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Cairo is Egypt’s capital city, and with over 16 million inhabitants, it ranks as one of the largest cities in Africa.  This city of contradictions will enthrall you with its ageless charm.  The ancient and the modern co-exist in surprising harmony, and the hospitality and friendliness of its people will set you at ease.  Historic Cairo includes the wonders of the pharoahs, as well as a religious heritage embodied in the numerous jewish, coptic and islamic monuments that abound.



  Pyramids of Giza

The only present-day survivors of the Seven Wonders of the Ancient World, The Pyramids of Giza are among the world’s greatest tourist attractions and never lose their ability to inspire and overwhelm visitors.  The largest and oldest of the Pyramids of Giza is that of Cheops (Khufu).  Also known as the Great Pyramid, it is thought to have been built between 2589 – 2566 BC. Located at the base of the south face of the Great Pyramid are five boat pits discovered in 1982, as well as a Museum which houses one of the boats.  The Pyramids of Khafre the Great and Menkaure the Divine may not be as large in size as the Great Pyramid, but they are no less imposing in fascination.

  Cheops Pyramid

King Khufu, who is also known by the Greek name "Cheops," was the father of pyramid building at Giza. He ruled from 2551 - 2528 B.C. and was the son of King Sneferu and Queen Hetpeheres. The pyramid was built in 2589-2566 B.C. and consists of 2,300,000 limestone and granite blocks of stone.  The base is 13 square acres, 568,500 square feet.  The length of each side of the base is now 745 feet but used to be 754 feet.  Total weight of this pyramid is 6.5 million tons.  The average weight of an individual block of stone is 2.5 tons.  The height of Cheops is 449 feet and angle of incline is 51 degrees

  Chephren Pyramid


Khafre, was the son of Khufu and was also known as Chephren.  He ruled from 2520 until 2494 B.C.  and he is responsible for the second largest pyramid complex at Giza, which includes the Sphinx, a Mortuary Temple, and a Valley Temple. This pyramid was built of red granite and limestone in 2558-2532 B.C.  The base is 704 feet on each side and covers an area of 11 acres.  The average weight of each stone is 2.5 tons, some of the larger blocks weight as much as 7 tons.  The height is 446 feet and the angle of incline is 53 degrees.  Khafre may be best known for his statues, and most famous among them is, of course, the Sphinx.

Mykerinus Pyramid

The third and smallest of the pyramids, that of king Mykerinus, Kefren’s son. It was constructed between 2533 B.C. and 2505 B.C., yet it is characterized by its splendid exterior. It had not been completed by the time that Mykerinus died; only the lower section of it has been cased in red granite.
Its entrance is found in the northern side 4m from the ground, leading to a passage and a corridor, which in turn leads to the burial room. In this room, a mummy was found in a wooden coffin, and it is now preserved in the British Museum.
One of the differences from the two other pyramids is that the burial chamber in this pyramid was under the pyramid not inside it as it used to be.
Close to Mykerinus' pyramid lie three smaller pyramids, the largest of which was thought to belong to Mykerinus' principle wife Khamerernebty II. All three of these subsidiary pyramids remained unfinished.



Eulogized in poetry, enthroned in legend, the Sphinx remains a symbol of strength, wisdom and mystery for eons.  Partially buried several times over the years by the shifting desert sands, the Sphinx now stands fully exposed with its impressive dimensions visible to all.  The body of a lion with the head of a king or god, the Sphinx lines up with the Pyramid of Khafre, and it is believed that it was commissioned by that 4th Dynasty king. The Sphinx faces the rising sun with a temple to the front which resembles the sun temples which were built later by the kings of the 5th Dynasty. The body is 60m in length and 20m tall.

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