Karnak Temple in Luxor, Egypt was designed to align with the sunrise on the solstice, focusing light on a shrine to the sun god. Ancient Egypt's sprawling temple of Karnak was constructed in alignment with the winter solstice at Luxor more than 4,000 years ago.
An HDR photo of the Karnak Temple during the winter solstice on December 17, 2015 in Luxor, Egypt.

Egypt’s Karnak Temple was built in alignment with the solstice, in order to focus light on a shrine to the sun god. Ancient Egypt’s sprawling temple of Karnak was constructed in alignment with the winter solstice at Luxor more than 4,000 years ago. Similar alignments can be seen from Angkor Wat to Machu Picchu.

These photos were taken during one of Egypt’s tourism dips so there weren’t any other tourists to see the annual event. But often you will find swarms of tourists arriving just before sunrise in the weeks around the solar event to watch the alignment of the sun with the temple corridor.

As you can see in the photos the sun appears to rest on the door/pedestal at the end of the long corridor looking through Hypostyle Hall.

N.B. These solstice photos were created by sandwiching multiple exposures together into HDR photos so they aren’t photojournalistic though they pretty accurate to the appearance of the sunrise in Luxor.