This is an attendant standing at one of the entrances to Abu Simbel. I did not realize until we visited that behind the giant statues is an elaborately carved and painted interior, with many more large statues. It is miraculous that this was moved and saved from the flooding from the Aswan Dam.
Arabic calligraphy is quite artistic. This sign is above the doorway in the Ar Rifai Mosque in Cairo, where the tomb of the Shah of Iran is located.
This is a typical street scene in the old Fatimid district of Cairo, a teeming maze of narrow streets and alleys dating back about 1,000 years. Vendors and merchants push carts with food and other goods for sale. Not surprisingly, there is a minaret visible in the background.
We travelled to Egypt on a group tour. We saw the crowds thinning out and remained a few minutes until we were the last ones at Abu Simbel. We hustled back to the bus so we would not keep the rest of the group waiting. The reward for our effort was being able to get some photos of the temples without dozens of other tourists in the pictures.
The shape of these arches show that this is a Roman structure, not an Arabic building. Indeed, this is part of what is called the Babylon Fortress and was constructed by the Roman Emperor Trajan on the site of a Persian fort dating to the 6th Century, B.C. It is located in the old Coptic Christian quarter of Cairo. The Arab conquest of Egypt included a siege of this fort for 6 months until it fell in 641 A.D.
When we travel as part of a tour group, one of the challenges and at times frustrations is not being able to stop whenever we want and take photos. Sometimes we will sit with the camera the bus window to try to snap quick photos of street scenes, which is what I did with this photo of watermelons being sold from the back of a pickup truck in Cairo. There are advantages, of course, to group travel, including security and convenience. The Egyptian travel police had an armed guard with our group at all times. He was very helpful in looking after everyone in our group, along with our excellent tour director and local guides. We have done about 10 Tauck Tours.