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A Nile river cruise

The Nile is one of the greatest rivers in the world, and not just because of its length, which makes it the longest river in the world. Rather, its importance also comes from the influence it has wielded in the affairs of men and women who have lived along it. From the ancient times, the Nile has supplied the inhabitants of the Nile valley not just with fresh water, but sustenance for life itself.

The Importance of Nile in History

For much of its history, Egypt was an agricultural society, and depended on the Nile for its irrigation as well as inundation. As a province of the Roman Empire, Egypt supplied much of the grain for the ancient city of Rome. It was all made possible by the yearly flooding of the Nile, in which the river broke its banks every year and enriched the land annually by inundating it. Herodotus, the ancient Greek historian, understood that Egyptian agriculture was made possible only by the Nile. He was the one who called Egypt The Gift of the Nile.

The civilizations that arose in Egypt were directly or indirectly a result of the river itself. Indeed, almost all the important ancient cultural landmarks of the ancient Egyptians are within 20 miles (32 kilometres) of the banks of the river. Today you can see these landmarks by going on a cruise up the river. The following are the three of the more interesting landmarks that you can see on a Nile river cruise.

Double Temple of Kom Ombo

This temple is often called the unusual double temple of Kom Ombo, because, unlike other temples dedicated to a single god, it is dedicated to two gods of the ancient Egyptians. Appropriately, the temple has two of every important feature, including two courts, two halls, two sanctuaries etc. It was built by the Ptolemaic dynasty, which was a Macedonian Greek dynasty, in 2nd and 1st century B.C.

City of Thebes

Today known by its modern name Luxor, the city of Thebes is located 5 00 miles (800 km) south of the Mediterranean Sea. Luxor is also called the world s largest open-air museum, and it is not hard to see why. Within its bounds, an d around it, one can find the following monuments and landmarks: the Karnak Temp le complex, Valley of the Kings, Valley of the Queens, Tombs of the Nobles, Luxo r Museum, Luxor Temple, apart from other ancient monuments. Many popular films h ave been shot with these monuments in the background, including the film Death o n the Nile. Almost every Nile river cruise goes 500 miles upriver to the City of Thebes, and its ancient monuments.

Valley of the Kings

Also called the Valley of the Gates of the Kings, this valley served as a burial ground for the pharaohs of the ancient Egypt for about 500 years. From 16th century B.C. to 11th century B.C., more than 63 known tombs were constructed for the pharaohs. The valley is located on the west bank of the river, opposite the modern city of Luxor. Reaching this landmark on a Nile river cruise cannot be anything but one of the most thrilling rides of anyone's life.



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