Saturday, August 23, 2008

Pyramid Pests Prohibited

If you've ever been harassed, cheated, bullied, pestered, deceived, or nagged and declared that even one of the wonders of the world was not worth the incessant and undesired attention of the locals, you may now have cause to consider a return visit to the Pyramids of Giza.

The monuments may be glorious, but visiting Egypt's famed Giza Pyramids has long been a nightmare, with hawkers peddling camel rides and pharaonic trinkets hustling tourists relentlessly at every turn.

But now the hustlers are gone, as Egypt unveiled on Monday the first stage of an elaborate project to modernize the site and make it more tourist-friendly, complete with security cameras and a 12-mile fence with infrared sensors surrounding the site.

"It was a zoo," Zahi Hawass, Egypt's chief archaeologist, said of the usual free-for-all at the pyramids. "Now we are protecting both the tourists and the ancient monuments."

The three Giza Pyramids have long been unusually open for a 5,000-year-old Wonder of the World, especially compared to other world-renowned sites like Greece's Acropolis, Jerusalem's Western Wall or Rome's Colosseum, where security is tight and the movement of visitors is controlled.

The ABC News story continues here.

Three great pyramids from horseback, 89-26tb 
Pyramids of Giza

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5 Comments:

  • Thank goodness! Now I definitely want to go back!! No more bakshish. At least there, anyway...

    By Blogger austend2, at Sat Aug 23, 02:11:00 PM  

  • I was there in June, and it was much better run than the last time I was there in 2001. Just make sure you have Egyptian Pounds. They don't take American or credit cards. And you have to have a guide now. We only got hustled once when a tourist policeman opened a locked tomb for us.

    By Blogger psychobob, at Sun Aug 24, 06:42:00 PM  

  • wow, that would be quite a change...alothough i think it just made the whole experience unique and a bit more adventurous :)

    By Blogger DellaRose, at Tue Aug 26, 11:59:00 AM  

  • In my experience, Giza was the first stop for many tourists which made them ideal prey for unscrupulous Egyptians. Maybe this change will increase the economic standing of vendors elsewhere.

    By Blogger Todd Bolen, at Tue Aug 26, 12:10:00 PM  

  • One word, "backshish."

    By Blogger Christopher, at Wed Sep 03, 02:13:00 PM  

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