The provincial town of Edfu is located about halfway between Luxor (115km away) and Aswan (105km). 65km north of Kom Ombo and 56 km south of Esna.
The site of Edfu contains the most complete and best-preserved temple in Egypt, the Ptolemaic Temple of Horus. This was constructed between 237 BC and 57 BC on top of the remains of earlier temples.
The oldest part of the temple is the section from the Festival Hall to the Sanctuary; this was begun by Ptolemy III in 237 BC and completed by his son, Ptolemy IV Philopator. The Hypostyle Hall was added by Ptolemy VII (145-116 BC) and the pylon was erected by Ptolemy IX (88-81 BC). The final touches to the temple were added under Ptolemy XII in 57 BC.
The reliefs that cover the walls, columns, and doorways of the temple constitute an extremely important source of information about ancient Egyptian religious and political thought. Some of these reliefs tell the story of Horus exacting his revenge on Seth for the murder of his father, Osiris, an event that was re-enacted annually in the temple. Other reliefs recount the stages of the temple’s construction, and provide dates for the completion of different building elements.