"Giza Necropolis - DIY" Giza Necropolis Tip by June.b

Giza Necropolis, Cairo: 7 reviews and 30 photos

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The Giza Necropolis is what is popularly known to us as the Great Pyramids. Located about 25 kms from central Cairo and 9 kms from the old town of Giza. The whole archeological necropolis or the Giza pyramid complex is on a plateau (Giza plateau).

After visiting the Egyptian Museum on my arrival day, tired, I slept and the following day when I woke up I was a bit confused what to see first - Islamic Cairo or the Pyramids - and decided intantly to go to the pyramid complex...and on my own. I suddenly felt like it would be a great accomplishment if I would be able to reach the place and come back on my own and do a report, so I did.

I went out and few meters from the hotel there are couple of drivers who are offering their private tours but I declined, I said I'm working in the suburb out of Cairo (I speak a little arabic - a plus!) so I know my way (a bluff). They're really persistent, and I heard the famous line again that I always hear - from Aswan to Luxor - "You know how much?" They would always say that to entice you to talk. You'll surely hear that several times from people offering their service on the street from felucca captains to taxi drivers to private cars. My reply is -- "Yeah, I know how much".

So, I headed to the Sadat Metro station which is a 2-minute walk from my hotel in Tahrir Square, bought the EGP1 one way ticket to Giza station. from the subway and figured out the line (internet research). Line 2 (Shubra to El-Mounib line), btw, there's a carriage for women only in the middle of the whole trains and marked as red which I only found out upon leaving Cairo. I didn't noticed that as I was following people. (See my transport tips).

So from Sadat , the 6th station is Giza and I got off from there and find a taxi to the Pyramids (Al-Ahramat in arabic). Took me awhile as I'm figuring out which taxi are not going to overcharge me. I took one with an old driver, he dropped me right in front of the entrance near the Sphinx (there's another gate which I've seen later and where I exited near the big pyramid) paid less than EGP20 for the taxi, and found out that I was so early and the gate will open at 8:00am, while there are people waiting at the gate, I suddenly realized they were all locals, and found out from this persistent guy who wants to sell his camel/horse rides that all of those people are working inside - working means selling souvenir stuff, etc.

So I waited there, chatting with the two guys one selling souvenirs and the camel/horse guy, they speak english and really persistent but I learned the way to avoid, they were friendly though and once they got the idea that yI wasn't really a good prospect, they just chat with me, and I told them I'm working in that place and company near Cairo which is actually existing.

The gate opened and I was the first visitor, bought the ticket (EGP60) and entered (see my tips on warnings), and really I was the only visitor on the first half of the complex but of course I was not the only person, there are reconstruction workers and the souvenir vendors and the camel/horses/donkey riders. The Sphinx was the first sight that greeted me, there's a temple right below the Sphinx and you could enter just present your ticket, so you could get near the Sphinx. The pyramids are on a near distance and the road to there is a bit inclined.

It was nice to see the pyramids when there aren't many people around in the early morn. Although the camel/horse riders are seriously annoying keep on floowing you and offering the expensive ride (see my tips on warnings), nonetheless, I've learned how to say an acceptable NO! or at least... You will be approached by almost every camel or horse or donkey owners.

I wander around the complex for maybe 4 hours and found most of the people who entered on the other gate near the largest Pyramid of Khufu (Cheops). They came in big buses, package tours. Then I decided to go back to the hotel, exited on the gate near the Pyramids of Khufu instead of walking back (long walk again) to the Sphinx side gate. Got out, walked until I reached the main road and took a taxi to the Giza metro station, taxi fare is a little less at EGP15, took the metro train and got off at Sadat near my hotel.

I enjoyed the Pyramid tour on my own, that I decided to come back. This time I went on a private car tour availed from the hotel because I want to go to Memphis and also the Step Pyramid (the very first Pyramid), but it's not possible to skip Giza, it's the same price anyway whether I skip Giza or take it in, so I came back to the Pyramids again. The whole day private tour costs me EGP180. More of this on the next tips....

Address: Al Haram Str., Gizeh, Cairo
Directions: Off Al Ahram
Website: http://www.touregypt.net

Review Helpfulness: 2.5 out of 5 stars

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  • Updated Jun 13, 2011
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