The ancient city of Thebes thrived during the Middle Kingdom and the New Kingdom thousands of years ago, taking prominence as Egypt’s capital.
The height of Thebes occurred between 1500 and 1070 B.C. Today, visitors can see the magnificent remains of this ancient city’s temples, palaces, and necropolises.
Karnak, one of the largest religious complexes in the world, was built in Thebes during this time, along with the beautiful Luxor Temple that is still used today.
The necropolises are unlike any other, with the Valley of the Kings and the Valley of the Queens holding ancient secrets from long ago.
The huge Karnak complex is considered to be among the biggest religious complexes ever built at almost a mile long and half a mile wide. Karnak was the main area for religious activities in ancient Thebes with different structures that honored four separate gods. The monuments are huge, including 90-foot tall obelisk towers. Karnak connects to Luxor Temple by a road that is 1.9 miles in length with sphinxes overlooking everyone.
Luxor Temple was originally built around 1500-1200 B.C. and was added on to by other ancient Egyptian rulers throughout the years. Worshippers used Luxor temple as a way to give dedication to Amun, the god of the city of Thebes. Amun was seen as the god of fertility, and this temple was used in the yearly Opet Festival. Today, a mosque that was added on during the 11th century is still used for worship.
Valley of the Kings
The Valley of the Kings was the burial grounds for the royal members in Thebes between 1550 to 1070 B.C. The tombs were elaborately decorated and filled with many items so that the pharaoh would be prepared for the next life. The famous tomb of Tutankhamun is located here, which is one of the best-preserved tombs in the Valley of the Kings that avoided any looting before discovery.
Valley of the Queens
The Valley of the Queens is located nearby in the cliffs, home to about 90 long-ago queens and other members of royalty that lived and died during the New Kingdom from 1550 to 1070 B.C. Many of the tombs in the valley of the queens was also looted by grave robbers, with only a couple of tombs that remained preserved through thousands of years.
3 sites in this World Heritage
- Temple of Karnak
- Temple of Luxor
- Ancient Thebes Necropolis