The legendary Sphinx, dating from 2,500 BC, is one of the best known yet least understood monuments of ancient history. Carved from an outcrop of soft limestone that was supposedly left standing after the harder surrounding stone was quarried for the Great Pyramid, it was shaped into a lion's body with a human head, the latter believed to be a representation of the pharaoh Chephren. Despite its familiarity, however, the purpose and meaning of the Sphinx still remain a mystery.
The face of the Sphinx was seriously damaged at the very end of the eighteenth century by Napoleonic troops who used it for target practice.
To reach the Sphinx you pass through Chephren's funerary temple, consisting of a pillared hall, central court, niched storerooms and a sanctuary.
As well as visiting the Sphinx by day, you may also return in the evening to watch the spectacular 'Sound and Light' performance. The Sphinx is given the role of the narrator.