Alexandria is the second largest city
in Egypt, It has an atmosphere that is more Mediterranean than
Middle Eastern; its ambience and cultural heritage distance it from
the rest of the country although it is actually only 225 km. from
Cairo. Alexandria lies northwest of the Nile Delta and adjoins Lake
Mariut. It is linked to Cairo by the Delta Road (231 km.) and the
Desert Road (225 km.). It is one of the most notable summer resorts
in the Middle East, known for its temperate winters and beaches,
with soft sands and magnificent scenery that stretch for 40 km.
along the Mediterranean Sea. Founded by Alexander the Great in 331
BC, Alexandria became the capital of the Graeco-Roman Egypt, its
status as a beacon of culture symbolized by Pharos and the setting
for the stormy relationship between Cleopatra and Mark Antony. The
city, immortalizing Alexander's name, flourished, beyond all
expectations, into a prominent cultural, intellectual and economic
metropolis, the remains of which are still evident to this day.
There is so much to see in this city. Listed below is a brief
overview of some of the sites that you can visit.
The Graeco-Roman Museum: Houses
many collections of rare Roman relics and coins- about 40 thousand
pieces, from the 3rd century B.C. to the 7th century A.D. The most
important being the " Tanafra " statues.
Pompeii's Pillar: (
Shown on top of page )This is a granite pillar, over 25 meters high,
and built amidst the ruins of the Serapium in 297 A.D., in honor of
The Catacombs of Kom al-Shqafa: This
is the largest Roman cemetery. It is of three levels and cut in the
rock to a depth of 100 feet. Dating to the beginning of the 2nd
century A.D., it is a blend of Pharaonic and Roman art.
The Tombs of Al-Anfushi: These
Limestone tombs, dating from about 250B.C. are decorated with
pictures of Egyptian gods and daily life.
Other tourist attractions
The Museum Of Fine Arts: Houses
collections of sculptures, paintings and architectural works.
Exhibitions by contemporary foreign and Egyptian artists are often
The Antoniadis Gardens: They
contain beautifully arranged trees and
flowers, as well as several
Greco statues in marble and Antoniadis Palace.
The Shallalat Gardens: A
central garden in the eastern part of the city center, it is of a
special character and is distinguished by its high and low levels
The Montazah Palace Gardens: Acres
of formal gardens and a beautiful beach make Montazah (shown to the
right ) the foremost city pleasure grounds. Montazah Palace, a grand
structure built in a mixture of Turkish and Florentine styles, is
now a great statehouse.
Monument and Tourist Sites:
Egyptian Fleet Anchorage: Built
by the Ptolemies, the remains of the naval installations still stand
west of the port.
Coptic Chapel: Very
early Coptic age, and contains several caves bearing inscriptions.
Rommel's Hideout: A
cave, hewn in the rock, where Rommel drew up plans of this military
operations. It has now been turned into a military museum.
Port Said: Was
built in 1860 on the Mediterranean as the northern Suez Canal. This
city increased in repute when it was declared a free zone. It is 220
km. from Cairo, 80 km. from Ismailia and 160 km. from Suez. It is
characterized by beautiful, calm and soft sandy beaches and
rock-free waters. Geographically, it links Africa with Asia, through
Port Fouad, a suburb on the east bank of the Suez Canal. One can
visit al-Jameel (the beautiful) 12 km. west of Port Said, for
fishing, or take a port cruise to see the ship convoys passing
through the Suez Canal.
Other visited sites:
Cleopatra's Bath: Is
hewn in a rock about 50m. from the shore which is surrounded by
rocky cliffs. It can be reached directly by
car or on foot,
and then wading to the rock.
Al-Abyad Beach: About
20 km. further west, its beauty surpasses that of Mersa Matrouh
beach. Ageebah Beach: About 28 km. west of Mersa Matrouh, it is
distinguished by its numerous natural caves and enchanting scenery.
Ras el-Hekma: Is
a land spur jutting out into the sea, about 85 km, east of Matrouh
and is distinguished by the beauty and serenity of its beaches. Not
only does Alexandria provide you with cities of ancient history, but
it also has miles of white sandy beaches. So just sit back and enjoy