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6 Most Popular Things to Do in Aswan

Aswan is one of the most beautiful locations in Egypt, but unfortunately less frequented by tourists. Located close to the southern borders of Egypt, the city was once an important strategic location for the ancient Egyptians. During the reign of the pharaohs, it was a vital garrison town. The limestone and granite collected from the local quarries were used in construction of the Great Pyramid in the Giza Necropolis.

Read More: Giza Pyramids - Feel the Grandeur of Pharos

Nowadays, the city is an ideal holiday destination for the tourists who love to travel on off beaten tracks. Stay at some of the welcoming guesthouses close to the Aswan Dam, while enjoying the beauty of the city. There are numerous things to do in Aswan, and you can do them at your own pace – without being pushed and shoved by other tourists.

Let’s check some activities you can do in Aswan.

1. Exploring the Past at the Nubian Museum

Address: Assuan, Sheyakhah Oula, Qism Aswan, Aswan Governorate, Egypt
Opening hours: 9:00 am to 9:00 pm
Tickets: EGP100 for adults, EGP50 for child – for cameras extra

Nubian Museum
Nubian Museum

One of the popular tourist attractions of Aswan, the place is home to some of the ancient relics from the Nubia history. The place is ideal for explorers who want to learn more about the history and culture of the place. Some of the oldest artifacts of the museum, dating back to 6000 BC, are kept in well-lit displays with explanatory plaques in English, and Arabic. 

2. Paying Homage to Goddess Isis at the Philae Temple

Address: Aswan First, Aswan Governorate, Egypt
Opening hours: 7.00 am to 4.00 pm (Oct-May), 7.00 am to 5.00 pm (for rest of the year)
Tickets: EGP100 for adults, EGP50 for child – for cameras extra – concessions for students

Philae Temple
Philae Temple

One of the best-preserved Ptolemaic temples in the country, visiting the Philae Temples that located on the Agilkia Island is one of the things to do in Aswan. Built in around the end of 650 B.C, the temple is dedicated to Goddess Isis. Along with her, Osiris and Horus had their dedicated temples within the complex. In the evenings, tourists can watch the Light and Sound show. Tickets for the show are available online and costs around EGP190. Located on the Philae Island, vacationers need to hire a boat to reach the landmark. Roundabout boat trip can cost around EGP120.

3. Visiting the Nubian Village

While some tourists love to visit an authentic Nubian Village, other think of it as a waste of time and often opt out. Usually, the village tour includes a boat ride to the village, exploring the huts of the locals and talking to the locals to know their culture better. Overall, if you love to know more about the local lifestyle and cultural heritage of the Nubians, then do visit the place.

Nubian Village
Nubian Village

4. Day Trip to Abu Simbel Temple

Address: Abu Simbel, Aswan Governorate, Egypt
Opening time: 5:00 am to 6:00 pm
Tickets: EGP280 for adults, EGP140 for children – student concession is available on presenting valid proof

Abu Simbel Temple
Abu Simbel Temple

Abu Simbel, around 270 km from Aswan, is one of the most ambitious rescue projects for an archaeological landmark. Funded by the UNESCO, these temples were relocated from further south of their current location due to flooding of the plains due to Aswan Dam. Usually, tourists take one hour-long flight from Aswan or book conducted tours to the venue. Usually, the flights can cost around EGP1000.

5. Visit Fekra Cultural Centre to Know More about the Cultural Heritage of Aswan

Address: Gebal Shisha, Aswan, Egypt
Opening time: 10:00 am to 8:00 pm
Tickets: Entry to the complex is free

Fekra – meaning idea or thought in Arabic – is one of the biggest cultural centers of Aswan. Close to the new High Dam, the place is overlooking the gorgeous Philae Island. Fekra Cultural Centre is known to host numerous cultural events and workshops to support the local artists. Spread in a vast area, the visit to the place is one of the must things to do in Aswan for culturally inclined tourists. 

6. Riding the Felucca on Nile

Where to board? – Port area
Cost of the ride: Around EGP1,100

Felucca on Nile
Felucca on the Nile River

Riding the feluccas on the heart of Nile, especially during the sunset, is one of the best experiences you can have on your trip to Aswan. The feluccas are the traditional sail boats, still in use, and are often boarded by the tourists. Usually, ride on feluccas can cost around EGP1, 100 for one-hour trip. But the rates might be heavily inflated, and you are expected to negotiate till you reach a favorable deal.

See also A Guide for Nile Cruise

Apart from the above-mentioned things to do in Aswan, you can go for a day trip to Kom Ombo and Edfu or visit the Aga Khan mausoleum. Overall, Aswan with its laid-back attitude is ideal for recharging the batteries after a hectic tour and sightseeing.

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