During the 19th Dynasty, Ramses added this courtyard surrounded with a double row of columns. This portico-courtyard is about 56 m by 50 m. The axis is slightly shifted, that is, the courtyard is not on the same axis as the pre-existing tall colonnade behind it.
The large pylon front, a kind of triumphal entrance, is about 64 m across. Two granite colossi of Ramses II on a throne (about 15 m high) frame the entrance. Originally four standing statues of Ramses II also were placed in front of the pylon. In addition, an 23 m obelisk stands at the ceremonial entrance.This obelisk's twin is in the Place de la Concorde in Paris. The pylon has four vertical indentations for the placement of flagstaffs. Inscriptions on the pylon cite Ramses II as the builder of the temple, even though he is only responsible for the pylon and the first courtyard. Bas-reliefs on the front depict scenes of military campaigns, specifically Ramses' battles with the Hittites in the fifth year of his reign.
This temple was dedicated to the thebes triad: Amon (king of Gods), Mut (his wife) and Khnum (their son, the moon God).
The temple has a more unified plan than some Egyptian temples because it was essentially the work of only three pharaohs: Amenophis III, Tutankhamen, and Ramses II. Each new addition was situated in front of the older section. It has the typical Egyptian temple features: an entrance pylon, courtyards with porticoes, a hypostyle hall and at the end of the longitudinal axis, a sacred area, with the sanctuary, a birth house, and other small rooms, not accessible to the ancient public. In ancient times a 3,5 kilometers long avenue of sphinxes connected the two temples; originally these sphinxes had ram heads (Amon's symbol) but they were replaced with human-headed sphinxes in the 30th Dynasty.
The temple is about 250 m long and about 65 m height.
The people of Luxor wanted the mosque to be left intact when the archaeologists cleared the village. The mosque still plays a large part in the local life and maintains its tradition of worship as it has done for 3,000 years.
The temple is guarded by the colossi of Ramses. Originally there were 6 statues of Ramses II here, four seated and two standing, along with two obelisks.
Two statues and one obelisk were removed, the latter now standing in the Place de la Concorde in Paris.
Luxor temple is quite well preserved having been covered in sand with the village of Luxor built on top of it. The temple excavations began in 1885 when the removal of the sand and village revealed the hidden temple.
Luxor temple is approached by an avenue of sphinxes which originally linked the temple of Luxor to that at Karnak two miles to the north.
Although not complete now, you can still glimpse part of the avenue between the modern buildings of todays Luxor.
The temple at Luxor was once the centre of the capital of ancient Thebes, which covered all of what is now Luxor and Karnak..
It was built between 1390-1352 B.C. by Amenhotep III, the 18th Dynasty “sun king”.
He built a bigger temple on the west bank of the Nile but all that remains of that temple are the two colossal guardians known as the colossi of Memnon.
The Luxor temple is 20 Egyptian pounds to enter... that is about 3.50 US, but don't think of this as an entrance fee, but rather an investment in preserving the heritage of one of the oldest civilizations in the world.
Enjoy... and just think, even if you do not like it... McDonald's is right around the corner!
Even on the 8th day of our trip to Egypt, one of the things I was truly amazed at is the craft done by people over 5000 years ago. It is unimaginable to think about how long it took the Egyptians to build all of this, but the Luxor Temple and its connection to the Temple at Karnak is truly amazing. 2.5 miles seperates the two, but they are linked together by a row of ram guardian.
Louxor temple was our first destination while arrived in Egypt. By sunset/ nightfall, the temple is just amazing, with its Avenue of Sphinxes connecting to Karnak temple, three statues of Ramses II standing right in front of the entrance, the obelisk pair of the one in the Place de la Concorde in Paris.
Here's me & my best friend, Daria.
The entrance is the pylon of Ramesses II which is flanked by two seated statues of the king, obelisk and one standing statue. The western obelisk has stood in the Concorde Square in Paris since 1836, when Mohamed Ali granted it to French after they granted him Clock Tower in Alabaster Mosque in Cairo.