But I'm jumping ahead of myself.

We stayed outside of Cairo at the JW Marriott. The hotel was wonderful -- virtually brand new -- and the kids really appreciated the four pools of which some are part of an artificial beach they have there. But for anyone without kids I wouldn't stay there. Having said that, we met a British couple who come to Cairo often and they said the JW was the nicest hotel to stay at while in Cairo. I'm sure I'd agree, it's just so far from town. I think it took about 30 - 40 minutes to take a taxi into Cairo.

Egyptian Museum

We had three full days in Cairo. The first day we took a cab to the Egyptian museum. The sun was so bright when I took the picture. You are not allowed to bring your camera inside the museum, but the amount of ancient items in the museum is breathtaking. It's not a museum like the Louvre where everything is polished and clean with everything in its place. I'm sure there is a very specific order to the Egyptian museum, but you feel like every item is thousands of years old and they placed the item with other items that were found at the same time. Apparently, there are something like 40,000 items on display at any one time and they all have some amazing story that you'd like to learn. The number of items on display is almost overwhelming and you really aren't sure where you should be looking because it all looks so interesting. and foreign. and old. Of course there is the Tutankhamun exhibit that is in its own small dark room.

That room was filled with people and we were there during a week in off season. I can't imagine what it's like in high season. There is also a special mummy room, which we didn't tour because I think the kids had had enough about death. We had taken an hour tour with a museum guide and he told us quite a lot in that time. We had to stop the tour guide early on as he went into *graphic* detail about how a body was prepared for the mummification process. Nevertheless, I felt like we got a nice overview of the museum and for an hour it held the attention of the kids. I'm so glad we were able to spend time there.

-- said Auntie M in Paris
10:20 PM



Welcome back! I'm so glad to hear you had a great trip! Great photos, too!

# posted by Oz : 12:57 AM  

Love the pictures.

And the hotel, very posh. ;)

I agree though, I've had that same concern in mind when researching hotels for Rome. There are some fabulous hotels outside the city, but I want to be within the city itself, and for that you pay a bit more for a bit less.

I commute daily to school, I don't want to commute much when I'm in Rome for three days!

It sounds like you all had a fantastic time. Where to next? :)

# posted by Joe : 1:00 AM  

Back already! It sounds fantastic. I have a student who has visited the museum, fortunately she speaks English well enough to describe it all to me, it must be fascinating

# posted by Anji : 11:26 AM  

Just found your blog today, sounds like an amazing trip. I've been there before, but I don't get to stay in such posh hotel, lucky you! Next time you visit the museum, don't pass the mummy, they're quite fascinating, actually.

# posted by yuvee : 4:42 PM  

Hi Auntie M - I've been keeping up with you since my wife and I began planning a trip to Paris this February/March. Your blog is a great way for me to stay connected to Paris. Vicariously, but still...

I am curious, how did you get to Egypt? My wife and I would like to come to Paris next year again, get down to visit friends in Corsica and fly to Cairo for a few days. Who did you fly with? Cheap? Anyone I should NOT fly with? Any hints?

Thanks so much. David (http://fearfullyhuman.blogs.com)

# posted by Anonymous : 7:27 PM  

Oz, Thanks. The trip was wonderful.
Joe, The hotel was nice -- but when we travel with the kids to developing coutries we spend the extra money. We were in Rome last year and stayed far from city center too. I hope you won't have to commute too far for your school. We love Rome. I hope you have a great time.
Anji, It was a quick trip.. too short. The museum is truly unique. You feel like they just keep digging up new treasures all the time and just place them right into the museum.
Yuvee, I really wanted to go to the mummy room, but my kids have a low tolerance for that kind of stuff.
David, We checked out sncf.com I believe. We ended up flying with Austrian Airlines, which was very nice. Sorry I don't have more info.

# posted by Auntie M in Paris : 9:32 PM  

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