This is the 3rd part of the Cairo, Nile Cruise series. After Luxor and Kom Ombo we journied up river to Aswan. Aswan is home to 2 hydro-electric dams, a botanical garden (out in the river), a Nubian Village, and the Philae Temple.

Hydro-Electric Dams

First up was visiting both the Aswan Dam and the High Dam. Both generate hydro-electric power for Egypt. The Aswan Dam is The High Dam is what holds back the majority of the water, creating Lake Nasser. The High Dam was built in the 1960’s as a UNESCO project. In addition to the creation of the lake, several historical sites were moved to preserve them (otherwise they would be underwater). Lastly, there are no more crocodiles below the High Dam. Partly for human safety, and partly to keep them from going through the electric generators (not good for the crocodiles or the generators)

On our way back from the dam, we stopped to see the Lotus Flower Tower. This was a gift from Russia to celebrate the completion of the High Dam.

Philae Temple

We had to take a small boat out to the island to see the temple. This is the first temple we visited that was relocated as part of the High Dam construction project. The screened off the area, cut the temple and rock base into chunks, and moved them to a higher location. The new location was about 20-30m away.

Botanical Garden

The botanical garden is on Kitchen Island. They have trees and flowers from around the world growing there.

Nubian Village

Lastly, we visited a Nubian Village. In addition to selling hand-made crafts, and amazing smelling freshly ground spices, they keep crocodiles, in their houses (not everbody, but some). They aren’t really domestic, but you can get some good closeups if you’ve been wondering about them. They frequently also have a baby that you can hold. The hide was an interesting combination of hard bumps connected by tough but supple portions. Crocodiles are one of the oldest animals still on the planet, dating from around 60-70 million years ago.