Luxor Temple is one of the most beautiful temples we visited in Egypt. Luxor Temple was built by Amenhotep III and the temple runs parallel to the Nile river from North to South.
Our friend Ramses II with the assistance of his architect Pak-In Khonso added the front part and completed the temple. Ramses also added the large forecourt and a pylon at the northern front of the temple. Other Pharaoh’s made small additions over the years and Alexander the Great rebuild the Sanctuary. So loads of history in this temple.
We were blessed (once again thanks to the awesome tour guides) to see the temple as the last rays of the setting sun made the stones glow and as darkness fell we saw the transformation of the temple as it was lit up to highlight its beauty. There is an eerie yet peaceful atmosphere at night which I am not sure that daylight can replicate.
Even though we were exhausted from a long day and hungry to boot (the two are a pretty lethal combination) the magnitude of this structure left a lasting impression. I must admit that I was able to follow the architecture of the Luxor Temple far easier than I did that of Karnak. Starting at the beginning is the avenue of the sphinxes that runs the 3kms Karnak in the north. The first pylon was raised by Ramses II and of course it was decorated with reliefs from his military exploits…ai this man!! There was originally 6 massive statues of Ramses four seated and two standing but only two of the seated and one of the standing remain today.
There are all kinds of statues and obelisks to see but what I found interesting was the different religions who were represented here. Firstly there are the Egyptian Gods, then in the 14th century a mosque was built over the temple and a piece of the old mosque is still visible today and in fact has been restored after a recent fire. The mosque is known as the Mosque of Abou El-Hagag. Then during the “Christian era” the inner section of the temple was converted into a church. Those walls contain “graffiti” which put my Bible School Koine Greek to the test.
I think one of my favourite parts of this magnificent temple was the Hypostyle Hall. It has four rows of eight columns each leading into the temples main sections. There is something inspiring about seeing the columns which feel like they go on forever.
Luxor as a whole did not disappoint and I am so glad we made this trip. But it was almost 20:00 and Meg and I were fading fast. We both just wanted food and our beds oh and a shower cause it was crazy hot!!!
|Part of the mosque|