Mike visited:

» Thailand
» Myanmar (Burma)
» Laos
» Cambodia
» Vietnam
» India
» Nepal
» Egypt
» Jordan
» Uganda
» Tanzania
» Malawi
» Mozambique
» Swaziland
» South Africa

View a map of his route.

 press/awards earned a few nice mentions in the press, including's vote as best travel blog on the Web. Read about it on the Press/Awards page.

The Egyptian Museum in Cairo, Egypt

The museum's main entrance.

For many people, The Egyptian Museum in Cairo is the Holy Grail of museums. Over 150,000 relics from ancient Egypt are packed into this scruffy, salmon-colored giant, including some of the most precious artifacts known to man. To put the enormity of the museum's collection into perspective, consider this: if you spent one minute looking at each piece, you'd be there around-the-clock for nine months.

I don’t have nine months to spare, but I did manage to spend two days exploring the museum. Here are the things I admired most:

Granite statue of Chephren, builder of the second pyramid at Giza.

Falcon god Horus provides protection (and a little love).

This beauty is a whopping 4,500 years old.

Wooden statue of Ka-Aper.


Also around 4,500 years old, this statue is carved out of a single piece of sycamore.

He's kind of an intense fellow.

Museum patrons. It's fun to check out the work of local art students.

Big white people tend to move in herds.

The museum's atmosphere can't be beat.

Mummy of woman with portrait, 2nd century A.D.

Greco-Roman mummies included beautifully detailed portraits of the deceased.

These are the world’s first known portraits.

Engraved granite stela. This single slab of stone is around 10m (30ft) high.

One side sings his the praises of King Arhenaphis III .

The other side mentions Israel, the only reference to Israelites in known Egyptian texts.

Akhenaten, the "heretic king".

Artistic styles changed dramatically during Akhenaten's rule. His statues have curving, feminine hips - and fat Mick Jagger lips.

Akhenaten established ancient Egypt’s first and last monotheistic faith. After he died, priests attempted to obliterate all record of him.

Haphazard collections. The museum's collection is notoriously disorganized. Labeling is scarce, frequently non-existent.

Some rooms seem to be just storage space for piles of random artifacts.

But the chaos is part of the charm – you feel like an explorer as you investigate hidden corners of neglected rooms.

The scribe Mitri.

This wooden statue is 4,400 years old.

(Poor Mitri - writing's hard work)

Granite sarcophagus of Thiharpto, scribe and priest of Min.

These texts are from the Book of Hades.

(Everybody likes monkey hieroglyphics.)

Royal Mummy Room.
Photography is not allowed in the royal mummy room, which might be a good thing - photos from this joint could scar children for life.

Around fifteen of Egypt's most famous leaders are on display in this quiet, climate-controlled room. Their wrappings have been removed, their faces and hands exposed.

Brittle black skin clings tightly to the bone. Bits of skull and bone are visible in areas. Hair and nails are largely intact.

Judging from his skeletal structure, Ramesses II had an enormous beak. His perfect teeth may have offset the effect. Straight, reddish hair covers the crown of his head.

Two queens (Nedjemet & Henuttawi) were provided with thick heads of fake braided hair and painted white shells for eyes. The site of these bright eyes gazing out of twisted, sunken faces is incredibly disturbing.

Gold mask of Tutankhamun, the "boy king". This mask was placed over the head of the mummy.

Hieroglyphics on the back of the mask.

Tutankhamun's treasures were found undisturbed in 1922. His tomb was relatively modest in size, as was his historical legacy. The splendor of his treasure is likely just a shadow of the wealth looted from more important pharaohs' tombs.

Posted on May 26, 2003 10:19 AM


Comments (post your own below)

Mike, amazing!

I´m from Brasil and i´m a fan of you. Your trip is so fantastic.

Great Photos!!!


Posted by: Arley Ramos on May 26, 2003 10:29 PM

Excellent stories, per usual. You don't ever have to come home, right? ;)

Posted by: Tonya on May 26, 2003 10:45 PM

Thanks for the great photos!

Posted by: Cousin on May 29, 2003 12:04 PM

Tremendous work all around. You are a brave soul, in my book...I wouldn't have the guts to travel to the 'bug-eating' countries. Optimistic AND open-minded-a wonderful combination in a world citizen abroad. BTW, the person who termed your adventure as "condescending" couldn't be more wrong. Have truly enjoyed the time purusing through your word and pictures. Many thanks.

Posted by: Linda on May 31, 2003 04:00 AM

Uncle Mike, we love seeing your video's ... keep them coming so we can see more of you. Mommy and daddy show us your website every week and we love it!

We miss you!

Posted by: Grace and Abby on June 1, 2003 07:37 PM

One world,one life,one travel around the world...snif,snif, do you need a partner? Congratulations from barcelona (spain)

Posted by: josep on June 2, 2003 08:11 AM


Good to see you decided to go to Egypt after all. It looks like it was well worth it and your fears were unfounded, right?

These pictures and stories are very captivating. Keep up the good work.

Posted by: Todd Adams on June 3, 2003 07:17 AM


Your site is amazing. The phenomenal photos are followed by true Pugh text. Take care of yourself and look forward to hanging out in the fall. Healthy travels!


Posted by: PeterD on June 4, 2003 02:02 PM

what you are doing is simply AWESOME!. i envy you on so many dream is to someday see the earthly things of you, i will explore them at a pace set by unconciousness, rather than clock....your venture is, i think, every mans hidden quest! LEAD ON!!!

Posted by: Dent S on June 17, 2003 10:28 AM

I love ancient Egyption history & your perspective is refreshing & fascinating.

Posted by: Chris on June 17, 2003 03:24 PM


your site is very interesting,I thought the photos fantastics.
Great job.


Posted by: carlos bastos on July 28, 2003 11:19 AM

Congratulations, good job, show the people what's going on somewhere else. If you ever need a helper give me a call. Montreal,Quebec.

Posted by: bernard teixeira on August 25, 2003 12:43 PM

Mike - makes me more determind to go there now that I have seen some of what you have!

Posted by: coral panuccio on September 2, 2003 10:15 PM

I'm surprised they let you take photos there. I remember being abused by security guards for trying to fire off a photo inside the museum.

Posted by: robsul on February 26, 2004 05:13 AM


really great pictures. May I use one picture of Akehnaten for a publication in medical history (On course I will aknowledg you as the photographer?

Posted by: Stefan on April 3, 2004 02:12 PM

thanks for the trip. What a trip it was!

Posted by: brian on August 10, 2004 10:19 PM

Comments closed.


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