National Geographic: Egypt Pyramids
Writer Carl Hoffman traveled to Egypt in February 2011, a week after popular demonstrations led to the president's resignation. These are his observations. Tourism is Egypt’s second largest source of revenue, bringing in $13 billion in 2010. The Great Pyramid at Giza, after all, is one of the seven ancient wonders of the world. To visit the Pyramids is to be struck dumb by their monumentality, their celebration of the fundamental human need to create. It's even more affecting in the midst of a revolution, when there are no tourists at all. I have visited them before, but this time they felt different. In the empty quiet I had a chance to talk to the horsemen and camel drivers who usually hustle rides to tourists. “We have no work, nothing,” said Ali Abd el Hamid, astride his camel. He and his colleagues ply their trade seven days a week, year in and year out, a profession inherited from their fathers and grandfathers.
• Ancient Egypt