Kawa is situated between the Third and Fourth Cataract of the Nile, on the eastern bank, opposite the river from Dongola. The area is very sandy, with dunes reaching up to the river bank and covering most of the site.
The ancient name of the place, Gem-Aten, suggests that it was founded under Akhenaten and contained a temple dedicated to Aten. Extensive excavations have uncovered a temple precinct, the origins of which date back to the New Kingdom. The oldest extant structure, however, is a small temple of Amun built under Tutankhamun.
Taharqo, the most important ruler of the 25th Dynasty, had a large temple of Amun built at Kawa. Like the temples at Jebel Barkal and Sanam, it was one of the stations of the coronation journey of the Kushite kings. Several stelae of Taharqo and other Napatan rulers which were found in the Amun temple of Kawa mention this ceremony.
The site also includes an extensive settlement area of which only selected parts have been investigated so far as well as a cemetery of the Kerma period which indicates an older occupation phase of the area.
You will enjoy travelling with us …
- Small groups of no more than 11 travellers
- Private journeys, tailor-made tours and self-guided trips
- Expert scholars with you all through the tour
- Unique itineraries and extensions that take you off the beaten track
- Partnerships with archaeological projects and local communities
- Private behind-the-scenes access
- Personalised customer service and attention to detail