• Date With The Mummies 6.9: Astounding Aswan

    by  • 23 February, 2013 • Art & Architecture, Travel • 2 Comments

    After a grueling 14-hour butt-numbing overnight train ride from Cairo, finally, we arrived in Aswan. We were picked up from the train station and were brought to our “home” for the next few days, M/S La Boheme. Aswan is our starting point to our cruise along the Nile River. Although we were very overwhelmed of the idea of doing this cruise thing, we were a bit disappointed after learning that we were actually upgraded to a five-star suite had we arrived earlier. Boo, sleeper train!!

    Anyway, after a freshening up, we headed to our first destination: High Dam. This was built to control the devastating Nile floods. The dam’s construction made a lot of noise because (1) the nutrients that make the valley fertile throughout the old times will be retained in Lake Nasser, and (2) a lot of Nubian temples and monuments will drown from the flood. The second issue was raised by UNESCO, thus the relocation of a few ancient structures like the Abu Simbel Temple and the Temple of Philae.

    Aswan High Dam

    Aswan High Dam

    Aswan High Dam

    We then hopped on a boat that brought us to an island, to which the Temple of Isis (now) stands.

    Temple of Isis (Philae Temple)

     

    This was my first encounter with a legit ancient Egyptian temple (not counting the pyramids here, they’re more of a mausoleum than a temple). The capitals, the hieroglyphs, the symbols of the unification of Upper and Lower Egypt, the works! Felt like I was in a Nat Geo documentary!

    Temple of Isis (Philae Temple)

     

    I love these gorgeous capital designs!

     

    Temple of Isis (Philae Temple)

     

    Temple of Isis (Philae Temple)

    Temple of Isis (Philae Temple)

    This Coptic cross vandals were evidences that the temple was used for Christian services.

    Temple of Isis (Philae Temple)

     

    Temple of Isis (Philae Temple)

    The small yet beautiful Temple of Hathor stands in a few distance.

    Temple of Hathor, Philae

    To better see what’s around, we hired a felucca, a traditional sailing boat, that cruised us along the river from which we had a quick glimpse of everything else Aswan.

    Felucca ride along the Nile River

    Felucca ride along the Nile River

    We passed by a few interesting spots we’d like to check out if only we have extra time. There’s the Qubbet el-Hawwa, the Aswan Botanic Garden, among others.

    Qubbet el-Hawwa

    Aswan Botanical Garden

    Felucca ride along the Nile River

    After sunset, we didn’t call it a day yet. When we finished dinner, we returned to the Temple of Isis for a light and sounds show. It’s much different from the one we previously had in Cairo. Here, we were on a “walking tour” around the complex with the lights and sounds as our guide. It’s a good experience, not to mention a hair-raising-kind-of-there-might-be-a-ghost-over-there one.

    Temple of Isis (Philae Temple)

    Lights and Sounds Show at Temple of Isis (Philae Temple)

    About

    I am Jane, born and raised in chaotic and historic Manila and now based in the ambitious emirate of Dubai. I love to write about my travel stories and Arabian adventure. I'm a huge fan of history, arts and architecture. And I love to capture nice photographs, too.

    http://www.janesarabia.com

    2 Responses to Date With The Mummies 6.9: Astounding Aswan

    1. Pingback: Date With The Mummies 7.9: Temples of Abu Simbel and Kom Ombo | The Desert Life

    2. 21 August, 2014 at 12:57 AM

      What’s up, I read your new stuff regularly. Your story-telling style is awesome, keep doing what you’re doing!

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