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Day 7 (Sunday)-- Aswan -- Cruise


M/Y Alyssa

Breakfast on board. Afterwards, visit the Aswan High Dam, the Granite Quarries and the temple of Philae. Located near Aswan, the world famous High Dam was an engineering miracle when it was built in the 1960s. It contains 18 times the material used in the Great Pyramid of Cheops. The Dam is 11,811 feet long, 3215 feet thick at the base and 364 feet tall. Today it provides irrigation and electricity for the whole of Egypt and, together with the old Aswan Dam built by the British between 1898 and 1902`, 6km down river, wonderful views for visitors. From the top of the two Mile long High Dam you can gaze across Lake Nasser, the huge reservoir created when it was built, to Kalabsha temple in the south and the huge power station to the north.
The High Dam created a 30% increase in the cultivatable land in Egypt, and raised the water table for the Sahara as far away as Algeria. The electricity producing capability of the Dam doubled Egypt's available supply.
The High Dam added a whole new aspect to Egypt and a new environment as well. The lake is some 500 miles long and at the time it was built, if not now, was the world's largest artificial lake.

Afterwards continue to the granite quarries. These are the quarries which supplied the ancient Egyptians with most of the hard stone used in the building of the Pyramids, Temples and a huge Unfinished Obelisk. Three sides of the shaft which measure nearly 42 meters long were completed except for the inscriptions and it would have been the largest single piece of stone ever handled if a flaw had not appeared in the granite. So here it lies where the disappointed stonemasons abandoned it, still partly attached to the parent rock and with no indication of what it was intended for.

Even when it seemed that it was destined to be lost forever beneath the rising water of the Nile, Philae Temple was moved to the Island of Agilika to be saved from being lost forever under the waters of Lake Nasser. The romantic and majestic aura surrounding the temple complex of Isis on Philae is a must see for all travelers to Aswan.

Return to the ship in time for lunch.

After lunch visit the Nubian Museum. Opened in 1997 the museum displays thousands of antiquities that would have been lost under the waters of Lake Nasser had not a major international effort salvaged them during the 1960s and '70s. Also among the highlights are scenes of Nubian life demonstrated with a range of life-size displays.
The museum also features exhibits highlighting aspects of Nubia′ s influence during the Graeco-Roman, Coptic and Islamic periods.
The museum is built on a hill on the road heading south from Aswan before the turnoff to the Unfinished Obelisk. The facility sits amid gardens that feature antiquities, a waterway representing the River Nile, a cave fitted out with pre-historic wall carvings, and a Nubian house.

Dinner and overnight onboard in Aswan. (B,L,D)

 

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