Aswan is a city located in southern Egypt, and it is known for its rich history, vibrant culture, and stunning landscapes. While Aswan is not as bustling as some of Egypt’s larger cities, it has its unique charm, especially at night.
One of the most iconic sights in Aswan at night is the High Dam. The High Dam is an engineering marvel built across the Nile River to control flooding and generate hydroelectric power. At night, the dam is often illuminated with lights, creating a beautiful spectacle against the dark sky.
Another famous attraction in Aswan is the Philae Temple, dedicated to the goddess Isis. When lit at night, the Egypt temples take on a magical ambiance, and visitors can enjoy a sound and light show that narrates the history of the temple and the goddess Isis.
Unique 7 Things To Do in Aswan at Night
Aswan, with its rich history and scenic beauty, offers a variety of activities for visitors to enjoy at night. Here are some things you can do in Aswan after the sun sets:
1- Attend the Sound and Light Show at Philae Temple in Aswan
Attending the Sound and Light Show at Philae Temple in Aswan is a popular and enchanting experience for visitors. The show combines history, storytelling, and dramatic lighting to bring the ancient temple to life after dark. Here’s what you can generally expect if you attend the Sound and Light Show at Philae Temple:
- Narration of History: The show typically begins with a narration that recounts the history of the Philae Temple, its significance, and the myths associated with the goddess Isis, to whom the temple is dedicated. The commentary is often available in multiple languages to accommodate international visitors.
- Dramatic Lighting: As the narration unfolds, the temple is illuminated with carefully designed lighting effects. Light and shadows enhance the temple’s architectural details, creating a visually stunning and magical atmosphere.
- Soundtrack and Music: The show accompanies a soundtrack or music that complements the narration and adds to the overall ambiance. Combining the illuminated temple, storytelling, and music creates a captivating sensory experience.
- Multimedia Effects: Some Sound and Light Shows incorporate multimedia effects such as laser lights, projections, and other visual enhancements to make the storytelling more engaging and immersive.
- Nighttime Setting: Since the Sound and Light Show takes place after sunset, you’ll have the opportunity to experience the temple in a different light. The nighttime setting adds an extra layer of mystique to the ancient site.
- Cultural and Educational Experience: Beyond the entertainment value, the Sound and Light Show offers a cultural and educational experience. It provides insights into the history of the temple and the ancient Egyptian civilization, making it a great activity for history enthusiasts.
2- Take A Boat to the Romantic Philae Temple At Night
Taking a boat to the Philae Temple at night is a wonderful and romantic experience, offering a unique perspective of this ancient site. Here’s a guide on how you might plan and enjoy a boat trip to the Philae Temple in Aswan at night:
Choose the Right Boat:
- 1- Felucca: Consider taking a traditional felucca, a wooden sailing boat with a large, triangular sail. Feluccas are known for their charm and tranquility. While they may not have engines, the gentle sailing experience is part of the appeal.
- 2- Motorboat: If you prefer a faster mode of transportation, you can opt for a motorboat, which is more modern and quicker than a felucca.
Plan Your Timing: The best time to embark on your boat trip is in the evening, just as the sun sets. This allows you to witness the changing colors of the sky and the Nile River, creating a romantic atmosphere.
Departure Point: Depending on your location, you can depart from the Aswan Corniche or other points along the Nile. The boat ride to Philae Temple usually takes around 15-20 minutes.
Enjoy the Sunset: If possible, time your boat trip to coincide with the sunset. The view of the sun setting over the Nile River can be breathtaking and adds to the romantic ambiance.
Arrival at Philae Temple: As you approach the Philae Temple, you’ll likely see the illuminated structure against the darkening sky. The lights make the temple look even more magical at night.
Explore the Temple: Disembark and explore the Philae Temple grounds once you arrive. Walking around the temple at night, with the play of lights on the ancient stones, can be a truly enchanting experience.
Sound and Light Show: This is an opportune time if you haven’t attended the Sound and Light Show at Philae Temple yet. The show adds a layer of storytelling and visual appeal to the temple’s surroundings.
Return Boat Ride: After enjoying the temple and the show, take a boat back to your starting point. The return trip may offer a different perspective, especially if the temple is beautifully lit from the water.
3- Felucca Cruises in Aswan At Night
A nighttime felucca cruise along the Nile River in Aswan is a captivating experience that combines tradition, tranquility, and enchanting views. These traditional wooden sailing boats, adorned with large triangular sails, offer a unique journey through southern Egypt’s historical and picturesque landscapes. As the sun sets, the calm waters of the Nile create a magical ambiance, reflecting the moonlight and city lights along the riverbanks.
The illuminated landmarks, including the Aswan High Dam and the mausoleum of Aga Khan, add to the mesmerizing cityscape. Under the clear night sky, away from city lights, passengers can indulge in stargazing, appreciating the celestial wonders above.
Some felucca cruises provide entertainment with traditional Egyptian music and the option for a dinner on the Nile, enhancing the cultural experience. Whether you prefer the romantic atmosphere of a moonlit cruise or the panoramic daytime views, a felucca excursion in Aswan promises an unforgettable journey through Egypt’s rich history and natural beauty.
4- Take A Walk Along the Corniche of Aswan At Night
Taking a stroll along the Corniche of Aswan at night is a delightful experience that immerses you in the enchanting ambiance of this historic city. The Corniche is a picturesque promenade that runs along the banks of the Nile River, offering stunning views of the water and the surrounding landscapes. The temperature becomes more pleasant as the sun sets, creating the perfect atmosphere for a leisurely evening walk.
The city lights illuminate the Corniche, casting a warm glow on the charming streets, cafes, and shops that line the waterfront. The sounds of the Nile and the occasional boat passing by add to the serene atmosphere. The Aswan High Dam, illuminated in the distance, becomes a captivating focal point along the night skyline.
Whether you choose to enjoy the company of locals and fellow travelers at the cafes or simply revel in the peaceful ambiance, a nighttime walk along the Corniche provides a wonderful opportunity to absorb the beauty and culture of Aswan while experiencing the timeless charm of the Nile riverside.
5- Sound and light Shows in Abu Simbel
The Sound and Light Shows at Abu Simbel are captivating nighttime events that enhance the grandeur of the iconic temples dedicated to Ramses II and his queen Nefertari. Abu Simbel, located in southern Egypt near the border with Sudan, is renowned for its massive rock-cut temples, and the Sound and Light Shows offer a unique way to experience the history and splendor of these ancient structures.
During the Sound and Light Show, the temples are illuminated with colorful lights, creating a dramatic and visually stunning backdrop against the night sky. The show is accompanied by a narrative that tells the history of Abu Simbel and the pharaohs and the significance of these temples in ancient Egyptian civilization. The narration is usually provided in multiple languages to accommodate a diverse audience.
Here are some key points about the Sound and Light Show at Abu Simbel:
- Temple Illumination: The Abu Simbel Temples, built during the reign of Pharaoh Ramses II, are famous for their colossal statues and intricate carvings. The temples are bathed in lights during the Sound and Light Show, showcasing their grandeur and detailing.
- Narration: The show usually includes a narration that provides historical and cultural insights into the construction of the temples, the life of Ramses II, and the relocation of the temples in the 1960s to save them from submersion in Lake Nasser.
- Multilingual Commentary: The commentary during the Sound and Light Show is often presented in multiple languages to accommodate a diverse audience.
- Magical Atmosphere: The combination of the illuminated temples, the storytelling, and the ambient music creates a magical and atmospheric experience, enhancing the appreciation of Abu Simbel’s historical and architectural significance.
- Evening Timing: The Sound and Light Show typically occurs in the evening, after sunset. This timing allows visitors to enjoy the temples in a different light and temperature, avoiding the heat of the day.
- Ticket Information: Visitors must purchase separate tickets for the Sound and Light Show. It’s advisable to check the availability of tickets, show timings, and any specific requirements in advance.
- Photography: While flash photography may not be allowed during the show, capturing the illuminated temples against the night sky can still result in stunning photos.
6- Go Shopping in Aswan At Night
Aswan offers a unique and vibrant shopping experience to buy Egypt souvenirs, and exploring the markets at night can be a delightful way to immerse yourself in the local culture. Here are some places you might consider for shopping in Aswan at night:
- Aswan Souk: Aswan Souk is a bustling market where you can find a variety of goods, including spices, jewelry, textiles, and traditional handicrafts. At night, the market may take on a different atmosphere with colorful lights and the energy of local vendors.
- Nubian Village Market: If you’re interested in Nubian crafts and artifacts, consider visiting a Nubian Village Market. These markets often feature handmade products such as pottery, baskets, textiles, and jewelry. Some Nubian villages may have evening markets or shops open at night.
- Gold Market: Aswan is known for its gold markets, where you can find intricately designed jewelry. While some shops close earlier in the evening, others may stay open, especially during tourist seasons. Negotiating prices is common in these markets.
- Spice Market: Aswan’s spice market is a sensory delight. Here, you can find a variety of aromatic spices, herbs, and teas. The vibrant colors and fragrances make for a unique shopping experience. Some spice shops may remain open at night.
- Handicraft Shops along the Corniche: Along the Corniche (the road along the Nile), you’ll find various shops selling traditional Egyptian handicrafts and souvenirs. These shops often have an inviting atmosphere, and you can enjoy strolling along the riverside while browsing.
- Night Bazaar Events: Occasionally, special night bazaar events or markets may be organized for tourists and locals. These events may feature live music, cultural performances, and a variety of stalls selling goods. Check with local tourism offices or your accommodation for information on any upcoming night bazaars.
- Shopping at Hotels: Some larger hotels in Aswan have their own shopping arcades that may stay open in the evening. These shops often offer a selection of local crafts, souvenirs, and clothing.
7- Visit the Nubian Village At Night
Visiting a Nubian Village at night promises a uniquely immersive experience into the vibrant culture along the Nile River. Engaging in a local tour or hiring a guide facilitates an exploration of the Nubian community’s colorful houses and rich traditions. Many tours offer the chance to indulge in a traditional Nubian dinner, allowing visitors to savor authentic local flavors prepared by Nubian families. The nighttime atmosphere often comes alive with Nubian music and dance rhythms, providing a festive backdrop to the visit. Away from the urban lights, Nubian villages offer an excellent opportunity for stargazing, with the tranquil setting along the Nile River enhancing the peaceful ambiance. Exploring local crafts and possibly purchasing handmade souvenirs adds to the cultural experience, as does capturing the visually striking colors of the painted houses through photography. It’s essential to respect local customs, seek permission for photographs, and confirm transportation arrangements to ensure a safe and enjoyable visit to the Nubian Village at night.
Is it safe to walk around Aswan at night?
Aswan is generally considered a safe destination for travelers, and walking around the city at night is often safe for tourists. However, as with any travel destination, taking common-sense precautions is essential to ensure your safety.
While Aswan is generally safe, it’s crucial to stay vigilant and use common sense, just as you would in any unfamiliar city. Also, conditions may change, so checking for updated travel advisories or information before your visit is a good idea. If you have specific concerns or questions, your hotel staff or local authorities can provide assistance and guidance.