To the south of the pyramid were cut places for the wooden boats. These boats were intended for the use of the king in his journeys during the day time and at night with the sun-god Re as well as for crossing rivers and lakes of the hereafter. The actual boat, now in exhibition in a special building beside the Great Pyramid, was discovered in 1954. It was found dismantled under limestone blocks and plaster. Also found were the ropes for rigging and matting. The process of reassembly took more than 10 years. The boat is 44 m long and 6 m wide with an estimated displacement of more than 45 tons. Hundreds of pieces of shaped wood comprise the hull which was held together with ropes.
Since wet wood swells and rope shrinks, the boat would become water tight in water, making caulking unnecessary. The boat had six pairs of long oars, one pair by the stern post serving as rudder oars. Discoveries revealed 3 pits for these boats located to the east of the pyramid. In 1954, two other pits were found to the south of the pyramid. Cheops' boats were not the earliest to be found. Rather, these boats were found buried in Saqqara and Helwan from the First Dynasty.
The name 'Solar Boats' arises a number of questions since no evidence is found to prove that it was one of the boats used in the solar journey, whereas there is more than one evidence to prove that the boat was one of the seven or eight ones mentioned in the Pyramid Texts connected with the journey of the king after his death in the hereafter. Besides, solar boats were shown with certain religious symbols. Yet, all this was not found in the discovered boat.