We love to show you all the sights!
There is much to discover in and around Aswan!
This most southern Egyptian city is really worth a stay.
Many cultural heritage from the time of the Pharaohs is preserved in this area.
Along with the interesting Nubian museum they provide a clear picture
of the impact of the Nubians at different times in the ancient Egyptian civilization.
Below you will find all the sights with a brief description. Click on the pictures:
The northern hills of the west bank are filled with the rock-hewn tombs of princes from the Old Kingdom to the Roman period. The 6th Dynasty tombs, some of which form linked family complexes, contain important biographical texts. Inside, the tombs are decorated with vivid wall paintings showing scenes of everyday life, hieroglyphic biographies and inscriptions telling of the noblemen's journeys into Africa.
The grave of a local saint. Qubbet al-Hawa means windy dome. It's quite a climb, but you will be rewarded with a fantastic view over the Nile Valley. We can also arrange a camel ride to this site. In 2013 and 2014 many archaeological discoveries are made in this area.
The history of the monastery of St. Simeon dates back to the 7th century, and survived long as a Christian stronghold of southern Egypt until destroyed by Saladin in 1173. While still in use it housed 300 monks, and could in addition receive up to 100 pilgrims at a time. The monastery was surrounded by a 10 metre high wall, and doubled as a fortress. Apparently, the monastery did not return to its original use after Saladin's destruction.
In November 1997, the long-awaited Nubian Museum opened in Aswan. It has been worth the wait as it displays thousands of antiquities that would have been lost under the waters of Lake Nasser had not a major international effort salavaged them during the 1960s and '70s. Also among the highlights are scenes of Nubian life demonstrated with a range of life-size displays open-air theatre. Read an extended description in the attached document.
Elephantine Island is the largest of the Aswan area islands, and one of the most ancient sites in Egypt, with artifacts dating to predynastic periods. This is probably due to its location at the first Cataract of the Nile, which provided a natural boundary between Egypt and Nubia. As an island, it was also easily defensible. In fact, the ancient town located in the southern part of the island was also a fortress through much of it's history.
This is the Mausoleum of the spiritual leader of the Ismailis, a Shi'ite sect (as were the Fatimid) based principally in India but with followers around the world. It is a very elegant pink granite structure of late 1950 origin, which also resembles the Fatimid tombs in Cairo. Members of this sect consider themselves to be the direct spiritual descendants of the Fatimid. The Mausoleum has an excellent view, including Aga Khan's white villa below.
Kitchner's Island is a botanical garden, filled with exotic plants and trees imported from all over the world. It is a perfect place to spend a lazy afternoon in the shade. The island must be reached by boat, and is located on the other side of Elephantine Island from Aswan. The Island was given to Lord Kitchner for his campaigns in the Sudan, and he moved their and created his garden, importing plants and trees from all over the world.
The Ancient Egyptians built a beautiful and magnificent Temple on this island for the Goddess Isis, but the Temple became submerged after the first Aswan dam was built in 1906, and it was not until the seventies that many nations attempted to save the Temple. All these countries, together with UNESCO, selected a suitable place, but they had to wait until the completion of the High Dam, in 1971, which would stabilize the level of the water around their chosen island.
Kalabsha Temple originally built at Kalabsha (Talmis) was moved to its present location at New Kalabsha (Chellal) in 1970, together with other monuments from Nubia, including the Kiosk of Qertassi (Kertassi). Also nearby is Beit al-Wali. It was the largest free-standing temple of Egyptian Nubia and the design of Kalabsha Temple is classical for the Ptolemaic period with pylons, courtyard, hypostyle hall and three room sanctuary.
The two temples at Abu Simbel are among the most magnificent monuments in the world, but their removal and reconstruction was an historic event in itself. When the temples (280 km from Aswan) were threatened by submersion in Lake Nasser, due to the construction of the High Dam, the Egyptian Government secured the support of UNESCO and launched a world wide appeal. During the salvage operation 1964- 1968, the temples were dismantled and raised over 60 meters up a sandstone cliff.
Only 8 km south of Kom Ombo is the camel market. Sometimes up to 2,000 camels are brought to the market, which is usually liveliest on Sundays. Most of the camels come from the Sudan in caravans up to Abu Simbel.
Located in the town of Kom-Ombo, about 28 miles north of Aswan, the Temple, dating to the Ptolemies, is built on a high dune overlooking the Nile. The actual temple was started by Ptolemy VI Philometor in the early second century BC. The Temple known as Kom Ombo is actually two temples consisting of a Temple to Sobek and a Temple of Haroeris