Where We Be
|Flowering shrubs soften the austere lines of the temple
|Aswan & Philae Temple, Egypt
Philae Temple is a small temple on a beautiful
flower-filled island. Since it is surrounded by
water, the views are lovely in all directions.
Believe it or not, this temple was cut up into
large blocks and moved from its original (now
submerged) island to its current location
during construction of the Aswan High Dam.
Frankly, you can't tell the temple hasn't stood in
this spot for a millennium. The island is filled
with birdsong and flowering shrubs. The temple
is dedicated to the goddess Isis, patroness of
nature and magic. We explore it for half an hour
on our own and enjoy every minute.
Afterwards, we drive over the top of Aswan
High Dam, then continue to a vantage point
beyond it where we can see the dam itself. It is
4 km long and not as tall as we expected, but it
is very thick and pyramid-shaped in a shallow
sort of way. Lake Nasser spreads out behind
the dam (the Nile flows from south to north),
This enormous elongated lake contains huge
fish and crocodiles up to 25 feet long.
|Most Egyptian temples are in dry, dusty settings, but this island is green, flower-filled, and full of birdsong
|Best friends! These kids really wanted us to take their picture!
|We also get to watch a demonstration
of how to make paper from papyrus
|At this perfume factory in Aswan, we get to sniff frankincense and myrrh, rub sandalwood oil
onto our forearms, and sniff single flower essences like lotus, jasmine, and gardenia.
|Aswan High Dam is not all that high but it is 4 km (2.5 mi) long. On the other side of the dam is Lake Nasser, an artificial, elongated lake of enormous size.
|Partial view of Aswan's busy river port. Most tourists wish they could stay longer in Aswan -- we certainly do!
|What makes Philae Temple special is its setting on a lovely island in a lake-like part of the Nile