The charming city of Aswan is one of the famous winter resorts located in southern Egypt and one of the major touristic cities of the country. Being the last city in Egypt from the Southern part, Aswan has always served as an important gate to Egypt and a significant transit point for commercial caravans coming from Africa towards the land of the Nile.
Aswan has a lot to offer! The warm weather all year long, some of the most remarkable historical sites including the Temple of Philae and the Unfinished Obelisk, and the most magnificent views of the River Nile at its widest points; all these factors contributed in the unique magic of Aswan.
Aswan governorate is the southernmost area in Egypt where people live. The city is located only 215 kilometers to south of Luxor, more than 900 kilometers to the south of Cairo, and around 520 kilometers away from the Red Sea resort of Hurghada. Its distinctive location near the Equator granted the sun to be always shining in Aswan.
The name Aswan was originally derived from the word Sono in the ancient Egyptian language. This word means the large market and Aswan was at the time one of the most important centers for trading activities to and from and the Nile Valley. The Romans and the Arabs modified the name afterwards to become Aswan.
Since ancient times, the Egyptians knew how important Aswan is to protect the Southern borders of Egypt against any attacks. This is in addition to the presence of several quarries that provided stones for the construction of many temples and other establishments.
When the kings that belong to the Middle Kingdom governed Egypt, they started sending their army troops and was able to take control of Nubia, parts of Sudan, and many other areas.
During the Ptolemaic era, the Ptolemies, recognizing the importance of Aswan and its inhabitants, they rebuilt the marvelous Temple of Philae that was the cult of the worship of Isis and Osiris. The Romans also played the same role and continued their special attention to Aswan.
Around the 4th century AD, when many Egyptians started converting to Christianity, with the Roman emperors trying to get rid of Egyptian Copts, many of them resorted to Aswan and the Philae Island became an important Coptic center. The importance of Aswan even grew when the Moslems took control of Egypt as the commercial activities expanded to include towns in the Arabian Peninsula.
In contemporary times, the Egyptian government established several significant projects in Aswan. The most important among them is the High Dam that restores the water of the Nile flood and generate a portion of Egypt’s electricity.
Today, Aswan is a favorite hub for Egyptians and foreigners who enjoy their vacations in Egypt. The highlights of Aswan include the Unfinished Obelisk, the Temple of Philae, the Unfinished Obelisk, the Kitchener’s Island, the Nubian Museum, and many other attractions.