Luxor, Egypt is the largest open-air museum in the world. Ancient tombs and temples were scattered along the east and west banks of the Nile. In this article, you will learn how to plan a visit to Luxor. Discover what to do in Luxor, how to plan your time, how to get around, where to stay, and more.
INTERESTING FACTS ABOUT LUXOR
Luxor was the ancient city of Thebes. From 1570 to 1069 a. C., Thebes was the capital of Egypt. It has become an important center of worship of Amun. The period from 1353 BC to 1336 BC. C., it was the largest city in the world with a population of 80,000. So the Nile divides Luxor into two parts, the west bank, and the west bank.
The east bank of Luxor is the city of Luxor. This is where most Egyptians live and work, and where you will find most hotels and restaurants. There are several notable places to visit on this side of the river, two of which (Temple of Karnak and Temple of Luxor) are two of Egypt’s most spectacular places.
The west bank of Luxor is where the ancient Egyptians buried the dead. Every night, the sun sets on the west bank of the Jordan River, creating a necropolis surrounded by tombs and temples, including the famous Valley of the Kings.
BEST THINGS TO DO IN LUXOR
This list is organized by geographic location. Start with the East Bank site. So there are only four of them. Then cross the Nile to the west bank and a long list of its archaeological treasures.
EAST BANK OF LUXOR
On the eastern bank of the Nile, there are four major attractions. So the Temples of Karnak and Luxor are wonderful and worth a few hours. For those who want to deepen the history of Egypt, add to the to-do list of the Luxor and Mummy Museums.
KARNAK TEMPLE COMPLEX
The Karnak Temple is the second largest group of temples in the world (Angkor Wat in Cambodia is the largest). Over 2000, since 2000 a. C., temples, monuments, and buildings have been added to the complex. About 30 pharaohs have added something to the Karnak Temple complex.
Karnak Temple has four main sections: Amunla District, Mut Temple, Montu District, and Amenhotep IV Temple. Amendola envelopes are open to the public and you can visit the Mut Temple with a special ticket. The Karnak Temple is the second most visited place in Egypt, just behind the Pyramids of Giza.
Undoubtedly, this is one of the best things to do with Luxor. For photos of the Karnak Temple, see the article in the Complete Guide to the East Bank. Visits to the Karnak Temple also include the Karnak Open Air Museum.
The museum contains blocks and shrines reconstructed from other parts of the Karnak Temple complex. You can see the white chapel of Senuslet, the red chapel of Hatshepsut, the Calcite Shrine of Amenhotep II, the statue of Goddess Sekmet, and numerous blocks covered with intricate sculptures.
The Luxor Temple looks like a small version of the Karnak Temple, but it had a different purpose than many of the temples found in and around Luxor. This temple is not dedicated to any particular god or pharaoh. Instead, a place where many of the ancient Egyptian kings were crowned was possible. This temple was built in 1400 BC. C., mainly by Amenhotep III and Ramses II.
Opened in 1975, the museum houses relics found in the Luxor region and from the tomb of King Tutankhamen. A visit here usually takes about an hour.
This is a small and somewhat interesting museum about the mummification process. Not only mummified people but also mummified cats, birds, and crocodiles can be seen. A visit here usually takes 30 minutes.
WEST BANK OF LUXOR
The list of things to do on the West Bank is very long. The Valley of the Kings and the Temple of Hatshepsut are at the top of the list of many visitors, but this side of the Nile is literally a treasure chest with magnificent tombs and temples.
VALLEY OF THE KINGS
A visit to the Valley of the Kings is not only one of the best places to visit in Luxor, but also one of the best places to visit in Egypt.
Valley of the Kings is the royal cemetery of the Pharaohs of the 18, 19, and 20 dynasties (New Kingdom of Egypt). Famous kings of this era include Tutankhamun, Ramses II, Thutmose III, Seti I, as well as powerful aristocrats and Pharaoh’s wives and children.
VALLEY OF THE QUEENS
The Queen’s Valley was a pharaoh’s women’s graveyard. The tombs displayed here are small, with major exceptions to the size of the Valley of the Kings tombs. Queen Nefertari’s tomb is one of the most beautiful tombs to visit in Egypt.
The level of detail is amazing and the colors are more vibrant than we have seen in many Egyptian tombs, temples, and pyramids. If you want to know what the tomb looks like 3000 years ago, you need to include Queen Nefertari’s tomb in the list.
MORTUARY TEMPLE OF QUEEN HATSHEPSUT
This temple has three terraces and is located on the cliffs of Deir el-Bahri, which makes it look very different from many other temples in Egypt. It was dedicated to Queen Hatshepsut, one of the most powerful female rulers of ancient Egypt.
COLOSSI OF MEMNON
The two statues of Amenhotep III appear eastward in the direction of the Nile. These two statues welcome visitors arriving from Luxor on the west bank. You can jump from the parking lot to take pictures or walk to the statue for a closer look.
The famous Colossi of Memnon are all that remains of the funerary temple of the great King Amonphis the third, father of Ikhanaton, and grandfather of King Tutankhamun.
These statues that must have been at the entrance of the temple are 20 meters high.
MORTUARY TEMPLE OF RAMESSES III AT MEDINET HABU
This large group of temples was dedicated to Ramses III. It has several courtyards, pillars, and porticos, with headings depicting the defeat of sailors during Ramses III’s reign.
DEIR EL-MEDINA (VALLEY OF THE ARTISANS)
The craftsmen who worked on the Valley of the King’s tombs lived here in the old village of Deir el-Medina. A tomb was built here for the best workers.
Like the Valley of the Kings, these tombs are much smaller and less decorated than the Valley of the Kings.
TOMBS OF THE NOBLES
There are many tombs to visit in the aristocratic tombs. Our guide recommended the tombs of Sennofer and Rekhmire, two of the best tombs of the aristocrats.
Ramesseum is a morgue dedicated to the great Ramses II. At one point, a large statue of Ramses II stood about 20 meters high. But it has fallen and is now in some large pieces on the ground.
TEMPLE OF SETI I
This temple was started by Seti I and is dedicated to Amenle. After the death of Seti I, Ramses II completed the temple.
HOWARD CARTER HOUSE
Howard Carter is a British archaeologist who discovered the tomb of King Tutankhamun in November 1922. He lived in a house on the west bank of Luxor, outside the Valley of the Kings.
Visiting this house is like going back 100 years. All Howard Carter furniture is intact, and his camera, personal belongings, and photographs remain intact. Behind the house is a replica of King Tutankhamun’s tomb.
HOT AIR BALLOON RIDE
For unforgettable views of the West Bank sunrise from Luxor, you can take a hot air balloon flight. Expect a very early start to the day (pick up times from your hotel may vary between 3 am and 4:30 am), but it’s worth it for aerial views of the tombs and temples.
The temple of Amun – Ra
In Luxor, all that remains of its glorious past is the temple that the ancient Egyptians built for the glory of the god Amun-Ra. The temple is 260 meters long built mainly by 2 pharaohs, the first was Amon-Ophis third and the second was Ramses the great and the temple was attached to the temple of Karnak with a long stone.
Falluca Ride – Sail In The Nile At Night
Falluja is basically a fully man-controlled sailboat. A walk-in Falluca is the best thing to do in Luxor at night. One can experience the sunset and the stars during a walk-in Falluca at night. The view is just amazing and can leave you mesmerized. So, visit Banana Island by taking a felucca ride.
Luxor is famous for different items like perfumes, carpets, spices, alabaster, and many more things. Also, don’t forget to buy the Anubis keychains and magnets as a souvenir. Try to do your shopping in government-approved tourist stores, as they are a guarantee of quality and price.
The price may be a bit higher for the products in Egypt as they are made by local artisans. But it is worth the price paid.
Enjoy a Horse Carriage Tour in Luxor
As you travel by horse-drawn carriage in Luxor, you will traverse the fabric of time and space and witness the history that passes before your eyes as you move, displaying the divine beauty and glorious scenery that elevate your mind and spirit to the current height where it will. Do you feel the warmth of the city that surrounds you with grace, wonder, and charm?