Located 672 kilometers south of the capital city of Cairo, Luxor was once the capital of Ancient Egypt. Today, Luxor is known for its many ancient ruins and monuments, which provide a fascinating insight into the lives of the people who once lived there. Furthermore, Luxor is considered to be one of the world's largest open-air museums.
With so much to see and do in Luxor, it can be hard to know where to start. To help you plan your trip, below are what we consider to be the top things to see and do while in Luxor!
Traveler Tip: The best way to reach Luxor is by taking a flight from Cairo, which will get you to Luxor in under an hour.
1 - Valley of the Kings
The Valley of the Kings is a one-of-a-kind UNESCO World Heritage Site and home to over 63 royal tombs, including the burial site of the prominent King Tutankhamun! Furthermore, the Valley of the Kings features some of ancient Egypt's most stunning architecture and artwork. During your visit to the Valley of the Kings, you will have the opportunity to explore the tombs of some of the most famous pharaohs in Egyptian history.
If there are two tombs you can't miss out on, they are the Tomb of King Tutankamun and the Tomb of Ramses VI, one most beautiful tombs in the valley!
2 - The Temple of Karnak
Built over a span of 1,000 years by pharaohs from the Middle Kingdom to the New Kingdom period, the Temple of Karnak is the largest temple complex in Egypt. The temple is a sight to behold with its massive columns and hieroglyph-covered walls.
The Temple of Karnak was dedicated to the god Amun-Ra and was used as a place of worship and pilgrimage. It was also where Pharaohs would celebrate their victories and make offerings to the gods. The temples and other buildings at Karnak are incredibly well preserved, providing insight into the ancient Egyptians' religious beliefs and practices.
3 - Sail Down the Nile River
The Nile River is one of the longest rivers in the world, stretching over 4,000 miles from its source in Ethiopia to its delta in Egypt. The river has been used for irrigation and transportation for centuries and is still a vital economic resource for various countries.
During your visit to Luxor, you can't miss sailing down the Nile River on a felucca! A felucca is a traditional Egyptian sailboat used on the Nile River for centuries. Cruising down the river on a felucca is a great way to take in the sights and sounds of Luxor while getting away from the hustle and bustle of city life!
4 - The Luxor Museum
The Luxor Museum is one of the most impressive museums in Egypt. The museum houses many artifacts from Ancient Egypt, including some from Tutankhamun's tomb, which was too large to move to the Cairo Museum. Also, the museum has several interactive exhibits, making it a great place to learn about ancient Egyptian culture. Last and my favorite, the museum also has a Mummification Gallery with real mummies on display!
5 - Luxor Bazaar
The Luxor bazaar is one of Luxors most lively landmarks. The sprawling bazaar dates back to the 1960's and is still a thriving center of commerce. Furthermore, the bazaar is home to numerous of shops and stalls selling everything from spices to jewelry. The narrow alleyways and crowded stalls can be overwhelming for first-time visitors, but it is all part of the bazaar experience.
Also, haggling is expected, and it is considered rude to accept the first offer. However, there are also many fixed-price shops where you can find quality souvenirs without haggling. Whether you're looking for souvenirs, spices, or want to soak up the atmosphere, the Luxor bazaar is a must-visit destination while in Luxor!
6 - Hot Air Balloon Over the Valley of the Kings
If you have ever dreamed of riding on a hot air balloon, this is your chance! Many companies offer hot air balloon rides that will take you over the Valley of the Kings in the early morning hours as you watch the sunrise upstream of the Nile River.
You can easily book your hot air balloon experience online (www.viator.com) for an incredibly affordable price!
In summary, Luxor is a fantastic city with so much history and culture to offer all travelers. With its massive temples, royal tombs, felucca rides down the Nile River, and bustling markets, there's something for everyone in Luxor! Whether you're looking to explore ancient history or relax by sailing down the Nile, add Luxor to your travel list – you won't regret it!
Have you ever been to Luxor? What are your favorite things to do in this ancient city? Let us know in the comments below!