I was more excited (and more sleepy with my 1:00am start) than a kid on Christmas morning when we arrived at the Egyptian Museum of Antiques in Cairo.
With over 120,000 items on display here, I began happily emerged with the culture of ancient Egypt. We booked our trip with Get Your Guide and apart of an all day trip which included our own private guide, a trip to the Pyarmids of Giza, Egyptian Museum and lunch for €74, to which all of our admission prices were included.
Now before I begin, geeking out on all the things I had learnt. there are a few bits of tips that I'd like to share with you. First thing, is take a large bottle of water - there is no air conditioning in this building and you can become parched, pretty quickly. Next, you can not take cameras inside the museum and photos are strictly prohibited - I know! I was gutted. If you do decided to take your camera, you will have to put it into a locker and then you're given a keyring number by the guard to collect at the end.
Ok, so now to the fun stuff... before you even enter the huge grey doors, there's so much detail outside of the building and of course lots of statues to take photos at.
Walking in and out of the museum you'll also find a number of fluffy feline friends who are just strolling around. For me, this kind of added to the magical Egyptian experience as cats (or Mau as they were once called) were deemed as such sacred animals.
Fact: Cats were deemed so sacred that they underwent the same mummification process as humans did!
When entering into the museum, it's set out into sections of the Egyptian dynasties so that it's easy for you to navigate around. However, due to so many amazing artefacts being in one place, Ahmed showed us to the key features. The first up was a giant 30 ft statue of King Amenhotep III and his wife Queen Tiye who were both of equal size and shape, which was usually uncommon in Egypt, but it was because he loved the queen so much and saw her as his equal.
Fact: Male statues always have their left foot move with their right foot forward as this is supposedly the warm of stance and protection.
As we moved around the museum, admiring all of the intricate artefacts, Ahemd was giving us so much insightful information. I also never really understood the difference between male and female statues until we came across these beautiful ones of Ra-Hotep and his wife Nofret.
Fact: you can tell the difference between male and female statues as men will have 'red skin' and women will have 'white skin'. This is because the men were mainly outside (collecting food or fighting) and their skin became darker form the sun.
Admiring all of the ancient kings and queens, Ahmed told us about one 'true queen' to Egypt, Queen Hatshepsut (which I thought was actually Cleopatra). Ruling for over 20 years, this queen wanted to be seen as an equal and so she would dress up entirely in men's clothes to state her authority and was pictured with the 'red' skin, like the men. As she would be out and about with the people of Egypt.
Fact: The famous Cleopatra was not actually an Egyptian. She was Greek.
Once we had completed the first floor, we then made our way up to the second floor to see the famous King Tut - aka Tutankhamun. From the 18th dynasty of Egyptian Kings and Queens, he ruled for only 7 years between 1323-1332 BC in the New Kingdom. His tomb was the only room with air-con (which was heavenly in the heat) to preserve all of his precious jewels, swords and accessories found in his tomb, It truly was one of the most beautiful things I have ever seen - so much detail.
Fact: As well as jewels and riches, King Tut was also buried with one of the first ever condoms - safety first in the after life.
Once we had completed this section, we were ready for a cool drink and some lunch. If you'd like some more information on the Egyptian Antiquities Museum, then head over to Trip Advisor.