On a bike to meet Tutanchamon
Read my lips: “You are crazy!”
Staring faces from behind the glass of an air-conditioned bus. “Crazy to go ride on a bike in this heat!”
The bus full of tourists was driving on the broad asphalted road up to the Valley of the Kings in Luxor, Egypt. The Valley with the tombs of ancient Egypt pharaohs, situated up in the mountains near Luxor, on the other side of the Nile.
We are Dutch. We like bikes.
When we travel we never miss the opportunity of renting a bike. Luxor was no exception to the rule.
Of course it was hot. 35 degrees Celsius or 95 Fahrenheit. But that didn’t stop us.
The only one
It was a bit odd that we were the only one riding bikes. But as bikers we could easily stop for a minute, for example to watch the Colossus of Memnon (two guards on each side of the road after you have crossed the Nile). It is a great way to travel!
The first, rather flat part up to the Valley was easy. The last part with steep roads into the mountains, was not.
So for the last couple of miles we decided to take a taxi. But not without our bikes!
The taxidriver was so kind to strap our bikes on top of his car. It’s a pity my camera didn’t capture that.
Reaching the tombs
We reached Tutanchamon’s tomb. We parked our bikes against the rocks. The tourists from that air-conditioned bus were already leaving again.
But we just sat there. We watched the Valley. Just a place between rocks, but hiding the world’s most valued treasures. We watched the sky. A bird of prey circling, floating on hot air. We watched tourists come and go. In between we visited the tombs. Our taxi driver kept an eye on us. Was he worried about our health and safety? Or just eager to take us back to Luxor?
Back from the Valley of the Kings to Luxor we had so much fun! Downhill, with a need for speed. We and our unique travel experience, a new merger that was there to stay for a lifetime..
What do you think? Was it irresponsible to go out on a bike or worth the risk? What is your bike travel experience?
This travel took place in May 2000.