After arriving in Giza after a crazy drive and then checking into our hotel, we decided to go for a walk as the sun was setting. There were horses everywhere. It felt like Asia (what we will always compare everything to), but unlike Asia. Many people tried to sell us souvenirs, taxis, a helicopter…wow! We wandered down some streets and did a loop back to our hotel where we ordered some food on the rooftop of our hotel. Jives had kabab, rice, hummus, pickled veggies and cucumbers with pita and a rice soup. I had a cheese pizza because being vegetarian in Egypt ended up being very difficult.
We watched the Sphinx and Pyramid light show from the roof and had a pricey beer. The meal was about $60 Canadian, we won’t do that again!
We went down to our room to sleep around 10pm. What a day.
Oh, June 9th…what to say about June 9th. We woke up at 1:30am to the sound of a dog chorus in the streets. This song and dance continued until about 3:30. I was finally able to fall back asleep until about 6:30 when we got dressed to head to the roof top for breakfast. Breakfast was incredible! A young boy came over to open a HUGE umbrella to block the already hot sun for us, but it was incredibly heavy, so Jives gave him a hand… just as the whole thing toppled over on to my head and arm. He was so embarrassed, and I felt terrible. An adorable lady brought us homemade pita, a tomato and goat cheese spicy dip, eggplant, homemade fries, veggies, spicy cheese, omelettes, papaya juice and coffee with melon to wash it all down!
After the delicious breakfast, we headed to an ATM to get some cash (it had been impossible to get Egyptian pounds in Canada) and water. We got scammed by a friendly local, but what are you going to do? At least it was only $14.. when it should have been maybe $6 for the waters.
We then went to the Sphinx entrance to buy tickets. We were being rushed to purchase and felt really unsafe, so we walked away from the booth for a moment to regroup. We then stood in line for about 15 minutes to get tickets to the grounds as well as to enter the Great Pyramid. The cost was about 1050 Pounds for two people. We then entered the building beside the ticket booth to get our bag scanned. The turnstile is the ONLY place you need to show your ticket (also as you enter a pyramid), however right outside the entrance we met our first scammer. He said he needed to see our ticket, so I said “no”. He got mad and said “no one can enter without a guide” which I knew was untrue. I said “no we are ok” and we yelled “what does that mean?” I wanted to yell back “it means I’m not getting scammed by you”, but I didn’t. Be careful, the guides will ask to see your ticket and then take it and not give it back.
At the entrance to the gallery, the Sphinx guards might ask to see your ticket again,but only hand the ticket to the man at the door. I handed my ticket to the guard and he kept looking at it, and then at my face as if he was checking that it was really me (the ticket only has a QR code on it), so I asked the guard if I looked like the QR code and he and his friend laughed like crazy!
We walked into the Sphinx complex and got the iconic, yet tacky “kiss” photo, beside about 30 other people doing the same. It was still TOTALLY worth it!!