Monday, March 31, 2008

Egypt. Day 4: Luxor Temple and Karnak

After finishing our visits to Kom Ombo and Edfu, we arrived at Luxor and checked in in our hotel: Sherief Hostel, Bob Marley's House. For a double room with private bathroom, we paid less than 5 euros per night!! And it wasn't that bad... and it included a nice breakfast!

After check-in, we went for lunch and visited the temples on the East Bank: the Temple of Luxor and Karnak. Both temples are around 3-4 km away and in ancient times there was a festival during which the images of some gods were brought from one temple to the other. The way between the two temples was a castaway with sphinxes on both sides. The temple of Karnak was the most important sanctuary in ancient Egypt. Kings lived in Karnak and Luxor and were brought to the West Bank when dead.

In the next photo, you can see the sphinxes in the way to the entrance of the Luxor Temple:

At the entrance of the temple, there were two giant Ramses II and two obelisques. Now there is only one, the other one is at Place de la Concorde, in Paris (France).

The temple was covered by sand and a town was built on top. Afterwards, the temple was discovered and the town dismantled. However, the town mosque was not knocked down and we can see it there. It is amazing the amount of sand which covered the temple! The mosque was at ground level and that means a height of 4-5 meters now!

And this is within the temple:

When we left, the temple was beautifully illuminated.

Later, we took a local bus (a real experience ;-) and went to Karnak, for the Light and Sound evening show. This is the appearance of the whole temple of Karnak.

And this is a detail of some statues at one of the innermost pylons.

Next day, we went to the West Bank, to see some tombs... that will be tomorrow!

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