The city of Kom Ombo which sits along the Nile River is primarily an agricultural town, but it also draws in many tourist who are river cruising. The Temple of Kom Ombo which is a short walking distance from the river, sits on top of a small hill and is the main attraction which draws in the tourists. My friends and I were a few of those tourists who were traveling up the Nile from Aswan to Luxor, landed in Kom Ombo and then visited this ancient fascinating Egyptian temple.
We arrived to the Temple of Kom Ombo at night because our cruise departure from Aswan left later than expected. When we arrived into the city we could hear the call of prayer over the loud speaker and see the illuminated temple, as well as a small shopping area with local men who were bowing in prayer. It was an interesting and captivating site to pull up into, a bit of ancient and recent Egypt all coming together from the balcony of our ship.
Our guide from Egypt Gift Tours was already waiting for us once we docked and kindly escorted us through the shopping area and up to the temple. This was the only temple during our trip to Egypt that we visited at night and it was a fantastic site. It was not as large as the other temples, but it was beautiful and intriguing all the same.
This temple was constructed during 120-47 BC, the Ptolemaic Dynasty, with some additions during the Roman era. It was built with a very interesting vision of keeping both Sobek (Crocodile God) and Horus (Falcon God) separated due to the conflict between them. There are two separate entrances, two colonnades, two sanctuaries, two courts and two Hypostyle halls. Each god had their own temples, the south was dedicated to Sobek and the north was dedicated to Horus.
Column details and relief works of the Temple of Kom Ombo
Remains of the Temple of Kom Ombo, parts had been destroyed by erosion, earthquakes and other builders who were resourcing the stone for other projects.
The illuminated temple columns, it was a magnificent site.
Considering that half of the Temple of Kom Ombo is dedicated to Sobek, the Egyptian Crocodile God, it should come to no surprise that there is a crocodile museum on property. After we were educated on the temple, my friends and I took a quick view of the small Crocodile Museum which houses several mummified crocs. Understanding why the temple was built and the ancient peoples relationship to the crocodiles, it made sense why these animals were mummified.
If you do not have a guide with you, there are written and illustrated explanations in English throughout the museum. Descriptions that tell of the ritual and cultural history of crocodiles with the ancient people along the Nile and where the crocodile mummies were excavated from. This little museum is worth the visit as well as the Temple of Kom Ombo.
More than likely if you are visiting Aswan or Luxor for the temples, you will be hiring a private guide to take you there. It is very important that you hire an official guide in Egypt to take you to the sites, and just not someone on the sidewalk asking you if you want to take a city tour. On our trip to Aswan and Luxor, plus our cruise along the Nile River, we chose Egypt Gift Tours who I highly recommend. They had professionally coordinated us on private tours for all of our trips from Aswan to Luxor.
It’s a BIG world out there – GO explore!
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📸 All photos are taken by me and are my intellectual property – Trixie Navarre