Cheops Boat Museum

Museum in Giza

Immediately south of the Great Pyramid is this fascinating museum with exactly one object on display: one of Cheops' five solar barques (boats), buried near his pyramid, and unearthed in 1954. This huge, stunning ancient wood vessel, possibly the oldest boat in existence, was carefully restored from 1200 pieces of Lebanese cedar and encased in this museum to protect it from the elements. Visitors to the museum must help this process by donning protective footwear to keep sand out.

Five large pits were found near the Great Pyramid of Khufu. They contained the pharaoh’s solar barques, which may have been used to convey the mummy of the dead pharaoh across the Nile to the valley temple, from where it was brought up the causeway and into the tomb chamber. The boats were then buried around the pyramid to provide transport for the pharaoh in the next world.

This boat was put back together for this museum, but the others were buried again after their discovery.