Lucia Gahlin is a specialist in the archaeology of Ancient Egypt and has been leading archaeological tours to Egypt for over 20 years. She is an Honorary Research Associate at University College London’s Institute of Archaeology.
She has taught Egyptology for the Universities of London (Birkbeck College and UCL), Reading, Surrey, Sussex, Warwick, Bristol and Exeter. Lucia has worked at the Petrie Museum of Egyptian Archaeology at UCL, and continues to teach with objects in this museum, one of the world’s most important collections of Egyptian antiquities. She has been a Trustee of the Egypt Exploration Society, is Chair of the Friends of the Petrie Museum and Co-Director of Bloomsbury Summer School at UCL, providing short courses on Ancient Egypt and the Ancient Near East. Her areas of special interest are Ancient Egypt's social history, settlement archaeology and the rituals and beliefs of daily life. She has worked as the Small Finds Registrar at the archaeological site of Tell el-Amarna in Middle Egypt, and is author of books including Egypt: Gods, Myths and Religion.
What first sparked your passion for archaeology?
My favourite subjects at secondary school were Latin and Ancient Greek, but when as a teenager I experienced the Ancient Egyptian sculpture in the British Museum, I was so blown away by it, that I decided to study Egyptology at university, and never looked back.
What does archaeology mean to you?
Archaeology helps me understand the human condition, connect with the human spirit, and marvel at human achievement.
What is your favourite archaeological site?
Beni Hassan in Middle Egypt, because the climb up to these 4000 year old rock-cut tombs affords the most majestic views of the Nile Valley, and the intricately painted scenes on the walls of these burial complexes provide remarkable insights into the daily life of the ancient Egyptians, and evidence for the particularly interesting transition from Egypt’s politically fragmented and turbulent First Intermediate Period, to the glorious and unified Middle Kingdom.
How many tours have you led for Andante?
I think it’s about 20 tours to Egypt since 2008, as well as study days in the Petrie Museum of Egyptian Archaeology and the British Museum.
What is the most memorable thing to happen to you on a tour?
To be honest, every trip I make to Egypt is special, and all Andante tours I have lead there have been made memorable by fantastic site visits and wonderful company. Although I would have to admit that Andante’s arrangement of private access inside the Great Pyramid at Giza and the Egyptian Museum in Cairo, have been particularly memorable.