Cairo Top Tours
Cairo Top Tours

Latest Articles

  • Seabourn Sojourn Cruise Stops in Safaga Port

    Seabourn Sojourn Cruise Stops in Safaga Port

    The Seabourn Sojourn, the flagship vessel of Seabourn Cruise Line's ultra-luxury fleet, was built in 2008 at the T. Mariotti shipyard in Genoa, Italy. Measuring 198 metres, it can accommodate up to 450 guests in its 225 spacious all-suite staterooms.

  • Norwegian Sky Cruise Stops in Safaga Port

    Norwegian Sky Cruise Stops in Safaga Port

    Norwegian Cruise Line operates a cruise ship called the Norwegian Sky. It was constructed in 1999 and can accommodate 2,004 passengers in addition to 878 crew members. The ship has several dining establishments, lounges and bars, a spa and fitness center, swimming pools, and a number of entertainment areas.

  • Explora II Cruise Stops in Safaga Port

    Explora II Cruise Stops in Safaga Port

    Explora II, the second vessel in the Explora Journeys fleet, sets sail in 2024 to redefine luxury cruising. With 461 ocean-front suites, 9 culinary experiences, and 4 pools, this haven of sophistication and sustainability promises an unforgettable "Ocean State of Mind" journey to inspiring destinations.

  • Mein Schiff 6 Cruise Stops in Safaga Port

    Mein Schiff 6 Cruise Stops in Safaga Port

    The Mein Schiff 6 is the latest cruise ship in the renowned TUI Cruises fleet, offering passengers a luxurious and sophisticated cruise experience. At 315 metres long, this floating resort features a range of dining options, entertainment, and recreational facilities, including a spa, fitness centre, and sports amenities.

  • Mein Schiff 4 Cruise Stops in Safaga Port

    Mein Schiff 4 Cruise Stops in Safaga Port

    When the Mein Schiff 4 cruise ship docks in Safaga, Egypt, passengers are granted access to a realm of ancient wonders. Aboard this state-of-the-art vessel, guests can embark on meticulously curated shore excursions that showcase the region's most iconic landmarks, including the Giza Pyramids, the enigmatic Sphinx, and the remarkable tombs and temples of the Valley of the Kings in Luxor.

  • MS Europa Cruise Stops in Safaga Port

    MS Europa Cruise Stops in Safaga Port

    The Silver Moon, Silversea's latest flagship, is a luxury cruise ship that offers an exceptional travel experience for Venezuelans exploring Egypt. With a capacity of 596 guests and an impressive 40,700 gross tonnes, the Silver Moon maintains the small-ship intimacy and spacious all-suite accommodations that are the hallmarks of the Silversea brand.

Elephantine Island in Aswan

Information about Elephantine Island Temple in Aswan

  • 05 16, 2023

Elephantine Island in Aswan

In the religion of the ancient Egyptians, Elephantine was the home of Khnum, the ram-headed god of waterfalls, who ruled and guarded the Nile from the caves under the island. He was one of the late triad of Egyptian deities worshipped here.

The ancient town of Abu, located at the island's southern end, was once a trading and economic center. The island's name also reflects its former role in the ivory trade as caravans from the south of Egypt unloaded their goods to be transported north on the river. From this Pharaonic-era settlement, the late Khnum Temple and other partially excavated monuments spread over the rest of the island remained.

Some people think of the island's name as having any large wild mammals anywhere on it. But the reason for calling it this name is that it comes from the large gray granite rocks at its southern end, which some believe to be like a group of elephants standing in the water. The island offers a variety of Aswan attractions that make it difficult to miss on any Nile cruise from Aswan to Luxor.

The island has the fabulous Aswan Museum as well, the palm forests cover 2 villages from Nubia that usually receive tourists and stunning landscapes on the river. There is also a luxury hotel, Movenpick Aswan, located at its northern end. Elephantine Island can be approached by means of a small boat or a felucca ride on the Nile in Aswan which could be hired along the shore.

The Temples of Elephantine Island

Temples and cemeteries are located at the southern end of the island, including a sanctuary of the goddess Satet, who was the protector of Elephantine. A sanctuary of the goddess Satet was founded in the 2nd dynasty and the temple was rebuilt here during the Middle and the New Kingdom, as well as during the Ptolemaic era. 

Information about the Temple of Khnum at Esna's past

Khnum, the ram-headed god whose attributes included creation, fertility, and the annual flooding of the Nile, was worshipped in Esna, also known in antiquity as Latopolis. On his potter's wheel, Khnum was reputed to have molded humankind from clay.

The Elephantine papyri are Aramaic records of the Aramaic and Jewish communities of Elephantine, as well as documenting a 6th century B.C. Jewish community, possibly mercenary, that maintained separate temples and polytheistic beliefs, possibly coexisting with those of Khnum.

The Temple of Set
The first temple built on the island was the Temple of Satet around 3000 BC; the temple went under renovation and modifications over the next 3000 years.
The southern tip of the island, once of strategic importance and great fame, has been transformed into a major tourist attraction and a huge open-air museum with stairs and paths.

The temple of Khnum
The ruins of a temple of Khnum, the god of the battering ram associated with the first cataract of the Nile, are also found on the island. The main terrace of this temple dating back to the 30th dynasty remains as well as a monumental portal. Together with Anuket, goddess of the island of Sehel, these three gods formed the triad of the Elephantine area.

Temple of Khnum at Esna

Temple of Khnum at Esna


The Ptolemaic sanctuary of Kalabsha

Dedicated to the Nubian god Mandoli and saved from Nubia, was rebuilt at the southern end of the island. Nearby, a statue of an elephant, the heraldic emblem of the area (found during the excavations of Aswan), has been placed.


Share On Social Media:

Egypt Tours FAQ

Read top Egypt tours FAQs

A summertime Nile cruise is not something we advise. Between May and September, when temperatures often approach 40 degrees, is the warmest time of year. Between November and March is the ideal season to cruise the Nile.

This island was once the focus of worship for the ram-headed god Khnum and is the oldest inhabited area of Aswan. Offer changes to make what we display better. Examine many approaches to seeing this location. Travelers give this encounter a 96% positive rating.

Fatta, Mahshi, Saloufa, Bamia, Meshaltet, and Mulukhiyah are just a few of the Nubian delicacies that guests can savor at the Aswan Nubian Festival. Mahshi is rice, herb, and spice-stuffed vegetables, while Fatta is a hearty dish made with bread, rice, and meat. Sweetened with sugar, coconut, and ground rice, saloufa resembles a pancake and is typically served with powdered sugar or honey. Okra stew cooked in a tomato-based sauce and served over rice or bread is known as bambamia. Made with wheat flour, yeast, and salt and baked in a clay oven, meshaltet is a traditional Nubian bread. A leafy green vegetable rich in nutrients, mulukhiyah is cooked with chicken or meat coriander, and garlic.



Aswan offers numerous outdoor activities and natural attractions, including the Philae Temple, Abu Simbel Temples, Felucca Ride on the Nile, Aswan Botanical Garden, Nubian Village, and Elephantine Island. The Philae Temple is an ancient temple complex on an island in the Nile River, while the Abu Simbel Temples are located a 3-hour drive away. The Aswan Botanical Garden is a lush oasis filled with exotic plants and trees. The Nubian Village offers a glimpse into local culture and lifestyle. Elephantine Island offers a mix of history and natural beauty.

It's important to note that the Abu Simbel Temples are located about 280 kilometers (174 miles) southwest of Aswan, so traveling by road can be time-consuming and less convenient compared to taking a domestic flight. Flying allows you to make the most of your time and ensures a more comfortable journey to and from the temples.

The Elephantine Island Temple in Aswan is an important archaeological site located on Ajmal Island in the Nile River. Dating back to the Pharaonic times in Egypt, the temple was dedicated to the worship of Isis, the goddess of love and fertility.

Things to do at Elephantine Island Temple include the following:

Exploring the temple: Visitors can explore the Elephantine Island Temple and explore its magnificent architecture and unique stone carvings depicting the gods and goddesses of the ancient Egyptian civilization.

Photography: The Temple of Elephantine Island is a beautiful location for photography, where visitors can take great photos of the stone structures, statues, and inscriptions.

Guided tours: Guided tours of the Temple of Elephantine Island are usually organized to guide visitors and provide historical and cultural information about the site and its history.

Enjoy the scenery: The Elephantine Island Temple is located in a picturesque location on the banks of the Nile River, providing visitors with an opportunity to enjoy the scenic landscape and fresh air.

Enjoy the Nile pools: In the area surrounding Elephantine Island Temple, there are many restaurants and cafes that offer great views of the Nile River, and visitors can enjoy walking along the banks of the river or wandering through the beautiful gardens surrounding the temple.

The first temple belongs to the First and Second Dynasties, around 2800 BC, the second temple belongs to the beginning of the Sixth Dynasty, around 2250 BC, the third was built by Senwosret I around 1950 BC, and the fourth and last was built by Queen Hatshepsut around 1480 BC.




Cairo Top Tours Partners

Check out our partners

the oberoi