An ancient garrison town famed for its granite quarries, today it's embraced tourism, taking full advantage of its attractive riverfront. To visit that temple, tourists catch a short flight from Aswan. The Temple of Abu Simbel, while originally built by Ramses II in about 1250 BC, was relocated here only about 50 years ago. Abu Simbel was saved from being submerged in the lake and lost forever after an international outcry. Thanks to a heroic effort, in 1968, this ancient temple was cut into huge blocks and relocated to this spot — high and dry for at least another 3,000 years.