Philae Island obtained a great position due to its special location; it formed, together with Aswan Island, natural geographical boundaries, known in the Egyptian texts as the dividing line. The name "Philae" itself is derived from the Greek word Φιλαί, which means the beloved. It is known in the Arabic literature as "Anas al-Wogood" due to its connection with stories from the cultural heritage. The Salvage Fund of Nubian Monuments succeeded in completely transferring all the monuments of the island into the nearby Agilika Island.
Isis Temple is the main temple in the island as it occupies a quarter of its area. It was established by King Ptolemy II at the same place of another smaller temple that was also dedicated to Isis and the soldiers charged to protect the southern borders of Egypt. Many Ptolemaic kings have participated in building this Temple. At the island also, there is a temple dedicated to the cult of Hathor as well as a shrine for "Nectanebo I" and another one for "Taharqa" which was established also for Isis.