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TripAdviser has recognized GAT Tours Egypt with a 2013 Certificate of Excellence.
This prestigious award, which places GAT Tours Egypt in the top-performing 10% of all businesses worldwide on TripAdvisor, is given to businesses that consistently earn high ratings from TripAdvisor travelers.

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Last week in Egypt, a group of Russian photographers apparently climbed the Great Pyramid of Giza—hiding from guards for four hours after closing time before beginning the ascent. Climbing the pyramid, one of the photographers claims, carries a punishment of one to three years. But it was worth it. “I was speechless,” one wrote. “I felt a chilling delight, absolute happiness.” Here are some of their photos:

The Unbelievable Photos Taken by the Crazy Russians Who Illegally Climbed Egypt’s Great Pyramids

The Unbelievable Photos Taken by the Crazy Russians Who Illegally Climbed Egypt’s Great Pyramids

The Unbelievable Photos Taken by the Crazy Russians Who Illegally Climbed Egypt’s Great Pyramids

The Unbelievable Photos Taken by the Crazy Russians Who Illegally Climbed Egypt’s Great Pyramids

The Unbelievable Photos Taken by the Crazy Russians Who Illegally Climbed Egypt’s Great Pyramids

The Unbelievable Photos Taken by the Crazy Russians Who Illegally Climbed Egypt’s Great Pyramids

The Unbelievable Photos Taken by the Crazy Russians Who Illegally Climbed Egypt’s Great Pyramids

The Unbelievable Photos Taken by the Crazy Russians Who Illegally Climbed Egypt’s Great Pyramids

The Unbelievable Photos Taken by the Crazy Russians Who Illegally Climbed Egypt’s Great Pyramids

The Unbelievable Photos Taken by the Crazy Russians Who Illegally Climbed Egypt’s Great Pyramids

The Unbelievable Photos Taken by the Crazy Russians Who Illegally Climbed Egypt’s Great Pyramids

The Unbelievable Photos Taken by the Crazy Russians Who Illegally Climbed Egypt’s Great Pyramids

Egypt Classic – 08 Days/07 Nights

  • Introduction:

Nothing compares Egypt! This is what you will feel after landing in Egypt, land of secrets. Of course, your trip to Egypt will be the unforgettable one in your life, as Egypt looks like a unique country. Although this country consists of many various cultures, religions and traditions, it managed to mix all of those differences and create a unified country with special culture.

At the beginning of your mysteries trip in Egypt, you will explore the great pyramids of Giza, touching the 4,000 years old sandstone. What an amazing feeling! One can almost see himself as a Pharaoh, standing beneath that Pyramid during the time when Pharaohs ruled and the Gods were worshiped.

It is not enough to see the Giza Pyramids, visiting the monuments of Memphis, or even walking between the statues, paintings you have seen on the walls of the Egyptian Museum. But you have to complete your tour in our land, so that you could see the rest of our unique treasures! This would be happened during your tour in Aswan, the magic of the south. The ancient Souan or Aswan was also famous for its granite quarries. Thousands of Egyptian statutes, obelisks, shrines and even pyramids are constructed out of the Syenite granite mine in Aswan. The city of Aswan was also a crucial military base of the ancient Egypt. Whenever the reign of the land passed on to a new dynasty, security of the city was tightened the more. Aswan was always a garrison town. Mention of Aswan can be found in the writings of Herodotus, Strabo, Pliny and Ptolemy.

From Aswan to Luxor, the city which boasts the extremely unique collection of the Egyptian temples in the east bank of the Nile. While they kept their tombs at the west bank of the Nile. What amazing understanding! The ancient Egyptians managed to understand the circle of the world from the sequence of the sun rising. So they used to keep their daily life objects at the east bank of the Nile (where the sun rises everyday) and their funerary objects at the west bank (where the sun dies everyday).

Let us take you in such wonderful tour into Alexandria, which is considered to be the second capital of Egypt. Alexandria was founded by Alexander the Great in 331 BC to be the capital of the Graeco-Roman rule in Egypt. Its status as a beacon of culture is symbolized by Pharos, the legendary lighthouse that was one of the Seven Wonders of the World.

Since the 19th century Alexandria has played a new role, as a focus for Egypt’s commercial and maritime expansion. This Alexandria has been immortalized by writers such as E.M. Forster and Cavafy. Generations of immigrants from Greece, Italy and the Levant settled here and made the city synonymous with commerce, cosmopolitanism and bohemian culture; Lawrence Durrell described it as “The capital city of Asiatic Europe, if such a thing could exist”.

  • Trip Itinerary:

DAY 01: Arrival to Cairo – Cairo Overnight

Your Egypt tour begins at your chosen hotel in Cairo. A private transfer by an A-C van from Cairo International Airport to your hotel in Cairo is included. Since most of the international flights arrive Egypt between 03:00 & 11:00 PM (local time), you might need to consider travelling to Egypt a day early and arrange pre-stay in Cairo to ease the effects of jet lag before the first day of sightseeing on your Egypt tour begins. A very nice room is ready to host you during your first night in Cairo. [No Meals]

DAY 02: Pyramids – Sakkara – Memphis

GAT Tours’ Egyptologist tour guide will meet your at the lobby of your hotel in Cairo in order to accompany you in such an awe-inspiring tour to Pyramids of Giza “Khufu, Khafre & Menkaure”, where the greatness has been embodied in three pyramids with a limestone statue of Sphinx guarding the whole area. Enjoy your tour at pyramids area and smile for the camera while picking a photo of you on a very cute camel’s back. After that you will proceed to the city of Sakkara, where you will be so excited by exploring The Step Pyramid of king Djoser. This pyramid has a very nice story, when king Djoser asked his chief Architect Imhotep to create something different, so that the king could be buried at. As a result the well known Architect creates the Step pyramid, which surprised the king so much since it was considered to be a new achievement in this period. Drive towards Memphis, the city which was the first capital of the united Egypt. After finishing your day tour, you will be transferred by private A-C van to Giza Train Station in order to travel towards Aswan via an A-C sleeper train. Dinner meal will be served on board. Overnight on board the train. [B, L, D]

DAY 03: High Dam – Temple of Philae – Unfinished Obelisk

According to the published schedule of Egypt Railway, you train arrives Aswan around 08:35 AM. Upon arrival to Aswan Train Station, you will be met and greet by our English-speaking tour leader, who will transfer you by private A-C van to your fabulous Nile cruise ship. Embarkation before 12:00 PM. At the beginning you will have your Lunch meal on board. After Lunch, you will start unforgettable trip to the south of Egypt by visiting The High Dam, which is considered to be one of the most famous monuments in our modern history. Your second visit will be to Temple of Philae, which was erected during the Gaeco-Roman period and was dedicated to goddess Isis. At last you will be escorted to visit the very unique monument made out of red granite and was dedicated to god Amun Ra by his daughter queen Hatshepsut, The Unfinished Obelisk. Finally you will return to your ship. Free noon & Dinner on board. At night Nubian Folkloric Show will be operated on board. Overnight in Aswan. [B, L, D]

DAY 04: Temple of Kom Ombo – Temple of Edfu

What a pretty morning while enjoying the sun rise on board your Nile cruise ship! Today & after breakfast we will take you in a mysterious journey to land of secrets. This guided tour of today begins by visiting one of the most wonderful temples in Egypt, Temple of Kom Ombo, where the two gods Sobek & Haroeris were worshipped for a while. Get back to your ship and enjoy your lunch on the sun deck, watching the unique landscape of the great river Nile. On its banks the ancient Egyptian civilization has been created & flourished. Afternoon, enjoy chariot riding to Temple of Horus in Edfu. This temple is considered to be one of the most well preserved temples in Egypt. Finally, you will return to your ship. Sail to Esna, cross the lock and sail to Luxor. Dinner on board your ship. Enjoy your night with Egyptian Folkloric Show (Galabeya Party). After the show you will go to your cabin for overnight. [B, L, D]

DAY 05: Luxor West Bank – Luxor Overnight

After breakfast you will join your Egyptologist tour guide in such a unique tour to world of the dead!. As today you will visit Valley of the Kings & Queens, which considers as the royal cemetery of the Theban kings & queens of ancient Egypt, and the place where our Pharaohs were buried. After that, you will proceed to visit the most impressive Temple of Hatshepsut at Deir El Bahari. Temple of Hatshepsut is considered as one of the most wonderful examples of the Architecture in ancient Egypt, because it was built inside the mountain. Maybe this is an ordinary thing. But what you will think in the Egyptian abilities when we let you know that this temple is totally carved inside the mountain. What a genius architect who do this?! At the end of the tour, you will return to your ship to enjoy your lunch meal on board. Then Afternoon tea will be served on board your ship. Very special Dinner will be served on board. A lovely oriental show is awaiting your presence, to share smiles, dances, words with your partner. After that show, you will enjoy sleeping in your cabin with lots memories about Luxor. [B, L, D]

DAY 06: Luxor East Bank – Train to Cairo

Arrange your luggage, don’t waste the time and be ready at about 08:30 AM, as you will leave your Nile cruise after having this breakfast! After that you will enjoy your tour discovering the East Bank of Luxor, including the most wonderful Karnak temples, which is considered to be the biggest complex construction in the world covering an area of a hundred. Finish your lovely tour in Temple of Luxor, built by one of the kings of the 12th dynasty & completed by the well know king Ramses II (from the 19th Dynasty). With a very unique experience in the south, you will get back to Cairo. An A-C sleeper train is a waiting you at Luxor Train Station in order to be your method of travelling away from the south back to Cairo. Dinner will be served on board the train. [B, D]

DAY 07: Cairo Train Station – Alex. Overday – Cairo ON

As soon as you reach Cairo Train Station (at Ramses Square), you will be met with GAT Tours’ English-speaking representative, who will transfer you by private A-C van to your hotel for check in, rest & refresh. Later on, GAT Tours’ Egyptologist tour guide will join you in such amazing tour. As today you have a meeting with a very unique collection of our Graeco-Roman monuments. You will start you tour there by exploring one of the main sources of knowledge in the ancient world, The Alexandria Library. The site of which was the original site of the Pharaoh (lighthouse). Enjoy your tour to visit The Catacomb cemetery of Kom El Shoqafa, the cemetery which houses many mummies of various animals like horses. Later on you will take a break during having your Lunch meal at a lovely restaurant. After Lunch you will complete your amazing Alex. Tour by visiting Pompey’s pillar, which was erected in 292 AD. While being in Alexandria, you must visit Qaitbay Citadel (from outside), which is considered to be one of most famous sightseeing in Egypt in general and in Alexandria in specific way. After finishing your day tour, you will drive back towards Cairo. Arrive Cairo and proceed to your hotel for overnight. [B, L]

DAY 08: Check Out – Final Departure

Check out after breakfast. Later on, you will be met with GAT Tours’ English-speaking representative, who will transfer you by private A-C van to Cairo International Airport for your final departure from Egypt. [B]

Citadel of Qaitbay

Citadel of Qaitbay

Citadel of Qaitbay

The Qaitbay Citadel in Alexandria is considered one of the most important defensive strongholds, not only in Egypt, but also along the Mediterranean Sea coast. It formulated an important part of the fortification system of Alexandria in the 15th century A.D.

The Citadel is situated at the entrance of the eastern harbour on the eastern point of the Pharos Island. It was erected on the exact site of the famous Lighthouse of Alexandria, which was one of the Seven Wonders of the Ancient World. The lighthouse continued to function until the time of the Arab conquest, then several disasters occurred and the shape of the lighthouse was changed to some extent, but it still continued to function. Restoration began in the period of Ahmed Ibn Tulun (about 880 A.D). During the 11th century an earthquake occurred, causing damage to the octagonal part. The bottom survived, but it could only serve as a watchtower, and a small Mosque was built on the top. In the 14th century there was a very destructive earthquake and the whole building was completely destroyed.

About 1480 A.D, the Mameluke Sultan Al-Ashraf Qaitbay fortified the place as part of his coastal defensive edifices against the Turks, who were threatening Egypt at that time. He built the castle and placed a Mosque inside it. The Citadel continued to function during most of the Mameluke period, the Ottoman period and the Modern period, but after the British bombardment of the city of Alexandria in 1883, it was kept out of the spotlight. It became neglected until the 20th century, when it was restored several times by the Egyptian Supreme Counsel of Antiquities.

The founder of the Citadel of Qaitbay is Sultan Al-Ashraf Abou Anasr Saif El-Din Qaitbay El-Jerkasy Al-Zahiry (1468-1496 A.D) who was born about 1423 A.D (826 H). He was a Mamluke who had come to Egypt as a young man, less than 20 years old. Bought by Al-Ashraf Bersbay, he remained among his attendants until Al-Ashraf Bersbay died. Then the Sultan Djaqmaq bought Qaitbay, and later gave him his freedom. Qaitbay then went on to occupy various posts. He became the Chief of the Army (Atabec Al-Askar) during the rule of the Sultan Tamar bugha. When the Sultan was dethroned, Qaitbay was appointed as a Sultan who was titled Almalek Al-Ashraf on Monday 26th Ragab, 872 H. (1468 A.D). He was one of the most important and prominent Mameluke Sultans, ruling for about 29 years. He was a brave king, who tried to initiate a new era with the Ottomans by exchanging embassies and gifts. He was fond of travel and made many prominent journeys.

Qaitbay was so fond of art and architecture that he created an important post among the administrative system of the state; it was the Edifices Mason (Shady Al-Ama’er). He built many beneficial constructions in Mecca, Medina, and Jerusalem. In Egypt there are about 70 renovated edifices attributed to him, among them are Mosques, Madrasas, Agencies, Fountain houses (Sabils), Kuttabs, houses, military edifices like the Citadels in Alexandria and Rosetta (Nowadays the city of Rashid). These Citadels were built to protect the north of Egypt, mainly against the Ottomans, whose power was increasing in the Mediterranean.

Qagmas Al-Eshaqy, The Edifices Mason, was the architect of the Citadel. Before his arrival in Egypt he was a Mameluke of Djakmaq in Syria. During the rule of Qaitbay he became the edifices mason, and then the Viceroy of Alexandria. He was appointed governor of Syria (Damascus), built a Mosque outside the gate of Rashid (Bab Rashid) as well as a Cenotaph and a Khan. He also renovated the Mosque of El-Sawary outside the gate of Sadrah (Bab Sadrah).

Qagmas was intelligent and modest, as well as the overseer of many constructions during the time of Qaitbay. In 882 H. (1477 A.D) the Sultan Qaitbay visited the site of the old lighthouse in Alexandria and ordered a fortress to be built on its foundations. The construction lasted about 2 years, and it is said thatQaitbay spent more than a hundred thousand Dinars for the work on the Citadel.

Ibn Ayas mentioned that building of this fort started in the month of Rabi Alawal 882 H. He said that the Sultan Qaitbay travelled to Alexandria, accompanied with some other Mameluke princes, to visit the site of the old lighthouse and during this visit he ordered the building of the Citadel.

In the month of Shaban 884 H, the Sultan Qaitbay travelled again to Alexandria when the construction was finished. He provided the fort with a brave legion of soldiers and various weapons. He also, as Ibn Ayas mentioned, dedicated several waqfs from which he financed the construction works as well as the salaries of the soldiers.

Throughout the Mameluke period, and due to its strategic location, the Citadel was well maintained by all the rulers who came after Qaitbay.

The Sultan Qansoh El-Ghoury gave the Citadel special attention. He visited it several times and increased the strength of the garrison, providing it with various weapons and equipment. It included a large prison made for the princes and the state-men whom the Sultan kept away from his favour for some reason. In the episodes of the year 920 H, the Sultan El-Ghoury travelled to Alexandria with other princes. They went to the Citadel of Qaitbay where he watched some manoeuvres and military training on the defensive weapons of the Citadel of that era. When he felt the approach of the Ottoman threat, he issued a military decree to forbid weapons to be taken out of the Citadel, he even announced that the death penalty would be the punishment to those who try to steal anything from the Citadel, and he ordered the inscription of this decree on a marble slate fixed to the door leading the court.

After the Ottoman Turks had conquered Egypt, even they cared for this unique Citadel. They used it for shelter, as they had done with the Citadel of Saladin in Cairo and the Citadels of Damieta, Rosetta, Al Borollos and El-Arish. They kept it in good condition and stationed it with infantry, artillery, a company of drummers and trumpeters, masons and carpenters.

As the Ottoman military became weak, the Citadel began to lose its military importance. In 1798 A.D, during the French expedition of Egypt, it fell into the hands of the French troops, mainly because of the weakness of the Citadel garrison, and the power of the French modern weapons at that time. Inside, the French found some crusader weapons, which dated back to the campaign of Louis IX. Maybe it was a spoil after the battle and capture of El-Mansoura!

When Mohammed Ali became the ruler of Egypt in 1805, he renovated the old Citadel, restoring and repairing its outer ramparts, and he provided the stronghold with the most modern weapons of the period, particularly the littoral cannons. We can consider the reign of Mohamed Ali as being another golden era for the Citadel.

The Citadel retained the interest of Mohammed Ali’s successors until the year 1882 when the Orabi revolution took place The British fleet bombarded Alexandria violently on 11 July 1882 and damaged a large part of the city, especially in the area of the Citadel. This attack cracked the fortress, causing great damage. The north and western facades were severely damaged as a result of cannon explosions, aimed directly at the structure. The western facade was completely destroyed, leaving large gaps in it.

Unfortunately, the Citadel then remained neglected, until 1904 when the Ministry of Defence restored the Upper floors. King Farouk wanted to turn the Citadel into a royal Rest house so he ordered a rapid renovation on it.

Ras El Soda Temple

Ras El Soda Temple

Ras El Soda Temple

It was situated in Ras El Soda area on the agricultural road leading to El Montazah and Abu Qear and near the eastern company of Linen. In the early 19th and 20th centuries, this temple was transported to Bab Sharq.

It was discovered in 1936, and it is the only private temple discovered so far in Alexandria.

It was built by the Roman charioteer Ezadoras as a thank giving for Isis, on the recovery of his foot which was broken when he felt of his chariot.

The temple consists of a platform built of limestone and approached by a staircase. At the middle of the platform, there is a small pedestal on which the votive marble statue of Ezadoras was placed.

There are also four Ionic marble columns and five marble statues between them;

  • The 1st statue:

It belongs to Hermanubis who is depicted as a young man wearing a Greek tunic with a torch in his hand, and next to his feet there is a seated figure of Jackal (Anubis).

  • The 2nd statue:

It belongs to god Harpocratis who is depicted as a naked child with his thumb in his mouth, he is also shown with a side lock of hair.

  • The 3rd statue:

It is the largest one and it belongs to goddess Isis who is depicted in the Greek form as a standing figure of a woman wearing a tunic with a knot on her dress, she is also crowned with two horns and a sun disk, and she holds the situla (jar for sacred water).

The 4th and 5th statues:

They are for god Osiris in canopic form, he is represented as a jar and its lid takes the shape of the head of god Osiris.

The pedestal, the votive marble foot and 5 marble statues are now in the Graeco Roman museum at Alexandria.

On one side of the platform, there is a staircase leading to two rooms, one behind the other and the second room is smaller and its floor is higher than that of the first room.

The second room also has benches along the side walls therefore; some scholars believed that this room was used as a living quarter for the priests of the temple.

The Roman Theatre

It is situated in Kom El Dekka area opposite to the railway station of Alexandria. It is the only theatre discovered so far in Alexandria. It was discovered by the Polish Expedition in 1960 when they were removing the remains of the Napoleonic fort.

This theatre was built in 1st century AD, and went to various developments until it was converted into a closed a simply religious hall in the 6th century AD.

The theatre consists of an auditorium & a skene and between them there is the place of the orchestra. When the theatre was built, its diameter was 42 m. and it is very difficult to estimate the number of the steps of the auditorium.

In the 3rd century AD, the outer façade of the theatre collapsed, then the theatre was restored and as a result the diameter of the theatre was reduced into 33.5 and the number of steps became 16 steps.

In the 6th century AD, this theatre was converted from an open air theatre to a closed a simply religious court as they followed the following steps;

  1. They reduced the number of steps from 16 to 13, while the diameter remains 33.5 m. ”all the steps are made out of marble except for the lowest one which was made out of red granite”.
  2. They extend the either sides of the auditorium towards the skene, and the shape of the theatre changed from half circular shape to a semi circular shape.
  3. Triple arcade was built in the skene and then they covered the whole construction with a dome which rested on the top of the auditorium and the triple arcade.

These alterations were not on sound architectural bases, therefore, it was not long and the dome collapsed and the theatre stopped from being used.

The floor of the skene still retains some of its original mosaics which take the shape of Geometrical motifs such as circles, squares and rectangular.

Pompey’s pillar

It was erected in 292 AD, on the top of the platform of the temple of Serapis by the people of Alexandria as a thank giving for the Roman Emperor Diocletian.

There was a revolt at Alexandria and the Roman Emperor came and surrounded the city until it surrendered because of hunger and famine, when he entered the city, he distributed wheat and corn among the people of Alexandria for free in order to decrease the effect of the famine on the people, in return the people of Alexandria erected this pillar as a way to thank him.

This pillar was made out of red granite and consists of the base, the shaft and the capital. It measures about 26.85 m. in height; while its diameter at the tower end was 23 m. in other words it is tapering towards the top.

The capital of the pillar was of Corinthian type. On one side of the base of the column, there was a text which read as; (Posthumous, the prefect of Alexandria built it for the most just Emperor Diocletian).

In the middle ages, the crusaders believed that the head of Pompey, the Roman leader, was buried on the top of this column, and therefore they named it as Pompey’s pillar. But this is a misnomer because Pompey was killed in 48 BC, and this column was erected in 292 AD. Moreover the text on the base confirms that this column was erected for the Roman Emperor Diocletian.

King Khasekhem

Khasekhem “the powerful is crowned” who was a native of Hierakonpolis. On the occasion of his coronation, Khasekhem made a temple offering of several objects commemorating his victory over northern Egypt, comprising inscriptions on stone vases and two statues (one of schist and one of limestone) showing him seated on a low-backed chair.

At the base of both statues: we find the number of enemies or captives captured in his wars against the Northerns that he led to reunite the country. The number inscribed is 47,209 which may be an exaggeration.

No tomb has been found for this king neither at Abydos, nor at Sakkara. Khasekhem was back to follow and support the cult of Horus, and we are not sure about his relation with Peribsen (whether he was his son, or prince or one of his commanders who had to put down the rebellions in the north resulting from Peribsen’s policy).

It is thought likely that the victory over the north was the reason why he later changed his name to Khasekhemwy “the two powers are crowned” placing both Horus & Seth over the serekh, to satisfy the northerns and southerns. At the same time, he chose “the two Mistresses are at peace through Him” for his name as king of Upper & Lower Egypt.

His establishment of control over Egypt and apparently the reunification of the country were accompanied by an energetic building policy that led to advances in architecture. Khasekhemwy built in stone at El Kab, Hierakonpolis and Abydos, where his tomb is the largest of the second dynasty. He also had a cenotaph at Sakkara to satisfy the Northerns (for the dual nature of the land).

There are family links between the second and third dynasties: one of Khasekhemwy’s wives was the princess Ny-Maat-heb (Ny-Maat-Apis) who was eventually to be the mother of Djoser. It is clear however that the late second dynasty was already more of a Memphite than of a Thinite monarchy.

The reign of Khasekhemwy simply brought an end to political opposition of the north and south and established the basic economic, religious and political systems of the dynastic period. His reign was the beginning of a great epoch during which Egyptian civilization reached a level of artistic skill and perfection.

King Djer

The reign of Djer was characterized by further developments in foreign policy, including expeditions into Nubia, Libya and Sinai.

He also set the economic and religious organization of the country, building a a palace at Memphis and a tomb for himself at Abydos, where he may even have been the historical prototype of Osiris.

Two breat tombs belonging to Djer were found at Abydos and Sakkara. For more reason, the ancient Egyptians in a later period thought that Djer’s tomb at Abydos was the tomb of Osiris, they performed pilgrimage to it and presented offerings until it was assured that it is the tomb of Djer by the discoveries of Amelineau.

He was buried along with the rest of his court, although this doesn’t necessarily mean, that his courtiers were obliged to die violently to accompany their sovereign into the grave. However, this was the first case of the Pharaoh’s recognition of the funerary needs of his subordinates. Judging from the funerary furniture in the private tombs of his contemporaries, the reign of Djer was the time of great prosperity.

Djer continued Hor-Aha’s wars against the Nubians and established his rule as far up river as the second cataract. This important event is engraved on a sandstone slab which was found on Gebel Sheikh Suliman, about 11 km south of Wadi Halfa. This slab has been cut and transferred to Khartoum where it is now in the garden of the new museum. This shows that the kings of the 1st dynasty were interested to secure the southern borders of Egypt and to invade the areas to the south of the first cataract for the movement of the commerce with Sudan.

Recent excavations at Sakkara have brought to light a large tomb belonging to Her-Neith who might have been his wife.

King Hor-Aha

With the death of Narmer, the succession of the almost united Egypt passed to Hor-aha, who in Emery’s opinion was the first king of the first dynasty, and may perhaps be identified with Menes of the classical historians.

In that case, he would be the founder of the Thinite Period (the 1st dynasty).If he was the same person as Narmer, then he was the inaugurator of the cult of the crocodile god Sobek in the Fayoum region as well as the founder of Memphis (some 20 miles south of the apex of the Delta near the natural frontier between the north and the south). They chose this place to be the capital Memphis because,

01. It is a very strategic position to control both Upper and Lower Egypt.

02. Memphis was the top of Upper Egypt and belonged to Lower Egypt as he controlled the southern, and settled in Lower Egypt ready to attack the northern in any time.

This was the place of the capitals of Egypt through the different ages. The new capital, later known as [Mn-nfr] and then Memphis then Manf was called ‘The White Wall’ which is the wall surrounding the country and from this strategic point Hor-Aha ruled the newly untied Egypt. Here is his new capital. He built a great temple dedicated to the god Ptah, who remained the patron deity of the city throughout its long history.

Here also on the desert edge behind the city, he set up his northern tomb, the first of a long series of funerary monuments which were to be built by his successors.

He would probably have established both his administration and the cult of Apis-bull at Memphis.

It is likely that he also organized the newly unified land by stating a policy of conciliation with the north, which is deducted from the fact that the name of his wife Neith-hotep was formed from the name of the goddess Neith, originally worshipped at Sais in the Delta. The tomb of Neith-hotep, excavated at Naqqada, was provided with large amount of equipment including a tablet bearing the name of Aha.

It seems that Aha founded a temple of Neith at Sais and celebrated the festivals of Anubis and Sokar as well as his own royal jubilee or sed festival.

The reign of Aha was a peaceful one except for a series of wars against the Nubians (he defeated the Nubians and established his rule as far up river as the first cataract) he also defeated the Libyans. He also established trading relations with Syria and Palestine. These military and economic initiatives were carried on by his successors.

The reign of Aha which must have ended in about 3100 BC, was thus reasonably well-documented on the whole.

He had two tombs, one at Sakkara and the other at Abydos.

His name Hor-Aha means the fighter. On his objects – monuments – some indications were mentioned about his wars against the Libyans and the Nubians. Also we know of some religious ceremonies, some were of the ceremony of his coronation.