Medinat Habu is a stunning yet relatively little-visited complex that comes a close second to Karnak in terms of size. Visitors can generally wander here in peace as few people make the journey out to see what nonetheless is a superb example of Pharaonic temple-building. Once the centre of Theban life the temple remained occupied for centuries after the fall of the pharaohs, and during the 20th Dynasty sheltered Thebes’ entire population from attack by the Libyans.
As late as the 9th century the temple/village was still occupied. The interior of Medinat Habu is protected by high walls inside which can be found two immense courtyards and a Hypostyle Hall. The wall carvings are amazing and many have colour still in place, fantastic representations of what the ancients achieved. They show scenes from Ramses III’s victory over the Libyans and him presenting prisoners of war to the Amun and Mut.