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  • Writer's pictureKirk

Alexandria, Egypt - Part 1

Updated: Oct 2, 2023

After landing in Cairo and exploring a few days, I took an Uber to Alexandria, however, getting a ride back proved to be a challenge. But before that, a review of the ancient city.


Alexandria is the second largest city in Egypt behind Cairo. It was founded by Alexandria the Great in 331 BC, hence the name of the city. It is the largest city on the Mediterranean Ocean.


The Roman influence of the city can be seen by a visit to Pompey's Pillar. The pillar was erected to hold a statue of the Roman Emporer at the time, Diocletian, around 300 AD. It's name,Pompey, comes from a modern misreading of the inscription on the column.


A Naval Commander in the 1800's flew a kite over the column to secure a rope over it for climbing. He and anothe sailor scaled the column and drank a toast to the king of England at the top. I chose to stay on the ground.






 

Catacombs of Kom El Showafa is one of the seven wonders of the Middle Ages (how many seven wonders are there? A hundred?).



It's a cemetery with elevated tombs known as a necropolis. The tomb designs merge cultures from Egyptian, Greek, and Roman archeology.




A long spiral staircase leads to the ancient catacombs. It's believed it was originally designed for one rich family, but it was opened later to many more for unknown reasons.


At the bottom is found the tunneled tombs along with the ancient carvings and statues:



Old bones. I guess they're trying to keep them from the stray dogs.


Roman architecture


Egyptian architecture


Tombs added later.


Alexandria is a very old city steeped in ancient ruins and mystique. It's location on the Mediterranean made it a target as well as port of trade for foreign cultures.


Next post will examine further the rich and deep cultures of this famed city along with my difficulty getting back to Cairo.

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