Visiting the Pyramids of Giza in Cairo – Ancient Egypt

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Updated May 6, 2017 / Joรฃo Leitรฃo / 12 Comments / Filed in: / Reading time 3 minutes
Visiting the Pyramids of Giza in Cairo - Ancient Egypt

Visiting the Pyramids of Giza in Cairo – Ancient Egypt

Pyramids of Giza

Egypt is a country that takes us back in time.

One cannot mention the city of Cairo without thinking about the Nile River, the pharaohs and the pyramids.

View of the Pyramid of Cheops

View of the Pyramid of Cheops

This chaotic Arab metropolis offers several nice places to visit, but among the major tourist sites, there is only one considered to be โ€œThe bestโ€. I’m referring to the Necropolis of Giza a.k.a. Giza pyramid complex archaeological site on Cairo’s Giza Plateau.

Giza Plateau lies inside the desert and is about a half hour drive from Downtown Cairo.

This complex consists of three sets of pyramids, better known as the Great Pyramids. In this place we can also visit the impressive Great Sphinx, various smaller pyramids, the tombs of noble people, several cemeteries, the Solar Barque Museum and a village where artisans and workers used to live back in the pharaohs era.

Great Sphinx of Giza

Great Sphinx of Giza and the Pyramid of Cheops on the background

The most impressive of the three pyramidal structures is the Pyramid of Cheops also called The Great Pyramid of Giza. This stunning pyramid is the oldest of the Seven Wonders of the Ancient World.

Pyramids of Giza – main structures:

  1. Pyramid of Cheops – the tomb of the fourth-dynasty Pharaoh Khufu (2580 BC)
  2. Pyramid of Khafre – the tomb of the fourth-dynasty pharaoh Khafre (2570 BC)
  3. Pyramid of Menkaure – tomb of the fourth-dynasty Pharaoh Menkaure (2510 BC)
  4. Great Sphinx of Giza – the largest carved monolith in the world, which has about 73 m / 241 ft long, 19 m / 63 ft wide and 20 m / 66 ft high (between 2558 and 2532 BC)
View of the Pyramids of Giza dating back from Ancient Egypt

View of the Pyramids of Giza dating back from Ancient Egypt

Interesting facts:

  1. The pyramids of Giza were built 4500 years ago.
  2. The Pyramid of Cheops has 2,300,000 stone blocks that weigh from 2 to 50 tons each.
  3. The three pyramids are accurately aligned with the Constellation of Orion.

1- Pyramid of Cheops (Khufu)

This pyramid stands out for its grandeur. Belonging to the Fourth Dynasty of Egypt (2613 to 2494 BC) it was the tallest building in the world for more than 3,800 years until the Eiffel Tower in Paris was built in 1889.

Pyramid of Cheops

Pyramid of Cheops

Cheops pharaoh reigned between 2589 and 2566 BC. It took about twenty years to build the pyramid which is made up of three compartments: the lower chamber, the Queen’s chamber and the King’s chamber.

The 147 m / 482 ft tall Pyramid of Cheops is the largest and oldest of the Giza pyramids and was built around 2580 BC.

Instagraming from the pyramids:

Andrej Ciesielski climbed the Giza pyramids and took amazing pictures.

Check out and follow Andrej Ciesielski on Instagram.

2- Pyramid of Khafre (Chephren)

The materials used in this construction were red granite and limestone. The engineers took advantage of the hilly terrain to sculpt the nearby Great Sphinx.

Pyramid of Khafre

Pyramid of Khafre

Khafre pharaoh reigned between 2520 and 2494 BC. The team of archaeologists found an empty sarcophagus inside the pyramid.

Inside the Pyramid of Khafre

Inside the Pyramid of Khafre

The 136 m / 446 ft tall Pyramid of Khafre is the second largest of the Giza pyramids and was built around the year 2570 BC.

3- Pyramid of Menkaure (Mycerinus)

Menkaure pharaoh reigned between 2530 and 2500 BC. Like his grandfather and father, he ordered the construction of a pyramid to be his royal tomb.

Camel in front of the Pyramid of Menkaure

Camel in front of the Pyramid of Menkaure

Inside Menkaure pyramid, they found huge sculptures and works of art. This is the least spectacular of the pyramids since the pharaoh died unexpectedly.

The 65 m / 213 ft tall Pyramid of Menkaure is the third largest of the Giza pyramids and was built around the year 2510 BC.

Some photos of the archaeological site:

Map of Giza Pyramids:

Map of Giza pyramids archaeological site in Cairo

Map of Giza pyramids archaeological site in Cairo by Messer Woland ยฉ

A bit more about Cairo

Courtyard of the Muhammed Ali Mosque in Cairo

Courtyard of the Muhammed Ali Mosque in Cairo

The enormous city of Cairo has over 16 million people and extends along the east bank of the Nile River. It is the largest city in all of Africa and the Middle East. Its impressive viewpoints give us exceptional panoramic views of the river, its surrounding valleys and the arid desert.

Impressive Khan el-Khalili district in old Cairo

Impressive Khan el-Khalili district in old Cairo

Before the Arab Spring, Cairo attracted millions of tourists mainly because of the Great Pyramids of Giza. But apart from the pyramids, Cairo actually has an enviable urban heritage and many monuments and museums worth visiting.



Visual artist shares inspiring photos and exotic travel destinations. Adventure travel blogger with ideas and narratives to motivate independent travelers and audacious backpackers. Intense journeys into more than 126 countries around Africa, Antarctica, Asia, Europe, North America, South America and Oceania since 1999. Expat in Morocco - North Africa since 2007, polyglot and proud Lonely Planet Pathfinders blogger.

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12 Comments. Leave new

Giza pyramids are in my bucket list and I hope i get to marvel at the effort that the people made to make these great landmarks.

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Going to Egypt was one of the neatest things I ever did but man I don’t know if I would try and go now. Things weren’t great when I went but things are a little scary now. When we went in 2009 we still had escorts for the bus and never had any problems, maybe it isn’t much different now just seems like it could be. We weren’t allowed to climb on the Pyramids so was wondering how they got the great pic from the top of one of them.

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Always wanted to go to Egypt! I need to make this happen this year! Thanks for the tips!

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I hope you make it to Egypt this year. Such a special and exotic country. Thanks

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The Pyramids are indeed an impressive sight. I really want to visit them. I hope i can manage to go there while there is little to no tourism to enjoy them more. Cairo is also worth a visit. And if it wasn’t for the political instability, Egypt would be a very interesting destination. Thanks for this post ๐Ÿ˜€

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I learned so much from this post, and can’t wait to see these pyramids in person! When you visited, was it very crowded? and do you think we should visit with a tour company or do it on our own?

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hey Ben! thanks for commenting. I did go on my own and no, not many people around – even visiting back in 2008 when things were stable in Egypt. This is a great travel destination. My good friend was there 2 days ago and he said no tourists around.

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The pyramids are amazing. I’ve always wanted to visit them, and definitely will one day! It’s a shame they’ve been turned into a tourist trap, but it looks like it’s definitely still worth it.

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I thought climbing the pyramids was not allowed, but love the picture from the top!

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wow! amazing photos yo captured of that beautiful place and pyramids are looking so attractive.

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What an awesome place! Can’t wait to revisit.

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Czeล›ฤ‡!!! Hey thank you for your comment! When did you visit Egypt? I was there back in 2008… people say that now Egypt has no tourist… so it could be a different experience to visit again. I also want to revisit soon. Maybe even this year. Happy travels!

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