Luxor Temple - History and Facts | History Hit

Luxor Temple

Luxor, Luxor Governate, Egypt

The Luxor Temple is a vast sacred Ancient Egyptian site which once formed part of the city of Thebes. It is UNESCO listed.

Antara Bate

24 Jul 2021
Image Credit: Shutterstock

About Luxor Temple

The Luxor Temple in the city of Luxor, Egypt was once a sacred temple built in honour of the deity Amun.

Luxor Temple history

Constructed in the 14th century BC by Amenhotep III, the ninth pharaoh of the Eighteenth Dynasty, the Luxor Temple was part of the Ancient Egyptian city of Thebes.

The Ancient Egyptian temple complex of Luxor was founded in 1400 BC and was expanded by 18th Dynasty Pharaohs Amenhotep III and Tutankhamun, and later by Ramesses the Great, and under the Roman Empire it was used as a fortress and government building.

The Romans constructed a military fort around the temple that the Arabs later called Al Uqsur (The Fortifications), which was later corrupted to give modern Luxor its name.

The Temple was also known as the Southern Sanctuary, its main function was during the annual Opet celebrations, when the statues of Amun, Mut and Khonsu were brought from Karnak, along the Avenue of Sphinxes, and reunited here during the inundation.

In the 14th century, a mosque was built in one of the interior courts for the local sheikh Abu Al Haggag. Excavation works, begun in 1885, have cleared away the village and debris of centuries to uncover what can be seen of the temple today, but the mosque remains and has been restored after a fire.

Luxor Temple today

Today, together with the Karnak Temple and the Valley of the Kings, Luxor Temple forms part of the UNESCO World Heritage Site of “Thebes and its Necropolis”. It is incredibly well-preserved and, with its statues of Ramesses II, it is clear that several pharaohs and other leaders added to it at later stages, including Tutankhamun and later even Alexander the Great.

From its Avenue of the Sphinxes to its looming archways and giant statues, the enormous Luxor Temple is a breathtaking site, indeed it ranks among our top ten tourist attractions to visit in Egypt.

Getting to Luxor Temple

The temple of Luxor is located on the east bank of the Nile River, in Luxor city centre. It is accessible on foot, by bike, or by taxi from accommodation and other sites in Luxor.

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