Ancient Egypt can be found in the heart of Madrid in the form of the treasured Temple of Debod. This millennia’s old temple was originally located in southern Egypt and was relocated to Spain in 1972. The temple was a gift from Egypt in the late 1960’s when the construction of a nearby damn threatened the temple and other archaeological sites. Because of Spain’s help in preserving the sacred site, Egypt gifted the structure to Spain in gratitude.
Built in the second century, the temple was a monument to the goddess Isis. Two great stone gateways lead to a one room stone chapel and it is now set in one of Madrid’s most beautiful parks. The temple’s structures were dismantled piece by piece and painstakingly reconstructed at its permanent site. Should the temple had stayed at its original location in Egypt it would have been lost underwater forever, a victim of the Egyptian damn project.
The temple is situated in the same way as originally built – east to west, and today the site features a museum with in-depth exhibits and information on its history. Old photographs highlight the recent past of the temple and compliment the written story of its rich history, offering a wonderful perspective to this ancient site.
Situated in Madrid’s West Park, the temple is accessible on bus route #74 or by train at metro station Plaza de España.