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An Egyptian Landmark | The Debod Temple in Madrid

It’s a cloudy day in Dublin (that’s pretty common here),  and I’ve been thinking quite a bit about the trip I took last year to sunny Madrid. There’s a lot there from that trip that I haven’t written about including visiting the Debod Temple.

The History

The Debod Temple or Temple of Debod is a legitimate, real Egyptian temple in the heart of Madrid, Spain. It’s the only real Egyptian temple outside of Egyptian. The Temple was originally located in the Aswan region of Egyptian and was built back in 200 BC. The Kushite king of Meroë built it as small temple for the Egyptian god Amun.

The Problem

Fast forward many years later (uh to 1960 AD) to when Egypt was building the Aswan High Dam. The reservoir was threatening to flood and damage The Abu Simbel Temples, which are some of Egypt’s greatest temples. Long story short Spain stepped up and helped Egypt moves these temples to a safe location. After Egypt was like, “hey thanks for that. Here have a temple.”

The Temple in Madrid

So that’s what they did, Egypt gave Spain the Debod Temple. It is now located in the Western Park or Parque del Oeste by The Royal Palace (Palace Real de Madrid). The Temple is free to visit and inside contains small collections of Egyptian artefacts including some hieroglyphics with information cards in Spanish and English. It takes about 10-15 minutes to go through the temple.

Temple of Debod in Madrid, Spain

When I came to the Temple Debod, it was my last morning in Madrid. I’d been sick the previous days (sick enough I couldn’t leave my room), and my head still was in the right place, because when I at first thought this was the temple. It’s not.

Temple of Debod in Madrid, Spain

This is the actual Debod Temple where you can go inside and check out some Egyptian artefacts.

Hieroglyphics inside the Temple of Debod

One of the hieroglyphics displayed inside the temple.

Temple of Debod and reflecting pool in Madrid, Spain

The Debod Temple and reflecting pool.

I came to the Debod Temple on my last morning in Madrid. I haven’t been to Egypt yet, so it was pretty cool to see a real Egyptian temple in person. Apparently, the Temple Debod is also one of the best places to watch the sunset here in Madrid. Looks like a good reason to go back to Madrid again.

Things You Should Know

The Temple Debod is located at Paseo del Pintor Rosales, 2, 28008 Madrid. If you are taking the subway the closest stop is the Plaza de España (Lines 3 or 10). A single trip on the Metro will cost between € 1.50 and €3, unless you’re coming from the airport in which case a single ticket is €6. From Plaza de España station it’s about a 10 minute walk to the Temple Debod.
The hours of operation on when the temple is open varies throughout the year. For specific times when the temple is open please check here (page is in Spanish with English and French available). The Temple is closed every Monday and on January 1 and 6, May 1, and December 25, but even on those days you can view the Temple Debod from outside.
While in Madrid I stayed at Huespedes Dolcevita Hostel in a single private room with a balcony. There was a shared bathroom, free breakfast, and free WiFi. The hostel was in the LGBT friendly Chueca neighbourhood and was a 5 minute walk to the Chueca Metro station.  If you’re looking for a private room in Madrid at a decent price (I paid about $25 for my room/night when I stayed) I highly recommend this hostel. You can book a room here.
If you want a higher end accommodation option while in Madrid you can book one here.

Have you visited an Egyptian temple before?


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11 Responses to An Egyptian Landmark | The Debod Temple in Madrid

  1. Ryan Biddulph October 9, 2016 at 3:04 PM #

    Hi Alouise,

    Neat story! Fascinating how these partnerships work out. Spain did them a solid, Egypt sends a temple their way. All the best on your job hunting too. If you have any questions about expanding your blog, feel free to shoot me an email at any time. I do it full time so could help you build things up while you do the job search thingee 😉 Thanks much Alouise, and hopefully things are a bit sunnier there today 🙂

    Ryan

    • Alouise October 16, 2016 at 12:04 AM #

      Hi Ryan. Thanks for the comment and for the offer. I’ll be sure to check out your website for more information.

  2. Diana - MVMT Blog November 14, 2016 at 9:04 PM #

    I have yet to make it to Madrid! So cool that you can find an Egyptian temple there. I love the reflection pool outside. I know you said you haven’t made it to Egypt yet, but I am really curious how this compares to a temple in Egypt! Will be a neat comparison to make when you have the chance to go to Egypt!

  3. melbtravel November 14, 2016 at 9:27 PM #

    Oh wow, I never knew that Madrid had an Egyptian temple that is so cool and interesting. I definitely want to visit here if I ever go back as this is something I would love to see. I can’t believe it is the only real Egyptian temple outside of Egyptian that is such a great fact. I also love how the acquired it to that the Egyptians just give to the Spanish for helping them out.

  4. Kristine November 14, 2016 at 10:10 PM #

    The Debod temple looks really fascinating. An Egyptian temple in Madrid, that’s just amazing.. Thank you for sharing these gorgeous photos and introducing me to yet another thing I need to add to my bucket list 😉

  5. Naomi November 14, 2016 at 11:03 PM #

    Wow I never knew this! How interesting that is. I’d think that with all the stolen items from Egypts past, they wouldn’t just be handing out temples to other countries but apparently they did! I’d love to visit when I make it to Madrid one day.

  6. katie November 14, 2016 at 11:50 PM #

    Wow, I didn’t even know this existed! I will definitely check this out when we head to Madrid! Thank for the share!

  7. Lydia@LifeUntraveled November 15, 2016 at 12:20 AM #

    Well this caught me off-guard! When I saw the title, I expected it to be in Egypt. I’ve been to Egypt and Debod Temple would easily fit in. Since this isn’t an ancient temple, I wonder if the hieroglyphics have any meaning? :\

  8. kathy (from walkaboutwanderer.com) November 15, 2016 at 9:55 AM #

    What a shame that you were sick whilst there. You will definitely have to return!
    I have been lucky enough to go to Egypt. I saw the pyramids in Cairo but would love to return to go to Luxor.
    Thanks for sharing your post. I was not aware that there are Egyptian temples in Spain.

  9. Nuria November 15, 2016 at 10:51 AM #

    Wow! I live in Barcelona and never heard of this before… Added to the ‘Must do’s’ in Madrid. Looks super pretty and interesting !!
    xx

  10. Jimmy and Tina November 15, 2016 at 3:13 PM #

    oh wow, had not heard of this, how very cool wouldn’t expect to find an Egyptian temple in Spain! Great photos!

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