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How To Spend Two Days in Abu Simbel Egypt

Abu Simbel, a small village in southern Egypt, is home to one of the most impressive archaeological sites in the country – the temples of Ramses II and Nefertari. With its stunning architecture and rich history, Abu Simbel is a must-visit destination for anyone travelling through Egypt. In this article, we share with you how to spend 2 days in Abu Simbel, from exploring the temple in the evening and again at sunrise.

Check out our 8, 15 and 21 day Egyptian itineraries here

Abu Simbel at sunrise
Abu Simbel at Sunrise

Our trip to Abu Simbel was by car from where we spent 2 days in Aswan.

The 280k  journey by car takes 3.30 hours.  You can fly from Aswan to Abu Simbel in 48 minutes.  We had allowed 2 full days to visit the Ramses II temple in Abu Simbel for the night show and for the sunrise tour.

All our journeys apart from our Nour El Nil Dahabiya cruise were with Egyptian Edu Travel. We had booked our private driver and Egyptologist with them for Cairo, Alexandria, Luxor and Aswan.

We were so impressed with their services that we have brought them on board as partners of To Travel Too. This means that you will get a discount if you mention our promo code TTT2024. Please contact: [email protected] for quotes.

Halfway stop from Aswan to Abu Simbel Sarab Cafe
Halfway stop from Aswan to Abu Simbel Sarab Cafe

The journey was safe travelling from Aswan to Abu Simbel in both directions with various checkpoints along the way. You stop halfway for a toilet break and you can purchase food or drinks too.

Desert along the road from Aswan to Abu Simbel
Desert along the road from Aswan to Abu Simbel

We both found it interesting travelling through the desert in both directions. Some may say it is boring, yes, at times, but also fascinating.

Do you need an e-sim for Egypt? We used Holafly and we got excellent coverage even in the middle of the desert on our way to Abu Simbel.  For more details click here.

This post may contain affiliate links. Please see our disclosure for more information. As an Amazon Associate, we earn from qualifying purchases (if applicable).

Seti Abu Simbel Hotel
Seti Abu Simbel Hotel

On arrival we drove straight to our hotel – Seti Abu Simbel – the best place to stay in Abu Simbel. We were upgraded to the Presidential Suite, it was quiet during our visit due to the conflict in the region. The resort is perfect, a lovely pool, accommodations and views across Lake Nassar to Sudan. The restaurant was excellent and provided a good menu during our stay.

Ramses II Temple was only a five-minute drive away, just perfect for our Light and Sound Evening Show and for the very early start for the sunrise tour.

To book Seti Abul Simbel click here

Facts about Abu Simbel

  1.  Ramses II temple and the Temple of Hathor were carved out of rock in the 13th century BC.
  2. Ramses II temple stands at 33m high
  3.  The 4 statues of Ramses II at the entrance to the temple show him wearing the double crown of upper and Lower Egypt. The 2nd statue of Ramses II was destroyed during an earthquake.
  4.  Both temples were relocated by UNESCO during the 196os as they had to make way for the High Aswan Dam
  5. The Temple is dedicated to the gods Amon-Ra, Ra-Harakhti, and Ptah.
  6.  They were discovered in 1813 by Jean-Louis Burckhardt a Swiss explorer.
  7.  Reliefs inside the Temple Hall of Ramses II show the Battle of the Qadesh
  8.  The Temple of Hathor was built of Ramses II for his wife Nefertari. It is much smaller than Ramses II.
  9.  Two solar alignments one on February 22 celebrates the cultivation season and the 2nd solar alignment on October 22 celebrates the flood season. Head to the Sanctuary on these two days at sunrise and you will see the rays highlight the four statues of Rameses II, Ptah, Amon-Ra, and Ra-Harakhti
  10. Opening times: 7 am to 4 pm (in summer 7 am to 5 pm)
  11. You walk from the main entrance down hill which takes around 5 minutes. When exiting you walk past the Temple of Hathor and make your way back to the main entrance.  If mobility is an issue you can hire a buggy.

You can purchase your entry tickets here to visit during the day:

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Abu Simbel Sound and Light Show

Abu Simbel light and sound show
Abu Simbel light and sound show

If you are visiting Abu Simbel we highly recommend booking the Abu Simbel Sound and Light Show.

Abu Simbel light and sound show
Abu Simbel light and sound show

Depending on when you visit there are different show times in different languages for the light and sound show. Duration is 30 minutes.

To purchase tickets for the Sound and Light Show click here

Sunrise Visit to Abu Simbel

Inner Sanctuary Ramses II, Amun-Ra, Ptah, Ra-Harakhty
Inner Sanctuary Ramses II, Amun-Ra, Ptah, Ra-Harakhty

Opening hours are from 6 am to 5 pm.

Arriving at 6 am before the busloads of tourists arrive is the perfect time to visit Abu Simbel. After learning the story at last night’s Abu Simbel Light & Sound Show we entered Ramses II temple with its magnificent statues on either side of you.

Temple of Hathor
Temple of Hathor
Inside the Temple of Hathor
Inside the Temple of Hathor

The carvings and the hieroglyphs were very impressive in both temples.

How Do You Get To Abu Simbel

The airport at Abu Simbel is 4.5 km away from the centre of Abu Simbel

Flying from Cairo to Abu Simbel is with Egypt Air. All flights go via Aswan.

The only direct flights are from Aswan to Abu Simbel.

For flight schedules and ticket prices click here

Abu Simbel Tours

By private car with driver

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By tour bus Aswan to Abu Simbel
In the early morning, you will be picked up from a hotel in Aswan, then you will be transferred by an air-conditioned bus (with a group of people) to the Abu Simbel temple Upon arrival, enjoy a visit to the Abu Simbel Temple, as the Abu Simbel Temple is among the most magnificent monuments in Egypt. The temple is famous for its four huge seated statues that adorn its façade. You will have enough time to explore the temple At the end of your wonderful day, you will be transferred again to your hotel
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Private Day Trip From Luxor to Abu Simbel

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Hotels in Abu Simbel

Pool area of Seti Abu Simbel Hotel
Pool area of Seti Abu Simbel Hotel

Our favourite and recommended hotel in Abu Simbel is the Seti Abu Simbel. You can book here, we recommend booking in advance as it is very popular and can be booked out well in advance.

For more hotels and guest houses in Abu Simbel click here

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Visa for Egypt

You can purchase a visa on arrival if you carry certain passports or can you have it organised for you here.



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2 days in Abu Simbel


2 days in Abu Simbel


2 days in Abu Simbel


We hope you have enjoyed our article – how to spend 2 days in Abu Simbel.  After spending a relaxing two days we recommend that this is the way to visit Abu Simbel if you have the time. We feel doing Abu Simbel during the day can be rushed, whereas planning to do the Sound and Light Show and then visit at sunrise gives you the complete experience.


Thanks for stopping by and welcome to To Travel Too – Australia’s top Baby Boomer lifestyle and travel blog, with an international worldwide audience in mind, run by the married couple, freelance writers and full-time travellers Jane and Duncan Dempster-Smith. Come with us as we explore the world. Our two mantras that we live by are 'chase time not money' and 'age is no barrier when it comes to travel'.

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