While you are on a paseo through the city of Madrid this summer, why not stop by the famous Templo de Debod and really examine this archeological treasure straight from ancient Egypt! Pharaoh Ptolemy IV Philopator began its construction in 200 BC in Debod, Nubia, next to the River Nile to worship the god Amun.
Fast forward to the 20th Century: Between 1960 and 1970 the Egyptian government built the Aswan High Dam across the Nile and in so doing endangered the nearby Temples of Abu Simbel, venerable relics of ancient human civilization, and understandably a UNESCO World Heritage Site.
Concerned about the threat of flooding, UNESCO made an international appeal to save the temples. Spain answered the plea. In gratitude, Egypt gifted the Temple of Debod to the Spanish people in 1968. The temple was transported to Madrid slab by ancient slab. It was opened to the public in 1972.
The Madrileño location and the setting of the Temple are ideal, especially at sunset when it is dramatically silhouetted by the setting sun. The light reflects on the pond as you stand towards the western sky, and the whole experience is evocative of the mysteries of the Egyptian Pharaohs and pyramids.
You can stroll along the rose-lined path and stop for refreshments at outdoor kiosks with a table or two to enjoy your evening to the fullest. Be sure to bring your camera!
It’s a Ministerio de Turismo’s prized attraction and an archeological treasure for the native Spaniards — well-worth visiting in the warm and lazy days of summer!
Templo de Debod
Calle Ferraz, 1 (Behind Plaza España)
Featured image (Templo de Debod)/Raul Carrillo Garrido, CC BY-SA2.0 via Flickr
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