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Abu Simbel

Abu Simbel

1. Stepping inside

2. Temple of Hathor

3. Saved in 1964


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Saved in 1964

Abu Simbel

The process of salvaging the Temple of Abu Simbel by moving it 210 metres away and 65 metres up took about 4 years, starting in 1964. The job must have been just as much a sight for those who could experience it, as the temple by itself. As a matter of fact, the media attention the salvaging got, is one of the main reasons for the fame and popularity of the monument today.
Archaeological and engineering teams of Egypt, Italy, Germany, Sweden and France started at first with stabilizing the brittle sandstone structures with synthetic resin. Then it was cut in blocks of up to 30 tonnes by handsaw. But as the Nasser Lake started to rise, a coffer dam was put up, protecting the monument and the workers.
A new hill was built behind and over the temple, but hollow, now containing an air conditioning plant. It can be entered by anyone brave enough to crush the illusion of total genuineness the temples give away from any other angle.
So how much did it cost? In mid-60's US dollars, about 40,000,000. Who paid it? You and me and anyone coming out here, both the stiff entrance fee and the apparently unnecessary Visa fee to Egypt is still being used to pay back for the huge job.
Abu Simbel

How David Roberts found it in the late 1830's.

By Tore Kjeilen