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Blog Diary 2007

Mid-Winter Solstice Celebration Holiday 2014

Hatshepsut temple

A fabulous week holiday in Luxor visiting many ancient sites culminating in celebrating the mid-winter solstice at the magnificent temple of Queen Hatshepsut. We will also visit the Osirion in Abydos.

15th - 22nd December:
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Sacred Egypt

Winter Solstice Trip

An 10 day trip exploring some of the most significant sacred sites of Ancient Egypt in the Upper Nile Valley

led by David Furlong and run in conjunction with Eagle Travel

Monday 14 December - Wednesday 23 December 2015

Day 1 - 14 December Fly to Luxor, check into hotel. Introduction to trip and the sights we will be seeing.
Day 2 - 15 December Early morning visit to magnificent Karnak temple dedicated to the god Amun and his consort Mut. This temple is aligned to the mid-winter sunrise and we will have the first opportunity of having a sense of this phenomenon in the 'holy of holies' in the temple. We will also visit a subsidiary temple dedicated to Ptah, Sekhmet and Nefertum that houses the powerful statue of the goddess Sekhmet and the very interesting open air museum.

In the late afternoon we will visit to Luxor Museum, with its many exquisite artefacts, including the recently discovered statues known as the "cachet" of Luxor.

Day 3 - 16 December Overland visit where we will first visit the cult temple of Seti I at Abydos, dedicated to the god Osiris. Here in this beautiful temple there are many enigmatic scenes including the famous "helicopter" hieroglyph. We will also see the strange structure at the rear of the temple known as the Osirion, which has drawn on one of its columns the "Flower of Life Symbol".

From Abydos we will travel to visit the temple of Hathor at Denderah built in Ptolemaic times. This temple has many astronomical depictions including the famous zodiac. This was one of the great healing temples of Egypt and is aligned to the stars of Ursa Major

Day 4 - 17 December Overland trip to Aswan. En route we will first visit the rock tombs of El Kab (Nekeb), which date to the 18th dynasty. On arrival in Aswan we will check into our hotel and then travel to visit to the temple of Isis on the island of Philae. This temple was saved from destruction when the Aswan dam was built. This is a beautiful Ptolemaic temple, which holds some of the last inscriptions of the ancient hieroglyphic language. En route back we will visit the ancient quarries of Aswan and the high dam.
Day 5 - 18 December Optional early morning flight to Abu Simbel to see the magnificent rock cut temples of Ramses II and his wife Nefertari. This complex was raised from the valley floor when the Aswan High Dam was erected. Transfer to Nile Cruise boat for return trip to Luxor.
Day 6 - 19 December

Sail to Kom Ombo, to visit the Ptolemaic temple dedicated to the crocodile god Sobek and to Horus. Sail to Edfu for overnight stop. There will be opportunities for sharing and discussion as we travel by boat seeing the Nile countryside.

Day 7- 20 December Early morning visit to the magnificent temple of Horus, the best preserved in all of Egypt. In the myths Horus was married to Hathor and every year the priests travelled with their cult statues of the god and goddess between the two temples of Edfu and Denderah, celebrating a "divine" marriage. We too can feel into the unification of the two parts of our being, the yin and the yang, the masculine and the feminine.
Day 8- 21 December Cruise to Luxor. Disembark after lunch and check into hotel. Afternoon free for shopping.

Evening visit to beautiful Luxor Temple, built by a succession of great kings from the 18th and 19th dynasties.

Day 9 - 22 December In order to see a solar astronomical alignment there will be an early morning visit to Deir el Bahari (Hatshepsut temple), which is one of the most magnificent temples in the whole of Egypt. We aim to arrive early to experience the alignment of the winter solstice sun, through a 'light box' into the inner sanctuary of Amun at the centre of the temple.

After this experience we will then visit the famous Valley of the Kings, with its many tombs nestled under the 'Holy Mountain' of Thebes. From the Valley of Kings we will travel a short distance to visit the mortuary temple of Seti 1 at Qurna. This small peaceful temple is aligned to the southern lunar 'standstill'. Finally after lunch we will visit the great temple of Ramses III at Medinet Habu. This temple has many beautiful carved scenes and the ceiling star map.

Day 10 - 23 December Return flight UK. 

Photos of Egypt

Luxor Temple in the evening Abydos Temple
Hatshepsut's temple in the morning light Medinet Habu temple from the air
Solstice sunrise at the Karnak temple Sphinx avenue at Karnak
Sunset over the Nile Hieroglyps from the barque shrine of Sesostris I

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For further information please write to:
David Furlong or Frida Maria Myrtles, Como Road, Malvern Worcs WR14 2TH
Tel: +44 (0)1684-569105 or +44 (0)777-978-9047
Email: David Furlong

A felucca on the Nile
Felucca on the Nile

Temple of Hathor at Denderah
Denderah Temple - dedicated to the goddess Hathor

Temple of Queen Hatshepsute
Hatshepsut's temple at Deir El Bahri

Statue of Horus
The statue of Hours from the Edfu temple

Temple of RamsesIII
Carving of Goddess Hathor from the temple of Ramses III at Medinet Habu.

Akhenaten from the Luxor Museum
King Akhenaten from the Luxor museum

Obelisk from the Karnak temple
Hatshepsut's obelisk from the Karnak temple

King Tutmosis III
King Tutmosis III from the Luxor Museum

The goddess Sekhmet from the temple of Ptah in the Karnak temple complex

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