Lies atop an ancient city, Luxor is a modern ancient city. The city has a sheer wealth of temples and tombs and is often known as the ‘World’s greatest open-air Museum’. This city of Egypt
is perfect for a few days vacationing.
Best Time to Visit
The best time to the cheapest airfares to Luxor
is from March to April and between October and November. During this time of the year, the temperature of the city is pleasant.
Top 5 Attractions in Luxor
- Luxor Temple:Built over 2,000 years ago, Temple of Karnak is dedicated to the Theban triad of Amun, Mut, and Khonsu. It is one of the most beautiful and stunning monuments in Luxor. This monument was not built under a unified plan but to represent the activity of various successive rulers of Egypt, who added their part to make this great national sanctuary the adorning one.
One must need at least three hours to make sense of the whole complex, but if you don’t have enough time, then you can opt for a tour offered.
- Ras Um Sid Beach and Coral Reefs: Built by Amenhotep III, Ramses II, and Tutankhamun, and other pharaohs over hundred years ago, Luxor Temple is one of the most significant and religious centers in Egypt. The vast complex of the temple includes the colossal Great Colonnade Hall with 28 twenty-one-foot-high columns. The hall is almost 61 meters long and decorated by Tutankhamun. One of the halls of the temple there is a granite shrine of Alexander the Great. The most evident feature of the temple is a giant colonnade of 14 pillars which is 52 feet high. Later, Ramses II constructed an outer court, decorated with his colossal statue between the pillars of a double colonnade, and a lofty pylon.
The temple went under a transformation into a church and then in the Islamic period, the Mosque of Abu el-Haggag was built inside the complex grounds which was dedicated to a revered holy man.
- Luxor Museum: It is one of the best museums in Egypt that holds a beautiful collection from the local area that tells the story of ancient Thebes from the old kingdom. The most highlighted possessions of the museum are the two Royal Mummies of Ahmose I and Ramses I in the ground floor. The upper floor of the museum exhibits silver bowls, amulets, grave and tomb of furnishings. Votive tablets are running across the center of the floor space. It is a perfect place to visit for history lovers.
- Tombs of the Nobles: This place is not much popular but includes much-preserved instances of tomb paintings. The Tomb of the Nobles has around 400 tombs of different dignitaries dating back the 6th century dynasty. The paintings in the tomb show the daily life of the Egyptians. In particular, the Tomb of Rekhmire, Tomb of Benia, Tomb of Sennofer, Tomb of Menna, and Tomb of Nakht are some of the popular places that house some of Egypt’s most realistic and dynamic paintings. Out of all these, the Tomb of Rekhmire and Tomb of Sennofer has incredibly detailed paintings.
- Valley of the Queens:Also known Biban el-Sultanat, the Valley of the Queens is the place where wives of Pharaohs were buried in ancient times. Most of the tombs in the valley belong to the 19th and 20th dynasties. Many tombs here unfinished and without decoration and very few are finished and decorated with paintings on stucco.
Only four tombs here are open for public, out of which only one is the famed-Tomb of Queen Nefertari. It is regarded as the finest of the West Bank’s glut of tombs. The chambers and walls of the tomb are covered with gleaming and highly detailed color scenes. The tomb of Queen Titi and the Tomb of Khaemwaset contain some of the interesting preserved scenes. Luxor is known as the city of Amun and shows up that it had a deeply religious nature. The city with all its monument it is declared as the UNESCO World Heritage site in the year 1979. Luxor is a good city to discover ancient Egypt.
Shopping and Nightlife
There are no glamorous shops and fancy malls in the city, but there are a lot of street shopping options. Egyptian cotton, Papyrus illustrations, alabaster vases, and other items from mouldings, alabaster factories, and carvings of Pharaohs, queens and gods, leather, glass scent bottles, silver, gold, and perfumes, you can buy anything you want. Some of the best places to shop include Habiba, Caravanserai, and Every for two Euros’.
Luxor is a conservative city and generally sleeps early. But there are a few places where you can enjoy drinking. At West Bank, there is no real bar and mostly drinking is done at restaurants.
At East Bank, the night is busy without tourism. There is no specific bar or club, even if you are into dancing or mild music.
How to Get Around
Tour bikes and buses are the most convenient way to get around the city. It helps to bypass the transit headaches like traffic, complicated route maps, and congested parking lots. While booking the tour keep in mind that the fares depends based on the duration of the tour and the sites visited.
Most people get around the city on bicycles. You can easily rent one at a variety of bike shops on the West and East Bank. Some of the shops offer daily rentals and some charges on an hourly basis. To ensure good rates, it is recommended to negotiate and check the brakes, tire pressure, and bike lock.
Also known as service taxis, Minibuses are a popular way to get around Luxor. But minibus has limited seating available and due to lack of route maps, it is difficult to determine the stops. Each ride will cost around a dollar per head.
Walking is another cheapest way to get around the city but comes at a price.