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Discover Magical Luxor

The sheer size and number of its wonderfully preserved monuments have made Luxor Egypt's greatest attraction after the pyramids. Small wonder that the area is often described as the world's largest open-air museum. Feluccas, old barges and luxury hotel ships cruise to and from Cairo and Aswan.

Discover magical Luxor

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» Abydos

Abydos, Luxor

In a country that's home to some of the most ancient structures on earth, the city of Abydos is a standout destination for lovers of history, hieroglyphs and architecture. That's because this city is one of the nation's most historic - and home to perhaps the most well-preserved temple in the country. Travelers to this Middle Egypt destination can examine the exquisite reliefs of King List at the Temple of Seti. These finely-detailed carvings are some of the best kept in all of Egypt and the temple's off-the-beaten-path vibe means it's easy to explore without bumping into tons of other tourists …

» Avenue of Sphinxes

Avenue of Sphinxes, Luxor

The Avenue of Sphinxes was the site of ceremonial processions and originally connected the temples of Luxor and Karnak, although it is considerably more recent than either of those sites, dating to around 380 BC. It stretched some 1.5 miles (2.7 kilometers) and would once have had 1,350 sphinxes lining its sides. Around half of those have been uncovered, with many reworked by later civilizations or sitting in museums. Much of the avenue itself is covered by modern buildings. There are dozens of examples in various states of preservation forming the immediate approach to each temple …

» Colossi of Memnon

Colossi of Memnon, Luxor

Little remains of the once impressive Amenhotep's memorial temple. But the two imposing statues of Pharaoh Amenhotep III, erected to guard the ancient entrance, still stand watch some 3,400 years later. Today, travelers can venture to the shores of the Nile, just across from the city of Luxor, and revel at the giant manmade sculptures. In addition to these impressive twin statues, travelers can check out two smaller figures of the Pharaoh's wife, Tiy, and mother, Mutemwia. Visitors can also get an up close look at the sandstone panel carvings …

» Dendera (Dandarah)

Dendera (Dandarah), Luxor

The main lure at Dendera is the Temple of Hathor, one of the least ancient of ancient Egypt's glories, main construction being more or less contemporary with the life of Christ, although it was built on much older foundations. There are fascinating glimpses of the meeting of great civilizations, with a famous wall relief of Cleopatra VII (the Cleopatra of legend) and her son, fathered by Julius Caesar. Other depictions of Roman emperors make this a Who's Who of the ancient world …

» Luxor Museum

Luxor Museum, Luxor

While the size of its collection can't rival the treasures of Cairo, Luxor Museum is renowned as one of the thoughtfully assembled displays of antiquities in Egypt. Most of its exhibits come from temples and other constructions in the Luxor area. Highlights of the museum include sculptural depictions of Amenhotep III, under whose reign many of Luxor's temples were built. There are also a number of objects from the controversial opening of the tomb of Tutankhamun, including an imposing cow-headed deity …

» Luxor Safaga Cruise Port

Luxor Safaga Cruise Port, Luxor

Located on Egypt's Red Sea coast, the port of Safaga has a small but lively tourism industry, primarily centered on scuba diving and surfing. For most cruise passengers, the port will serve as an entry way to visit Luxor several hours away. It is also a port for ferries to and from Saudi Arabia, just across the Red Sea. Luxor is about a three and a half hour drive from Safaga, so you will likely visit as part of an organized shore excursion, often one that includes an overnight stay in Luxor …

» Luxor Temple

Luxor Temple, Luxor

The enormous Luxor Temple was one of the great constructions of the New Kingdom (dating from the 14th century BC) dedicated to the god Amun. It was known as the 'Southern Sanctuary' and was the site of ceremonies aimed at encouraging the life-giving Nile floods. Once through the processional Avenue of Sphinxes you come to the First Pylon, which announces the phenomenal scale of the stonework here: statues, columns and obelisks all compete with each other in a race to the sky …

» Medinet Habu (Temple of Ramses III)

Medinet Habu (Temple of Ramses III), Luxor

Where the fertile Nile floodplain meets the desert lies the Mortuary Temple of Ramses III, known locally by its Arabic name Medinet Habu. The whole compound forms a huge rectangle, with the temple a smaller rectangle within. The ensemble is the second largest in Luxor after Karnak, and is related in both style and scale to the nearby Ramesseum. Visitors come here mainly for the outstanding wall reliefs, enormous depictions of pharaohs, gods and battles; one section serves as an accounting system …

» Mummification Museum

Mummification Museum, Luxor

Located in Luxor, to the north of Luxor Temple and overlooking the River Nile, the Mummification Museum is a small yet interesting museum dedicated to explaining the ancient art of mummification. It can easily be explored and appreciated in less than an hour. At the museum's entrance is an ornate statue of Anubis, the god of embalming. The Ancient Egyptians applied their embalming techniques to many species, and the museum displays a number of mummified animals, including cats, fish, and crocodiles …

» Ramesseum (Mortuary Temple of Ramses II)

Ramesseum (Mortuary Temple of Ramses II), Luxor

While not as well preserved as nearby Medinet Habu, this mortuary temple dedicated to Ramses II, dating to 1258 BC, still has more than enough to interest the visitor. In the inner sanctuary, for example, the majority of the columns in the hypostyle hall are still standing, as are a number of osirid statues standing sentinel at the entrance, albeit mostly without heads. As is typical with such structures, giant wall reliefs trumpet the pharaoh's military accomplishments and proclaim his immortality. But also on view are parts of the fallen Colossus of Ramses …

» Temple of Hatshepsut (Deir el-Bahari)

Temple of Hatshepsut (Deir el-Bahari), Luxor

The vast Temple of Hatshepsut in Deir el-Bahari rivals the Pyramids as one of the great funerary monuments of the ancient world. Built into the towering cliff face which shelter the Valley of the Kings on the other side, it rises on three enormous terraces connected by ramps, each level marked with a colonnade of stark, largely unadorned square pillars. Its namesake was one of the few female pharaohs of ancient Egypt, who not unfairly called her monument 'Splendor of Splendors'. However, much of the construction dated from earlier rulers, starting with Mentuhotep II in 2050 BC …

» Temple of Horus at Edfu

Temple of Horus at Edfu, Luxor

This ancient temple, built as homage to the falcon-headed god Horus, was erected between 237 and 57 BC, during the reign of six different Ptolemies. It's the second-largest temple in Egypt, only after Karnak, and its main building includes a number of marginally preserved reliefs. The temple pylons stretch an impressive 118 feet into the sky and visitors can still see where guards once stood, keeping watch over the pharaoh's enemies. Visitors to this ancient site can trace history through age-old etchings that record years of land donations and even depict the annual Triumph of Horus …

» Temple of Karnak

Temple of Karnak, Luxor

The largest of Luxor's temples, Karnak was one of the most sacred sites in ancient Egypt. Constructed in the 16th Dynasty, it marked the ascendancy of Thebes as the capital of the New Kingdom. The major site here is the Temple of Amon, the largest place of worship ever constructed. There the Great Hypostyle Hall, dwarfs visitors with its dozens of colossal columns reaching 25 yards (23 meters) into the sky …

» Tomb of King Tutankhamun

Tomb of King Tutankhamun, Luxor

The boy pharaoh Tutankhamun, who ruled the New Kingdom in the 14th century, enjoys fame disproportionate to his short reign and modest achievements. This is mostly due to the discovery of his largely intact tomb in the Valley of the Kings in 1922, his mummy adorned by a dazzling gold mask (now in Cairo's Egyptian Museum, along with most of the tomb's other bling). Having risked the curse said to await anyone who disturbs the tomb's rest, visitors may be slightly disappointed by its modest scale and relative lack of adornment …

» Tomb of Merenptah

Tomb of Merenptah, Luxor

Pharoah Merenptah, son of Ramesses II and Queen Isis-Nofret, was entombed in the Valley of Kings in Tomb KV8, more popularly called the Tomb of Merenptah. This paticular tomb was discovered by Howard Carter in 1902, almost a decade before his more famous discovery of Tutankhamun's tomb. When the tomb was first excavated, it was filled with debris, indicating that it had been open for centuries. While very little in the way of funerary items or furniture was found within …

» Tombs of the Nobles (Valley of the Nobles)

Tombs of the Nobles (Valley of the Nobles), Luxor

The Tombs of the Nobles (or Valley of the Nobles) may lack the star power of the Valley of the Kings or other Luxor hotspots, but this neglected gem is well worth a visit. This is a cemetery on a rare scale, with hundreds of tombs embedded in the rock, often richly decorated with frescoes depicting the working lives of their inhabitants. Only a fraction of the sites can be accessed. Highlights include the tomb of Sennofer, the mayor of Thebes (modern-day Luxor), with its charming painted grapevines, and the harvest scenes accompanying Nakht the astronomer on his eternal journey …

» Tomb of Ramses III

Tomb of Ramses III, Luxor

Located on the west bank of the Nile in Luxor, the Valley of the Kings is the final resting place of the last of Egypt's warrior pharaohs. At 125 meters long, the Tomb of Ramses III is one of the longest in the Valley of the Kings. It has been well preserved, with its colorful sunken reliefs of traditional ritual texts still clearly evident. All 63 of the royal tombs here are different, and what's unique about the Tomb of Ramses III are the foreign tributes located within its side chambers, including detailed pottery imported from the Aegean …

» Tomb of Ramses VI

Tomb of Ramses VI, Luxor

The Tomb of Ramses VI is one of the most striking and architecturally interesting tombs within the Valley of the Kings, which is situated on the west bank of the Nile in Luxor. Originally built for Ramses V and expanded upon by Ramses VI during the 20th dynasty, its decoration is one of the most sophisticated and complete of the royal tombs. In general, the Tomb of Ramses' elaborate decoration depicts the story of the origins of heaven and earth, including the creation of the sun and life itself …

» Valley of the Artisans (Deir el-Medina)

Valley of the Artisans (Deir el-Medina), Luxor

Creating the Valley of the Kings was no simple undertaking: a small army of builders, engineers, engravers and other workers was required to carve the dozens of tombs out of sheer rock over the centuries. Naturally they all had to be housed somewhere, ideally not too far away. But it was only with the discovery Valley of the Artisans (or Deir el-Medina), around the time of the opening of Tutankhamun's tomb, that we learnt more about their living conditions. The outlines of the 'workmen's village' are still clearly visible, and extant reliefs offer a fascinating portrait of everyday life …

» Valley of the Kings

Valley of the Kings, Luxor

The harsh, lunar landscape of the Valley of the Kings is the resting place of numerous New Kingdom pharaohs, whose remains were interred in tombs burrowed into rock. The 60-odd tombs which have been discovered (which may represent only half of the total tombs in the area) are identified by number rather than the name of their original inhabitant, and a handful of tombs are closed at any one time for restoration. Nonetheless there is more than enough to see, and it is better to pick out a representative sample rather than try to see every tomb …

» Valley of the Queens

Valley of the Queens, Luxor

Hidden in a Y-shaped ravine on the West Bank of the Nile, the Valley of the Queens is an ancient burial site where the wives of the reigning Pharaohs from the 18th, 19th, and 20th dynasties were buried. The valley not only contains the tombs of the royal wives and children from this time, but is also home to a number of other tombs of members of the royal families, including princesses and princes. The most famous tomb at the site is that of Queen Nefertari, which is only occasionally open to visitors …


Luxor Tours, Travel & Activities
Luxor Hotels & Accommodation

Magical Journeys to LuxorLuxor Travel,
Tours & Activities

Luxor Tours, Travel & Activities

People have been visiting the magnificent monuments of Luxor for thousands of years. Built on the site of the ancient city of Thebes, Luxor is an eccentric combination of provincial town and staggering ancient splendor. The concentration of monuments is extraordinary, towering incongruously above the buzz of everyday life …

» LUXOR Tours, Travel & Activities

Luxor HotelsLuxor Hotels
& Accommodation

Luxor Hotels

Luxor is the premier travel destination in Upper (southern) Egypt and the Nile Valley. The dynastic and religious capital of Middle Kingdom and New Kingdom Egypt, Luxor has much to offer the traveller, from vast temples, to ancient royal tombs, via spectacular desert and river scenery and a bustling modern life …

Luxor Hotels

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Egypt Travel Guides

Egypt Travel Guides