"Visiting Valley of the Kings" Valley of the Kings Tip by Tijavi

Valley of the Kings, Luxor: 132 reviews and 217 photos

  View from entrance to Tuthmosis III's tomb
by Tijavi
  • View from entrance to Tuthmosis III's tomb - Luxor
      View from entrance to Tuthmosis III's tomb
    by Tijavi
  • Pyramid-like landscape - Luxor
      Pyramid-like landscape
    by Tijavi
  • Entrance to Ramses IV's tomb - Luxor
      Entrance to Ramses IV's tomb
    by Tijavi
  • Entrance to Ramses Ix's tomb - Luxor
      Entrance to Ramses Ix's tomb
    by Tijavi
  • Marker of Tuthmosis III's tomb - Luxor
      Marker of Tuthmosis III's tomb
    by Tijavi

The Valley of the Kings (VoK) is a must-visit. By now, you probably know what to expect here - pharaonic tombs to your heart's content. A few practical tips on visiting VoK:

1) Best time to visit would be early afternoon (around 1-2 pm) when most tourists wouldn't want to venture under soaring temps. Suicidal? Not really. That would be the time when tombs have least number of visitors, when you can have them all to yourself, like me. Don't fret, there are shaded areas and the tombs are well ventilated inside-actually felt cooler inside the tombs.

2) Take some time to view the 3D fiberglass model of the site at the entrance - this gives a feel of the lay of the land, as well as clues on what to expect, and help you plan which tombs would be most fun to view.

3) Rethink plan to see Tutankhamun's tomb - most of the artifacts had been moved to the Egyptian Museum, so the empty tomb may not justify the extra fees , which you pay on top of the standard EGP 70 fee (good for 3 tombs).

4) Don't miss Tuthmosis III's tomb - one the earliest to be built, it's the least accessible, and the most fun to visit-you climb a steep hill, cross a steep ravine to the entrance, from where you descend several meters below ground, crossing a deep shaft built to entrap ancient robbers. Sounds complicated? Try it yourself and you'll know what I mean. Warning: not for the faint of heart!

5) Forget what guidebooks say about bringing water - in this most tourism-corrupted town in the world, price of bottled water should be pretty much the same everywhere. Bringing water would not only be cumbersome, water would also be useless after being exposed to the sun. You can buy water at the stores located beside the main visitors' area at the entrance.

6) Respect regulations on taking photos - being alone inside the tombs, I could have switched to my shutter-happy mode, but chose not to (taking pictures inside is not allowed). The paintings are in a delicate condition and any measure to preserve them should be encouraged.

Happy tomb viewing!

Directions: Visitors usually see the tombs through organized tours. You could also hire a taxi for a day, which costs about EGP 120 (~USD 20) as of May 2007. It would be suicidal to bike your way to VoK during summer and even spring.

Review Helpfulness: 4.5 out of 5 stars

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  • Updated Dec 29, 2007
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