Egypt: Abu Simbel

Abu Simbel is a historic site comprising two massive rock-cut temples in the village of Abu Simbel, Aswan Governorate, Upper Egypt, near the border with Sudan. It is situated on the western bank of Lake Nasser, about 230 km southwest of Aswan.

🙂 First class flight upgrade! Awe inspiring!

🙁 Heat!!

We were up at the crack of dawn (05h00) and took our flight to Abu Simbel. This is a tiny village in the middle of the desert and the only attraction is the Temple of Ramses II. The famed entrance is flanked by 4 colossal statues of Ramses II which are 20m tall. It was dedicated to the gods Amun, Ra-Horakhty, and Ptah, as well as to the deified Ramesses himself. It is generally considered the grandest and most beautiful of the temples commissioned during the reign of Ramesses II, and one of the most beautiful in Egypt. The temples were named after a young boy, Abu Simbel, who was the first to leaf an exhibition of the site in 1813. These temples have been cut out of Rock cliffs near the Aswan, the bigger one was dedicated to King Ramses II while the smaller one was dedicated to his wife Queen Nefertari. These temples were constructed to celebrate King Ramses II victory against the Hittites during the Kadish Battle in 1274 BC. Construction of the temples took two decades to complete.

The original location of the two temples was at the banks of the river Nile. This was before the high dam was constructed. Water at the banks rose significantly and posed danger to the ancient temple. The government was also considering constructing a dam at the same location. In 1964 the two Abu Simbel Temples were carefully cut into several pieces and were moved further away from the rising water of Lake Nasser. They were moved to a new location 200 metres back from the shoreline. This relocation process was managed by UNESCO.

We had a very interesting morning and were over awed by the sheer size of the statues. We got upgraded to First Class flights on the way back – for all 30mins of the flight!

Go To: Cairo

Go to: Aswan

Leave a Reply

Continue Exploring