Abu Simbel, Egypt
أبو سمبل


Legendary Abu Simbel (Pharaoh Ramesses II, 13th century BC), Egypt — December 16, 1996


Abu Simbel looking right, Egypt — December 16, 1996

Abu Simbel is magnificent not only in shear size, but because it was literally transported to safety from the rising waters of the newly created Lake Nassar. This colossal undertaking began in 1963 when the original site was surveyed and dismantled piece by piece. The entire monument (including the mountain!) was then reconstructed on ground 64 meters higher. Abu Simbel was not only rebuilt to scale, but its absolute positioning to the cosmos was ensured so that the sun would still illuminate the great hall on the solstice. By 1968, tourists once again flocked this ancient wonder. 18 years later I arrived and was dumbfounded by what I saw. To make matters even more interesting, the mountain that supports Abu Simbel is hollow. You simply go behind the site and you can enter the steel-line chamber that holds up the entire structure. Here, the contrast becomes unreal as you transform from pharaonic times to the modern. All in all, Abu Simbel was one of the more unbelievable things I saw on world tour; 5-stars.


Abu Simbel looking left with the now famous graffiti, Egypt — December 16, 1996


Posing in front of Abu Simbel, Egypt — December 16, 1996


Camel Caravan, the Road from Abu Simbel, Egypt — December 16, 1996


The Great Hall inside Abu Simbel, Egypt — December 16, 1996


The Temple of Hathor right of Abu Simbel was built by Ramesses II (c.1279-1213 BCE)


Hieroglyphics inside Abu Simbel, Egypt — December 16, 1996


The legendary Abu Simbel, Egypt — December 16, 1996


Opposite Abu Simbel is human-made Lake Nasser بحيرة ناصر, Egypt — December 16, 1996


Road to nowhere coming from Abu Simbel, Egypt — December 16, 1996


Brian at Abu Simbel, Egypt — December 16, 1996