Egypt Travel Guide – Valley of the Kings

Valley of the Kings

Valley of the Kings in Egypt is a valley where tombs were built in the honor of pharaohs, kings and powerful nobles who ruled here during the ancient Egyptian era. The valley is located on the west bank of river Nile at the centre of Theban necropolis. There are two valleys present in the wadi which are the East valley and the West valley. Since the end of eighteenth century the valley has been visited by archeologists and Egyptologists frequently in order to learn more about the tombs and the burials. The tomb of Tutankhamen has helped in making the Valley of the Kings very popular in the modern times helping it get ranked among the famous archeological sites on globe. In 1979 the valley was declared as a world heritage site along with the entire Theban necropolis.

The tombs

There are many tombs present in the Valley of the Kings and precisely the number is 60. The valley was where burials took place from 1539 BC to 1075 BC. Also tombs of many noblemen and the wives and children of kings and nobleman are also present here. The tombs starting from Tuthmose I to Rameses X can be found here and by the time Ramesses I was buried the Valley of the Queens had already begun constructing.

The many names of the valley

Often referred as the Wadi el Muluk, the other names by which the valley was known officially are The Great and Majestic Necropolis of the Millions of Years of the Pharaoh, Life, Strength, Health in The West of Thebes, or more usually, the Great Field. The kings and nobleman were buried in secret tombs and for their time had the best protection, but even then they could not fail from falling prey into the hands of grave robbers.

Some more info

The rock quality in the rock is varying and most tombs were built by making use of various layers of limestone having different qualities. The presence of shale layers is the most serious issue as the material starts expanding when it comes in contact with water which is why many tombs here have seen severe damage due to the floods.

The last two centuries have been the major exploration time for the Valley of the Kings before which the area was in antiquity. The area helps in studying the ancient Egypt starting from antiquity hunting and ending in the excavation of the necropolis. Even after such massive projects of exploration and excavation carried out in the valley only eleven of the tombs have actually been completely recorded.

Why visit this place

Valley of the Kings has many magnificent tombs which can help any person in getting a glimpse about the life and belongings of the pharaohs during the ancient Egyptian era. The tomb of Tutankhamen is the most popular among the tombs and also the most visited one among tourists who flock here from all across the globe. The valley has helped excavators in learning a lot about the secrets and stuff that the tombs veiled.