Steppe Pyramid of Saqqara


Member Rating 5 out of 5 by kwasiak on August 24, 2005

The Steppe Pyramid is the only example of what most Egyptian scholars consider the second stage towards the building of the first true pyramid of Egypt. The first stage was the mastabas, which were rectangular mounds of earth placed over the dead. They believe that is how the Steppe pyramid began, and then the architect of the pharaoh’s tomb, his son, Imhotep, decided to build mastabas on top of each other. That is how this pyramid evolved into eventually resembling six rectangles on top of each other. This structure is where the pharaoh was eventually buried.

Nearby there is a deep pit that was also a place of burial, but it was not for the pharaoh’s body. It was for the pharaoh’s internal organs. For the Ancient Egyptians, the afterlife was very important, and they believed that one could only have an afterlife if their body or internal organs remained intact. That is why the body was mummified. As a fallback plan, the internal organs were mummified separately in jars with the head of gods on top and buried in a place separate from the body. If something happened that made it impossible for the person’s spirit to return to its body, it could still have an afterlife with its organs.

My favorite thing to see here was behind the pyramid. Behind the pyramid was a small, covered room with only a few small holes. You could look in these holes and see a statue of Djoser, the owner of this pyramid. This statue is actually a copy of an original statue of him that is now at the Egyptian Museum in Cairo.

There are camel jockeys here, but according to our guide, they are not very good to deal with and the terrain around the pyramid is rather dangerous to be riding on. What often happens is that they will ask a price and you will give it to them before you get on, and then they will want more before allowing you to get off.
Step Pyramid of Saqqara
North Saqqara
Cairo, Egypt
No phone available

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