History Embalmed

Aswan Dam

Travel Guide
The Travel Guide to the Aswan Dam highlights the most important places to visit in this area of Egypt and its significance to the history of Egypt together with Ancient Egyptian facts and information about the Aswan Dam.

Location of the Aswan Dam
Our Egypt travel guide differentiates between the sites of Upper and Lower Egypt. Ancient Egypt originally consisted of two parts which were called Upper and Lower Egypt. The Aswan Dam is located in Upper Egypt. Upper Egypt was the valley area in the South and Lower Egypt was the delta area in the North. Upper and Lower Egypt each had their own governments and rulers. These two parts Egypt were eventually united in 3118BC. Plan your Tour of Egypt around the most important and ancient sites of Upper and Lower Egypt, including the Aswan Dam, using our travel guide.

The Cataract at the Aswan Dam
The granite barrier of the cataract at Aswan marked the natural Southern frontier of Egypt where the River Nile flows north through Egypt until it reaches the Mediterranean Sea. The word  Cataract means a waterfall or where the flow of a river changes dramatically.

It comes from the Greek word meaning "downrush" or the Latin "cataract" meaning a waterfall, a floodgate or a portcullis. The cataract at Aswan, with its waterfalls, rocks and torrents, made it impossible for boats to navigate. All river traffic stopped at this point and the treasures and goods from Nubia including gold and its valuable trade routes to the Sudanhad to be carried by caravan across the barren Nubian Desert.

Places to Visit and tour in Aswan - The Aswan High Dam, Temple of Isis & the Rock Temples of Ramses II and Queen Nefertari
The most famous places to visit in Aswan are as follows:

  • The Aswan Dam High Dam
  • Temple of Isis
  • Rock temples of Ramses II and his wife, Queen Nefertari

The Aswan Dams
There are two dams across the River Nile at Aswan . The older Aswan Dam or Aswan Low Dam and the newer Aswan High Dam. The objective of the dams was to prevent the flooding of the River Nile, generate electricity and provide water for agriculture. The British began construction of the first dam in 1899 and it was completed in 1902. Due to potential  flooding the height of the dam was raised in two phases, 19071912 and 19291933. In 1946 the danger of flooding caused the decision to be made to build a second dam, 4 miles up river. The project was eventually started in 1960 and was funded by Russia. The Aswan High Dam was completed in 1970.

Aswan Dam - Moving the Temple of Isis from Philae and the Rock Temple of Abu Simbel
The Aswan High Dam project threatened the Temples at Philae and Abu Simbel and the tomb of Nefertari which would have been submerged under water. The United Nations organisation (UNESCO) undertook the massive task of relocating these great Ancient Egyptian Monuments and financing the project. The Temple of Isis and other important buildings on the island of Philae were transported over a system of steel rails to the island of Agilkia. The fabulous rock temples of Abu Simbel dedicated to the Pharaoh Ramses II and his wife Queen Nefertari were brought 180 metres inland to an artificially built rock which was 64 metres higher than the original. The massive rock temple was cut into pieces weighing 30 tons and reassembled in its new location.For more facts and information about Abu Simbel please click the following link:

Abu Simbel

Aswan Dam
Each section of this Egyptian website addresses all topics and provides interesting facts and information about the Golden Age of Egypt. The Sitemap provides full details of all of the information and facts provided about the fascinating subject of Egypt, the Ancient Egyptians and of the Pharaoh Tutankhamun, King Tut.

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