El Shatby Tombs
El Shatby Tombs may not be Egypt’s most popular tourist attraction; but they’re worth visiting if you’re on a mission to see as many historical places as possible.
Alexandria, Egypt, may not have world-famous SCUBA diving and other activities, but it does have its share of amazing historical landmarks. In fact, most international visitors come to the region purely for this purpose; despite the fact that the region is also famed for its museums; galleries, and other attractions. El Shatby Tombs; for example, are one of Alexandria‘s ancient tombs.
One thing visitors should be aware of is that the El Shatby tombs are also called as the Chatby tombs; which might cause confusion for some visitors. The fact that there are two distinct burial cemeteries in the same district further adds to the confusion.
- The Military and War Cemetery
- El Shatby Tombs
El Shatby Tombs, unlike the adjoining Military and War Cemetery, are much older, dating from the 3rd century BC, just before the end of the Pharaonic period. Although the Greeks were still in authority at the time, there was a great deal of Greek and Roman influence at the time of their construction. This blending of civilizations can still be experienced today in Alexandria; not only when visiting the tombs, but also throughout the city. In fact; it’s one of the characteristics that contributes to the area’s allure.
Having said that, many Egypt private tour packages do not include a visit to the area’s ancient tombs; so keep that in mind while making your vacation plans. If you’re truly keen on seeing the country’s less-touristy sights, you might want to look into personalized Egypt excursions.
Typical Greek Custom
El Shatby Tombs clearly followed tradition; at least to some extent, for those who are familiar with typical Greek architecture of the time. Visitors to the tombs, on the other hand, are greeted by two gigantic sphinx statues; which are not Greek in origin but are an important component of Egyptian mythology. After all, the Egyptians believed the sphinx was in charge of protecting the afterlife’s entrance.
Many Greek influences can be seen in the El Shatby tombs, and for those with a particular interest; a trip to the adjacent Alexandria National Museum is well worth a visit; as many of the site’s smaller objects were transported there for safekeeping.
Despite the fact that the tombs were built underground, the majority of the complex is now above ground, and the areas that remain underneath are mainly off limits to tourists due to safety concerns. Those parts that are open, however, have been carved from native sandstone and are well worth a visit. The area above ground is truly lovely, and it now includes a small garden and seating area that are usually very quiet and peaceful.
Though the monument is not on everyone’s “must see” list for the city, it is well worth a visit if you are fascinated in Egyptian history during this time period.