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Alexandria, Egypt has been the hub of all intellectual concepts in the traditional world. It was at this port that is was first realized that planet wasn't flat, geometrical concepts were created, made the steam engine, presented the theory of latitude and longitude, and the foremost precise maps around the planet were chalked.
Almost 90 % of Alexandrians are Sunni Muslims. Pay attention for that mesmerizing calls to prayer that resonate anywhere in the city's minarets five occasions each day. Coffee shops, bookstores and shops will all of a sudden empty as males make their way toward their prayer area rugs. Abu Abbas al-Mursi, on Sharia Fransa, only a block in the seafront boulevard known as Corniche, is really a brilliantly striking illustration of Islamic architecture that pulls 1000's of worshipers for that noon prayer on Fridays.
Where You're Cruise Ship Docked
Cruise ships dock at a modern cruise terminal in the western part of the harbour. There are no amenities inside the terminal other than toilets but there is a large souvenir market outside. There are a lot of steps however. It is an easy walk into the city. Distance to the city center is approximately one mile (1.5 kilometres).
Official blue taxis will be waiting by the terminal but you can save some money by taking the cheaper yellow/black ones from outside the gate.If you want to see the Great Pyramids, it is recommended to take a tour, either a ship-sponsored or private organized one.
If you want to take a train to Cairo, you can find details here - http://www.seat61.com/Egypt.htm
Within Alexandria, there is a chaotic and crowded bus and tram network but it is better for tourists to take a taxi or a tour. Trams are inexpensive and there is a stop outside the port gate but you will need local currency.
From Wikitravel - Be careful though: taxis will uniformly refuse to use meters (the rates haven't been adjusted in years) and drivers love to take advantage of non-Alexandrians, so it's best to agree on the fare before you get in. No taxi ride between any two points in the city should cost more than 25LE. Alternately, if you are on a day trip to Alexandria, hire a taxi outside the railway station for the day and pay LE 10-15 per place. E.g., if you plan to see 5 places in 3-4 hours, pay around LE 50-60 to the driver or LE 80-100 if you plan to see 8-10 places in 5-6 hours.
Things To See and Do
Have an equine and carriage ride. Motorists are situated in most the apparent places, including just outdoors the main harbor. Touristy, yes, but it is a pleasant method to go through the crowds together with the riot of physical stimulation that's Alexandria's essence.
Take a look at among the Egyptian quaint and crowded cafes. They're known more for mint tea than coffee, however the star attraction may be the ubiquitous sheesha, a water line that's introduced towards the table together with a mixture of tobacco and molasses. Many people order their tobacco drenched in any fruit juice, which produces the sweet aroma that models the experience.
Go ahead and take visit to Cairo , and go to the historical site in Giza to have an exterior look at the magnificent pyramids additionally, you will begin to see the Valley Temple and also the Sphinx.
Alexander the Great founded Alexandria in 331 B.C. This port city occupies an advantageous location on the Mediterranean Sea and Lake Mareotis. Its most famous landmark, the Lighthouse of Pharos, was one of the original Seven Wonders of the World. The famous sites in Alexandria today range from ancient monuments to modern edifices.
Most cruise ships will have either a late sail or overnight in Alexandria to allow passengers to get to Cairo, over three hours away. By law, tourists travelling in large groups must have armed security and travel in convoys.

Bibliotheca Alexandrina
A reimagining of Alexandria's ancient Great Library, this gorgeously designed cultural center contains a host of museums as well as one of the modern world's most ambitious libraries. Its architecture - a giant sun disk - presides over the waterfront Corniche, while inside, a huge reading room can hold eight million volumes. Below the main library, visitors can explore a range of beautifully curated exhibitions. The Manuscript Museum with its magnificent collection of ancient texts and scrolls and the Antiquities Museum with its Graeco-Roman antiquities and statuary found during underwater exploration in the harbor are the two prime attractions. But there are also rotating art exhibitions, a permanent Egyptian folk art collection, and a Science Museum and Planetarium that are aimed squarely at children.
Location: Corniche, Shatby, Official site: www.bibalex.org

Alexandria National Museum
Alexandria's National Museum is a must-stop if you want to get to grips with the vast history of this famed city. Inside, the collection guides you from the Pharaonic era (in the basement), to the Hellenistic heyday when Alexandria and Egypt were governed by the Ptolemy dynasty begun by Alexander the Great (on the ground floor), and up to the Byzantine and Islamic periods (on the 1st floor). As well as the displays, statuary, and antiquities unearthed in and around the city (including finds from underwater explorations in the area offshore), there are excellent map drawings that imagine what the classical city of Alexandria would have looked like, which really helps visitors understand the changing face of this city.Address: Tariq al-Horreya Street
Fort Qaitbey
Walk the long shorefront Corniche road heading west, and you'll finally arrive at Fort Qaitbey. It may be a poor substitute for what was once the site of the mighty Pharos Lighthouse - one of the seven wonders of the ancient world - but this squat and dinky fort has been standing guard over Alexandria's eastern harbor since 1480. The Pharos itself said adieu to Alexandria in 1303 when it was toppled by a violent earthquake. Fort Qaitbey was built by Mamluke Sultan Qaitbey in an effort to fortify this important Egyptian port from attack, and rubble from the toppled lighthouse was used in its construction. Inside, you can explore the series of stone-walled chambers and climb up to the roof to look out over the Mediterranean.Location: Corniche, Eastern Harbour

Kom el-Dikka
Nobody thought much of the ancient rubble mound in central Alexandria until, in 1947, they decided to clear the site to make way for new housing. Instead, the area known as Kom el-Dikka ("Mound of Rubble") revealed a whole swag of ancient ruins including a small Roman theater. Excavation work commenced, and today, this park area includes the remnants of a Ptolemaic temple and the mosaic flooring of a wealthy Roman-era dwelling now known as the Villa of the Birds. Address: Yousri Street

Catacombs of Kom el-Shuqqafa
The Catacombs of Kom el-Shuaqqfa are hewn from the rock on the southern slopes of a hill, in the Carmous district. Thought to date from the 2nd century AD, they offer an admirable example of the characteristic Alexandrian fusion of Egyptian and Greco-Roman styles. Discovered in 1900 (thanks to a donkey falling into them) they are laid out on several levels of sarcophagi and loculi (shelf tomb) chambers.
A spiral staircase leads down into the ground to the main rotunda. To the right, you can enter the main burial chamber and also the Sepulchral Chapel with 91 loculi, each large enough to accommodate three or four mummies. To the left is a large room known as the Triclinium Funebre, which would have been used for banquets in honor of the dead. Location: Carmous

Pompey's Pillar
In Carmous (in the southwest of the city) is a hill littered with the remains of ancient walls, architectural fragments, and rubble on which Alexandria's only ancient monument is left standing. Pompey's Pillar rises from the ruins of the ancient and famous Serapeion (Temple of Serapis), which was once used to store the overflow of manuscripts from the Great Library of Alexandria. This column of red Aswan granite with a Corinthian capital, standing on a badly ruined substructure and rising to a height of almost 27 meters, actually has nothing to do with Pompey and was instead set up in AD 292 in honor of Diocletian, who supplied food for the starving population after the siege of the city. Location: Carmous

Montazah Gardens
An oasis of calm on the city's eastern edge, Montazah is a lush haven of tall palm trees, trimmed lawns, and blossoming flowers that was once off-limits to all but the royal court and their hangers-on. Built as a hunting lodge in the 1890s by Khedive Abbas Hilmi, it was later extended substantially by King Fuad and replaced Ras el-Tin Palace as the royal family's summer house. The eccentrically-designed Montazah Palace with its ornate Florentine-inspired towers and Rococo flourishes is not open to the public, but everyone is welcome to stroll within the sprawling gardens, which can be a welcome slice of nature after a day spent within Alexandria's hustle. On the coastal end of the park is a small beach with a peculiarly whimsical bridge to a small island. If you need a dose of tranquility, a trip to Montazah is just the ticket to restore your sanity before diving back into the inner city fray. Minibuses heading west up the shorefront Corniche road all pass by Montazah. They charge between 1-2 EGP depending on where you board.Location: Corniche

Ras el-Tin Palace
Sumptuous Ras el-Tin Palace was once a summer escape for Egypt's sultans when the desert heat of Cairo got too much to bear. It's also the famed location where King Farouk - Egypt's last king - officially abdicated in 1952 before sailing out of Alexandria's harbor and into exile in Italy. Today, the palace is used by the Egyptian navy, which means its glorious interiors are out of bounds to casual visitors, but the monumental white facade, best seen from the harbor waters, is a must-see. Location: Corniche

Cleopatra's Palace
There may be only scant remnants of the once grand Hellenistic city above ground, but dive into the waters of Alexandria's Eastern Harbour area, and you'll find there's plenty more of ancient "Alex" to explore. Archaeologists have been plumbing the depths for years searching for the lost sunken city of the classical age and bringing up many treasures to the surface (now on display in Alexandria's museums), but recreational divers can now visit the archaeological ruins under the sea, too. The most popular site has been (unsurprisingly) nicknamed "Cleopatra's Palace" and indeed was once a palace area - though if the great lady herself was ever in residence, we'll never know. There are sphinxes and tumbled columns and statuary galore still in situ here, which makes for a fascinating underwater experience.
Location: Eastern Harbour
Cavafy Museum
One of Alexandria's most famous sons, Constantine Cavafy (1863-1933), was a Greek Alexandrian poet who found fame and recognition for his writing after his death. His flat on what is now Sharm el-Sheikh Street is a tribute to his life and a major attraction for anyone on an Alexandrian literary pilgrimage. Cavafy spent his working life as a journalist and civil servant, little recognised for his poetry outside of a small group of Alexandrian-based writers (including English novelist EM Forster who was a champion of Cavafy's work). His poetry, though, richly captures the vast history of Alexandria - particularly its Hellenistic origins - and he has become one of the greatly celebrated literary figures of the city. The small museum contains many of his manuscripts and correspondence. Address: Sharm el-Sheikh Street

The working-class district of Anfushi stretches west from Fort Qaitbey and the harbor in a warren of lanes that contain some of Alexandria's best seafood restaurants. Just after sunset, this is the city's liveliest area to explore with traditional coffeehouses spilling out onto the street, and the scent of sheesha (water-pipes) and grilled fish hanging in the air. On Qasr Ras el-Tin Street are the city's shipyards, while further along the street is the bustling Alexandria fish market, which is prime territory for photographers in the mornings when the haggling is at full throttle.
Abu Abbas al-Mursi Mosque
One of Alexandria's major landmarks, the Abu Abbas al-Mursi Mosque was built in 1796 over the tomb of the 13th-century Sufi holy man Abu Abbas al-Mursi. Originally from Murcia (in Spain's Andalusia region), Abu Abbas became a highly esteemed religious leader in Alexandria and his teachings are still revered in Egypt. The mammoth cream-colored mosque that holds his name is a major pilgrimage site. For non-religious visitors, the mosque's exquisite facade of swirling Islamic calligraphy designs and motifs is the major draw-card. Those that want to enter to see the beautiful and intricate mosaic halls should dress modestly and leave their shoes at the main entrance. Address: Mohammad Karim Street

Main Souk Area
Alexandria's main souq (market) stretches through the backstreets heading west from Midan Tahrir in the central city. You'll find everything from fresh produce to silver trinkets by poking about in this district. To be fair, there isn't much on sale to interest tourists; this is a real-deal local souk and you come here more to capture an essence of Alexandrian life than to shop. The entire souq area is a squiggle of lanes that flow off from each other with each alley specialising in different products. If you want to dig a bit deeper into Alexandria's soul, don't miss a wander through here.
Location: Midan Tahrir, Day Trips from Alexandria
Presiding over a promontory, defended on all sides by old forts, the little fishing village of Aboukir has an illustrious history that defies its small size. This is where, on August 1st 1798, the Battle of the Nile was fought in which Nelson inflicted an annihilating defeat on the French fleet. Here, too, in 1799, Napoleon defeated a numerically superior Turkish force; and here also, in 1801, Sir Ralph Abercromby defeated the remnants of the French army and compelled them to evacuate Egypt. For Naval history-buffs this military past of battles is enough of a reason to visit, but for the average sightseer, the main reason for a journey here is to sample some of Egypt's finest seafood. Aboukir bay is home to a host of fabulous fish restaurants that locals flock to in the summer months. Stuffing yourself full of shrimp and crab while sunset sears over the Mediterranean is the perfect end to an Alexandrian day. Location: 24 kilometers northeast of Alexandria

El Alamein War Memorials
The hardscrabble township of El Alamein holds a fascinating place in modern world history. It was across this parched piece of nondescript desert that the Allies first decisive victory in World War II's North Africa campaign was won. The bloody battles that took place here in October 1942 killed or wounded more than 80,000 soldiers from countries as varied as Australia, New Zealand, India, and Great Britain (Allies) as well as Germany and Italy (Axis Forces). Today, the war memorials that stand are a poignant reminder of the 13 days of fighting that claimed so many lives. The rather excellent El Alamein War Museum does a good job of giving an overview to the El Alamein campaign with plenty of military memorabilia displayed. The Commonwealth Cemetery is a beautifully-kept tribute to the fallen with the 7,000 tombstones in regimented rows between well-tended desert plants. Just north of town, along the coastal highway is the boxy German Memorial where most of the 4,500 German dead are buried and another couple of kilometers north is the Italian Memorial, which is also home to a tiny, but interesting, museum.
Location: 112 kilometers west of Alexandria
Fortress Qait Bey
A high ridge at the end of the beach along Alexandria’s coast was once the site of the fabled Lighthouse of Pharos. It collapsed after an earthquake in the 14th century. Qait Bey Fort remains as the only reminder that Alexandria provided safe harbor for vessels seeking refuge and trading opportunities. Qait Bey, a 15th-century Egyptian sultan, constructed the fort to secure the entrance to the harbor. Some sections used rubble from the old lighthouse. The fort provides unobstructed views of Alexandria and the Mediterranean Sea and is home to a small mosque and a naval museum. Experienced divers can search for relics from the lighthouse and ancient ships in the waters around the fort. Eternal Egypt's website provides historical background and interactive webcam images of the fort and Alexandria's harbor.Fortress Qait Bey Alexandria, Egypt tel:011-20-34-86-5106
Library of Alexandria
The original library of Alexandria building, constructed by Ptolemy during the third century B.C., attracted scholars and historians for many centuries. The Egyptian government replaced the original library with a modern facility in 2002 and moved the contents to a more secure location befitting the historical treasures in the Alexandria library. Lonely Planet says the replacement library is just as grand and imposing as the old library. In addition to space for eight million books, the library has conference rooms, a planetarium and space for cultural performances. It also has a museum that holds over 1,000 ancient Egyptian sculptures, papyri and artifacts retrieved from exploration of the waters near the city. Library visitors can get free PDA guides to enhance the tour experience.
Bibliotheca Alexandrina Corniche al-Bahr, Chatby Alexandria, Egypt 011-20-34-83-9999 bibalex.org
Kom el Shoqafa Catacombs
In the second century A.D., the Romans constructed the three tiers of underground tombs and burial chambers in the Kom el Shoqafa Catacombs by cutting into bedrock. The catacombs had been forgotten until 1900 when a hole above them swallowed a donkey. The lowest level is over 60 feet below the earth's surface. Some parts of of the catacombs are inaccessible due to flooding. The site has a triclinium (formal dining room) with stone tables and seating for funeral feasts, along with tableware and wine jugs discovered during excavations. The main chamber had space for at least 300 bodies, according to Lonely Planet. Archaeologists have discovered smaller attached chambers that have connecting passageways. The site's architecture, reflecting Alexandria's history, mixes Greek, Roman and Egyptian symbols throughout the passages and entryways.
Part Lord of the Rings, part Indiana Jones, the catacombs are about 35m (115 ft.) below ground level and reached by a spiral staircase that circles an open central shaft that was once used to lower dead bodies into the tombs below. The story goes that the whole complex was discovered in 1900 when a donkey, working the land above, fell in.
At the bottom of the stairs, you'll find yourself in a funerary complex, with rooms and passages leading off in all directions. It was more formally laid out when it was built in the 2nd century A.D., and many of the interconnecting passages that you see now are the work of grave robbers.
The burial tomb chamber is obvious once you're at the bottom of the stairs; it's through the doorway that's flanked by Anubis and Agathodaemon. Stop for a moment before going in to consider the odd mix of Egyptian, Roman, and Greek symbolism here -- it's an excellent illustration of the syncretism of Ptolemaic culture. Anubis is the Egyptian god most closely associated with tombs, and he features prominently on royal tombs in Upper Egypt, where he protected the mummified remains of the occupants. But here, instead of the traditional collar around his neck, Anubis wears the uniform of a Roman legionary. The snake-tailed Agathodaemon, meanwhile, is an expat Greek god associated with good food and plenty, which may or may not be a reference to funeral rites that included feasting in the tombs. The chamber is modeled on a temple, with an antechamber and an inner sanctum. Note: Even though the statues and carvings have been left unprotected and unsupervised, you shouldn't touch them.
The rest of the catacombs, though less elaborate, are well worth a visit. If you've brought water or a snack, try the triclinium, the large room with the benches close to the bottom of the stairs. This was where friends and family of the deceased gathered periodically to feast and pay their respects.
The amount of the water in the lower tombs goes up and down, and there are always limits to how far you can explore. Much of what you can access was added well after the original construction, and access was further improved by later raiders in search of treasure. There is a usually accessible section behind the main tomb where a narrow hallway goes off into a series of little tombs and a wholly separate section known as the Hall of Caracalla off to the right (standing with your back to the main stairs).Kom el Shoqafa Catacombs Tawfikeya Street 011-20-34-84-5800
Note: Officially you are not allowed to take pictures in the catacombs, so tuck your camera into the depths of your bag (no X-ray machine here) and be discreet

Downtown Alexandria's wide waterfront road is as much a symbol of the city as any of its monuments. It's here that you get a real feel for the era of cosmopolitan elegance and decadence that marked this city in the late 19th and early 20th centuries. Much of the architecture from this era still stands along the Corniche, though these days, much of it is heavily dilapidated and falling into disrepair. During your stroll check out the colonial remnants of the Cecil Hotel and Windsor Palace Hotel that are still the key harbor-side addresses for visitors who want to wallow in bygone-days ambience. The Cecil played host to Winston Churchill and the British Secret Service during WWII, and both hotels have endeavored to restore and keep much of their original Edwardian charm. 12-plus miles lengthy, may be the most buzzing Seafront Boulevard that can serve as Alexandria's social touchstone. On one for reds are public beaches, a number of yellow, blue and eco-friendly fishing boats for sale along with a stone citadel known as Qaitbay Fort that goes back to 1480 A.D. Certainly one of Alexandria's visual signatures, the fort is made around the remains from the legendary Pharos lighthouse. Most days, a legion of surf anglers hits the rocks outdoors the citadel, drawing the undivided attention tourists.
Mid- and-rise structures, varying from shabby to chic, dominate sleep issues from the boulevard. Here, you will find restaurants, cafes, hotels along with a couple of memory joggers of home: Domino's Pizza, Local cafe and Chili's. The Cecil Hotel, now a Sofitel, is on Corniche. Built-in 1930, visitors incorporated Winston Churchill, Somerset Maugham and Noel Coward.
A more modern arrival towards the looping waterfront boulevard may be the fabulous Bibliotheca Alexandrina. Established in 2002, the superbly styled library, with space for eight million books, has touches of a library built within 3rd century B.C. It had been considered the finest library ever, a magnet for that world's intelligentsia. The brand new library, designed like a sun rising from the Mediterranean, is thought to possess been built on the same site as of their ancient predecessor.
The Alexandria National Museum is more contemporary. Three floors of original items bring alive such marquee names as Nefertiti, King Tut and Alexander the truly amazing. One room is totally devoted to the mummification process. Labels throughout have been in British and Arabic.

Shoreline Activities
The most common ship-backed activities have a bus ride to Cairo and also the pyramids. Expect a lengthy day. Due to the length between Alexandria and Cairo, they are usually 12-hour matters. The half-day Alexandria city tours usually include stops in a Roman theater dating back the fourth century A.D., Qaitbay Fort, and only the Alexandria National Museum or even the Greco-Roman Museum.
Great Pyramids & Sphinx - You will typically given an opportunity to enter the tomb of one of the pyramids. It is discouraged since you have to crouch along in a narrow tunnel and it is a bit claustrophobic. However, it is quite an experience if you are up for it. Tours will typically take you to a viewpoint filled with vendors selling souvenirs and offering camel rides and pictures. Entry fee 60 LE and 30 LE for Sphinx. Extra 100 LE (Dec 2011) to enter a tomb depending on which one is open. No cameras are allowed inside.
Egyptian Museum - Straight out of Indiana Jones, this old museum has dusty display cases filled with Egypt's treasures. You will need to climb stairs to get to the second level. There is an additional fee to see the royal mummies. Don't miss King Tutankhamen's treasures including his golden death mask in a small air conditioned section in the back. Entry 60 LE (extra 100 LE for mummies, Dec 2011). A new museum, the Grand Egyptian Museum, is being constructed close to the Great Pyramids (and further away from protesters at Tahir Square) and is scheduled for completion in 2015.
Sakkara Step Pyramid - This pyramid is one of the oldest in the area and has a small temple complex surrounding it. Entry 60 LE. If given the option of Sakkara or the museum, choose the museum to see King Tut's treasures.
 Eating Out
Look no farther compared to Seafood Market, an attractive restaurant on Corniche with sweeping sights of Eastern Harbour. Choose your personal sea food -- red-colored snapper, grey mullet, threadfin seafood, silver bream, lobster, sole, shrimp or clams -- and also the chef will grill, fry or steam it for you personally. Prices noted are per kilogram.
Lunch is offered together with exceptional preparing salads and snacks, including hummus with tahina, baba ganoush, tahina with eco-friendly all kinds of peppers and spices or herbs, a eco-friendly salad and potato salad. To accomplish the package, an incredible traditional bread, made from plain and bread toasted flour, is baked inside a kiln directly on district floor.
Unlike a majority of the restaurants, that one serves wine. Seafood Marketplace is one among Alexandria's most trendy and informal eateries, yet lunch for 2 having a half-bottle of the Egyptian Pinot Blanc may cost less than $15. That informs you something concerning the local economy. Open noon to two a.m. The Seafood Market complex includes Tikka Grill, which is an expert in grilled meat a coffee shop along with a French patisserie.
There will be a large market setup outside the cruise terminal for souvenirs. Pick up some papyrus artwork for only a dollar. Alexandria City Center is a huge modern mall with 160 stores approximately 5 miles southeast of the port (20 minutes away by taxi). You will find markets by El Nasr Square (first roundabout on El Nasr street from the port gate). From this roundabout, the main street (El Tahir Square) has shops and shawarma restaurants on the north side. The street running parallel one block north has a souk selling mainly clothes and household goods but the street parallel one block on the south side has interesting food including live bunnies. Stalls for souvenirs also setup by the Citadel.
When the exodus began after 1952, many people didn't have the money or the time to take household goods with them and, as a result, Alexandria became the Egyptian hub for used European furniture. Most of the items left behind were unremarkable, but many were of high quality and quite a few were antiques. The trade in these items has long centered on Attarine Street (more properly, Al Masgid al Attarine Street), a disappointingly unromantic street that runs into the back of Ahmed Orabi Square. For antique furniture buffs, as well as those just looking to pick up an old postcard or some knickknacks, an hour or two spent strolling past the windows won't be wasted. Stores range from clean, well-organized emporiums of nicely polished Napoleonic chairs and 19th-century silver services to junk stores with moth-eaten crocodiles and piles of moldy school books from the 1920s. Take your pick -- far better in my opinion to take home a battered piece of the real thing than a shiny factory-produced souvenir. If you're actually going to buy, though, remember that Alexandria (not to mention the city of nearby Damietta) is the Egyptian hub for furniture production, and much of what you see (and is offered as antique) was probably produced a couple of months ago in a shop around the corner.
Souvenir shops are large on camel toys, pyramid paper weights, materials, alabaster, religious symbols, spices or herbs, tobacco and water pipes which are an element of local cafes. Bartering for affordable prices is anticipated at souvenir stands and street bazaars. For additional serious shopping, explore the 2 primary commercial roads, Sharia Saad Zaghloul and Sharia Safiyya Zaghloul, situated close to the historic Cecil Hotel. Across in the hotel, you will find Omar Effendi, a well known linen shop.

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