Holidays to Luxor bring you face-to-face with ancient Egypt – think bustling souks and neck-craning historic hotspots.
Luxor city breaks
Perched on the east bank of the River Nile, where Thebes – the ancient Egyptian capital – once stood, the city of Luxor is a mind-boggling mix of the old and the new. Throw in a cast of outgoing locals, and you’ve got a bustling city with bags of personality and monuments that come in one size only – epic.
The neck-craning sandstone walls of Luxor Temple dominate the city’s downtown area. Head a mile north, and you’ll find the Temple of Karnak. This super-sized complex is in amazingly good nick, considering it’s over 1,300 years old. Both open early in the morning, so there’s no need to bake in the midday sun as you get your ancient Egypt fix.
On the waterfront
There’s no beach in Luxor City, but the riverside walkway of Sharia al-Corniche is a top spot for watching the Nile roll by over a glass of shai – the local cuppa. And from here, you can hop aboard one of the traditional white-sailed feluccas for a cruise. Meanwhile, at night, the bars and restaurants of the east bank keep things buzzing into the small hours.
Day trips to the Necropolis
A 20-minute drive west over the river takes you to the outskirts of the ancient Necropolis. Carved into the very rock of the surrounding hills, the tombs and temples of the pharaohs pepper the area. Home to more than 60 royal resting places, the Valley of the Kings – where Tutankhamun dug in for the afterlife – is a must-see.