Luxor Travel Blog› entry 4 of 5 › view all entries
The flight up to Luxor was on a Russian Antonov turboprop. The aircraft flew at a lower altitude than the Comet, enabling a closer view of land use and farming along the Nile valley as the river cut its bright blue swath through the desert. Bridges spanned the river at intervals and irrigation channels brought water to the square fields. The afternoon flight soon brought us to Luxor, the legendary capital of Egyptian travel. It's attracted travelers since Napoleonic times eager to fathom the mysteries of the ancient Egyptians.
We stayed at the Savoy Hotel on the Corniche. The location afforded a view of the Nile through the hotel garden.
We wasted no time in seeking out the ancient mysteries ourselves. As soon as were checked in, we were off to the twin temples of Luxor and Karnak. Both of these are on the Eastern, or Luxor, bank of Nile.
Entering the Temple of Karnak, we followed the traditional tour route through the ruins. The temple was built over a period of time with each pylon representing a different era. At the approach to Karnak, one sees the main entrance at the First Pylon. The First Pylon is preceded by the popular Avenue of Sphnixes. At one time, a canal led from the Nile to the temple, with a quay leading up to the Avenue of Sphinxes. Beyond the First Pylon is the Second Pylon leading to the Hypostyle Hall. The Hypostyle Hall is notable for the twelve 24 m high columns lining the aisle. Beyond the Hall are the Third and Fourth Pylons with the Obelisk Courtyard between them. The most prominent is the Obelisk of Hatshepsut.
In the evening we took a carriage ride around the old city. A boy of about 10 hopped on the carriage to sell souvenier wood carvings of Egyptian figures. We bought one.