Top Aswan Things To Do
Nestled along the timeless Nile River, Aswan beckons adventurers with a captivating blend of ancient charm and modern allure. As a Southern Egyptian city immersed in a rich tapestry of history and natural beauty. Aswan invites you to uncover its unique array of activities. Join us as we reveal an assortment of “Aswan things to do,” promising an exceptional adventure that seamlessly weaves together cultural immersion, historical exploration, and the enchanting landscapes that define this captivating destination.
This city’s appeal extends beyond its historical significance, permeating the very essence of its streets. Within the labyrinth of Aswan, the echoes of bygone eras harmonize with the vibrant rhythm of contemporary life. Architectural wonders, steeped in the city’s storied past, coexist seamlessly with lively markets and charming cafes. The warm conversations of the locals, creating a captivating fusion of antiquity and modernity.
Egypt Best Vacations invites you to an exploration of “Aswan things to do” that transcends the ordinary, where each activity serves as a portal to the city’s rich heritage.
Aswan Things to do:
1- Philae Temple
Philae Temple is always rated number one thing of the top Aswan things to do. Philae Temple or the Temple of Isis at Philae Island in Aswan is one of the most beautiful temples in Egypt. It is known as the “Pearl of Egypt”. The temple is located on an island, so it requires a short boat ride. The boat is taken from the Shallal boatyard south of Aswan, where you can also buy tickets to the temple.
The name Philae is derived from the ancient name of the island ‘pilak’ or ‘philak’ which means “remote place” or the “end”. According to the myth of Isis and Osiris, the heart of Osiris was buried on Philae. While his left leg was buried at the nearby island of Bigah.
Bigah Island was viewed by the ancient Egyptians as the source of the Nile. Bigah was the first tip of land to appear out of the primeval waters. It was so sacred that only the priesthood had access to it. At Philae Island, the popular cult of Isis developed. The image of Isis was ferried over to Bigah every ten days so that the goddess could be reunited symbolically with her husband Osiris.
Related tour: Tour to Philae Temple, High Dam and Unfinished Obelisk
2. Abu Simbel Temples
The temples of Abu Simbel are considered among the most celebrated achievements of ancient Egypt. The two temples were cut in the cliffs about 310 Km south of Aswan. The Great Temple was built for Ramses II (1279-1213 BC), while the Small Temple was built for his beloved wife, Queen Nefertari.
It is a strange fact that Abu Simbel, one of the most famous monuments of Egypt and one of the great Aswan things to do, was almost totally unknown even as late as the 19th century. On 23 March 1813 Johann Ludwig Burckhardt, a Swiss historian, accompanied by the local guide to visit the temple of Nefertari. He saw a part of the head of one of the colossal statues of the façade when the temple was totally covered with sand. Just four years later, on 1 August 1817, Giovanni Battista Belzoni managed to remove the sand and discover the entrance. Because of the rising water of Aswan High Dam, the temples had to be saved and rescued in a magnificent world rescue operation of temples in Lower Nubia.
Related tour: Tour to Abu Simbel temples by road
3. The Nubian Museum
Nestled along the Nile’s tranquil shores, the Nubian Museum in Aswan unveils the captivating story of the Nubian people. More than just an exhibition space, this cultural haven offers a concise yet immersive journey through the diverse heritage of a resilient community.
Discover centuries of Nubian culture through thoughtfully curated exhibits, showcasing both ancient artifacts and contemporary expressions. The museum itself is a visual delight, seamlessly blending traditional Nubian elements with earthy tones, creating an immersive atmosphere.
Explore a treasure trove of artifacts, from intricate jewelry to ancient hieroglyphics, offering insights into the daily life and customs of the Nubian people. Go beyond history as the Nubian Museum celebrates the contemporary spirit of the community through modern art installations, providing a glimpse into the evolving cultural identity of the Nubian people.
More than a museum, it serves as a bridge connecting visitors with the living heritage of the Nubian people, fostering engagement and understanding.
Related tour: Tour to the Nubian Museum & Kalabsha Temple
4. Kalabsha Temple
Nestled on the shores of Lake Nasser, Kalabsha Temple emerges as a timeless marvel, preserving the grace of ancient Egyptian architecture amidst the tranquility of Nubia. Built during the Roman era and later relocated, Kalabsha Temple stands as a testament to the enduring craftsmanship of ancient architects. Colossal sandstone structures adorned with intricate carvings beckon visitors to witness the grandeur of a bygone era.
Step into a world of precision and skill as detailed reliefs depict gods, pharaohs, and celestial scenes. Kalabsha Temple is a visual symphony, showcasing the architectural opulence that defined ancient Egyptian temples. Dedicated to the Nubian god Mandulis, the temple carries the echoes of ancient worship. Explore its sacred halls and courtyards, connecting with the spiritual significance that permeates the ancient stones.
Surrounded by the serene waters of Lake Nasser and framed by the Nubian desert, Kalabsha Temple offers a breathtaking setting. The blend of ancient ruins against the tranquil landscape creates a captivating panorama for nature lovers and history enthusiasts alike.
Related tour: Tour to Kalabsha Temple & Nubian Museum
5. The Unfinished Obelisk
Among the remains of the great ancient civilizations, the obelisks of Egypt are undoubtedly more often seen and better known than any other monuments. Obelisks are impressive not only for their lofty size and graceful form but for their high polish and beautiful decoration. One cannot but marvel at the skill of the ancient Egyptians in producing such wonders with relatively primitive techniques.
Some of the smaller obelisks and fragments of larger ones are familiar to the numerous visitors of museums in various countries. Larger ones that are still on their original sites are admired by the millions of people who visit Egypt each year.
Still, others are seen by the crowds who pass through London, Paris, New York, Istanbul, and especially Rome, where there are more obelisks than in any other place, even Egypt, the original home of the obelisks in the world.
Related tour: Tour to Philae Temple & the Unfinished Obelisk