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Without question the time Anne and I spent in Luxor and the surrounding area was a highlight of this magnificent trip. There we had the opportunity to view some of the world's most ancient and valuable treasures, the chance to walk amongst the ruins and, more importantly, the chance to reach out and touch these beautiful treasures. I can't tell you how much more meaningful it is to experience such things first hand. You just can't compare it to reading about them in a book or watching television documentary. Actually walking amongst the ruins puts it all into proper perspective.
From Luxor we would board our tour bus for the journey upriver to Aswan, home of the magnificent dam built by the Egyptians and Russians just a few years earlier. On this journey we would get a good perspective of what modern-day life is like in Egypt. The Nile, without question, brings life to Egypt. Where the Nile is there are lush, green pastures, and where it is not there is only hot, dry sand. Life throughout Egypt is centered around this life-giving river and it is beautiful. Modern day Egyptians are as dependent today on beast of burden like the camel and donkey to do everyday chores. On the way to Aswan we passed a large herd of camel being readied for auction (right).
Camels for auction
Edfu Temple wall
Temple wall at Edfu

On our drive to Aswan we would stop at several ancient ruins along the way. The first would be the great temple at Edfu. Edfu is a small town along the Nile that would probably have been forgotten long ago had it not been the home of this temple, perhaps the best preserved in all of Egypt. The temple at Edfu ranks second behind Karnak simply because of it's immense size, approximately 230 by 400 feet with a pylon measuring over 100 feet high.

The temple is dedicated to the god Horus and at its entrance stand two large black granite statues of Horus who is depicted as a falcon. The elaborate carvings on the walls of the temple are beautiful and as if carved just yesterday. Inside the temple was a small sanctuary where our tour guide related that the priests of the day offered the best parts of the animals to the gods. He then asked us to guess what the best part of the animal was that was offered to the gods. His answer was a bit surprising, but absolutely correct. He explained that the animals were burned on the altar and what was offered to the gods was the smell of the burning flesh. Think about it. Even the worst cut of meat can smell absolutely delicious while cooking it.

Enjoy a few pictures of Edfu.

Edfu Temple side wall
Side wall of the Edfu Temple

Black granite statue of Horus

The temple at Edfu is magnificent, but it lacks the many elaborate statues that are present at Karnak. But the temple wall carvings are beautiful. This was one of my favorite temples, probably because it was dedicated to one of my favorite Egyptian gods, Horus.

Entrance pylon at Edfu
Entrance Pylon at Edfu
Carvings on the pylon at Edfu
Carvings on Pylon
Horus close up
Close-up of Horus

From Edfu we would continue our drive upriver (south) to our next stop, Kom Ombo. Kom Ombo was the ancient city of Pa-Sebek (translated to mean the "home of Sabek"), the crocodile god. Crocodiles were worshipped in pre-dynastic times and the temple at Kom Ombo is dedicated to this Egyptian god. Of note concerning this temple is its unusual style. It is actually two separate temples joined on one side. One temple is dedicated to Sebek, the crocodile god, and the second to Haroeris, Horus the Great, the solar god of war. Sabek was the god of fertility who is believed to be the creator of the world.

Enjoy these pictures of Kom Ombo.

Ruins at Kom Ombo
Ruins of Kom Ombo Temple
Sabek, the crocodile god
Sabek, the crocodile god

Crocodile at Kom Ombo
Carving of a crocodile

The temple actually contained hundreds of mummified crocodiles hidden away in different chambers.

Kom Ombo Temple
Inside the Kom Ombo Temple

Kom Ombo Temple wall
Temple wall engravings
Kom Ombo, column to Horus
A column dedicated to Horus
Continue to the next page and enjoy pictures of Aswan, Egypt.
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Egypt Introduction Page
Athens : The Acropolis at Night | The Parthenon
Rhodes: Lindos | The Acropolis at Lindos
Alexandria: Port of Alexandria | The City | Roman Ruins and Palace
Cairo: Port Said to Cairo | Sakkarah | Memphis | Life in the Nile Delta |The Great Pyramids at Giza | The Great Sphinx at Giza
Life in Cairo and the Mosque | Life in Cairo and Sadat's Memorial
Luxor: Luxor and the Temple of Luxor | Temple of Luxor (2) | Temple of Karnak | Temple of Karnak (2) | Temple of Karnak (3) | Colossi of Memnon
The Ramesseum | Deir El-Bahari | Valley of the Kings | Shopping in Luxor | Shopping in Luxor (2)
Aswan: Edfu and Kom Ombo Temples | Elephantine Island and Unfinished Obelisk | Aswan Dam | Shopping In Aswan
Israel: Arriving in Israel and Bethlehem | Jerusalem
Kusadasi and Ephesus, Turkey: Surprising Turkey, Hadrian's Temple and Marble Road | Ephesus Theater and Public Toilets

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