Hatshepsut Temple | Visiting the West Bank in Luxor, Egypt

Hatshepsut Temple

When visiting Luxor one of my favourite location was Hatshepsut Temple. Hatshepsut might not be as famous as other Egyptian rulers but she was by far the most badass.

Earlier this year I was lucky enough to visit Egypt for the first time. It is a country so rich in history it was difficult to take it all in. I was able to visit Cairo, Giza, and Alexander, which I will share in a separate post. If you are interested in other locations in Luxor make sure you check out my Karnak Temple blog post.

Cleopatra might be more famous, but Hatshepsut, born a royal princess during the New Kingdom period of Ancient Egypt, was the first historically documented woman to rule the powerful empire with the complete authority traditionally only given to men.

While staying in Luxor, we hired a driver and guide through our hotel, and as part of our West Bank tour, we visited the Mortuary Temple of Hatshepsut.

Hatshepsut temple in Luxor

More than a Queen – Hatshepsut

After taking in so much history on our tour I really think they should have made movies about Hatshepsut rather than Cleopatra. In a time where only men were seen as rulers and the all powerful, Hatshepsut made sure any sculpture or drawing of her as a Queen was painted with male features in order to emphasise her authority. Really she is more than a woman, she was a King in the eyes of ancient Egyptian mean.

Hatshepsut temple columns

A temple fit for a queen – Hatshepsut Temple

Hatshepsut temple also known as Djeser-Djeseru is located on the West Bank in Luxor, Egypt. The entire temple is hand crafted from limestone and the beautiful columns and lines of this temple has been carved into the side of a dessert cliff. When you visit it looks like it was always meant to be there. It took over a decade to build and was chosen for its location in the Theban Necropolis. This region was long considered sacred to the goddess Hathor, who, among her attributes protected the dead on their journey to the great beyond. The temple’s axis was positioned to align with Hatshepsut’s Temple of Amun, the eighth pylon at Karnak across the Nile on the East Bank.

Hatshepsut temple entrance

Going on tours through Luxor was so educational for me. I learned a bit about ancient Egypt in history books, but nothing beats seeing these ruins in real life and realising the history behind them.

If you do make a visit to Luxor, I highly recommend taking a tour of this beautiful temple, but I suggest going in the early morning. The temple is in the middle of the desert with little to no shade. In the midday Egyptian Sun, it is quite a walk to the temple and the heat and sun can be very hard to walk through.

Hatshepsut temple dessert cliff
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