Serabit el Khadim
Hathor Temple and Turquoise Mines
Sinai used to be called the “country of Turquoise”. Since early times, Ancient Egyptians used to come to Sinai and search for its minerals and precious stones. By 3500 BC, the great turquoise veins of Serabit el Khadim were discovered and extraction had begun.
Hathor was one of the most popular and important deities in Ancient Egypt. Her cult is related to fertility and nature, and frequently she is depicted as a cow goddess. She was, among others, the goddess protector in the desert regions and a patron of miners. No wonder she was the one to have a temple in this faraway region. The temple of Serabit el Khadim os one of the few known pharaonic monuments in the Sinai.
The scattered ruins are not as impressive as the ones in the Nile Valley, though the surrounding landscape is breathtaking. The trek to arrive to it will make you feel as an explorer from the nineteen twenties.
The Site is relatively inaccessible, and the trip must be made by jeep.
The local tribes are responsible for protecting the site from looting and are open to assisting tourists and can be hired as guides