Luxor is a city full of magic; wherever you go you will be surrounded by a part of history. Luxor east and west banks have lots of temples and tourist attractions, getting tourist attention all over the world.
Luxor is located 655 km south of Cairo, Egypt. Where the Nile River passes through, surrounded by the ancient attractions along the east bank and the west bank of the River. Both sides have many historical sites and attractions, each showing a different part of ancient history.
You can visit the Karnak temple and Luxor temple and museum in the east bank of the Nile. While in the west bank, you can find Valley of the Kings, Hatshepsut temple and more.
Aside from exploring ancient pharaonic history and sightseeing, you will find different activities in Luxor that may interest you, like a Hot Air balloon ride. You can learn more about this exciting trip in the “Luxor hot air balloon rides 45 Minutes experience”.
You can choose to book a Nile cruise tour from Luxor to Aswan or vice versa. However, in my humble opinion, the best way to enjoy Luxor to the maximum is to book a hotel. Search for a trustworthy tourism company, they offer many tours covering most of Luxor city. They can provide you with a private guide, or you can join a tourist group on a guided tour. It mostly depends on the price you want to pay, if you are a budget traveller it’s better to choose the group tours. And the best thing is that they will pick you from your hotel to the most famous attractions.
Luxor east and west banks
Let us start our journey, in the largest open-air monument museum and one of the most famous archaeological sites in Egypt. Start your trip early in the morning, to have enough time to see the ancient treasures in a good light.
Luxor west bank
Visiting Luxor west bank is an experience of its own, and you may need more than a whole day to explore the Thebes Necropolis (Theban Necropolis), which the area is famous for the area.
This necropolis occupies a large area of the west bank of Luxor, as the ancient Egyptians used to bury their beloved in the west where they though the sun dies every day.
Thebes Necropolis has 3 main sites: Mortuary temples, Royal Necropolis and another necropolis.
The Mortuary Temples was made to memorialize the Pharaoh under whom they were built and used by the king’s cult after death. The most famous of those Temples is Mortuary temple of Hatshepsut and the Mortuary Temple of Amenhotep III where Colossi of Memnon exists.
The Royal Necropolis is divided into two main areas; Valley of the Kings and the Valley of the Queens.
The Valley of Queens is where they used to bury Pharaoh’s wives and children. The most recognized tomb there is Queen Nefertari’s’ tomb, where the walls are decorated with colourful scenes.
In the last necropolis, you can explore the Tombs of the Nobles and the Workmen’s Tombs. These two sites are not as famous as the others, yet if you want to go deeper in exploring the ancient history necropolis, you have to pay it a visit.
Mortuary temple of Hatshepsut
The temple is the most significant of the royal temples built back then, it’s larger and has more details, in addition to a long entrance ad large stone ramps.
The walls of the temple are decorated with paintings describing the Queen Commercial trips to Punt, hunting fish and birds, the construction of 2 obelisks and much more.
You will feel mesmerized in front of this great monument, and how this Queen managed to do all that she did in an age where men ruled.
Valley of the Kings
You can spend hours in the Valley of the Kings, exploring just a couple of the 63 tombs. Most of the tombs were robbed, only a few kept intact. The tombs used to be full of treasures believed to be needed in the afterlife.
Make sure to wear comfortable shoes and light clothes, as you will spend hours walking and wandering around to explore the place.
The most famous and fascinating tomb there is the tomb of Tutankhamun, it was discovered in 1922 almost intact. Most of the treasures there were well-preserved in addition to the Golden Mask of Tutankhamun. which was moved to the Egyptian Museum.
On a side note, the English Egyptologist Nicholas Reeves suggests that this mask was made originally for Queen Nefertiti, as the “Ankhkheperure mery-Neferkheperure” was engraved on it meaning Ankhkheperure beloved of Akhenaten. Nefertiti was Akhenaten’s chief queen, and she used the royal name Ankhkheperure.
Luxor East bank
Luxor East bank is famous for the Karnak Temple and Luxor temple, you will just need 5 to 6 hours to visit both temples. The two temples were connected by the amazing “Avenue of Sphinxes”, although now some of the sphinxes are lost or damaged, their pedestal exists.
The gigantic Karnak Temple Complex covers about 100 hectares (1 Square Kilometer) and consists of a number of temples, pylons and chapels.
The Temple glory can’t be described, you have to see to feel the magic in it. Behind every inch, there is a story and a king who spent years in developing the construction of the temple.
The temple is also known as the Southern Sanctuary, it was used mainly during the annual Opet celebrations when the ancient Egyptians transferred statues of Amun, Mut and Khonsu from Karnak through the Avenue of Sphinxes.
The temple is lit by night in a magnificent scene, you can enjoy watching the light and shadows dancing on the reliefs and colonnades.
Luxor east and west banks have more to discover than just the famous attractions. If you have more time, make sure to visit every inch of the Land of Legends and the city of the 100 gates.
If you choose to fulfil your dream and go on the trip of your dreams, we recommend that you check these tours: Luxor day trip to West Bank, Guided Day Tour to Luxor East Bank, and 3 day trip to Luxor from Cairo.