Your air-conditioned minivan will collect you from your hotel or Nile cruise ship in Aswan around 5am, an early start that will help you beat both the crowds and the heat at Abu Simbel, one of Egypt's most iconic sights. The scale of the two vast rock-cut temples, reflected in the tranquil waters of Lake Nasser, is awe-inspiring, from their gargantuan entrances to the huge statues that line them.
You'll reach the site around 8am, and your professional Egyptologist guide will walk you through both the Great Temple, constructed for the greater glory of its builder, Ramses the Great, and the Lesser Temple, dedicated to his wife, Queen Nefertari. You'll learn not only how the temples were built to demonstrate Egyptian control over Nubia but how they were moved, piece by piece, from their original location when the Aswan High Dam flooded the original site. You'll also discover the different gods and rituals depicted in the carvings and reliefs.
After a couple of hours exploring the temples, you'll return to the minivan for the 3-hour journey back to Aswan, arriving at your hotel or cruise ship in time for an early lunch.