This well-preserved 26th-dynasty temple was almost completely buried under farmland until it was discovered and excavated by a team from the Metropolitan Museum of Art in 1909. At the time of writing, it was still undergoing restoration, but a friendly smile and a small tip were sufficient to gain enough access to appreciate it. The temple actually sits in the middle of a much bigger site but is by far the most interesting location to visit. Stop to examine the Roman gate as you approach the temple -- the inscriptions there have proven to be a fruitful source of information on the oasis during the 1st-century A.D. Just past that is a gate decorated by Darius I. It is an extremely rare example of work done for the Persian king in Egypt. A line of sphinxes then ushers you into a colonnade and ultimately to the sanctuary. As you look around, watch for the signed graffiti left behind by 19th-century explorers such as Drovetti, Houghton, and Rohlfs.
- © Frommer's 2013
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