We leave around 7am and drive south towards Safaga before turning west to cross the Red Sea Mountains and desert plateau to the Nile Valley. Wonderful desert scenery. Crossing the Nile at Qena takes us to the village of Dendara with its banana plantations, lofty palm groves & mud brick village dwellings.
The Dendara complex comprises a visitor theatre where you’ll be shown a short film explaining the role of the temple & the importance of the goddess Hathor in Egyptian mythology. We then precede to the temples precincts, through the Roman archway and before us is the magnificent façade of the Temple of Hathor. Before exploring the temple we’ll see the Roman Birth House, Coptic basilica and other remains. Wonderful raised reliefs of pharaohs, Hathor, the god Horus and other deities.
We then enter the temple itself with its awe-inspiring columned hall and ceiling covered in painted astronomical reliefs and the goddess of the sky, Nut. All the temple walls and numerous side chambers are covered in raised reliefs showing pharaoh making offerings to Hathor.
A winding staircase takes us to the roof with staggering views over the surrounding countryside. Also on the roof are two chapels dedicated to the god of the underworld, Osiris, One of the chapels holds a reproduction of the world famous Dendara Zodiac (the original is now in the Louvre, Paris).
Returning to the ground floor via another staircase we can then explore the outside grounds . the sacred lake, temple of the goddess Isis and the reliefs on the outer walls – one of which displays the famous Cleopatra and her son Caesarion.
After touring the temple we drive back to the Nile for a short river cruise (about 1 hour) and a chance to take photos of the scenery and abundant bird life.
A drive back get us to Hurghada around 6pm.
WE RECOMMEND YOU BRING A PACKED LUNCH TO EAT AFTER THE TEMPLE VISIT. WE CARRY PLENTY OF WATER
For two persons the day costs 200GBP