Egypt

Touring Karnak Temple and Luxor Temple in Egypt.

Many of Luxor's tombs and temples are on the West Bank of the Nile but Luxor has two magnificent temples on it's East Bank which must not be missed - Karnak Temple and the Temple of Luxor.

Below is a visitor guide with quite a photographs about touring Egypt's totally impressive Karnak Temple complex in Luxor, Egypt. There are quite a few temple sites in and around this part of ancient Egypt to be visited - for instance the Medinat Habu Temple of Ramses III is fantastic - but Karnak Temple is really something else again. We enjoyed all of our sightseeing around the various temples but do think that we should have visited Karnak last of all because it simply over-shadows anything else. Karnak Temple is around 3kms from Luxor so easily reached from the centre of the city either by walking along the paved area beside The Nile or by a quick fairly inexpensive taxi ride or even by caleche. Entry into the site cost when we visited it was 45LE - even in February it was really hot inside the complex so it is really worth taking plenty of water with you. In fact the site at Karnak is so large that you can easily spend a whole day looking around so you may wish to consider even take some food with you too.
Karnak Temple Luxor - First Pylon
The First Pylon
First Pylon - Karnak Temple Luxor
First Pylon with the row of Sphynx
Karnak Temple Luxor
Karnak Temple
irrigation system.
Mummiform figures of the King as Osiris - Karnak Temple. Luxor, Egypt
Mummiform figures of the King as Osiris
Karnak Temple Luxor Wall Releifs
Wall relief's
Ramses II with one of his daughters, Karnak Temple in Egypt.
Ramses II with one of his daughters
Karnak Temple - Hieroglyphs can be seen everywhere
Hieroglyphs can be seen everywhere
Karnak Temple
Huge container
at Karnak Temple.
at Karnak Egypt - First Pylon of the Temple of Khonsu
First Pylon of the Temple of Khonsu
Hypostyle Hall of the Temple of Khonsu - Karnak Temple Luxor, Egypt.
Hypostyle Hall of the Temple of Khonsu
At the entrance to Karnak Temple you can easily get a guide to take you round but we prefer just to wander around such sites simply enjoying it all and taking our photographs. There are several books available which give you lots of information and descriptions - in particular one called "The Illustrated Guide to Luxor, Tombs, Temples and Museums" - this book by Kent R. Weeks is listed as ISBN 977-424-800-7 but from what we can see it may be that you can only buy it in the Middle East - we got ours in a backstreet shope in Luxor.
Hypostyle Hall of the Temple of Khonsu, Karnak, Egypt.
Hypostyle Hall of the Temple of Khonsu
Karnak Painted wall relief, Karnak Temple, Egypt.
Painted wall relief
Wall Releifs at Karnak Temple, Luxor
Wall Releifs
Karnak Temple
Karnak 7th Pylon with remains of statues
7th Pylon with remains of statues
Egypt - Karnak - The Sacred Lake
The Sacred Lake
at Karnak Temple
Temple of Ramses II, Karnak, Egypt.
Temple of Ramses II
Osiris Statue, Karnak, Egypt.
Osiris Statue
Karnak Temple
Karnak Luxor
 
Karnak Temple, Karnak, Egypt.
 
Luxor's Karnak Temple in Egypt.
Hieroglyphs, Karnak, Egypt.
Hieroglyphs
Karnak Temple
Temple of Thutmes III, Karnak, Egypt.
Temple of Thutmes III
at Karnak
Luxor - Karnak
 
Karnak Temple Luxor
 
The Obelisk of Queen Hatshepsut - Luxor, Karnak, Egypt.
The Obelisk of Queen Hatshepsut
Karnak Temple Luxor
Karnak Temple
near Luxor
Sandstone Columns of the Hypostyle Hall
Sandstone Columns of the Hypostyle Hall
Karnak Temple
The massive columns which supported the ceiling of the Hypostyle Hall, Karnak, Egypt.
Massive columns supported the roof of the Hypostyle Hall
Criosphinxes - lions body with the head of a ram, Karnak, Egypt.
Criosphinxes have a lion's body with the head of a ram

Looking round The Temple of Luxor which is situated alongside the River Nile right in the middle of Luxor.

Amenophis III commenced the construction of Luxor Temple to celebrate the Festival of Opet around 1400BC and then Rameses II added a Court some time later. The City authorities floodlight Luxor Temple in the evening to show it's magnificent granite pillars and it is a really beautifull sight - the Temple is open until around 9PM. Also good views can actually be acheived from the pavement outside the complex beside the River Nile since in a way you get a better overall view of the site - we took quite a few photographs from around there.
Beautiful night view of Luxor Temple Egypt Egypt's Luxor Temple - lit up at night Luxor Temple in Egypt Egypt's Luxor Temple Chapel of Serapis in Luxor, Egypt
Compared to the massive Karnak complex mentioned above Luxor Temple seems somewhat small - in hindsight we should have visited Karnak last of all on our sightseeing because it just dwarfs all the other temple sights. However we certainly did enjoy walking round Luxor's Temple - it really is very impressive in it's own right.
The entrance to the Temple of Luxor is located fairly near to the Winter Palace, about halfway along the paved area beside The Nile. If you wish you can have a guide to take you round and explain everything - one will certainly try and attach himself to you as soon as you enter the site, however in our case we just like wandering around, being ever more impressed with the sheer side of the pillars and the beauty of the drawings and taking our photographs of it all.

It is of course useful to have some information about what you are seeing and we think one book is particularly good - "The Illustrated Guide to Luxor, Tombs, Temples and Museums" by Kent R. Weeks is listed as ISBN 977-424-800-7. It is possible that this book can only be purchased in the Middle East - we got ours at a small Luxor bookshop for 200LE (after a bit of haggling of course).
First Pylon - with statues of Ramses II Court of Ramses II, Luxor, Egypt. Luxor Temple statues - Egypt Luxor Temple - Egypt Luxor Temple - Egypt
Colonade built by Amenhepet III, Luxor, Egypt. Abu Al-Haggag Mosque, Luxor, Egypt. Shrine of Alexander the Great, Luxor, Egypt. Luxor Temple beautiful columns - Egypt. Hypostyle Hall, Luxor Temple, Egypt.
Luxor Temple  Luxor Temple - Hypostyle Hall Luxor Temple Luxor Temple beautifully etched walls. Luxor Temple
As would be expected at such maignifcent sites there are plenty of coach trips which have Luxor Temple on their itinerary and the groups being led around can make it pretty busy, however most of these seem to be gone by around midday and the area becomes quieter with mostly just us "do it yourselfers" around, then it all starts getting busy again around 3 o'clock.
Sphynx - Luxor Egypt Luxor Temple Sphynx Luxor Temple Sphynxs - Luxor, Egypt There are a few sphynx wandering around which have been excavated on the site - some of these sphynx's are damaged but there are a few fairly intact ones to be found. Originally a thousand ram-headed Spynx lined the 2.5km long causeway between Luxor Temple and Karnak Temple - this route was once used for religious processions between the two Temples.
Please visit our Resources Page for other destinations for which we have travel and holiday guides - Cambodia, Vietnam, Thailand, China, Myanmar, India, New Zealand, Cyprus, lots of Greek Islands, The Algarve and several Canary Islands
Also many Topics about England - Wild Flowers, National Trail Walks, Churches plus quite a few canals including The Kennet and Avon Canal, The Oxford Canal, The Grand Union Canal, The Regents Canal - also two rivers and about walking The Thames Path.
Email Us via the above-mentioned Resources Page and also find there our website privacy policy and Cookie use.