(Karnak, two miles downstream from Luxor, takes time to explore, it is open from 7 am, to 5 pm admission is 50 usd )
known as Ipet-isu—or “most select of places, construction Began Around 1600 BCE with Numerous Incarnations over the centuries. The precincts cover about 40acres, enough ruins in this one area to match those of almost any other whole country .it was the supreme manifestation of ancient’s power and riches.
The greatest sanctuary of worship in history that includes several temples among which is the temple of Theban triad (Amon –Mut – khunso), The temple area is a vast open-air museum, Karnak consists in essence of the same elements as are usually found in a state temple, pylon, colonnade court hypostyle hall, vestibule, shrines and courtyards, and colonnades, and even subsidiary shrines, structures were added by each king who came to the throne.
Entry to Karnak is through an extended avenue of ram-headed sphinxes, personification of solar God Amon–Ra (Amun–Ra, or Amen)the temple begins with an avenue of ram-headed Sphinxes on each side symbolizing god Amun, built to protect The Temple, then the first and second pylon, The first pylon opens onto a wide court which invites the visitor, in the second pylon the vestibule of Horemoheb , finished by Ramses II and cased by ptolemis II and Ix.
The second pylon opens onto the Hypostyle hall (102mby53m)erected by Seti I with additional decorations by Ramesses II the hall contains 134 columns, the 12 flanking the processional way higher (23m) to accommodate clerestory windows, some of the sandstone grids of which are still in position the remaining 122 columns have papyrus –bud capitals and are set each side in nine rows of seven columns each.
Then the third pylon built by Amenhotep III, also where there is the obelisk of Thutmosis I it is currently 19m high and around 310 tons in weighing, continue to the east on the main axis, the fourth and fifth pylons were constructed by Tuthmosis I and together with a narrow, once pillared area between them constitute the oldest part of the temple still remaining, this inner temple area received several later additions, including the two, rose granite obelisks of Hatshepsut one of which still stands on the northern side, the other lies shattered to the south.
the sixth pylon of Tuthmosis III called Amun secure of prestige, although much damaged, but it contains historical texts including a geographical list of the king’s conquests also directly beyond the vestibule is the granite sanctuary of phlip Arrhidaeus, the passage around which continues the texts of thumsis III from the vestibule, the king is shown offering Amun RA and accounts are given of the years 23 and 25 of his reign, then the huge hall of ceremonies which dates back to the reign of Tuthmosis III .
The seventh pylon built by Tuthmosis III, is decorated with usual victory scenes with the names of conquered districts and the king killing the enemies before Amun, Then the eighth pylon Was raised by Hatshepsut but cartouches have been altered, the name of Amun was erased by Akhenaten and replaced by Seti I who added his Cartouch. seti and Tuthmosis are seen on the reliefs instead of Hatshepsut.
There is a little of interest in the courtyard, Horemoheb built the ninth pylon (much ruined ) and its interest lies in the fact that he reused many of talatat (stone blocks)from the five early temples of Akhneten , deliberately destroyed by Horemohb, Horbemohb also built the tenth pylon, we can watch scenes of the victorious king.
At the end of the tour, one reaches the sacred lake which lies outside the main hall, The Sacred Lake, which goes back to the time of Tuthmosis III. It is 200m by117 m and fed by underground channels from the Nile and so follows the fluctuation in height the river, in ancient times the lake was used for certain ceremonies and sacred boats would sail on it. It was also home to the sacred geese of Amun, Near the Sacred Lake, there is a scarab statue of a scarab dates back to king Amenhotep III. which was used for purification, The Ancient Egyptians called the scarab, Khebry, and it was the symbol of the Sun God. Today the Sacred Lake surrounded by restaurants and souvenir stands
You have to attend the sound and light spectacle Show in Karnak this is interesting show narrates in words, light and music, the history of karnak temple in Arabic , English , frensh , germen , Italian , Spanish and Japanese, Experience Tours To Karnak And Luxor Temples, East and West Bank Tours in Luxor while you are in Luxor City .