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Alexandria - Day 5 Sunday March 13

Exploring Alexandria in the rain


View Egypt 03/2022 on Cybercsp's travel map.

Yasser tells us that it rains in Egypt approximately ten days per year...this is one of those days. These lobby flowers certainly brightened the morning.

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Alexandria may be best known for things that no longer exist, such as Cleopatra, the Lighthouse of Pharos (another of the Ancient Seven Wonders of the World) and the Great Library of Alexandria. This lovely city was founded by Alexander the Great in 331 BC. Alexander arrived here as a conqueror, but came to love Egypt so much that he asked to be buried here, as he believed it was where his soul belonged.

The Lighthouse of Pharos was constructed in 280 BC and survived for 1500 years before being destroyed by an earthquake in 1323. Pieces of the lighthouse were repurposed into the construction of other buildings, such as this fortress.

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We began our tour at 9 AM, so we caught up on some much appreciated rest. And now, the inevitable...for those of you who have been waiting for it, we visited an ancient Roman Amphitheater in Kom El-Dikka. It is believed to date back to the second century AD and the tiers are made of marble.

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This area appears to have been used for some type of sporting events.

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There are remnants of Roman baths.

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Here are a pillar and sphinx to honors Seti I, who is buried in the Valley of the Kings. These were found at the bottom of the Mediterranean Sea.

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These magnificent mosaic floors and walls are believed to have adorned the home of a wealthy family.

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More assorted ruins for your viewing pleasure.

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Bastet, ancient cat goddess, may have made an appearance today.

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Some background before our next stop...The Great Library was considered to be the intellectual center of the ancient world from the time of its construction during the 3rd century BC until its destruction centuries later. Today, the modern Bibliotheca Alexandrina stands as a marvel of the modern world. Shaped like a giant discus embedded in the ground, its granite facades are carved with letters, pictograms, characters, and hieroglyphs from more than 120 different scripts. Sadly, the sky was the same color as the facade, so we lost some of the impact.

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Another outdoor view:

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Here is a model of the complex.

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We were early for our tour, so we made a stop at the cafe, where I ordered a Lotus Latte. Yum!

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We viewed the library from one of the top floors through a glass barrier (hence suboptimal photos). The main reading room can hold eight million books and accommodate 2,500 people under its distinctive sloping roof.

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Here is the first printing press, commissioned by Muhammad Ali.

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There are other treasures on the exhibition floor.

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The library has an amazing interactive website: www.bibalex.org
You’re welcome.

Today's lunch at San Giovanni Restaurant afforded lovely waterfront views, as well as a close look at a very attractive bridge.

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I had the best sea bass that I have ever had in my life. Here is the Creme Brûlée that four of us shared. We are beginning to feel like force-fed geese!

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When we returned to the hotel, we walked through a very large shopping mall. There are familiar stores, as well as these not-so-familiar.

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Enjoy tonight's sunset from the balcony.

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Our dinner tonight was at Byblos Restaurant in the Four Seasons, which specializes in Syrian food.

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Until tomorrow...

Photos are tagged Egypt and Alexandria

Posted by Cybercsp 07:55 Archived in Egypt Tagged egypt alexandria

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