egypt: abu simbel-aswan

philae temple

sunset at nile river




The Abu Simbel temples are two massive rock temples in Abu Simbel  in Nubia, southern Egypt,  situated on the western bank of Lake Nasser, about 230 km southwest of Aswan (about 300 km by road). The complex is part of the UNESCO World Heritage Site known as the “Nubian Monuments, which run from Abu Simbel downriver to Philae. (wikipedia)


The complex consists of two temples. The larger one,The Great Temple of Ramesses II, is dedicated to Ra-Harakhty,Ptah and Amun,Egypt’s three state deities of the time, and features four large statues of Ramesses II in the facade.

The Great Temple of Ramesses II
The Great Temple of Ramesses II

The smaller temple,the Small Temple of Nefertari, is dedicated to the goddess Hathor, personified by Nefertari, Ramesses’s most beloved of his many wives

the Small Temple of Nefertari
the Small Temple of Nefertari

The twin temples were originally carved out of the mountainside during the reign of Pharaoh Ramesses II in the 13th century BCE, as a lasting monument to himself and his queen Nefertari, to commemorate his alleged victory at theBattle of Kadesh.


The temple was forgotten until 1813,when Swiss orientalist Jean-Louis-Burckhardt found the top frieze of the main temple. Burckhardt talked about his discovery with Italian explorer Giovanni Belzoni, who travelled to the site, but was unable to dig out an entry to the temple. Belzoni returned in 1817, this time succeeding in his attempt to enter the complex.


Tour guides at the site relate the legend that “Abu Simbel” was a young local boy who guided these early re-discoverers to the site of the buried temple which he had seen from time to time in the shifting sands. Eventually, they named the complex after him


However, the complex was relocated in its entirety in 1968, on an artificial hill made from a domed structure, high above the Aswan High Dam reservoir. The relocation of the temples was necessary to avoid their being submerged during the creation of Lake Nasser, the massive artificial water reservoir formed after the building of the Aswan high Dam on the Nile River.



The Aswan High Dam is an embankment dam  situated across the Nile River in Aswan. Construction of the High Dam became a key objective of the Egyptian Government following the Egyptian Revolution of 1952, as the ability to control floods, provide water for irrigation, and generate hydroelectricity  were seen as pivotal to Egypt’s industrialization

aswan high dam

Lake Nasser is a vast reservoir in southern Egypt,  and northern Sudan and is one of the largest man-made lakes in the world.The lake was created as a result of the construction of the Aswan High Dam across the waters of the Nile between 1958 and 1971

lake nasser

The lake is some 550 km (340 mi) long and 35 km (22 mi) across at its widest point. It covers a total surface area of 5,250 km2 (2,030 sq mi) and has a storage capacity of some 132 km3 (32 cu mi) of water.




Philae temple on Agilkia Island as seen from the Nile

Philae  is an island in Lake Nasser. It was formerly an island in the First Cataract of the Nile River and the previous site of an Ancient Egyptian temple complex in southern Egypt.


The complex was dismantled and relocated to nearby Agilkia Island during a UNESCO project started because of the construction of the Aswan High Dam

2.IMG_0449aswan-Philae Isl-temple of isis---

The Ancient Egyptians built a beautiful and magnificent Temple on this island for the Goddess Isis


The Temple of Isis is one of the greatest Temples in Egypt and it occupies about a quarter of the island.


It is the main Temple on the island, with its huge pylons and beautiful scenes.


In addition to the main Temple of Isis there are other monuments here, such as The Kiosk of Trajan

2.P1010155aswan-Philae Isl-temple of isis---
kiosk of trajan

Trajan’s Kiosk is a hypaethral temple,  an ancient temple with no roof





Aswan  is a city in the south of Egypt, located just north of the Aswan Dam on the east bank of the Nile


Aswan is a busy market and tourist centre. Guarded convoys of buses and cars depart twice a day from Aswan, the nearest city, to Abu Simbel Temples


Egypt is a great country with amazing historical sites. This is the last album of Egypt. The other albums are : cairo,alexandria,dahab  and luxor


pictures taken in 2007 and properties of ani krisnamurti

text from wikipedia

5 Comments Add yours

  1. Another beautiful series here, Ani 🙂 Great shot an and pretty useful notes…

    Thank you so much for sharing 🙂

    1. anikiki says:

      thank u sreejith, but u didnt give any comment in my india posts. not good enough? hehe

      1. I am yet to explore your India posts… I’ll surely check it out 🙂

        Have a nice day, Ani 🙂

  2. Daniel says:

    I love that place!

    1. anikiki says:

      me too 🙂

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s