Detailed itinerary of Luxor Tour from Safaga Port
Karnak Temple Complex: The largest temple in Egypt
Karnak Temple Complex is located near Luxor, Egypt, and is a vast mix of temples, pylons, chapels, and other buildings. The complex was originally called Nesut-Towi, meaning “Throne of the Two Lands.” Construction began during the Middle Kingdom, around the reign of Senusret I, and continued into the Ptolemaic Kingdom. Most of the extant buildings in the complex, however, date from the New Kingdom.
The temple complex is part of the monumental city of Thebes and is the main place of worship of the 18th Dynastic Theban Triad, with the god Amun as its head. The Karnak complex gives its name to the nearby modern village of El-Karnak, north of Luxor. The area around Karnak was known as Ipet-isut, “The Most Selected of Places,” in ancient Egyptian times.
The Great Hypostyle Hall in the Precinct of Amun-Re is one of the most famous features of the complex. It measures an area of around 50,000 sq ft, with 134 massive columns arranged in 16 rows. The Karnak complex also includes the Karnak Open Air Museum.
The history of the Karnak complex is largely the history of Thebes and its changing role in the culture. The Karnak complex is divided into four main parts: Precinct of Amun-Re, Precinct of Mut, Precinct of Montu, and the Temple of Amenhotep IV. The Precinct of Amun-Re is the largest of the precincts of the temple complex and is dedicated to Amun-Re, the chief deity of the Theban Triad.
The Precinct of Mut, located to the south of the newer Amen-Re complex, was dedicated to the mother goddess, Mut, who became identified as the wife of Amun-Re in the Eighteenth Dynasty Theban Triad. The Precinct of Montu is dedicated to the son of Mut and Amun-Re, Montu, who was a war-god. The temple that Akhenaten (Amenhotep IV) constructed on the site was located east of the main complex, outside the walls of the Amun-Re precinct, but it has been deliberately dismantled.
In medieval Europe, Thebes’ exact placement was unknown, though both Herodotus and Strabo give the exact location of Thebes and how long up the Nile one must travel to reach it. Today, Karnak is a popular tourist
Luxor Temple: Built by King Amenhotep III
Luxor Temple is a large ancient Egyptian temple complex located on the east bank of the Nile River in the city of Luxor, which was known as Thebes in ancient times. It was constructed around 1400 BCE and was one of two primary temples on the east bank, with the other being Karnak. Unlike other temples in Thebes, Luxor Temple is not dedicated to a cult god or a deified version of the pharaoh in death. Instead, it is dedicated to the rejuvenation of kingship, and it may have been where many of the pharaohs of Egypt were crowned in reality or conceptually.
The Luxor Temple was built with sandstone from the Gebel el-Silsila area located in Southwestern Egypt. Many parts of the temple were built by famous pharaohs such as Tutankhamun and Ramesses II, while chapels were built by Amenhotep III of the 18th Dynasty and Alexander.
The temple complex consists of various sections, including the avenue of Sphinxes and Shrine stations, which lead to the entrance of the temple, as well as the Abu Haggag Mosque, an active mosque located on top of the ruins of Luxor Temple’s inner part. During the Roman era, the temple and its surroundings were a legionary fortress and the home of the Roman government in the area. Therefore, a chapel inside the Luxor Temple originally dedicated to the goddess Mut was transformed into a Tetrarchy cult chapel and later into a church.
Luxor Temple was dedicated to the Theban Triad, which consisted of Amun, his consort Mut, and their son Khonsu. The temple is well-known for its beautiful architecture, carvings, and reliefs, which depict important stories and events from ancient Egyptian history. Along with other archaeological sites in Thebes, Luxor Temple was inscribed on the UNESCO World Heritage List in 1979 and is now a popular tourist destination.
Valley of the Kings: Accommodates 65+ Royal Tombs
The Valley of the Kings is a famous burial ground in Egypt for pharaohs and nobles that dates back to about the 16th century BCE. It is located on the west bank of the Nile river in Luxor and contains over 60 tombs, many of which belonged to Egyptian pharaohs. The valley was chosen as a burial site because of its remote location, which made it harder for thieves to loot the graves.
The tombs in the Valley of the Kings are decorated with elaborate paintings and inscriptions, including scenes from ancient Egyptian mythology, the pharaoh’s life, and descriptions of the afterlife. Some of the tombs contain elaborate burial chambers, while others are simpler in design. The most famous tomb in the valley is that of Tutankhamun, which was discovered almost entirely intact by British archaeologist Howard Carter in 1922.
Despite the tombs being robbed in antiquity, many of them still contain incredible treasures, including artifacts and sarcophagi made of gold and precious stones. The design of the tombs is also of great interest to archaeologists, as they offer insight into the complex beliefs and culture of ancient Egypt.
Today, the Valley of the Kings is a popular tourist site. Visitors can explore some of the tombs, although not all of them are open to the public at any given time to help preserve them. The site also offers visitors a glimpse into ancient Egyptian history and the incredible culture and beliefs of this ancient civilization.
Lunch: Local Egyptian Food
Temple of Queen Hatshepsut: The funeral temple of the Queen
The Temple of Queen Hatshepsut, also known as the Mortuary Temple of Hatshepsut, is an ancient Egyptian monument located on the west bank of the Nile River in Luxor. It was built during the 18th dynasty of Egypt and is dedicated to Hatshepsut, one of the few women to rule as pharaoh of Egypt.
The temple was designed by Senemut, Hatshepsut’s royal vizier, and was built over a period of about 20 years. The temple’s architecture is unique as it is partly cut into a cliff, which gives it a distinct appearance. The temple was originally built as a place of worship and to honor Hatshepsut’s accomplishments as a ruler.
The Temple of Queen Hatshepsut also features a large number of wall carvings and reliefs, many of which depict important events from Hatshepsut’s reign. These carvings have helped historians and archaeologists to understand more about the life of this famous pharaoh.
Although some of the temple was damaged over time, much of it remains intact and has been restored and preserved. Today, the Temple of Queen Hatshepsut is a popular tourist attraction and is visited by people from all over the world who want to learn more about ancient Egyptian history and culture.
Colossi of Memnon: Large statues of King Amenhotep III
The Colossi of Memnon are two enormous stone statues of Pharaoh Amenhotep III that stand at the entrance of his mortuary temple on the west bank of the Nile River in Luxor. The statues each stand approximately 60 feet tall and have stood in place since around 1350 BCE.
The Colossi of Memnon are known for their impressive size as well as their historical and archaeological significance. Although the statues were damaged over time, they have been restored and preserved, allowing visitors to see them in person and learn more about the history of ancient Egypt.
There are also some intriguing stories and myths about the Colossi of Memnon. One of the most famous stories involves the statues “singing” at dawn, which was said to be caused by the breeze blowing through cracks in the statues. While this phenomenon is no longer visible, it has become a part of the folklore surrounding the Colossi of Memnon and adds an additional layer of excitement and intrigue to their story.
Overall, the Colossi of Memnon are an impressive and iconic part of ancient Egyptian history and culture, and they continue to draw visitors from all over the world who want to learn more about this incredible civilization.