Temple Of Luxor ; All What you Need to Know

Posted On : 04/01/2024 Kate Clark 50
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Facts and history of the Luxor Temple

Ancient Egypt has always produced a great fascination. The great monuments such as the enormous pyramids of Giza, the majestic tombs of the Valley of the Kings or the mummies that are preserved in the Cairo Museum, have fed the imagination of those who enjoy history and the beauty of ancient art. Today we make a stop at the Luxor Temple to learn more about its history and facts.


What is and where is the Luxor Temple?

It is one of the most important temples of Ancient Egypt and its ruins are located in the city of the same name, which is located in the central region of the country, on the banks of the Nile River. Its work is mainly due to two important pharaohs, Amenhotep III and the great Ramses I: thats why we can see two large effigies at the entrance to the Temple.


Who built luxor temple?

It was built mainly during the 18th and 19th dynasties of the New Kingdom, but continued to be modified and expanded until the Ptolemaic period. It began by order of Amenhotep III (or Amenhotep III), and was completed in its original form during the government of Ramses II, around the year 1250 BC. c.


Why was the temple of luxor built:

It is dedicated to the great god Amun-Ra, his wife Mut and his son Jonsu, who represent the triad of Thebes, as well as being the center of one of the most important religious festivals of his time, known as Opet, which was celebrated during the second month of the annual flood of the Nile. During this festival the temple, profusely decorated with bas-reliefs that can still be seen on its columns and walls, became the focal point of the festivities, which included a procession from the temple of Karnak to Luxor.


Secrets of the Luxor Temple

One temple, various cults

The temple has undergone a multitude of developments since what was originally a temple to worship the most important god of the Egyptian pantheon, Amun-Ra, was transformed over the years to house the worship of other deities. During the Ptolemaic era, Serapis, a syncretic god who combined Egyptian and Greek traditions, was venerated. Later, during the time of Roman rule, a chapel was first installed in honor of Augustus, emperor who was deified and later, when the Roman legion turned the temple into a castro, it housed the cult of other Roman divinities.

Centuries later, with the advent of Christianity and the acceptance of this religion by the Empire, churches were built inside the great temple compound and remains of one that was located in the courtyard of Ramses can still be seen today. II, on which a mosque dedicated to Abu El-Hagag, a local saint whose relics are kept inside, was later installed.


Luxor Temple statues

In short, between the passage of Egyptians, Greeks, Romans, Christians and Muslims, this temple has had cult activity for more than 3,500 years and today its mosque is still active, so we can hear the call to prayer while we contemplate the ruins of this pharaonic temple.


And the other obelisk?

If we look at luxor temple main façade, we can see that in front of the pylons, there are two seated statues of Ramses II flanked by an obelisk and the pedestal of what should be another obelisk. this obelisk is currently in the Plaza de la Concorde in Paris and which was donated by the Egyptian governor Mehmet Ali in 1830 at the request of the French Egyptologist Jean François Champollion.


Sphinx statues in the Egyptian Temple of Luxor

Continuing outside, we will observe that the avenue that develops in front of its main entrance is flanked on both sides by rows of sphinxes with ram and human heads and that reach the doors of the most important sanctuary in Ancient Egypt, the Temple of Karnak. In total, 3 kilometers of avenue with around 1,400 sphinxes that constituted a processional passage known as the Avenue of Sphinxes


Why do tourists love visiting the Temple of Luxor?


Tourists love visiting the Temple of Luxor for several reasons. Here are a few key factors that make it a popular attraction:

  • Historical Significance: The Temple of Luxor is an ancient Egyptian temple that dates back to the 14th century BC. It was built primarily to honor the god Amun-Ra and was later expanded by pharaohs from different dynasties. Its historical significance and well-preserved architecture attract tourists who are fascinated by ancient civilizations.
  • Architectural Marvel: The temple's architecture is a marvel in itself. It showcases the mastery of ancient Egyptian builders with its colossal statues, grand columns, intricate carvings, and imposing obelisks. Tourists admire the craftsmanship and attention to detail displayed throughout the temple complex.
  • Avenue of Sphinxes: One of the highlights of the Temple of Luxor is the Avenue of Sphinxes, a long path lined with sphinx statues that once connected the temple with the Karnak Temple Complex. This avenue adds an element of mystique and grandeur to the temple and captivates visitors.
  • Light and Sound Show: The Temple of Luxor offers an enchanting light and sound show in the evening. This multimedia presentation brings the temple's history to life, combining lights, music, and narration to create a magical ambiance. Tourists enjoy this immersive experience that adds a dramatic touch to their visit.
  • Proximity to Other Attractions: Luxor, the city where the Temple of Luxor is located, is often referred to as the world's greatest open-air museum. It is home to other significant ancient sites such as the Valley of the Kings, Karnak Temple Complex, and the Mortuary Temple of Hatshepsut. The Temple of Luxor's central location makes it a convenient starting point to explore these other attractions.

Overall, the Temple of Luxor offers a unique blend of history, architecture, and cultural significance that captivates tourists. It allows them to step back in time and witness the grandeur of ancient Egypt firsthand.


How to visit Luxor temple


  • Visiting the Luxor Temple is a straightforward and enjoyable experience. Here's a step-by-step guide on how to visit the temple:
  • Plan Your Visit: Research the temple's opening hours, ticket prices, and any special events or shows that may be available during your visit. This will help you plan your itinerary accordingly.
  • Transportation: Arrange transportation to Luxor. You can fly into Luxor International Airport or take a train or bus from other cities in Egypt.
  • Entrance Tickets: Upon arrival at the temple, purchase your entrance tickets. Keep in mind that there may be separate fees for the main temple and any additional exhibits or shows.
  • Guided Tour : Decide whether you want to explore the temple on your own or hire a Travel Agency that will prepare everything for you like local egyptologist, transportations and tickets. 
  • Temple Exploration: Enter the temple grounds and start exploring. Take your time to appreciate the grandeur of the ancient structures, intricate carvings, and statues. Don't miss the Avenue of Sphinxes and the impressive colonnade.
  • Photography: Capture the beauty of the temple through photographs. However, be mindful of any specific photography rules or restrictions in place.
  • Light and Sound Show: If available, consider attending the evening light and sound show, which adds an extra layer of enchantment to the temple's ambiance. Check the show timings and purchase tickets in advance if required.

 Temple of Luxor


Remember to dress appropriately for the visit, respecting the cultural and religious significance of the site. Wear comfortable shoes as there may be a fair amount of walking involved. Finally, carry water, sunscreen, and a hat to stay hydrated and protected from the sun.


What are some other must-visit places in Egypt after visiting temple of luxor


After visiting the Temple of Luxor, there are several other must-visit places in Luxor and surroundings that you should consider exploring. Here are some recommendations:


  • Valley of the Kings: Situated on the west bank of the Nile River in Luxor, the Valley of the Kings is a burial ground for many pharaohs of the New Kingdom. Visitors can explore the elaborate tombs and marvel at the well-preserved hieroglyphics.
  • Abu Simbel Temples: Located in southern Egypt, near the Sudanese border, the Abu Simbel Temples are a UNESCO World Heritage site. These impressive rock-cut temples were built by Pharaoh Ramses II and are known for their colossal statues.
  • Karnak Temple Complex: Situated in Luxor, the Karnak Temple Complex is one of the largest religious complexes in the world. It consists of a vast array of temples, chapels, and pylons, with the Great Hypostyle Hall being a highlight for many visitors. 
  • Nile River Cruise : Embark on a Nile River cruise, where you can enjoy the scenic beauty of the Nile while visiting various historical sites along the way. It offers a unique perspective on Egypt's ancient civilization.


Remember, Egypt has a rich and diverse history, and these are just a few suggestions for luxor temple surroundings. There are many other fascinating places to explore in cairo, such as giza pyramids, egyptian Museum, and old cairo. Let us to plan your itinerary based on your interests and the time you have available.


Read Also:

The East Bank Of Luxor

West Bank Of Luxor

Karnak Temple Of Amun

Luxor Museum

Temple Of Khnum

Temple Of Dendera Egypt


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By Kate Clark

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