One of the wonderful things about reading real travel tales from real travellers is reliving that feeling of being somewhere or seeing something for the first time. Our Intrepid group leaders always love seeing that first time excitement on the faces of our travellers and as Sameh Tawfik explains, we never tire of sharing these experiences with you…
“As a small boy growing up in Cairo, I always knew I lived in a special place. My fascination with the vast history of my country started when I was young and my desire to show my country to the world has only increased as I got older.
I am always delighted to see the expressions on the faces of my groups as we turn the corner and come into sight of the great Pyramids of Giza for the first time. It is amazing how structures so huge can hide behind buildings and surprise us by seeming to ‘just appear’ as we turn the corner. Every time, without fail, my groups gasp in wonder at the exact same moment.
I know how they feel, but I consider myself to be one of the lucky ones. Not only do I visit these stunning creations on every trip I lead, I have also chosen to live literally around the corner from the pyramids.
Every morning when I leave my house, I glance down the end of my street and see the top of Cheops pyramid peaking out over the skyline. Sometimes I stop and look for a minute or two, seeing the different colours of the rocks turn in the sunlight, other times I only have time for a fleeting glance. Several times I have driven by the pyramids and almost had accidents because I am too busy looking up at them.
On days when I have the luxury of time, I venture up to the roof top terrace above my apartment and watch the setting sun glow against all three peaks. As the sky darkens, the magnificent structures are lit by thousands of spotlights as the sound and light show begins.
I wish I could share all of these experiences with my groups, so that they know that even we Egyptians don’t take our monuments for granted!”
* photo by Jason Russel – Intrepid Photography Competition