A great way to see the Valley of the Queens is to hire a balloon and see it from above. It is a spectacular site from above and should not be missed. For over two centuries, since its beginnings in France and well before the invention of the airplane, ballooning has been an exciting form of travel. It offers the rider a chance to see the world from an aerial perspective. My first time ballooning just happened to be in Luxor, Egypt and based upon the positive experience I had, it won't be the last. The fantastic views from the basket were astounding. We got lowered right into Edu temple and then we were raised a few thousand feet in the balloon where we were treated to a spectacular view of the Valley of the Queens. We got a good deal on the ride for approximately $75 US dollars a piece. It was well worth my money. The topographgy of the terrain was mind-blowing and truely amazing! This ballooning trip was the icing on the cake in Luxor and turned out to be one of my prime highlights while visiting Egypt!
This valley, again you cannot take a camera in, is smaller than the valley of the kings, but some of the sites are bigger.
Buried here in the tombs were not only the queens but also the princes and princesses.
In April 2010 there were only 2 tombs open to the public, one of them had the best art work seen in any tombs when it comes to colour retention and accuracy.
I was travelling in Egypt with the daughter of one of my senior doctors, and she was interested in learning more about the lady rulers of Egypt. So, we did go to the Valley of the Queens. I only heard of the Valley of the Kings then - I did not know there was one for Queens!
I was on my first day in Egypt then and still hesitant to take pictures inside the tombs, but I did remember taking this picture of my guide outside the tomb of Tyti, designated QV 52.
The valley of The Queens is located on the West Bank at Luxor (ancient Thebes), and most tourists just visit the more famous Valley of the Kings. The wives of Pharaohs were buried here which was known in acient times as Ta-Set-Neferu, meaning –‘the place of the Children of the Pharaoh’. At the times of the Queens of the 18th, 19th and 20th dynasties (1550–1070 BC), their children were also buried here.
There are more than 70 tombs and you should not miss the the wonderfully decorated tomb of Queen Nefertari (1290–1224 BCE) of the 19th Dynasty which was carved out of the rock and with the reliefs in her tomb still with the very color it had during ancient times! The dryness in Egypt really preserves everything!
Situated to the south of the Valley of the Kings, the Valley of the Queens was first used as a burial place for some princes and members of the royal family during the 18th Dynasty. It wasn't until the Ramesside period that this valley became the chosen burial place for the wives of the Pharaohs, most notably Queen Nefertari. Although smaller and less elaborate than the Valley of the Kings, the tombs are nevertheless impressive. Only three tombs are open to visitors, so this valley is usually skipped by tour groups, making it a much more pleasant experience than the overcrowded Valley of the Kings. Further details can be found on my separate page on the Necropolis of Thebes.
the most important tomb is the one of queen Nefertari the wife of king Ramsis the second.
Nefertari Meri-en-mut (a name meaning “the Lovely One, Beloved of Mut”) most probably married the great pharaoh Ramesses II before he mounted the throne and she held a position altogether peculiar and unequalled in the history of Egypt. Numerous epithets define her as the “sweet of love”, the “pretty – looking”, the “rich in charm”.
This leading role, compared with the other numberless wives of pharaohs, is confirmed by the fact that she was always in Ramesses’ retinue, not only during civil and religious ceremonies, but even in the course of important journeys, like the one made to Nubia in the year 24 of his reign (around 1255 BC), on the occasion of the inauguration of the little temple of abu Simbel dedicated to the goddess hathor and to Nefertari herself: the queen is represented in large statues equal in size with those of the pharaoh, an extraordinary fact, considering that generally the wife was shown at the side of the pharaoh hardly coming up to his knee.
If there is one wish left that I would like to see in Egypt it would be Nefertari's tomb. But it is closed to the public.
You can enter it if you have enough money to spare. But to me the money is a bit more than I can afford. Or think it is worth that kind of money.....
Could it be that the most beautiful tomb in Egypt is exploited? I think so! The tomb has some mythical aura around it and the fact that it is closed to the public adds to the mistery.
Don't misunderstand me: I think it is closed for good reasons! Where ever I went on vacation I saw tourists showing no respect for the precious items in museums or historical sites. Taking photos with flash while it was clearly displaid that it was forbidden. Is that one picture so important that you don't care of what effect it will have on that unique item?
Nefertari's tomb is precious. It needs to be preserved for coming generations. But I think it should be shown to people who recognise the beauty of it, who will respect it and treat it with loving care.
Not just to people who can afford it and use it as something to brag about!
Here it's best to go to the Tomb of Amunherkhepshef (No 55). It's considered the best tomb before the Tomb of Nefertari was discovered. However, that tomb was closed to the public for restoration and I have no idea when it'll be opened. Here, you'll discover that the styles of the wall paintings and colors are quite different from the Tombs of the Nobles.
There are 2 other tombs available for viewing: Khaemwaset (No 44) and Titi (No 52).
I actually liked the the Tombs of the Nobles better than the Queens. I found the paintings depicting everyday life to be more interesting from a peasant perspective. At this point if you haven't gotten tired of tomb exploring, go to the Valley of the Kings. We opted not to go since we had an idea that it was going to be more of the same. We also knew that we would encounter more interesting sites on our upcoming cruise.
There are about 75 tombs in the valley of the Queens, only but only few are open for visit. They are Tomb of Amunherkhepshef (No. 55) and Tomb of Khaemwaset (No. 44).
The chief tombs of the Valley of the Queens are those of Queen Nefertari, wife of Ramses II (closed for restoration)
Admission ticket 20 EGP
You will more than likely visit the Valley Of The Queens on a combined trip with the Valley Of The Kings.
To be honest, The Valley Of The Queens is the same sort of thing as the Valley of the Kings - the difference being it was queens buried here not kings!
The queues arent as long though which is a good thing, and the tombs are as impressive.
If you didn't read the notes for Part I of this series, I recommend that you do so. These are more images of the tomb and Valley of the Queens. Note in this photo of the young prince the transparency of the cotton clothes he wears, revealing an excellence in fine weaving in this ancient time. Again, sorry for the darkness of these images that were taken with the dim flourescent lighting found in the tomb.
Although there are about 75 tombs in the valley of the Queens, only 2 were opened at time of my visit (May 2006). They areTomb of Amunherkhepshef (No. 55) and Tomb of Khaemwaset (No. 44) . The Tomb of Nefertari was closed. Those tombs are clorful and stunning.
You can get the history from your travel guide books. Practically, you need to bring hat, umbrella and sunscreen and it is oven hot.
Admission ticket 20 EGP (May 2006). You can only puchase on the site, NOT at the central ticket office near the Colossi of Memnon.
The Valley of the Queens actually appears to have more tombs dedicated to princes than queens. The Valley is somewhat less impressive than Valley of the Kings, but still has a surround of the rugged outcrop from which the tombs are carved. My notes for these images say that we visited tomb #44, Prince Khaemwaset, but the description by Lonely Planet for tomb #55 of Ramses III's son Amunherkhepshep bears a strong resemblance to the images provided here. If anyone can provide confirmation or correction for these images, please do so, otherwise enjoy. All the tombs are relatively close, but I recommend taking good notes. In these images of the prince, his father, and the gods to which he is introduced, notice the royal clothing. The see-through fabric indicates quite a highly refined skill in weaving for sure.
The Valley of the Queens is the site of over 90 tombs of royal wives, sons, and daughters from the 18th, 19th, and 20th Dynasties. The tombs are elaborately decorated and at times are better than the ones in the Valley of the Kings as there are far less people.
The most sought-after ticket in the valley is the tomb of Queen Nefertari. This is supposed to be the most beautiful tomb in the valley but it was closed to the public when I went there. In fact, only 3 of the tombs were open so I didn't have much choice in what I would see with my 3 tomb ticket (20 LE). I first saw the Tomb of Prince Khaemwaset and then the Tomb of Queen Titi.
The best tomb included on this ticket was that of Prince Amunherkhopshef, who was Ramses III's son. He died at the age of 15 . His tomb is well decorated and you can even see a mummified fetus there.
This is the tomb of another of Ramses III’s sons and again is lavishly decorated. The colours are very well preserved. This tomb, along with the tomb of Amun-her-khepshef were the last to be discovered in the Valley of the Queens. It was discovered in 1903.
This is the tomb of one of Ramses III sons’s and is the most popular tomb in Valley of the Queens. He died when he was very young - probably fifteen. This tomb is full of wall decorations, including Amun-her-khepshef and his father greeting the goddess Hathor as he led him into the underworld. When we got to the burial chamber at the end, the ‘guide’ gave us a torch to look into a display that had a mummified foetus in it.