The 4 Best Tombs in the Valley of the Kings for Photos & 11 Things They Don’t Tell You About Visiting!

best tombs in valley of the kings

This post may contain affiliate links. Please see my disclosure policy for details.

The tombs in The Valley of the Kings, are one of the most important excavation works of our time. The gateway to discovering knowledge of an ancient civilisation that had been buried thousands of years ago.

Whether you think it’s a triumph or glorified grave robbing, it still cannot be argued that Howard Carter and his team had made a mark in history.

The Valley of the Kings had been on my bucket list for a long time. I’d heard the tales of the “Curse of the Pharaoh” and King Tut, watched documentaries in awe and seen enticing pictures in museums but nothing quite prepared me for this visit that’s for sure.

If you’re travelling here independently (i.e. without a tour group) it’s not straightforward, in fact, I was downright confused!

When I arrived, I had no idea where to buy tickets, I was told I could only enter three tombs (of a possible 8) and had no clue what they looked like inside to choose.

I had to buy a super expensive photo pass and was harassed constantly for it by the guards whenever I got out my camera. Not to mention it’s hotter than hell inside and full of tourists, who also don’t have a clue what’s going on!

So, in this guide, I’m going to demystify a visit to the tombs in the Valley of the Kings. How to reach here, how much tickets and photo passes are, what tombs are open at the valley of the kings at this time, the best tombs in the valley of the kings for photos and some tips to watch out for.

There will also be lots of photos in this post as I was determined to make the most of that photo pass ;)

best tombs in valley of the kings

Table of Contents

Things to know and prepare before you visit Egypt

  • Don’t forget travel insurance for your trip, it’s easy to get sick here! I always choose World Nomad’s as they offer competitive plans and prices.
  • In Egypt they use the Egyptian Pound, I will be referring to prices in EGP. Many places like hotels and restaurants take card payments, but I would make sure you take cash out when you arrive for shopping and attractions.
best tombs in valley of the kings
Exploring Luxor temple

History of the Valley of the Kings

The Old Kingdom of Egypt saw many kings wanting to be buried in Pyramid style tombs in the old capital of Memphis near Cairo. The most famous of this legacy can be seen today at the Pyramids of Giza.  

But, the New Dynasty of kings favoured a different burial. The capital city for the New Kingdom had moved to Thebes (modern day Luxor) and so the rulers wanted to be buried on the West Bank of the Nile in Luxor.

The West Bank, where the sun sets each day, represents the realm of the Dead. So, the Theban hills and the peak of Al-Qorn, which has a pyramid-like shape, was chosen as the perfect location.

best tombs in valley of the kings
Al-Qorn peak

Unlike the Pyramids, kings of the New Kingdom would build elaborate tombs. These would have colourful tales of their victorious reign and their passing into the underworld, which can be translated through the hieroglyphic markings inside.

They would also leave room for their treasures and bring weapons and statues to embody slaves to take with them to the afterlife. This was all part of preparing to enter the underworld, where they would be judged by the Gods.

In ancient Egypt, when you died your body would be mummified and your soul would enter the underworld to meet Osiris who judged your soul. This determined if your soul was worthy enough to enter the Kingdom of Osiris.

Your heart would be weighed on a scales against a feather. If it weighed lighter than the feather, it meant you were good and you would enter the Kingdom of Osiris. If not, your heart would be eaten by Goddess Ammut and your soul destroyed.

The tombs in the Valley of the Kings were created to transmit these kings to the underworld and the more elaborate the tomb, the more elaborate the send off. Despite the name, there are 63 tombs that have been discovered and only twenty are kings. Some are noblemen and family members of royalty.

But, we wouldn’t have known any of this or been able to visit today, if it wasn’t for the incredible excavations by Egyptologists that brought these tombs to life.

best tombs in valley of the kings
Many of the tombs in Valley of the Kings show scenes of passing into the underworld and afterlife.

Excavation of Valley of the Kings

The tombs in the Valley of the Kings has been of interest since the Greek and Roman times, when it was discovered for it’s treasure.

But, the biggest excavation works took place by Egyptologists in the 19th and 20th Century with the likes of Henry Salt, John Gardiner Wilkinson and most famously, Howard Carter.

When the tombs in the Valley of the Kings were excavated, they had no idea who the person was inside the tomb at that time so they labelled them as KV (standing for Kings Valley).

Although a lot of these excavations were a triumph, they were also a risky business.

Famously in the discovery of Tutankhamun’s tomb, Lord Carnavorn died some months after. News spread like wildfire and the world was reading about the Curse of the Pharoah in the papers. 

Howard Carter and nine others died within 10 years of opening the tomb and many blame the “Curse of King Tut”.

Ever since, scientists have had theories such as tomb toxins and bacteria, I mean, anything that’s been locked in a tomb for 3,000 years has got to be mouldy right?

But, even today, many believe that the Curse of the Pharaoh does exist and these tombs are haunted with people seeing a ghost chariot. Spooky.

You can still visit Howard Carters house which is now a museum near the Theban Necropolis.

best tombs in valley of the kings
Exclusive to The Times [Public domain], via Wikimedia Commons

How to reach the Valley of the Kings in Egypt

The Valley of the Kings is located around 30 kilometres away from the city of Luxor by road, around a 45 minute drive by car. Or, if you crossed the Nile by boat to the West Bank, it’s a 15 minute drive from there.

If you’re heading here on a guided tour from Luxor, A Nile Cruise, or Hurghada, you’ll be taken to the Valley of the Kings by mini bus or coach. But, if you’re heading here solo or as an independent party, you will need to organise a private car.

Personally, I organised a private car to the Valley of the Kings, the Temple of Hatshepsut, the Colossi of Memnon and Madinet Habu.

I paid around £500EGP (£20) for a half day morning tour by car.

This didn’t include a guide to enter the tombs with me or any of the attraction tickets. I actually organised this with my cab driver who took me and my cases from the airport!

best tombs in valley of the kings
A Falucca ride on the Nile is a must when in Luxor or Aswan

Where to stay in Luxor

It’s definitely worth basing yourself in Luxor as there are plenty of day trips you can take from here for temple hopping.

If you’re a history lover, than you should stay at none other than the famous Winter Palace. Now a Sofitel, this hotel was built in 1866 by Thomas Cook & Sons and catered for famous residents like Lord Carnarvorn.

He was a patron of Howard Carter and famously announced the discovery of Tutankhamun from the Winter Palace steps in 1922.

This hotel stands proud on the edge of the Nile with some of the rooms boasting fantastic views of the Theban Hills and you can even see the air balloons rising each day.

For dates and rates available see here.

old winter palace luxor

How much are Valley of the Kings tickets and photo passes?

Buying tickets for the tombs in the Valley of the Kings was a stressful process on my own.

I didn’t have a clue what to buy at all or where to buy it. Most people visit with tour groups and let their guide buy the tickets.

So, I’d have tour guides shoving money through the counter inches from my face as they were in a hurry. As a Brit, the honour of queueing is a sacred ritual, so I wasn’t best pleased and quickly told them to wait their turn.

There are two counters to buy tickets. One for normal tickets and one for extra tombs and photo passes.

A regular ticket for the tombs in the Valley of the Kings which allows you into three tombs is £200EGP (£10). This includes the options of 8 standard tombs that are open to the public.

The tombs in the Valley of the Kings extra tickets and photo passes

  • Seti I (KV17) – £1000EGP (£43) – This is said to be the most impressive and well preserved tomb here with magnificent colour. No photography allowed.
  • Tutankhamun (KV62) – £200EGP (£8) – the most famous, has King Tuts mummified remains on display and well worth a visit in my opinion. No photos allowed.
  • Ramses V & VI (KV9) – £80EGP (£4) – a steal and my personal favourite, the double Goddess Nut ceiling was out of this world!

Photo passes are £300EGP (£15) which allows photos in three tombs. I’ll go into more about the rules and top tips for using it below! Tripods are strictly prohibited.

As of 2020, you are now allowed to take mobile phone photos for FREE. But, if you wish to take with a digital camera you must buy a photo pass.

The tram ride to get to the Valley of the Kings is £4EGP each way. I didn’t know at the time (and wasn’t told this) but you need to buy your ticket at the counter.

I tipped the driver in the end as I was too hot and couldn’t be bothered to get back in the queue :P

best tombs in valley of the kings

What tombs are currently open to the public at Valley of the Kings in 2020?

At the moment out of the 63 tombs, there are eleven tombs in the Valley of the Kings open to the public. Eight of them are included in your standard ticket and you can choose three out of the below;

  • KV1  – Ramses VII
  • KV2 – Ramses IV
  • KV6 – Ramses IX
  • KV8 – Merenptah
  • KV11 – Ramses III
  • KV14 – Tausert – Setnakht
  • KV15 – Seti II
  • KV47 – Siptah

Then the three that require extra tickets are;

  • KV9 – Ramses V & VI
  • KV17  – Seti the First
  • KV62 – King Tutankhamun

It’s probably a good time to say that tour guides are not allowed to enter the tombs with you out of respect for the dead, so you’re on your own inside. If you did want more information about them you can read the signs outside the tombs or ask questions separately.

best tombs in valley of the kings

Photography at Valley of the Kings

Update: In 2020 it is no longer required to buy a photo pass to take photos on your mobile phone, you lucky things! Only if you wish to take photos with a camera you need a photo pass.

For many years there was a photography ban in the tombs in the Valley of the Kings but recently, they have lifted this and so you can now take personal photos and videos on your visit. However, there’s a catch.

You will need to buy a photography permit in order to take photos. This is £300EGP (£15) and allows photography inside 3 tombs. This is for both mobile phones and digital/DSLR cameras. You must buy this at the entrance when you buy your normal tickets. There will be no chance to buy one inside.

Sometimes, you can just pass a tip or baksheesh to the guards if you’re caught, but often they confiscate your camera. I saw many tourists get their camera taken away from them and were ordered to go store them in the photography kiosk.

If you don’t have a photo pass, you will be asked to hand your camera into the photography kiosk in a locker which is guarded by a staff member. If you don’t feel comfortable leaving your camera there, I’d keep it in your bag but just don’t get it out.

Make sure you have your entrance tickets and photo pass to hand at all times. You will need present them at the entrance of each tomb you enter and it will be hole punched each time you wish to use it. Three times and you’re out! Also, if you are using your camera prepare to be ambushed about your photo pass often.

Remember you only get to photograph 3 tombs. So, even if you pay extra to see Ramses V & VI (KV9), you won’t get to photograph it if it you’ve used up your three turns.

best tombs in valley of the kings

The best tombs in the Valley of the Kings for photos (or just to oggle at!)

As you can only choose three tombs, it’s important to choose the best ones for photos that are big with lot’s of photo opportunities and colour!

The most annoying thing about online photos is that people caption them incorrectly a lot. Here are my personal recommendations. I ended up visiting twice as I didn’t realise it was included in my Nile cruise the second time round..so I went in a few more tombs than most.

Here are the best tombs in the Valley of the Kings.

best tombs in valley of the kings
KV9 – Ramses V & VI

Tomb of Ramses IV – KV2

By far, the prettiest and one of the best tombs in the Valley of the Kings included in the standard entry price is Ramses IV. It’s quite a short tomb but the vibrancy of the hieroglyphics more than make up for it!

As you walk down the corridor, you’ll end up at the burial room which is filled with yellow paint on the walls, beautiful paintings of ancient Egyptian scenes and Goddess Nut on the ceiling representing the night sky.

The very end of the tomb is blocked off and guarded but the guards will go in there for you and take photos for a tip.

This was my second favourite tomb of all of them as the preservation was spectacular.

best tombs in valley of the kings

Tomb of Ramses III – KV11

This tomb is massive with wide long corridors full of hieroglyphics. Although not as colourful as Ramses IV, the paintings and murals on the walls here are very impressive.

As you make your way around and down to the burial chamber room, you will feel the room heating up! There’s usually a queue to head down there and it can get stifling. Unfortunately, the chamber below is very much empty and not much to write home about but the decoration on either side is glorious.

best tombs in valley of the kings
best tombs in valley of the kings

Tomb of Ramses IX – KV6

KV6 is quite plain on the corridor walls compared to the other tombs as you walk in, the carvings are there but there’s not much preserved paint.

The highlight here is the impressive burial chamber that can be found at the end of the tomb. Decorations in Ramses IX are from the Book of the Day, The Litany of Ra, Book of the Night, opening mouth ceremony, Book of Caverns and Book of the Dead.

best tombs in valley of the kings
I snuck this photo in as I only could take photos of 3!

Ramses V & VI – KV9 (Requires an extra ticket)

My favourite tomb in all of Valley of the Kings was KV9 – Ramses V & VI. It’s only £80EGP extra to enter (£4) which is a total bargain. The paintings here will blow your mind and the burial chamber at the end is pure magic.

Goddess Nut (pronounced Noot), the sky goddess, appears regularly in the rooftops of many tombs and temples throughout Egypt. This particular painting shows the night and day journey of the sun.

I was so impressed by the double Goddess Nut painting on the rooftop of the tomb that I bought it on a Papyrus scroll in a shop in Luxor. It’s hand-painted by a local painter in blue and gold and it made such a good souvenir to remember this trip!

best tombs in valley of the kings

Is it worth entering King Tutankhamun’s tomb?

YES, this is the tomb that put Valley of the Kings on the map and made it world famous! You’ll be following the steps of Howard Carter and his excavation team.

You can’t take photos inside, but the legends and fame that surround King Tut’s death and discovery is well worth every penny to take a peek.

This tomb is small but deep underground. Having laid eyes on his gold mask and sarcophagi in the Egyptian Museum in Cairo , I knew it was going to contain some incredible pieces. But, it was actually less impressive than the others in terms of decoration. All of the treasure is gone but what’s inside more than makes up for it.

Today, you can see his gold sarcophagus in one display cabinet and his mummified remains in another. In 2007, Egyptologists removed him from his sarcophagus for testing as he died in mysterious circumstances 3,000 years ago.

As dark tourist as it sounds, I thought it was well worth the money. I mean, you’re only here once right?!

The things they don’t tell you about visiting the tombs in the Valley of the Kings – that could actually be useful

1. You enter and exit through a rather aggressive gift shop

My, my! What a way to start. Most Egyptian tourist sites will have a massive market to walk through when you enter and/or exit. Prepare to be ambushed! Luxor was the most aggressive sales city in Egypt.

There will be people coming at you from each side from their stalls and people approaching you with little statues, postcards, maps of Egypt etc.

They’ll entice you in with an unbelievably good price, then when you get inside the shop it will be bumped up to 10x what they said! If it sounds too good to be true, it probably is.

If you’re not in the mood to buy, just simply ignore it. Or say ‘La Shukran’ which means NO!

Don’t feel guilty or forced to buy, these guys are masters of their craft. They really won’t be upset or angry, it’s business. Five minutes later they’ll be hawking the next group.

visiting the pyramids
Beautiful alabaster statues! There are papyrus, alibaster, perfume and gold warehouses all over Egypt. Buy them in recommended warehouses. Not the markets.

2. No tour groups buy tickets, so it can be confusing for independent travellers

You will definitely be a minority if you’re travelling to Egypt on your own (i.e. without a tour group) and it really shows at Valley of the Kings.

When I got here, all the tour groups were standing around and not buying tickets. So, I was searching for the ticket counter, waiting for my turn, then tour guides would push in to buy tickets and shove money through the window as I was trying to buy!

Not to mention the fact there are two ticket counters and so I had to wait twice.

I had no tour guide to explain the process or what tickets I needed. So, I fumbled my way through. Super stressful in the heat!

When you’ve walked through the massive tourist market and through security, you’ll then walk through the information centre.

With a super cool model of the whole complex by the way, including all the tombs underground! Walk to the exit and turn right. There will be two ticket counters. One for normal tickets and one for extra tickets.

3. No one ever knows if you have to buy a ticket for the tram

I felt a sense of triumph when I finally bought my tickets, I made it!

I sat on the tram with a massive tour group waiting to take off. The tour group weren’t showing tickets for it, so I assumed it was included in the price. Then the driver approached me and asked for my ticket for the tram and I should have bought a ticket at the counter!

There’s no sign to tell you to buy tickets for the tram. There’s no way of getting to the Valley of the Kings without it either unless you take a long sweaty walk in the heat.

In the end, I tipped the tram driver so I didn’t have to wait in the queue again. On the way back, I joined another tour group and didn’t end up paying.

I left very confused and wasn’t really sure what I was meant to do. But, my tour guide on my second visit said it’s £4EGP one way usually. So buy your tickets at the counter.

best tombs in valley of the kings

4. If you don’t have a photo pass, you must hand your camera in

When buying tickets for Valley of the Kings, if you plan on taking photos, you must buy a photo pass at the ticket counter. There’s no option to buy later after you’ve left on the tram.

If not, you’ll be told to hand your camera in at the luggage storage kiosk. My advice? Just keep it in your bag and don’t get it out.

You can sneak in photos and pay a tip but buying a photo pass allows you more freedom to shoot.

best tombs in valley of the kings

5. The guards here are guardians of royal tombs and they take their job very seriously

The guards here are really strict on a lot of things. There will be one or two at the entrance to the tombs hole punching tickets.

There will also be guards walking through the tombs keeping an eye out for people taking photos without a photo pass.

They confiscate cameras and also keep an eye out for people being too noisy. Remember, this is a place of the dead and it’s important to be respectful.

best tombs in valley of the kings

6. It’s extremely hot inside and hard work to walk up and down the tombs

A lot of people were surprised when I told them how hot it was inside the tombs. You’d assume it would be cold right? Wrong.

Going inside these tombs is hot and sweaty work. There are no fans and some, like Tutankhamun, are climate controlled. Add in body heat from all the tourists and it’s like a sauna.

The Valley of the Kings also have walkways that are like chicken pens, there aren’t any stairs and some are extremely steep.

I saw lot’s of people with walking sticks to assist them. Walking up and down here can be tough, especially when it’s like an oven inside.

I was actually really out of breath when I was going up!

best tombs in valley of the kings

7. The Valley of the Kings gets crowded after 10am

The Valley of the Kings is a really popular tourist destination. Lots of tour buses turn up each day with crowds and crowds of tour groups.

This makes the tombs really busy, hot and means lot’s of queueing which can make it a bit of a unpleasant experience.

I would definitely suggest getting here before 9am to beat the heat and the crowds.

It actually opens at 6am so if you really wanted it to yourself, the earlier the better. It closes at 5pm each day.

best tombs in valley of the kings
If you want it to yourself, get here early and not with a tour

8. You can tip the guards to sneak a photo or enter an extra tomb (sometimes)

A baksheesh or tip can get you a long way in Egypt. You can sneak in photos, ask the guards to take photos for you of places guarded off to the public and even enter an extra tomb.

Although, I tried this and failed lol. It all depends on the time of day and how many people are around.

One of the guards asked me to follow him.

He brought me to one of the new tombs they were excavating and showed me pretty much just a hole in the ground. Then, wanted a tip for it. Again, I was really confused.

best tombs in valley of the kings

9. There aren’t any shops when you’re here, so buy or bring water before you take the tram

You’ll be spending at least an hour or two at Valley of the Kings, so I would make sure you keep water on you.  

I felt like I was cooking in October at the West Bank when I was temple hopping. It’s very dry and deserted so you’ll need a hat, sunglasses and water!

There are no vendors here after you’ve left on the tram, so make sure you bring some before you leave or at the market stalls. On most tours, they’ll provide water for you.

best tombs in valley of the kings

10. They are currently excavating newly discovered tombs

What I loved about Luxor was it was like an open air museum and every day they’re still making new discoveries. In December 2018, they uncovered a new tomb of a woman dating back 3,000 years. When I was here, some of the tombs were blocked off for Egyptologists for scientific study.

There’s so many mysteries buried underneath that sand. Who knows what they’ll find next? They still haven’t found Cleopatra VII’s tomb, so I guess we’ll have to wait and see.

11. Guides cannot enter the tombs with you

Whether you’re on your own, or with a tour group, guides are not allowed to enter any tombs due to respect for the dead.

So, the tour guide will wait outside for you. There’s a waiting area and here you’ll see lot’s of tour groups getting an explanation of the tombs before they go inside or after.

This can be both a blessing and curse. On one hand, it’s nice to explore on your own and take your time. But, on the other, it would have been nice to have a translation of all the scenes etc.

If you were interested, the signs outside of each tomb do a good job of explaining the significance of each tomb, who’s buried there, the history and the decoration in side.

best tombs in valley of the kings

Enjoy the timeless mystery of the Valley of the Kings

Beyond all the trials of my visit, I still think that the Valley of the Kings was one of the most incredible places I visited in Egypt. It had been on my bucket list for a long time, so I was happy to tick it off and have some epic photos to show for it.

While you’re in Luxor, I would highly recommend a visit to the Temple of Hatshepsut, the Valley of the Queens, Madinet Habu, the Colossi of Memnon, Karnak temple, Luxor temple and a hot air balloon ride for sunrise over the West Bank.

If you’re thinking of seeing Luxor independently, you can check out my 3 day itinerary here which will make sure you see the best of the city. Also, if you’re stuck for things to do in the evening, I have a whole post about things to do in Luxor at night here.

What not to do in Egypt
Karnak Temple

Read more of my blog posts on Egypt

The best itinerary for Egypt 

A complete guide for Luxor

Things to do in Luxor at night

Top tips for taking an air balloon ride 

How to score the best Nile cruise

The best things to see in Aswan

How to visit Abu Simbel

My top tips for visiting the Pyramids

The best things to see in Cairo

My complete photography guide for Egypt

Why you need to visit Alexandria in Egypt

Like this post on the best tombs in Valley of the Kings? Pin it!

best tombs in valley of the kings

28 thoughts on “The 4 Best Tombs in the Valley of the Kings for Photos & 11 Things They Don’t Tell You About Visiting!

  1. Agata says:

    I completely disagree on the point about the guards taking their job seriously- they would do anything for extra cash, they don’t care about the tombs. I brought to their attention someone touching the walls and they just shrugged it off.

    • Sophie Pearce says:

      Ah that’s such a shame and disappointing! It was a bit of a tongue in cheek point that they are jobsworthy and I totally get that tips seem to become part of the job spec. I don’t see it becoming much better though for now as tourism and the economy isn’t what it was. Thanks for stopping by. Sophie x

  2. Gp Capt P M Velankar, VM ( Retd) says:

    Wonderful read. Saw them in Feb 19, in a group tour so many problems were solved. But can visualise the probems faced. Eexactly as you have so nicely brought out., Though you have listed foue best tombs, fellows travelling in group tours do not have luxury to choose. Which tombs we will see . It is decided by the Tour agents.
    Their selection most probably is based on which three will take least time so they can get it overwith, to proceed to next attraction.

    • Sophie Pearce says:

      Oh that’s a shame you didn’t get to choose your tombs on your tour. I was also on a tour with Memphis tours for one of my visits and they let us choose our tombs! Yes it’s definitely easier with a tour guide then without. Hope you had an amazing time on the rest of your Egypt trip, thanks for stopping by. Sophie x

    • Sophie Pearce says:

      Hi Brian! Yes, outside the temples you’re free to take photos as you like :) the guards really only want a pass for inside the tombs. Thanks, Sophie x

  3. Janarthanan SR says:

    Such a useful article. With not much info on the tickets or tombs to choose, this is such a beautiful content. The snaps too are wonderful. My kids are 4 and 8 years of age. Do we have to get tickets for them? Any inputs on this is much appreciated.

    • Sophie Pearce says:

      Hi there Janarthanan, thanks so much for the lovely feedback! I’m so happy you liked the pictures. Child tickets are 50% of the adult tickets. Hope this helps and have a wonderful time. Sophie x

  4. Rajani Badami says:

    Hi Sophie, planning to visit in December 2019,looking really forward to it. Went through your points and am impressed. Could you please tell me which are the best 3 tombs to decide upon apart from the extra tickets tombs?
    From your narration I have noted kv2, kv 11 and kv6. Since you have seen extra tombs could you please suggest.
    Rajani

    • Sophie Pearce says:

      Hi Rajani, I hope you have an amazing time in Egypt. The tombs I would suggest are the ones mentioned in this article. The others aren’t as impressive for photos (in my opinion). I hope this helps and have a great time. The Valley of the Kings is an incredible place. Sophie x

  5. albert says:

    I was thinking, that I will buy the Luxor Pass, that allows all the sites in the Valley of the Kings and Luxor, except the super expensive tombs. So we are not limited to only 3 tombs…

    Any comment on that?

    • Sophie Pearce says:

      Hi Albert, I don’t have any idea about a ‘luxor Pass’ I didn’t see one advertised when I was travelling in Egypt. Always make sure you buy when you’re there as I don’t want you to get scammed online. I still believe you may only be limited to 3 tombs (this is egypt!) but don’t quote me on that!! I would double check personally to make sure how many tombs you’re entitled to with it. Also, the extra tombs don’t cost too much apart from SETI I so I would personally recommend them as you only live once :) have a great time in Egypt! Sophie x

  6. Max says:

    Hi!! I’m traveling on my own to Egypt (Cairo, Aswan, Luxor) in october. I liked the alabaster statues photo. Did you take it in the Valley of the Kings shop? Do they look authentic? Thank you! I’m making my own list of tombs to visit and this article helped me a lot!!

    • Sophie Pearce says:

      Hi Max, that’s amazing that you’re heading to Egypt. I went around the same time and loved it! Ah thank you, I actually took it in a tourist alabaster shop that my taxi driver took me too. It’s a workshop where they made genuine produce by hand and you can see them making them. There are shops at Valley of the Kings but the alabaster statues there aren’t genuine and I wouldn’t recommend shopping in those markets. On your trip, if you’re on a tour I’m 90% sure they will take you there as the tours join them for trade and if not, ask your taxi driver to direct you to the alabaster shops. But, make sure you haggle as taxi drivers/tour guides gain hefty commissions. Hope this helps, have an amazing time and thanks for reading. Sophie x

  7. Terry says:

    We are going on a Nile cruise in Feb 2020, and weren’t sure what to see and do at the VOK and at what cost, but your information has been an excellent source of information, and will help us in our choices.
    Thanks

    • Sophie Pearce says:

      Hi Terry, thank you so much for your feedback. I hope you have a wonderful time! VOK is such an incredible place, I’m sure you’ll love it. Sophie x

  8. Terry says:

    Sophie, so you’re allowed to visit 3 tombs and take photos (with pass). If you pay extra to visit KV9 (Rameses V & VI) are you allowed to take photos?, or does this count in the 3 allowed??
    Thanks Terry

    • Sophie Pearce says:

      Hi Terry, the photo pass only allows 3 tombs. So, even if you paid extra for another tomb entry, you can only take photos in 3 tombs. You could try your luck with a baksheesh to the guard but it’s a risk. I would personally save a photo pass stub for your entry to Ramses V & VI, it’s by far the most beautiful tomb!! I know its quite strict, but they’ve only recently allowed photos again and so I guess they’re trying to cash in on it for now. You could buy two photo passes but it’s really costly and then you’d need to buy two tomb entry tickets to make it worth it! Hope you have a good time, Sophie x

  9. Shylaja Venugopal says:

    It is really useful. We are going to visit Egypt next week. I would like to know if water bottles are available outside these visiting places or should we carry them from our hotels.

    • Sophie Pearce says:

      Hi Shylaja, there will definitely be packaged water sold outside of your hotel. It’s cheap. But, you can also bring the ones from your hotel and refill with filtered water to save plastic waste. Have an epic time in Egypt, Sophie x

  10. Dave Armstrong says:

    Hi Sophie …
    I have just returned from my tour of Egypt which included the Valley of the Kings & I have exciting news regarding photography IN the tombs!
    It’s a little strange BUT if you use a regular camera, a photo pass IS required as you stated.
    Now here is the change, use your cell phone camera, NO charge! That is right, if you use your cell phone camera, you do not need a photo pass! I should mention as well, it does not matter what type of camera you use, absolutely NO flash photography at all when you are in the tombs!
    This is GREAT news too; one can now take photos WITHIN KV62, King Tutankhamun’s tomb!
    Again, use a regular camera, display your photo pass but use your cell phone, no photo pass required when in King Tut’s tomb.
    With his gold coffin removed from the pink quartzite sarcophagus for repair at this time, King Tut’s body is still on display within his tomb; as you enter the tombs’ Anti-Chamber from the descending stairs, look to the left, King Tut is there, in a climate / humidity controlled specially designed display case.
    Just thought you would like to know …

  11. Dave Armstrong says:

    Hello Sophie …
    I have just returned from an utterly amazing trip to Egypt (September 11 – September 24, 2019) which included a visit to the Valley of the Kings.
    Inside of of a mere two weeks prior to my arrival, there was a governmental change regarding photography at many of the tourist sites but as most of your followers are asking questions about photo passes & which tombs you can & can not photograph inside, I thought it best to bring you the latest update.
    You are correct when you state one must purchase a photo pass to take photos within the tombs. This is the change though: use your cell phone camera & there is no need to purchase a photo pass!
    So, use your regular camera, you must purchase a photo pass but use your cell phone camera, you do not need to purchase a photo pass! One thing that remains constant though, be it a regular camera or cell phone camera, under NO condition do you use a flash at any time while in a tomb.
    Now, personally, this is the biggest change: up until recently, no photos within King Tutankhamun (KV62) were allowed but that too has changed; you are NOW allowed to take photos within the Tut’s tomb, regular camera, you must have your photo pass present; cell phone camera, no photo pass required!
    At the time I visited Tut’s tomb, his famous gold covered first anthropoid coffin was missing; it is at this time being repaired & I was told it should be returned late November / early December 2019.
    King Tut himself however is still within his tomb.
    Descend the stairs to the entry of the Anti-Chamber, turn left & there is King Tut, within his climate / humidity controlled special display unit.
    I have posted on your Facebook site, photos I took September 20, 2019 within King Tut’s tomb.
    It should also be mentioned to all your readers, the tombs are constantly changing as to which tombs are open & which are not. The reason is for preservation of the tomb itself.
    At the visitation center, there is a list of the tombs which are open; there is the standard 3 tombs & specialty tombs which cost extra …
    Personal opinion, you HAVE to go to the Valley of the Kings … no questions asked.
    The artwork alone within the tombs is beyond amazing …
    Hope this helps all your readers Sophie …

    • Sophie Pearce says:

      Hi Dave, WOW Thank you so much for the comprehensive update , I will try and update my post with this information ASAP! It’s amazing how fast things are changing. When I went, the guards were confiscating phones so it’s great to see that yuo can use them free of charge now. Also, I love the fact that new tombs are open for the public to explore. Isn’t the Valley of the Kings utterly amazing, I had such a great time there. Once again, thanks for taking the time to comment and I will update the post. I’m glad you had a good time. Sophie x

    • Ankur Patel says:

      Mr. Dave Armstrong,

      Thank you very much for the update. My girlfriend and I will be traveling to Cairo and Luxor in February. I’ve been reading about this update from other sites but I was not exactly sure. Thank you very much for letting me know, as to sites you can take pictures in, and then you can use your cellphone camera to do it. Initially I was contemplating as to whether or not to go into King Tut’s tomb, but if I’m allowed to take pictures with my cell phone I assume that it will be worth it. Therefore I appreciate your detailed update.

      Ms. Sophie Pearce,

      I’ll just like to say thank you very much for having this blog I read every single post that you have made for Egypt. I have even forced my girlfriend to read the (how to take great pics in Egypt post!) , I’m planning my whole trip as per your suggestions, I love your tips and also how detailed you are about all the locations and sites that I should go see, and the best way to see it. The number of times that I read your post I must have it memorized now LOL. As we will be going to both Cairo and Luxor as per your suggestions I will also leave a comments in February for any other information that I can help with your blog posting with any updates, and also to the readers like myself.

      I did have one question which i am trying to figure out, exactly where is the location for the Khan Khalili gateway entrance?
      https://thirdeyetraveller.com/wp-content/uploads/GIZA-1-of-1-27.jpg

      I have tried to figure it out on google maps and have been unable to do to. That looks like amazing shot for sure!

      Thank you.

      Ankur Patel

  12. WJR says:

    They haven’t found Cleopatra VII’s tomb because no Ptolomaic era tombs are in the Valley of the Kings. It is only New Kingdom, so that “fact” really should not be in here. The key missing tomb is Smenkaure (the name of Nefertiti when she took the throne upon her husband’s death and prior to Tut). Seti I is the best tomb to see – expensive yes, but by far the most amazing (I visited all but one tomb of the 10 open in January 2020). The double tomb of Tausert is better than Ramses IV or Ramses IX, and it for a more important pharoah. Merenptah is also a good one of a more important figure. Also, you no longer need a photo permit for cell phones, just needed for actual cameras.

    • Sophie Pearce says:

      Hi WJR, Thanks for this awesome insight. I only mentioned Queen Cleopatra as it’s something they are still on the lookout for. I think that some of the tombs and whether they are better, is a personal opinion. Personally, I thought that Ramses IV was the best! I’m glad you got to explore 10 tombs, that must of been an amazing experience. Thanks for the tips about the cell phones, I will update now. Hope you had an incredible time in Egypt. Sophie x

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Trips100 - Travel Blogs
Trips100