Earlier this year we dicussed doing a trip to the coast after October when the diving and holiday resort at Port Sudan on the Red Sea opens up for the winter season.
However, when we obtained travel and photo permits last week, Grant suggested we travel North to the Sudanese pyramids in the Nubian desert. Now I don't know about any of you out there, but until we came to live in the Sudan, I never knew there were pyramids in this country. Not only are there pyramids, there are more pyramids in the Sudan than in Egypt. Admittedly they are smaller than their Egyptian counterparts, but when you visit the various pyramid sites in the Sudan, you are normally the only people there.
Meroe pyramids lie 220km/138 miles north-east of Khartoum. We left home at 5am while it was still dark and made our way through the city, and eventually onto the Port Sudan highway.
|At last! We were on a trip into the desert.
There's something cosy about being on a road trip. Last year, Grant travelled this road and further north quite a few times on on business. He pointed out many interesting places and scenes as we drove along.
|Villages of mudbrick houses dotted along the highway
|A motel complex on the highway between Khartoum and Port Sudan. I love the plastic orange palm tree peeking out behind one of the rondawels/round huts!
|Baby camels in transit
|This is not a river on either side of the highway; it is rainwater. As we drove along, we found evidence of recent heavy rains.
|I took a total of 419 photos on my camera/s on our trip into the desert. Grant took one on his. This was IT (ha!)
|Early morning coffee under this sky in the desert. What more could we ask for?
|As we drove through the desert towards the Meroe pyramids (which we could see in the middle distance), two camels riders crossed our path. We stopped and I told them we were on our way to the pyramids. They cheerfully told us to follow them!
|While I photographed Grant from atop my camel, the gentleman photographed me!
|My camel photographed while I perched on top of it. Not an easy feat but I enjoyed it immensely. There are photos of me on the camel but I am keeping them for a post later in the week
|A camel ride cost SDG10/US$4.16 one way to the pyramids about a kilometer away. When we arrived at the site and I asked the men if they would wait for us, they immediately replied,
"ʻGhynyā ShrwnThānyh" (another 20 SDG!) I told them we'd walk back
|Here we are at the site with our camel drivers. My camel was to the right and out of the photo
|My first sight of the pyramids up on the hill
I was so excited to visit the Meroe pyramids and kept snapping away while exclaiming at this or that pyramid and its structure or colouring. After about ten minutes, Grant said: "Once you've seen one pyramid, you've seen them all." Oh no sirree! I beg to differ. Just look at all the different shapes and sizes!
|There are about forty pyramids at the Meroe burial site. I couldn't get enough of photos of them!
|An ancient pyramid almost intact
|I loved the gold sheen of the blocks
|The sands of time...
|Another group of pyramids can be seen in the background.
|Back at the entrance to the fenced off area, we bid farewell to the Meroe Camel Tranport Company
If you're like my darling hubby and also wonder why I'm waxing lyrical about pyramids, please bear with me; tomorrow's post is also about our visit to the pyramids this time I'll include many photos of the trip there and back.
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The Arabic word for pyramids is ʼHrām (pronounced Shrum). The Arabic word for desert is Şḩrāʼ (pronounced Sheera)