“Discover its Secrets Yourself”
The ancient Egyptians used to build hidden underground mausoleums to hide their treasures and their precious items. One of the most amazing tombs from the ancient civilization is Valley of the Kings, which is also known as “the Valley of the gates of the Kings“. It is located on the west bank of the Nile near Luxor opposite Thebes, in the hills behind Dayr Al-Bahri. It was the burial site of almost all the pharaohs of the 18th, 19th, and 20th dynasties from Thutmose I to Ramses X (1539–1075 BCE).
The History of Valley of the Kings
The main use of Valley of the Kings was for burials mainly from 1539 BC to 1075 BC. The valley contains about 63 tombs of different rulers, pharaohs, and queens of the old kingdom starting from Thutmose I and ends with Ramses XI.
The Royal Necropolis
The main kings and rulers of the eighteenth were the only ones who were allowed to be buried in the valley. Others out of the royal family were buried in small rock chambers close to the tomb of their master. The tombs inside the valley were decorated by the workers of the village of Deir el-Medina, who came from different routes over the Theban hills. Many tombs have graffiti from the ancient tourists as the site attracted tourists from the last two centuries. There were also many expeditions by the Napoleon expedition to Egypt and the European exploration to draw maps to the tombs inside the valley till around the beginning of the 20th century when the team of the American explorer Theodore M. Davis discovered many Royal and non-Royal tombs in the valley. In 2001, new signs of the tombs were designed by Theban Mapping Project to provide new information of the open tombs.
What is Valley of the Kings Contains?
This splendid location contains two valleys, the East Valley and the West Valley. The Valley contains 63 tombs, some of them are carved in the mountainsides and chambers, which were the burial place of the major Egyptian royal figures of the New Kingdom in addition to a number of privileged nobles such as Ramesses VII, Ramesses IV, Merenptah, Ramesses III, Seti II, Seti I, Ramses I, Thutmose I, Tutankhamun as well as queens, high priests, and other elites that are in the East Valley.
In the West Valley: there are only four known burials such as the tomb number 22, which belongs to the great Egyptian pharaoh, Amenhotep III, the tomb of Ay, the unfinished burial of Akhenaten, and the storage chamber for Amenhotep III’s tomb. That’s why the Valley is considered to be an important destination for tourists during their Egypt tour packages or Nile cruises holidays.
This majestic area has been the concentration of the Egyptological and the Archeological exploration since the end of the 18th century. It became a World Heritage Site in 1979. Most tombs in the valley were decorated with some religious symbols to guide kings and pharaohs in their afterlife. There was also some buried stuff with the kings such as furniture, preserved food, games, jars of wine, cosmetics, and many kinds of jewelry made of precious metals and semiprecious stones.
The Most Famous Tombs of Valley of the Kings
King Thutmose I Tomb: was the first ancient pharaoh to be buried in the Valley of the Kings. He knew that the pyramid tombs before were robbed so he decided to be buried in an isolated secret location away from everyone, which was the Valley of the Kings. The architect of the valley was Ineni, who wrote on the walls of Thutmose’s tomb: “No one seeing, no one knowing”.
The Tomb of King Ramses II: is the largest and most complex tomb in the valley. He was the greatest pharaoh of the 19th dynasty. His burial place is located opposite to the tomb KV5 and KV8, which are tombs of his son and successor. Inside his tomb, there are some scenes from the book of the dead, Litany of Ra, and the Opening of the Mouth Ritual plus some scenes of the king.
The Tomb of Queen Hatshepsut: is the longest one inside the valley, which is about 215 meters. Queen Hatshepsut decided to be buried in a sarcophagus. Her tomb was discovered by local robbers in 1916. The tomb is undecorated and lies directly behind the amazing temple of Hatshepsut. There are two sarcophagi inside the sarcophagi chamber; one of them belongs to Hatshepsut and the other belongs to her father, Thutmose I.
The Tomb of King Ramses XI: who was the last ruler of the 20th dynasty, was the last one in the valley. It lies in the west bank of Luxor and contains an entranceway and a corridor. Its hall and burial chamber was unfinished but the most interesting fact about this tomb was that it was the last resting place of the royal tombs in Valley of the Kings. There are some decorations inside the tomb showing Ramesses XI kneeling between two goddesses bordered by the sun disk.
The Tomb of King Boy Tutankhamun: stayed hidden for a long time because it was covered with debris left from the building of another tomb nearby. Tutankhamun was the most important ruler through the 18th Dynasty of the Old Kingdom and that’s why there were terrific treasures found inside his tomb. Those treasures are now located inside the Egyptian Museum and all tourists come from around the world to see the treasures.
What is Happen While Discovering the Tomb of King Boy Tutankhamun
There is also a curse that is closely associated with the discovery of Tutankhamun Tomb by the archeologist, Howard Carter. What happened with Howard and his team can’t be explained as after the discovery of the tomb, about 11 people from Howard’s team died with different reasons including Howard who died at the age of 64 and the financier, George Herbert.
Secrets Behind Valley of the Kings
The Valley of the Kings was the most important touristic attraction during the Roman times.
It has been a royal burial complex for about 500 years.
The Great and Majestic Necropolis of the Millions of Years of the Pharaoh, Life, Strength, Health in The West of Thebes was the official name of the valley.
Most tombs in the valley aren’t opened for the public.
Over 2100 ancient graffiti have been located by researched and they were mainly in Greek and Latin.
The mark KV refers to the Kings Valley while WV refers to the western valley.
The tomb of Amenhotep III, WV22 located in the West Valley is considered to be the most imposing one of this period.
The tomb of Horemheb is the most unique tomb in the valley because of its features.