First Pylon of Karnak Temple

The first pylon is the last to be built at Karnak and is the main entrance into the temple today. It was never completed and is undecorated; even the remains of the mud brick ramps, used to build it, can still be seen inside the great court.

circa 360 BCE

The first pylon, the facade of the Amun-Re precinct with avenue of the sphinxes leading up to the entrance. Construction of the current pylon began in 30th dynasty, but was never totally completed. There are large numbers of mud bricks piled up against the inside of the 113m wide and 15m thick pylon.

circa 360 BCE

It was built by Nectanebo I (380-362 BCE) who also built the huge enclosure wall surrounding Karnak and some scholars believe that an earlier pylon may have stood on this same spot.

circa 360 BCE

It was never completed and is undecorated; even the remains of the mud brick ramps, used to build, can still be seen inside the great court behind the north tower.

circa 360 BCE

The north tower (right) is about 71 feet (21.70m), and the south tower (left) 103 feet (31.65m). If the structure had been completed it would probably reached a height of between 124 feet (38m) to 131 feet (40m). The structure to the right is the Shrine of Seti II.


Points of InterestPart of
Pylons First Pylon · Second Pylon · Third Pylon · Fourth Pylon · Fifth Pylon · Sixth Pylon · Seventh Pylon · Eighth Pylon · Ninth Pylon · Tenth Pylon Pylons of Karnak Temple Complex
Boat/Barque Shrines Barque Shrine of Seti II · Barque Shrine of Hatshepsut · Central Barque Shrine · Calcite Shrine · Thutmose III Shrine Shrines in Karnak Temple Complex
Temples Temple of Rameses III · Akhmenu Temple · Temple of Ptah · Contra Temple · Opet Temple · Khonsu Temple ·
Obelisks Obelisk of Hatshepsut · Unique Obelisk ·
Halls Hypostyle Hall · Wadjet Hall ·
Other(s) Karnak Open Air Museum · Bab el Amara Gate (Gate of Nectanebo) · Bubastis Portal · Kiosk of Taharqo · Taharqo Edifice · Avenue of Sphinxes (Processional Ways) · Taharqa Nilometer · Court of Shoshenq I · Shabaka House of Gold · White Chapel of Senusret I ·
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