An Egyptian Landmark – Temple Debod in Madrid

An Egyptian Landmark – Temple Debod in Madrid

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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 to sunny Madrid. There’s a lot there from that trip that I haven’t written about yet, including my visit to the Debod Temple.

The History of the Debod Temple

The Debod Temple (or Temple de Debod in Spanish) is a legitimate Egyptian temple in the heart of Madrid, Spain. It’s the only authentic Egyptian temple you can find outside of Egypt. The Temple was initially located in the Aswan region of Egypt and was built back in 200 BCE. The Kushite King of Meroë made it as a small temple for the Egyptian god Amun.

The Problem

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

The Temple in Madrid Now

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

When I came to the Debod Temple, it was my last morning in Madrid. I’d been sick the previous days (sick enough I couldn’t leave my room), and I wasn’t thinking 100% because when I got to the ground, I first thought this was the temple. It’s not. This is cool and all, but there’s more to see. Just so you know.
This is the actual Debod Temple where you can go inside and check out some Egyptian artifacts.
One of the hieroglyphics displayed inside the temple.
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, Temple Debod is also one of the best places to watch the sunset in Madrid. Looks like a good reason to go back to Madrid one day.

Things To Know
The Temple Debod is at Calle Ferraz 1 in Madrid. Map link here. The closest metro 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 Temple Debod is open Tuesday to Sunday from 10 am to 8 pm. It is closed every Monday and on January 1 and 6, May 1, and December 25. On the days when the Temple Debod is closed you can’t go inside, but you can still see it from the outside. The temple is free to visit, but there is a limit of 30 people who can go in at once.
While in Madrid I stayed at the Huespedes Dolcevita Hostel in a single private room with a balcony. There was a shared bathroom, free breakfast, and free Wi-Fi. 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. Of course, if you’re not on a budget there are plenty of hotels in Madrid that you can book here.

Have you visited an Egyptian temple before?

11 thoughts on “An Egyptian Landmark – Temple Debod in Madrid”

  1. 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 🙂


  2. 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. 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. 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. 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. 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? :

  7. 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.

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

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