Back with the Pharaohs - Abu Simbel Temples
Duration: Half Day
Egypt boasts a wealth of magnificent archeological treasures, many of which have been protected under the UNESCO World Heritage convention. This excursion will introduce you to the majestic Temples of Abu Simbel, one of the most impressive monuments in the world. Step back in time and gain a glimpse of Egypt’s fascinating ancient history on a day of discovery and wonder.
Located on the western bank of Lake Nasser in the region of Nubia in Southern Egypt (now northern Sudan), the awe-inspiring Abu Simbel Temples have to be seen to be believed. The twin temples of Ramses II and Nerfertari were constructed during the reign of Pharaoh Ramses II in the 13th century BC to honour himself and his queen. They were also dedicated to the most important gods of the New Kingdom: Ptah (the creator god of Memphis), Amun-Re (the great god of Thebes) and Re-Horakhty (god of the rising sun). The entrance to the Greater Temple is guarded by four colossal statues of Ramses II, whilst eight further statues stand inside.
The beautifully decorated interior walls depict offerings to the gods as well as historic events and victories of ancient Egypt’s greatest king; one of the most important being his alleged victory at the Battle of Kadesh over the Hittite Empire. At the entrance of the Lesser Temple, dedicated to Ramses’ chief wife Nefertiti and the goddess Hathor, stand statues of the queen with her husband. Visitors will see many reliefs and inscriptions on walls and pillars throughout the complex whilst exploring the beautiful chambers, forecourt and large hypostyle halls.
The complex was originally carved out of the sandstone rock further down the cliff, but during the 1960s these colossal statues were moved 200 feet higher to protect them from being submerged in the rising waters of Lake Nasser reservoir during the completion of the world famous High Dam on the River Nile. At the time, Lake Nasser was the world's largest artificial lake. The relocation of the temples was an historic event in itself. This famous archeological site was added to the UNESCO World Heritage List in 1979 as part of the "Nubian Monuments", which extends from Abu Simbel down the river to Philae near Aswan.
Your tour will include an early morning flight from Aswan. The excursion isn’t guided so enjoy free time to explore the sacred complex at your leisure, or join one of the many official guided tours once you get there. Not to be missed, a visit to the Temples of Abu Simbel will be one of the highlights of your holiday in Egypt.
We don't currently have any holidays here unfortunately…
Why not call our specialists on 020 7644 1755 and we'll see if we can create you a tailored holiday.
Talk to a specialist
Call 020 7644 1755 to speak with our award-winning travel consultants.
Opening hours 09:00 - 21:00 GMT
Related articles for Egypt
Egypt NewsBrowse all Egypt News
A unique Egyptian tour led a world-famous archaeologist is set to take visitors along with private access to some of the country’s most impressive sites and monuments that aren’t open to the public. The Royal Tour of Egypt is a two-week historical tour, with insight into the country’s culture and some of the region’s most impressive discoveries, from the Great Pyramids to the Valley of the Kings.
Starwood Hotels and Resorts Worldwide Inc. has announced that it will debut its W Hotels brand in Egypt with the opening of the W Sharm El Sheikh and The Residences at W Sharm El Sheikh. Scheduled to open in 2020, the hotel will be situated near Naqb Bay, and guests will have direct access to the Red Sea from the 300 metre-long sandy beachfront.
The Ministry of Tourism in Egypt has announced that the opening times of many archaeological sites in Luxor and Aswan have been extended. In an effort to boost cultural tourism in Egypt, a lighting project has been completed at many popular sites that enables tourists to visit at night during the summer and winter.