Luxor Temple

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Luxor, Egypt

Luxor Temple Reviews

Suusj Suusj
198 reviews
Luxor Temple Aug 31, 2011
First some history

Luxor Temple is located on the east bank of the Nile. Known in the Egyptian language as Ipet Resyt which means “The Southern Sanctuary.” The temple was dedicated to Amun, Mut and Chons, the Theban Triad. It was build during the new kingdom. It’s focus was on the Opet festival. The Opet festival was when a statue of Amon was paraded down the Nile from Karnak to stay there next to Mut. The festival and the statue was a celebration of fertility.

The Temple is well conserved and it’s earlier parts are stil standing. The early parts were built by Hatshepsut and later on Tuthmosis III and Amenhotep III. Ramses II later on build the entrance pylon and the two obelisks.

During the Christian era one temple hall was made into a Christian church. The remains are still visible on a wall.

For thousands of years the temple was buried under the houses and streets of Luxor. Later on the Sufi Shaykh Yusuf Abu al-Hajjaj Mosque was built over it. During the discovering and uncovering of the temple the mosque was preserved. It’s still visible today. There is still discovering going on. The avenue of the sphinxes used to lead to Karnak. Because of the government issues nowadays the uncovering of more sphinxes has been stopped. There are actually still houses and streets upon the other parts of the sphinxes. It will take a while for they can be discovered.

Luxor Temple is way smaller then Karnak Temple. But definitely worth visiting. Again be aware of the fact that there are a lot of tourists.
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Africatrip Africatr…
2 reviews
Luxor Places Mar 17, 2011
Luxor is a great place to visit. Don't try to fit it all into one day. Take two, maybe three days. You really do not need a guide for the Valley of the Kings, just a taxi to get there. Valley of the Queens and Tombs of the Nobles are very much worth a visit on the second day.

If you can splurge on a hotel, the Palace Pavillion is great because of the super gardens and pool where you can easily hang to get away from the hustle on the streets.
Beei Beei
4 reviews
Open air musuem, Temple of Luxor Jun 24, 2011
I got a student price to enter the temple of Luxor. It costs 25 L.E. It is really a breathtaking view of this temple. Can you imagine the people who build this building for 100 years ago??? They don't have the equipment as modern as now. But, they were able to build such grand building. Love the place so much!
Don't you think it is really amazi…
Such a grand temple!!!
Posing with my loving mak caq!
Check it out! With head and withou…
Amerital Amerital
4 reviews
An incredible introduction to Karnak Temple Jan 09, 2010
Its been a few months since I was in Luxor so forgive me if I leave some of the minute details out of my explanation.

Luxor Temple was the first sight that we visited when we went to Egypt. Im glad it was too. Of all the places that I have been to, nothing effected me as much as Luxor temple. It was simply the most amazing human structure that I have ever been witness to (so far).

As expected, you take a cab to the temple. Make sure you ask your hotel front desk how far, long and how much the trip should be so that the cabs dont take you the long way and rip you off.

As you enter the temple grounds, do not buy tickets from anyone that is not inside the official booth. Everyone is trying to make a buck there and it is the safest option to stick with official places. You will pass some shops and then through a gate. That is where you buy the tickets. Then there is a long walk across a grounds that will bring you to the entrance of Luxor Temple. I cannot say enough about it.

The temple is HUGE. Much larger than I ever expected both in height and in overall size. It gets hot so dress accordingly and bring your own water. If you buy it there you pay a lot for it. Supply vs Demand.

The entrance is lined with statues along the sides and then you begin the jawdropping walk around the temple. The pillars are so tall, the glifics look machined. Its hard to imagine it was all done by hand. Some of the pillars still have the crossmembers on top and if you get a zoom camera you can see that there is still paint on some parts. Its great to see that in it's original colors.

Take your time to walk around. You will be approached by locals as well as tourist police to take you "behind the scenes". Its another money ploy but we did one of them for fun and I am so glad we did.

A local walked to us and began to tell me some of the history. He then walked to a small doorway where there was a tourist policeman standing guard. The local begged for us to be let through and offered the guard some money. The guard looked stern and then said "okay, only one minute though". All of this was in english so that we could understand this well choreographed act. It was cute and I played along thanking the guard profusely with a smirk and a nudge to my friends.

We did however get to climb on some of the statues that I had really wanted to and yes they were roped off from the public so I was very happy about this. The local took all our pics together for us. It was great and very pleasing. As expected at the end he asked us for money. We paid up without hesitation.

Not all people will provide this great experience though. Some of them will just babble on for 3 mins about history then demand money. So choose carefully.

The temple ends with a view of the Pharoh's spirit pool. During the night "light" show that is where the story is told with bleachers overlooking the pool. It is definitely worth seeing the light show too.

The total time we spent there was 3 hours. I feel that we saw everything that we wanted to in that time and being the first place we visited we took our time in every nook and cranny. If its any direction into how much I loved this temple- I gave the pyramids 4 stars and this temple 5. It's something I think everyone who goes to Egypt shouldn't leave without seeing.

Thanks for reading my review. Hope you like the pics!!
A big bite of humble pie.
I was trying to read the fine prin…
Those bugs from the movie "The Mum…
Faeimm Faeimm
2 reviews
Jan 17, 2008
The alarm went off at 2:45 am - time to wake up! Armed with pillows, breakfast boxes and pullovers, we boarded our 3:15 am bus an headed north towards Safaga. Three hours and 12 pit-stops (to pick up other Luxor "pilgrims") later, we entered the bus convoy terminal where we transferred to the "1-day English-speaking tour" bus. The Egyptian government authorizes 3 police-escorted convoys per day to depart to and from Luxor (total 6 convoys both directions). Since it's currently peak season, convoys can consist of over 200 buses! Our bus is part of the day's first convoy of 178 buses, departing Safaga at 7 am (the other two depart at 9 am and 5 pm respectively).

Luxor is a popular destination this time of year (winter months) because the weather is sunny and mild (20-23 °Celcius). An important part of the Egyptian history, this city is commonly known as the world's largest open air museum, and it has been a tourist destination since Diodorus of Sicily visited in 60 BC. The beginning of recorded history in Egypt dates back to 3200 BC, when the Egyptian pharaoh Narmer unified the whole country. Between his reign and the arrival of Alexander the Great in 332 BC, Egypt was ruled by thirty dynasties, roughly divided into Old Kingdom (capital city Cairo), Middle Kingdom (capital city Fayum) and New Kingdom (capital city Luxor). The dynasties of the Old and Middle Kingdoms were the pyramid builders, their pharaohs entombed in these huge structures. The pharaohs of the New Kingdom saw how easily these visible pyramids were plundered by thieves, and decided to build their tombs underground, cut deep into the limestone hills in the Valley of Kings from 1500 BC onwards. When Alexander the Great arrived in 332 BC, upon seeing the numerous gateways to the Egyptian temples, he changed the name of this city to "Thebes" – "City of 100 Gates". The Islamic period began in 640 AD, and the Arabs renamed this city of temples "el-Uqsor" – "Palaces". Luxor is the European form of the Arabic name.

Our 4-hour journey to Luxor took us through the Eastern Desert, with one pit-stop in between. I had decided not to drink more water than necessary because the only accessible toilet was the tiny cubicle in the bus for 46 passengers! At the halfway point (district border), the Safaga police handed us over to their Qena counterparts. Not only did our escorts change, but the landscape as well. As we approached the Nile valley, the arid and mountainous land gave way to green and fertile farms irrigated by canals fed from River Nile. The closer we got to the populated areas, the practicality of the convoys became obvious – the police stops local traffic 6 times a day for the buses to pass, 2-way roads are converted into 2-lane "highways" to facilitate smooth journey for the hoards of tourist through the villages and towns.

As we sped through the countryside, slowing down only at the numerous security checkpoints, we caught glimpses of village life typical along the river valley throughout Egypt. Despite covering only about 6% of the total area of Egypt, the Nile Valley and Delta are the most important regions, being the country's only cultivable regions and supporting about 99% of the population (15% Christians, 85% Sunni Muslims). The population is booming as well, apparently by 1 million every 9 months – that's one baby born every 23 seconds!

Farming continues to be the way of life along the Nile Valley – main crops are sugar cane, tomatoes, bananas, cabbage, pumpkins and corn. Farmers here still go about things manually – the majority is very poor, harvesting earns them on average 50 EGP per day per person (1 Euro ~ 8 EGP). This is barely enough to cover the daily needs of a family of 6-10 persons. Hence, it is very common for young boys aged 10-11 onwards to stop schooling to help their families make ends meet. These simple folk build their homes on the farms, the bricks made from mud dug out from the canals. Living in mud-brick homes is not that risky in this part of Egypt because it rains only 4 days per year.

Tour Itinerary

* East Bank: Al Karnak, lunch

* West Bank: Valley of Kings, Hatshepsut's Temple, alabaster workshop, Colossi of Memnon

* Boat trip across the Nile to East Bank

* Government Institute of Papyrus

Al Karnak: This vast complex of temples, obelisks and sphinxes took more than 1300 years to construct (work began in 16 BC). Approximately 30 pharaohs contributed to the buildings, enabling the complex to reach a size and diversity not seen elsewhere. The Karnak temple was dedicated mainly to the so-called Theban triad, made up of the Egyptian gods Amun-Re, his consort the goddess Mut, and their son, the moon god Khonsu. The great earthquake of 27 BC destroyed most of the temple complex.

Valley of Kings: Used by the pharaohs of the New Kingdom to house their underground tombs after they stopped building pyramids like their ancestors. So far, archaeologists have discovered 62 tombs ("used" over a period of 500 years), but only 24 belong to the pharaohs. It is a myth that workmen were killed upon completion of a king's tomb to protect its location. If it were true, there would not be enough skilled workmen to go around! Men with such skills were often involved in other projects as well, tombs for members of the royal family, in the Valley of Queens and elsewhere.

The most recent tomb discovered is that of the boy King Tutankhamun, on 4.11.1922 by the archaeologist Howard Carter. It took Carter and his team 10 years to move the tomb's entire contents (except mummy and casket) to the National Museum in Cairo. On 4.11.2007, 85 years after the 3000-year-old boy pharaoh's golden-enshrined tomb and mummy were discovered, the face of King Tutankhamun was unveiled in public for the first time. The mummy is housed in a climate-controlled glassbox, with only its shriveled leathery black face and feet showing under the linen covering (unfortunately recording devices strictly forbidden). The 19-year-old king was presumably murdered by his high priest-cum-prime minister Ay (fatal blow to the back of his head). Ay usurped the throne, and ordered King Tutankhamun's 17-year-old widow killed as well for refusing to marry him.

Hatshepsut's Temple: Hatshepsut was the only female pharaoh of Egypt. A daughter of Tuthmose I and first wife of Tuthmose II, she became regent for the 6-year-old Tuthmose III (son of Tuthmose II's second wife) on his succession, but after seven years in this role she took on kingly aspects and titularies. While not denying Tuthmose III's kingship, she was the senior partner, ruling Egypt for 22 years (died 54 years old). After her death, Tuthmose III appeared to have organized a campaign to obliterate part of her memory in revenge. One of her shrines in Karnak was dismantled, and in many other places her figures were cut, and her names were replaced with that of Tuthmose III. Fortunately, her temple at Deir-el-Bahari was still well-preserved.

Colossi of Memnon: The two statues are all that remains of the mortuary temple of Amenhotep III, which would have been one of the largest structures in Egypt. A popular tourist attraction, primarily during the Roman Period.

Towards the end of the tour, we crossed back to the East Bank of Luxor by motorboat, an easy ride over the waters of the legendary River Nile. This is Egypt's lifeline – the Nile made the land surrounding it extremely fertile when it flooded annually. It would be difficult to imagine how civilization would have developed if not for this river.

At the "Government Institute of Papyrus", we were given a brief demonstration of how papyrus is made, although I personally think the place is more a fixed-price showroom of Egyptian-motif paintings (albeit of good quality) on papyrus paper.

By 6 pm, our bus has rejoined the convoy returning to Safaga. The journey back to Marsa Alam took a bit longer than 7 hours, but since we were so exhausted from the day's programme, we did not really notice. Our bus dropped us off at Kahramana at 1.30 am – it has been a long day!


Luxor in one day is exhausting, but if that’s all the time one has, it is worth the 14-hour bus ride. The tour operator Blue Sky (Thomas Cook affiliate) organized a very compact itinerary. We would have preferred to spend more time exploring Al Karnak, and do without the pit-stops at the alabaster workshop and the "Government Institute of Papyrus" – thinly veiled attempts at getting us tourists to part with our cash, but then I suppose that’s doing something for the local economy.

Given the time constraints, for the comfort and convenience of being ferried from one must-see sight to another, having lunch and all entrance fees covered (except King Tut’s tomb 80 EGP), and being accompanied by a qualified archaeologist-cum-part-time guide who provides useful insight to the local culture – one could say the package was worth the 105 Euro per person price tag.
Bus convoy terminal in Safaga
Obelisks at Karnak Temple
River Nile at sunset
LeighTravelClub LeighTra…
47 reviews
Dec 22, 2007
Luxor Temple dominates the centre of the town on the banks of the Nile. Dedicated to the gods Amun, Mut and Khonsu, it was completed by Amenhotep II and Rameses II added to it. In 3rd century A.D. it was occupied by a Roman camp and then abandoned. Over the centuries it was engulfed with sand and silt, and a village grew up within the temple walls. In 1881 the archaeologist Gaston Maspero rediscovered the temple in remarkably good condition but before excavation could happen the village had to be removed. The temple is approached by an avenue of sphinxes which once stretched all the way from Luxor to Karnak almost 2km (1.2 miles away) . The sphinxes were there to guard the temple.

The main purpose of the temple was to provide a setting for the annual opet-festival, when cult images of the gods were taken in procession by land and by boat from Karnak to Luxor. Nowadays Luxor recreates the festival for tourists on 4th November each year - the anniversary of the discovery of Tutankamun’s tomb.
Luxor Temple. Avenue of Spinxes.
1 / 1 TravBuddies found this review helpful/trustworthy
LeighTravelClub says:
Yes, I was amazed too. We will definitely revisit this area sometime in the future.
Posted on: Oct 15, 2011
Chokk says:
I was amazed about this place
Posted on: Oct 15, 2011
glenniesguy glennies…
2 reviews
Feb 19, 2006
Well the first thing is plan your time. On the east bank there is Luxor Temple and Karnak Temple. There are 3km apart. Easy walk along the nile. There is also thje Luxor museum. Not very big but ibteresting. Then there is the market. lots of touristy things. There is an interesting sound and light show at Karnak at night. Diferent times for different languagues. A horse and buggy ride through town could also be fun.

You need to think what you want to do on the west bank. Do not take offers from anyone on the east side. Talk the ferry to the other side. You will be at the ticket booth. There you will need to by tickets for what you want to see. You cant do it at the tombs. They are sold in 3's. Then you will need to hire a car. You can't walk it.

it is very safe there. There will be lots of tourists. Unless the so called, cartoon thing" is scaring away people. The people in Luxor survive on visitors. You will have no problem.

I stayed at the Sheraton the last time I was there. Very nice hotel. See my travelogue of Luxor. lots of pictures.
Luxor Temple Entrance
Flyinhigh Flyinhigh
57 reviews
Grab a Guide and Go! Sep 26, 2006
If you read my blog on Luxor than you know how we met Mohamed. I have to say that having a local with his expertise show us around allowed us to see way more in one day than we thought would be possible. We managed to visit Luxor Temple, Karnak Temple, the Valley of the Kings, the Valley of the Queens, the Temple of Hatshepsut, the Colossi of Memnon, and a few other sites that we weren't planning to visit but he worked in.

Mohamed also works at the airport information desk in addition to working as a tour guide. His English is excellent and his knowledge of the history of Luxor was quite impressive.

Mohamed Youssry Tawhik

Luxor, Egypt


+2 010 4241344
Karnak Temple
Mohamed showing us around
fransglobal says:
Very interesting. Thanks!
Posted on: Aug 04, 2009

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