Egypt – Sailing the Nile – Valley of the Kings

If you missed the first in this series, please see our previous emails! 

Sailing along the Nile, you witness the local life. It is great to sit out on the deck, enjoy a beverage and just take it in on our Dahabeya ship.

Photo Tip 

Take it as it comes. 

Sometimes, people are so into photography, they miss just hanging out and enjoying the experience and life and culture of another country.  Have your camera with you, don’t be so fixated on the photos, and when an opportunity presents itself, take it. 


Valley of the Kings
The tombs from thousands of years ago that are available to walk through are quite literally mind-blowing. To see and photograph the details of the walls and walk through history like this, once again, really has to be experienced to understand. Although many of the tombs are now empty and the mummies of Great Pharaohs such as Ramesses the 2nd are now housed in the antiquities museums, the most famous of them all, King Tutankhamen is still there and, he is on display!  
Inside the tomb of Ramesses the 2nd 

Photo Tip- Low Light
With very little light and also crowded, it is impossible to use a tripod. Your best bet is to use a lens with a small aperture such as 2.8 and use a higher ISO so you can capture in low-light but also handheld.  The images may use a very high ISO and be a bit noisy. That is ok! 
Soaring over the Nile and Valley of the Kings is a peaceful and reflective opportunity for our clients. Every morning, 40-50 balloons take to the air to give a birds-eye view of the Valley and Nile below.

Photos by MPA instructor Toby Gelston 

Photo Tip – Perspective 
This photo by MPA instructor Toby Gelston over the Valley of the Kings in  a Hot Air balloon shows such a stark and varied difference from what it is like on the ground. When you have an opportunity for something like this, TAKE IT! 
Eye of Horus Temple
Everyone seemed to have their favorite temple and location. For myself, it was the Temple of Horus. After awhile. you can get a little jaded by all the temples. But each one has its own uniqueness and history worth exploring. As our group had affectionately become known as “The Eye of Horus” group, and that made it even more special. Horus was an Egyptian god known as a protector and giver of life.The magnificent temple is so intact and again, just jaw-dropping to walk into. The fact this all of this ancient history remains, truly blows away the mind. 

Then to have a guide such as Moe bring it all to life for us really feeds how you feel about where you are and what you are seeing. This of course translates to the images you create.

I found myself just photographing lots of details and thinking more in terms of sharing images as a story rather than great fine art pieces. There is just so much, that photographing your trip in this type of storytelling thinking, it will help you to know what to do with all of your images. 

Photo TIp
Creating a sense of movement.We had to take horse-drawn carriages to the Temple of Horus. It was a blast. Here, photographing Phil and Connie next to us, rather than a fast shutter speed, I slowed it down to 1/50th of a second to allow for a bit of movement rather than everything being perfectly sharp and still. Look at the wheels as an example. This gives a sense of the moving elelments in the mage and helps it not feel stagnate or staged. 

Photo TIp
Light and ShadowsLearn to look for interesting elements with light and shadow. It can help create impact through light and shadow design in your image! 
The “Eye of Horus” Group in front of the temple of Horus