Real-Life Photos of Egypt for Young (and Old) Egyptologists

Our family had the privilege of visiting Egypt (we stayed in Giza and visited Cairo & Saqqara) in 2009, when our children were 7, 5, 3, and 18 months.  Here are some pictures that share the size and scale of pyramids, tombs, and treasures we viewed up close.

I am sharing them for the enjoyment of Egyptologists young and old (and perhaps, homeschool moms, to aid in your teaching times about Ancient Egypt-- many of the pictures show well the size and scale of these ancient places).

(Unfortunately we could not take pictures inside of the Cairo Museum & thus things like chariots, mummies, and Tutankhamen's mask are things we viewed but do not have pictures of.)

On a platform beside the Sphinx, with the Great Pyramid directly behind it.

In front of the middle pyramid at Giza:

Here we are at the base of the Great Pyramid of Giza, which seems to infinitely stretch upward (click on each picture to see a large version- you'll be amazed at the scale of the blocks):

The boys actually climbed up into the Great Pyramid with Doug, climbing up a shaft to the Gallery & Burial Chamber for King Khufu (also called Cheops):

It's quite an incredible thing to be walking around in Giza and glance up to see the only remaining wonder of the ancient world:

One funny fact:  Did you know that the Great Sphinx now stares directly across the street at a Pizza Hut?  It's true!

A picture taken from our balcony in Giza. Such a view!!

We enjoyed watching the sunset behind the pyramids on the first night of Ramadan 2009:

I like this picture because it shows the scale of the Sphinx in comparison to the pyramids.  Open it in large view and look just above the buildings, almost directly below the point of the middle pyramid.  That is the head of the Sphinx.

Later in our trip we were able to visit Saqqara and Dashur and were able to go into three different tombs-- an overseer's, the King's butcher's tomb (this is us--in the underground tomb-- with wall carvings/statues of 5 of his 10 sons):

 and then here is us crawling through an underground shaft of a third tomb!

The kids all had a great time exploring and checking out this awesome site.

Saqqara is pretty much the center for information/archaeology for Egypt's Old Kingdom (the dynasties of Egypt that ruled roughly 5,000 years old).
There were other sites, near the ones we went down into, that had not yet been dug out-- literally, hieroglyphic-covered stones sticking up right out of the sand, like this one:
We enjoyed imagining what it would be like to dig it out and discover what lay inside.

Being 3, 5, and 7, they had fun playing in the dirt too. :)

Inside of one tomb (The Tomb of "Ti" for anyone who's interested), the walls were COVERED with "daily life" sort of hieroglyphics... truly breathtaking.

Here is 18-month-old Silas and I, in front of the Step Pyramid:

I hope you enjoyed this peek into Egypt.  We were so grateful to be able to visit such a historical place!


Bethany Hudson said...


Sandi said...

That first picture is awesome!
That's really you...really there!

I've only seen those parts of the ancient world in pictures. Must be so overwhelming to touch them for yourself. All the people who walked the same path you walked, all the conversations in that spot, all the labor and sweat that went into it.

Have a great vacation.

Rose said...

I dream of visiting Egypt. Fun to see pictures. Hope you and your family have a wonderful trip.

Jamie said...

WOW...that must be sooooo cool to be experiencing! I hope you enjoy the rest of your time there!

ps:(Hey, question: You seem to like John Piper an awful lot, and I was wondering if you ever listen to Matt Chandler?--if not you should check him out: is just a *taste* of what he's like---no Fluff!)

darci said...

such great pictures! what a fantastic time! i'll have to bring my girls on to show them, we just finished sonlight 1 with ancient egypt. what an incredible experience, and so much fun with your family. have a great time.
you look so good, too. :) ahh, vacation..darc

TexasHeather said...

Wow! What amazing sights, and isn't it just wonderful the things you can do/places you can go with a well-used baby sling? Love that!

Renee said...

Unbelievably COOL!!!!!

Jaime said...

Looks like a fabulous time!!

Jess said...

Thanks everyone-- we're SO excited to be here!

Doug & the boys went up inside the Great Pyramid and I sat outside with the younger two at the base of it, and those stones were so WORN. It was amazing how soft they were... and how many lines of wear and weather and work they had on them. I still can't really fathom that I was sitting on something that is more than 4,000 years old... something that Moses, Joshua, and maybe Mary, Joseph, Jesus, Abram, Sarai, Joseph, and others actually saw too. I've never been anywhere like this. It's amazing... utterly amazing.

Heather, YES! I totally love the sling. It's hot as all get out here but it still wasn't much more with the sling. And there's no way we could push a stroller through all that sand. :)

Jamie, thanks for the tip; I've heard of him but never listened. I'll have to check him out!

Brenda said...

OH my word!!!! Do your kids even know how COOL it is what they are seeing???? My daughter would flip out to be able to go there!!!!

Take lots of pictures. So very cool.

Jess said...

You know, Brenda, they DO understand, but it's just like anything else-- you really can't impress fully what it means.

I've tried though, and they're all really taking it in-- the boys are both really making comments, understanding more, asking questions, etc. Our 7 & 5 year old sons have been studying about Ancient Egypt, King Tut, and the biblical mentions of Egypt too, as we geared up for this trip. Like right now, our 5 year old is looking through our King Tut school book and pointing out to us all of the things that we saw at the Museum this morning. Our 3 year old daughter is pointing to hieroglyphics anywhere she sees them (calling them "hi-wif-ics") ... and repeating our exclamations, "This is aMAZing", etc.

So they're each understanding it as well as they can... but really, it's just not the same as having studied and learned about it my whole life and then seeing it as an adult. But I think as much as possible, they're taking it in with the understanding of what a rare privilege it is.

Michelle said...

What a beautiful photo to wake up to this morning. You look amazing-radiant. You can tell that you are just bursting with joy and pleasure from being a mom!

Leah said...

GREAT pictures Jess - thanks for sharing!

Brandy said...

This looks like such an awesome vacation! I hope you haven't already answered this in a previous post, but where did you get your sling? I have a bjorn carrier and my 4 month old(who happens to be 17 lbs.) is starting to seriously strain my shoulders...your sling looks a lot more comfortable!
I pray that you have a wonderful vacation and safe travels:)

Polly said...

Now *that* is a summer vacation! You look beautiful, happy & radiant. What a memory-making experience!

Erin said...

Ooo! how exciting, you guys are so lucky!

Ruth said...

What a great homeschool field trip! My husband was there on business last year and brought pictures back for the children to see. It was neat as we had recently learned about Ancient Egypt in Mystery of History. Enjoy!

Karen (KayKay) said...

That's my kind of vacation!!! How wonderful for you. All the photos are amazing - the first one - wow!

Abbi said...

What a very fun place to be able to go as a family! I can just imagine how real the stories about the 10 plagues and all will be since your kids have been there and seen that! Have lots of fun!


Marianne said...

Oh my word! How incredible!

Tim and Richelle said...

Delightful photos - enjoy the rest of your vacation!

Mom/Nana said...

I'm so excited and thrilled that you guys are there, and having this wonderful time together! A place that you've been interested in since you were very young, and you are getting this gift of being able to see it! Awesome!

Alison said...

What an incredible experience!

Ruth MacC said...

Lovely family, great blog..!

Michelle @ {Life is Good} said...

You are just so beautiful! I love that you embrace your natural beauty and it just shines through!

Jess said...

Thank you so much. What a great compliment! :) That's a nice thing to hear just 6 weeks away from the big 3-0. Thanks!

Anonymous said...

Comment unrelated to this- you might enjoy this article a little. The reason I found this so amusing was what a big deal they made about how "unusual" this style of parenting is. Like they don't realize that everyone in America used to live like this. Or that in other countries/cultures this is just called life and not controversial.
Perhaps for your next show & tell


Jess said...

HOW funny, Drea. I read that same article yesterday and thought the same thing-- "(yawn)-- I know more than a dozen moms who parent this exact same way... some of it, *I* do... this journalist really lives in a different world than I do." Thanks for pointing it out!


Bria said...

WOW! You went to Egypt? No fair! I really want to see it someday. I bet you are coming back full of knowledge! I like your blog! BTW I am Word Warrior's daughter.

Anonymous said...

This isn't a comment about your sweet pictures, though I did enjoy them immensely. I'm really writing about a much older posting. A long time back you asked your readers to state their views on the salvation of little ones who die before professing faith in Christ. I participated in that "conversation" from the perspective of a grandma to a little boy born with a serious heart defect. Since then, I've thought often about some of the other responses, especially since we (the participants) never seemed to come to a satisfactory Biblical conclusion that could bring consensus. We had positions ranging from "all babies go to heaven" to "only babies counted among the elect go to heaven." There was very little scriptural back-up given for all these opinions, so I sadly realized that this question just wasn't looked at deeply enough by most evangelical Christians, myself included. I was so pleased to find that John MacArthur's current radio broadcast series addresses just this topic. It's called "The Salvation of Babies Who Die" ( and is available as text (.pdf), instant listen, or some type of audiofile download. It follows on the heels of a series called "The Biblical View on Abortion." I just thought you might be interested.
God bless you and yours!

Mrs. R. Lanotte

Jamie Jo said...

I haven't been on the computer much since April, but I'm looking forward to reading more of your past posts. These photos look like something I'd expect to see on a SL catalog! I'd LOVE to go to Egypt someday.

Anonymous said...

Wow! That is amazing picture.

Came by from Biblical Womanhood.


Mary said...

Wow...absolutely awesome!!!

TulipGirl said...

Our boys were about the same age as your kiddos when we visited Egypt -- we loved it, too!

Jessica Connell said...

OOPS! Just got this comment but accidentally deleted it:

flyinjuju has left a new comment on your post "Real-Life Photos of Egypt for Young (and Old) Egyp...":

Thanks so much for posting these!! We just studying the Egypt/Pyramids with my 3rd grader, so this was perfect timing. She enjoyed looking at them.

Leanna said...

WOW... Hardly spoke at all. I'm twelve and I have a huge dream of going to Egypt. FREAKING OUT! I'm going to be an Egyptologist!!! READ THE KANE CHRONICLES!!! (KC or TKC)