On Youssef Hassan Street, just behind the popular "New Emilio" hotel, you will find the jewel among the many souvenir shops of Luxor - a small but quiet oasis among all the bustle that visitors to Luxor are sure to experience even off the beaten paths of the city: El Qurna Bazar, run by Ahmed!
Ahmed has been running his shop for years here. He has a great number of various souvernirs on display - and the good thing is you need not fear to be talked out of your money by some crafty seller of cheap merchandise! There surely is a reason why there is a large sign saying 'No hassle!' posted prominently on the shop's front window... As opposed to almost all other merchants at Luxor, Ahmed offers his goods at fixed prices, all of which are very reasonable and always in accordance with the trade value of the items in question. Ahmed will not even try to cheat you out of your money - quite the contrary: he sometimes even seems to feel embarrassed if you offer him more money for a particular item than he thinks it should be worth...
Ahmed has a large selection of goods, which is by no means restricted to the "usual" fast-cast resin statues, but also includes a great diversity of hand-made (by himself, of course) souvernirs in many shapes and in a variety of sizes: alabaster statues, canopic jars made from basalt, very convincingly rendered replicas of stone tablets and tomb inscriptions, hand-crafted wooden ships in a variety of scales, hand-potted clay vessels of all shapes and sizes... Not only is Ahmed's pricing very reasonable, but he is also an expert in advising you on what to buy as well as telling you about the historical background of the item depicted - he would never try to sell you, say, an Isis statue for one of Hathor simply because he didn't have one of Hathor right now, and he is not above informing you that this apparently valuable and genuine-looking Bastet cat is actually a cheap resin imitation, good looks notwithstanding.
And yet, there is even more to Ahmed's selection of goods: should you be interested in papyri, he is always willing to offer you a great selection painted by friends of his. You may choose from a number of motives in various sizes, and usually with different combinations of colours for one particlar motive. It goes without saying that these papyri, too, are priced very reasonably!
If you are on holiday in Luxor and want to see more than just the usual mix of overpriced tourist shops as "recommended" and frequented by tourist guides (who are cut into the profits of the overpriced sales anyway) ever and ever again, El Qurna Bazar is the place for you to stop by! You will feel right at home with Ahmed, who will not only provide you with a hassle-free environment, but is also always in favour of smoking a waterpipe or having a glass or two of shay with you. Especially all those who have always complained of "pushy" Egyptian merchants, but would still like to buy something without all that hassle and the ever-present danger of being overcharged, are in for discovering a new facet of Egypt they probably had no longer expected to exist: a different type of Egyptian merchant and a quiet, honest, competent trade oasis offering high-quality goods!