Temple of Hathor at Dendara

02 Days Luxor, Dendara & Abydos Tour from Safaga

One of the most underrated wonders along the Nile River is the Temple of Hathor. The structure is one of Egypt’s best-preserved temples, with unique features that combine a long line of ancient cultures. During the Ptolemaic era, Egypt’s last great ancient dynasty, the site is part of a temple complex at Dendara that served as a popular worship and healing center. The multifaceted sky deity Hathor, who was either the consort or mother of the pantheon’s chief gods Horus and Ra, is honored in the temple. He is frequently depicted with a cow’s head.
The building was built over a period of 34 years, beginning in 54 BC and lasting until the time of the famous Cleopatra VII. However, texts refer to a temple at the city of Dendara, originally called Enet-t-neter or “Enet of the Goddess,” being rebuilt during the Old Kingdom that lasted between 2575 BC and 1250 BC.
The hypostyle hall, which is covered in intricate carvings and well-preserved paint, is the temple’s most vivid area.The ceiling is supported by 18 columns and is topped by large representations of Hathor’s human face with cow ears. The sistrum, a procession rattle largely associated with the goddess that was played at major celebrations, is the shape that all columns, including her representation, take. Hieroglyphics and god-like images are arranged in a complex mosaic on the ceiling and walls. Additionally, there are fourteen secretly accessible crypts within the temple, eleven of which are decorated.
The Dendara Zodiac is the site’s most compelling item. A massive bas-relief with human and animal figures depicting a night skyscape was discovered on the hall’s ceiling. The specific arrangement of the planets only occurs once every thousand years. The depiction combines astronomical theories from Egypt, Greece, and Babylon. While the original is housed at the Louvre in Paris, a replica can be found at the temple.
It was believed that Hathor would leave her temple during new year’s celebrations in ancient Egypt to visit her son or husband at the Temple of Horus in Edfu, another often-overlooked wonder.