THE PYRAMID OF UNAS
South of the Step-Pyramid, lies the Pyramid of Unas, last of the V Dynasty pharaohs. This pyramid is noted for its tomb chamber, whose walls are inscribed with what is known as the "Pyramid Texts", and whose ceiling is decorated with stars that seem to sparkle above the royal mummy.
Near to the Pyramid of Unas lies the Persian Shaft, a tomb of XXVI Dynasty known as the "Persian Dynasty". The Shaft is 25 m. deep and at the bottom lie several tomb chambers.
Only the lower corridors remain, measuring several hundred metres, in length, and containing the tombs of the sacred bull, Apis. It was first begun by the XVIII Dynasty. Close to the Serapeum lies the Creek Philosophers Circle, which contains statues of Plato, Heraklites, Pythagoras and Pindar.
THE MASTABA OF PTAH-HOTEP
Located to the south-west of the Step-Pyramid and contains numerous mural paintings and inscriptions portraying daily, religious and funerary rites, as well as religious texts. The most important scene shows Ptah-Hotep - a renowned Pharaonic philosopher - being entertained by a band of musicians.
THE MASTABA OF KAGEMNI
This tomb is noted for its mural reliefs especially the scene of bird hunting.
THE MASTABA OF MERERUKA
Contains 33 chambers, the walls of which are filled with inscriptions portraying scenes from daily life, farming handicrafts and hunting. One important scene shows the veterinary treatment of animals.
The most famous structure in the world was built by King Cheops (IV Dynasty) around 2650 B.C., on an area of 13 feddans. Its height now is 137 meters (original height: 146 m.) Almost 2.5 million blocks of stone were put into building this pyramid, which measures 230 meters square at the base. All this, however, dwindles when compared to the precision and astounding ability of the ancient Egyptian in building this pyramid.
Close to the eastern flank of the Pyramid of Cheops lie three small pyramids dedicated either to his wives or family members.
THE SECOND PYRAMID
Built by Kephren, south-west of his father's pyramid though lower in height: 136 meters, it still retains, on some of its upper parts, the remains of the limestone that had once covered it all. At the base, it measures 215.5 meter square. Its interior is simple, with two entrances on the north side. The Second Pyramid, like all other pyramids, had an exterior covering of fine-grain limestone. Now, only a small part of this covering remains.
The visitor can also still see the remains of his mortuary temple, the Temple of the Valley, and rising causeway. These temples witnessed the religious rites during the embalming of the body.
THE THIRD PYRAMID
Built by Mycerinus (Menkaure), south-west of the Great and Second Pyramids. It is much smaller than either one (62 m). It is distinguished by the fact that the lower part of its sides still retain their granite slab coverings.
The Ancient Egyptians, it must be noted, built the pyramids to be tombs to preserve the bodies of their dead kings, especially that they believed in resurrection and immortality.
The three Pyramids of Giza are surrounded by several small pyramids, and hundreds of mastaba-tombs of the royal family, nobles and high-ranking people.
THE SOLAR BOATS (The Boats of Cheops)
The Ancient Egyptians carved spacious areas in the rock, near the Pyramids. There they placed wooden boats, to be at the disposal of the King when he went on his journey of Day and Night with the sun god, Ra, in the after world.
Early excavations have discovered three such sun boat sites, on the east side of the Great Pyramid. Two other sites were discovered on the south side. When the huge stone slabs were removed, they revealed parts of a large boat, made of cedar wood, in very good condition. There were also other implements, such as oars, ropes and a kiosk for sitting. The boat was 43.5 m. long, the prow and stern were 5 m. and 7 m. high respectively. The boats are now housed in a special museum, south of the Pyramid of Cheops.
On the way to the Temple of the Valley, (of the pyramid of Kephren), lies the large statue of the Sphinx. It is one of most famous monuments in the whole world. It is, indeed, a legendary statue for it has the body of lion and the face of a man. It is 70 m long and 20 m high. Scholars and scientists are of the opinion that the face of the Sphinx closely resembles that of King Kephren. The Sphinx, and the Three Pyramids, are regarded as one of the Seven Wonders of the World.