Tourists visiting Egypt will soon be able to see inside the ancient tomb of Queen Merensankh III in Giza. This tomb will be opened up for the first time in 25 years later in 2012, along with five other tombs of high priests.
Giza is already a hot holiday destination for Britons drawn in by the iconic Great Pyramids, which are the oldest of the Seven Wonders of the World. In fact, the oldest and largest of the pyramids is that of Khufu, who incidentally was Queen Merensankh III's grandfather. Thanks to the opening of the tomb, tourists will soon be able to hop from the Pyramid of Khufu to his granddaughter's burial ground, which is just a stone's throw away.
Merensankh's tomb is celebrated for the vibrant red, yellow and blue engravings and paintings that adorn its inner walls, promising visitors an impressive site. The tomb was first uncovered by the American archaeologist George Riesner in 1927, who wrote: "Our eyes were first startled by the vivid colors of the reliefs and inscriptions around the northern part of this large chamber. None of us had ever seen anything like it."
The decision is an attempt to lure tourists back to Egypt after a dramatic fall in visits; since the 2011 Revolution holidaymakers have largely avoided Egypt, favouring more secure destinations particularly in Europe where the pound is currently strong currency. However British travellers may now return to Egypt thanks to the exclusivity of seeing the magnificent ancient Pharaoh's wife's tomb, which some believe to be up to 4500 years old. Tourism officials are optimistic and hope for a 23 per cent increase in international visitors in 2012 compared to low statistics in 2011, according to Reuters.
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