view of Alexandria

What To Do In Alexandria Egypt: Top 31 Things To Do In 2024

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Wondering what to do in Alexandria, Egypt? You’ve come to the right place!

Alexandria, Egypt was founded in 331 B.C. by the famous conqueror Alexander the Great. It is one of the 70 cities that Alexander named after himself.

I am a Greek American. My family is from the same part of Greece as Alexander, and I have always felt a personal connection with him. So when I found out that my two week guided tour of Egypt was not going to stop in Alexandria, I went a few days early and explored the city on my own.

Located across the Mediterranean Sea from Greece, Alexandria has a beautiful coastline and many historic sites. Things to do include the Library of Alexandria, Pompey’s Pillar, and the tomb of the author of the Gospel of Mark.

A Sphinx and Pompey's Pillar
A Sphinx and Pompey’s Pillar

Top 31 Things To Do In Alexandria Egypt

There are a lot of amazing things to do in Alexandria. The Library of Alexandria is the most famous library in the world. Ancient Roman sites include Pompei’s Pillar and the Roman Arena. And there are several amazing museums, mosques, and palaces.

My favorite thing to do in Alexandria is to visit the church where Mark the Evangelist is buried. And of course, feed the street cats.

Read on to learn the Top 31 Things to Do in Alexandria!

The Library of Alexandria is shaped like the sun rising out of the Mediterranean Sea
The Library of Alexandria is shaped like the sun rising out of the Mediterranean Sea

1) Visit the Library of Alexandria

The Library of Alexandria was the largest and most famous library in the ancient world. Tragically, it was destroyed in 48 B.C.

A modern library – the Bibliotheca Alexandrina – was built on the site of the original library in 2002. Tilted out towards the sea in the shape of a sundial, it has become the symbol of Alexandra.

The granite exterior wall is carved with letters, pictograms, hieroglyphs and symbols from more than 120 different human scripts.

The library houses a planetarium and several museums – Antiquities, Manuscripts, History of Science, and Anwar Sadat. And it has the distinction of housing the world’s largest digital collection of historical manuscripts.

The Library of Alexandria has over 120 different human scripts on the exterior
The Library of Alexandria has over 120 different human scripts on the exterior

History of the Library of Alexandria

The history of the Library of Alexandria is absolutely fascinating. When Alexander the Great died suddenly in June 323 B.C. his empire plunged into a 40-year civil war. Eventually, Alexander’s 4 generals divided up his empire.

General Ptolemy I Soter founded the Ptolemaic Dynasty, which ruled Egypt from 323-30 B.C. Cleopatra was a descendant of this dynasty!

The Library of Alexandria was first established in 331 B.C. The Ptolemy II Philadelphus (282-246 B.C.) built the physical library sometime during his reign.

Map of ancient Alexandria
Map of ancient Alexandria

Books Confiscated from Ships

In its heyday, the library contained 200,000 – 700,000 books. Most were written in Greek and Egyptian, a now extinct Afro-Asian language. Subjects included rhetoric, law, epic tragedy, comedy, lyrical poetry, history, medicine, mathematics, and natural science.

Book were acquired for the library through 3 means – 1) Purchases in Athens and Rhodes, the two main book markets in the Ancient Mediterranean 2) Copying and 3) Confiscation.

One method of acquiring books was called “from the ships.” Whenever a ship arrived at the harbor in Alexandria, government officials boarded and searched for books.

They then brought all of the books they found to the library for inspection. The books were either returned immediately or confiscated and replaced with a copy made by the library scribes.

The ground floor of the Library of Alexandria
The ground floor of the Library of Alexandria

Did Julius Caesar burn the Library of Alexandria?

As incredible as it sounds, Roman Emperor Julius Caesar was responsible for the destruction of the Library of Alexandria!

In 51 B.C. the famous Egyptian Queen Cleopatra came to power as a joint ruler with her brother Ptolemy XIII. However, the two soon had a falling out and a civil war broke out.

In 48 B.C. Caesar sided with Cleopatra. He soon found himself besieged by the Ptolemaic forces by land and sea in the Great Harbor.

Caesar realized that his only chance lay in setting fire to the enemy fleet. However, the fire spread from the dockyards and burned the original library, which was located at the royal palace near the harbor.

Roman Emperor Julius Caesar
Roman Emperor Julius Caesar

How Many Years did the Burning of Alexandria set back Humanity?

Scholars think that the entire “literary corpus” of ancient Greece was kept at the Library of Alexandria, including works by Aristotle, Sophocles, Euripides, and more. The Egyptian books covered the traditions and history of Ancient Egypt. Thinking about losing all of this knowledge really hurts.

Scholars used the library to create the categorization of Ancient Egypt’s history into 30 dynasties, which is still used today. As well as the first translation of the Hebrew Bible, known as the Septuagint which is still a crucial text in critical Bible studies.

The Library of Alexandria is shaped like a sun dial
The Library of Alexandria is shaped like a sun dial

Statues Found Underwater

Make sure to check out the statues of Alexander the Great and Ptolemy I in the library courtyard.

As incredible as it sounds, they were under water for centuries!!! The statues were among the 7,000 monuments found underwater in the nearby Old East Harbor.

This Statue of Ptolemy I was underwater for thousands of years
This Statue of Ptolemy I was underwater for thousands of years

The Library of Alexandria

Opening Hours: Sunday-Thursday 10:00am-7:00pm and Saturdays 10:00am-2:00pm.
Phone #: +20 3 4839999.
Tickets: Must be purchase at the onsite Ticket Office
Location: Al Azaritah WA Ash Shatebi, Bab Sharqi

➡️ Explore Guided Alexandria Full City Tour and See the Library of Alexandria

2) Marvel at Pompey’s Pillar

Pompey’s Pillar is a giant Corinthian column that was built to commemorates the victory of Roman Emperor Diocletian over a revolt in Alexandria. (It should have been called Diocetian’s Pillar!)+–

Built between 298-302 A.D., it originally supported a colossal statue of Emperor Diocletian wearing armor.

The pillar was located inside a Greek temple called the Serapeum, where the god Serapis was worshipped. It is the only ancient monument in Alexandria that is still standing in its original location.

Pompey's Pillar was located inside a Roman temple called the Serapeum
Pompey’s Pillar was located inside a Roman temple called the Serapeum

Sphinx Statues

There is sphinx statues on both sides of Pompey’s Pillar. They have the body of a lion and the head of a man and are older than the pillar.

The two sphinxes are small Roman copies of the Great Sphinx of Giza, which is the most famous sphinx in Egypt.

Pompey's Pillar is flanked by 2 sphinxes
Pompey’s Pillar is flanked by 2 sphinxes

Pompey’s Pillar

Opening Hours: Open Daily 8:00am-5:00pm
Tickets: EGP 80
Location: In the eastern side of the temenos of the Serapeum of Alexandria, beside the ruins of the temple of Serapis itself

➡️ Explore Alexandria Full Day Tour and See the Pompey’s Pillar

3) Check out the Tomb of Jesus’ Disciple Mark!

St Mark (also known as Mark the Evangelist) is the author of the Gospel of Mark. It is the shortest of the 4 gospels in the New Testament of the Bible.

Mark arrived in Alexandria in 42 A.D. and founded a church which is now known as Saint Mark’s Coptic Orthodox Cathedral. It is the oldest church in Africa. Mark also founded the episcopal see of Alexandria, which was one of the five most important sees of early Christianity.

In 311 A.D. a chapel was found at the church that was believed to hold the body of Mark. When Egypt was invaded by Arabs in 641 A.D. the church was destroyed, but not the tomb. The church was rebuilt in 680 A.D. by Pope John III.

There is some controversy as to whether Mark’s body is still in the church in Alexandria or if it was moved to St Mark’s Basilica in Venice, Italy. Check out the Kims History Travel Where is St. Mark buried – Alexandria or Venice? blog to learn more!

Saint Mark's Church has a unique facade
Saint Mark’s Church has a unique facade

My Experience at Mark’s Tomb

I went to St Mark’s church as part of an all day tour of Alexandria. I didn’t know why the church was famous; I thought it must just be a beautiful old church.

My Alexandria tour Karim guide told me, “This is the tomb of St Mark.” I told him, “I don’t believe in saints.” So then he told me, “Mark the Evangelist.” I told him, “Sorry I don’t know who that is.”

He pointed to an icon and I told him, “Sorry, I still don’t know who that is.” Then he pointed to a picture of the Last Supper of Jesus. I said, “Holy crap!!! Is this the tomb of one of Jesus’ 12 disciples!!! The next time you are guiding Westerners, lead with that.”

I was SO EXCITED to be at the tomb of Mark I literally started jumping up and down.

It turns out I was wrong. Mark wrote the gospel of Mark, but he was NOT one of Jesus’ 12 disciples. Therefore, Mark was not at the Last Supper unless he was there in the background. According to Christian tradition, Mark’s parents owned the Upper Room where the Last Supper took place.

Mark's Tomb in Alexandra
Mark’s Tomb in Alexandra

Mark’s Tomb

Opening Hours: Open Daily 6:00am-10:00pm
Entrance Fee: Free
Location: 19 Al Akbat Church, Al Attarin, Alexandria Governorate 

➡️ Explore Guided Alexandria Full City Tour and Admire Mark’s Coptic Orthodox Cathedral

4) Tour the Citadel of Quaitbay

The Citadel of Quaitbay – also known as Quaitbay Fort – was built in 1477 AD by Sultan Qaitbey. Located on the northern tip of Pharos Island, its purpose was to defend against the Ottoman Empire.

However, despite the Sultan’s efforts, the Ottomans took control of Egypt in 1512.

It looks like a fairy tale
It looks like a fairy tale

Built on the ruins of the Lighthouse of Alexandria!

Incredibly, the citadel was built on the ruins of the ancient Lighthouse of Alexandria, which was one of the Seven Wonders of the World!!! The site was chosen because of the existing foundation which had been destroyed by an earthquake.

The original citadel received extensive damage in 1882 during a British bombardment to quash a nationalist uprising. It was rebuilt around the turn of the 20th century.

Aerial View of the Citadel of Quaitbay
Aerial View of the Citadel of Quaitbay

Citadel of Quaitbay

Opening Hours: Open Daily 9:00am-5:00pm
Phone #: +20 10 00539131
Entrance Fee: Adult EGP60, Student EGP30
Location: Qaitbay Citadel St Alexandria

➡️ Explore Guided Tour To Alexandria From Cairo

5) Eat at the White & Blue Greek Restaurant

The White & Blue Greek Restaurant is located near the Citadel of Quaitbay. It offers a delectable array of Greek cuisine that tantalizes taste buds with its authentic flavors and dishes. After visiting the historic Citadel, stopping by this restaurant for a meal allows you to unwind and savor delicious food.

  • White & Blue Greek Restaurant
  • Food at White & Blue Greek Restaurant
  • food
  • White & Blue Greek Restaurant
  • White & Blue Greek Restaurant

White & Blue Greek Restaurant

Phone #: +20 127-588-8836 
Opening Hours: Open Daily 12:00pm-12:00am
Location: Kayetbai, As Sayalah Sharq, Al Gomrok

6) Explore an Egyptian Aquarium

While exploring Alexandria near the Citadel of Quaitbay, you will come across the Aquarium. However, it’s important to note that the Aquarium might not offer an extensive or exceptional experience compared to other aquariums.

If you have spare time and a curiosity about marine creatures or local aquatic habitats, a visit to the Aquarium Museum could offer a simple and informative experience during your time in Alexandria. You can expect to see various aquatic species, small exhibitions, and displays related to marine life.

I’m hesitant to strongly recommend the Aquarium due to its limited features. It offers a brief and simple glimpse into the aquatic world. If you’re an avid aquarium enthusiast seeking an immersive or extensive aquatic experience, it might not meet your expectations. So, managing expectations about the size and scope of the exhibits is advisable.

  • Egyptian Aquarium
  • Egyptian Aquarium
  • Egyptian Aquarium

Alexandria Aquarium

Opening Hours: Open Daily 9:00am-11:00pm
Entrance Fee: LE 20
Location: As Sayalah Sharq, Al Gomrok, Alexandria Governorate  

7) Take Pictures of Montazah Palace

Montazah Palace stands as a significant historical site in Alexandria, known as the former summer residence of King Farouk, the last reigning king of Egypt. Although entry to the palace itself is restricted, its grounds hold notable attractions.

This exquisite palace complex is where the President of Egypt often hosts meetings with heads of state. While exploring the area, you would love the Haramlek and Salamlek Palaces, witnessing their architectural grandeur from the outside.

The charm of Montazah extends to its breathtaking Royal Gardens, offering a serene and picturesque landscape for a leisurely stroll. You can also enjoy a walk along the famous Montazah Bridge, leading to the Tea Palace island. Here, one can catch glimpses of the royal beaches once frequented by the queens.

While access to the interior of Montazah Palace might be restricted, the beauty of its surroundings, the lush gardens, and the historical significance of the site make it an alluring stop for anyone exploring Alexandria.

Montazah Palace
Montazah Palace

Montazah Palace

Opening Hours: Open Daily 8:00am-12:00am
Phone #: +20 128-608-3740
Entrance Fee: EGP 25 per person
Location: El-Gaish Rd, Al Mandarah Bahri, Montaza 2

➡️Alexandria Day Trip From Cairo

8) Check out the Roman Amphitheater

The Roman Amphitheater in Alexandria is an intriguing site showcasing the sunken monuments discovered beneath the East harbor of the city. It offers a unique display of historical artifacts and structures that have been unearthed. Contemporary research suggests that it might have served as a meeting place for dignitaries rather than solely for performances.

Constructed in the 4th century AD, this amphitheater showcased marble audience sections, accommodating up to 600 spectators across its 13 rows. The upper part comprised granite columns, some still standing today, and featured compartments with domed ceilings for VIP guests.

An earthquake in the 6th century AD caused considerable damage. The amphitheater’s design, based on thick limestone walls and arches, suffered during this seismic event. Only a few remnants persist today, showcasing the exceptional and splendid architectural prowess of the Romans.

The Roman Amphitheater
The Roman Amphitheater

Roman Amphitheater

Opening Hours: Open Daily 8:00am-5:00pm
Entrance Fee: Adults EG£ 15, Children EG£ 8
Location: Ismail Mahana Road, Kom Ad Dakah

➡️Alexandria Day Trip From Cairo

9) Drive across Stanley Bridge

Stretching majestically across the shimmering waters, Stanley Bridge stands as a landmark that connects different parts of Alexandria. It’s not just a pathway; it’s a sight to behold! The bridge’s architectural elegance draws locals and visitors alike, offering breathtaking views of the sea and the cityscape.

Stanley Bridge is not just a mere crossing over the water; it’s a symbol of modernity and progress in this historical city. Moreover, Stanley Bridge isn’t merely a structure; it’s a hub of activity. People come here to enjoy the sea breeze and take photos against the stunning backdrop.

Stanley Bridge
Stanley Bridge

Stanley Bridge

Opening Hours: Always Open
Phone #: +20 127-419-0727
Location: El-Gaish Rd, Fleming, Qism El-Raml

10) Explore the Catacombs of Kom El Shokafa

The Catacombs of Kom El Shofaqa, also known as the “Hill of Treasure,” is an extensive burial ground and royal cemetery originating from the second century AD. This extensive Roman cemetery showcases a unique blend of Egyptian and Roman styles, serving as an intriguing window into the past.

Entering the underground catacombs might seem a little scary due to the closely arranged stone tombs, giving off a spooky yet historically intriguing vibe. It’s like a secret underground city, but for the deceased.

As you walk through these catacombs, you can see the blend of Egyptian and Roman styles in the carvings and designs on the walls. It’s an incredible place to explore and learn about how people honored and remembered their loved ones so many years ago.

The catacombs consist of three levels with chambers cut 35 meters into rock, accessed through a rounded entrance. While the third level remains flooded, you can enter via a rounded shaft with staircases, reaching the main tomb.

This central area leads to an inner sanctum decorated with carvings of the Egyptian god Anubis in Roman attire and statues of Roman emperors who ruled Egypt. Notably, the catacombs feature the tombs of Emperor Tigrane and Wardian, located a short distance from the entrance.

  • Catacombs of Kom El Shokafa
  • Catacombs of Kom El Shokafa
  • Catacombs of Kom El Shokafa
  • Catacombs of Kom El Shokafa
  • Catacombs of Kom El Shokafa
  • Catacombs of Kom El Shokafa
  • Catacombs of Kom El Shokafa
  • Catacombs of Kom El Shokafa

Catacombs of Kom El Shokafa

Opening Hours: Open Daily 9:00am-4:00pm
Entrance Fee: EGP 150
Location: Ras at Tin

➡️Alexandria Day tour from Aexandria port (Archeological)

11) Visit the Royal Jewelry Museum

The Royal Jewelry Museum houses an extensive collection of jewelry, accessories, and personal belongings of the Egyptian royal family. The museum exhibits around 11,500 pieces. Just imagine the vastness of this treasure trove!

The collection includes pieces dating back to the Muhammad Ali Dynasty (19th century) up to the reign of King Farouk (mid-20th century).

Architecture and Layout

The palace comprises of eastern and western wings connected by a corridor. The architecture blends European and Islamic styles. Each wing features a basement and two floors.

  • Eastern Wing: It consists of two halls and a central hall. The central hall is crowned by a bronze statue of a boy. It is adorned with painting of lead-stained glass.
  • Western Wing: It comprises two floors. The first floor contains four halls and the second floor also has four halls.

Its architecture reflects a blend of Ottoman, Florentine, and Rococo styles. This adds to the grandeur of the museum experience.

The museum is only a one-kilometer walk north from the Mahmoud Said Museum, so the two are easily combined together.

Jewels at the Royal Jewelry Museum
Jewels at the Royal Jewelry Museum

Jewelry and Artifacts

The museum displays jewelry sets crafted by Europe’s greatest designers. They were once worn by Egypt’s queens and princesses. You’ll find exquisite items such as tiaras, necklaces, bracelets, and watches worn by members of the royal family.

Exquisite Artifacts: There is a diamond and emerald inlaid collar once owned by Muhammad Ali Pasha himself.

There are items like a gold chessboard, golden binoculars adorned with diamonds, rubies, and emeralds, as well as gold cups embellished with precious stones.

Diamond Flower Jewelry
Diamond Flower Jewelry

Legacy of the Muhammad Ali Dynasty

The Royal Jewelry Museum collection is intricately linked to the illustrious reign of the Muhammad Ali Dynasty, a pivotal era in Egyptian history.

Muhammad Ali (1769-1849) was the Ottoman governor of Egypt from 1805-1848. He is considered the founder of modern Egypt.

This dynasty ruled Egypt from 1805 until the Egyptian Revolution of 1952. The jewelry on display reflects the cultural influence of dynasty’s royal heritage.

 Muhammad Ali
 Muhammad Ali

Former Palace of Princess Fatma Al-Zahra

The museum is located in the former palace of Princess Fatma Al-Zahraa, daughter of Prince Ali Haider, a descendant of Muhammad Ali Pasha. The palace was built in 1919. It turned into a museum of royal jewels in 1986.

Palace of Princess Fatma Al-Zahra
Palace of Princess Fatma Al-Zahra

Royal Jewelry Museum

Opening Hours: Open Daily 9:00am-4:15pm
Entrance Fee: EGP 100
Location: 27 Ahmed Yehia, San Stefano, El Raml 2

➡️Admission to the Royal Jewellery Museum

12) Visit the National Museum of Alexandria

The National Museum of Alexandria offers a captivating journey through Egypt’s rich history and heritage. It showcases the grandeur and sophistication of civilizations that flourished here millennia ago.

It houses an extensive collection of artifacts that span millennia of Egyptian history. From ancient artifacts dating back to Pharaonic times to Greco-Roman relics, the exhibits offer a comprehensive overview of Egypt’s cultural evolution.

The museum’s exhibits offer a comprehensive portrayal of Alexandria’s rich past, encompassing various eras such as the Pharaonic, Greco-Roman, Coptic, and Islamic periods. You can explore an extensive collection of artifacts, including statues, pottery, coins, jewelry, and relics recovered from archaeological sites in and around Alexandria.

  • Pharoah Akhenaten
  • National Museum of Alexandria
  • Grave Tombs
  • Statues
  • Roman Mosaic

National Museum of Alexandria

Opening Hours: Open Daily 9:00am-4:30pm
Phone #: +20 3-483-5519
Entrance Fee: Adult: EGP 180, Student: EGP 90
Location: 131 El-Shaheed Galal El-Desouky, Bab Sharqi WA Wabour Al Meyah, Bab Sharqi

➡️Explore Guided Alexandria Full Day Tour

13) Play with Cats at the Alexandria Cat Rescue Centre

Like most places in the world, Egypt has a large population of cats and dogs that live on the street, and no animal control. The Alexandria Cat Rescue Centre provides veterinary service for injured street cats.

Check out the Mama Kims Alexandria Cat Rescue Centre blog to learn more!

Blind cat at Alexandria Cat Rescue Centre
A blind cat at Alexandria Cat Rescue Centre (Photo Courtesy of ACRC)

14) Socialize Cats, Dogs, & Horses at Animal Aid Egypt

Visiting Animal Aid Egypt is a meaningful and fulfilling activity for animal lovers or individuals interested in supporting animal welfare initiatives while in Alexandria.

Animal Aid Egypt (AAE) rescues, rehabilitates, and gives better lives to stray, working, and abandoned animals in Alexandria, Egypt. They run a clinic that helps stray cats and dogs as well as working animals including donkeys, mules, horses, and camels in Alexandria, Egypt. Their clinic also includes a mobile vet service for farm animals.

Consider donating to Animal Aid Egypt to support their efforts. Donations can help cover expenses related to veterinary care, food, shelter, and other necessities for the animals under their care. Check out the Mama Kims Animal Aid Egypt blog to learn more!

White cat at AAE clinic
A resident of the Animal Aid Egypt clinic in Alexandria (Photo Courtesy of AAE)

Animal Aid Egypt

Opening Hours: Open Daily 11:00am-5:00pm
Entrance Fee: Free
Location: 1 Mahmoud El Esawi St (Miami Area)

15) Visit the El Nabi Daniel Mosque

The Nabi Daniel Mosque doesn’t boast impressive architectural features but carries historical and religious significance. It is located on Nabi Daniel Street in Moharram Bek in Alexandria.

The mosque was constructed at the end of the 18th century on the site of a 4th century Roman temple. Later, it was restored in 1823 by Mohammad Ali. Over time, various explorers and scholars sought to uncover the mosque’s secrets, with tales of hidden chambers and crypts. Despite their accounts, the true extent of the mosque’s historical treasures remains mysterious.

It is named after Muhammad Daniel al-Mawsili, a Muslim scholar of the Shafi’i school of thought. The mosque is believed to house the remains of the Prophet Daniel, along with his companion Sidi Lokman el Hakim. Some scholars believe that the mosque might house the tomb of Alexander the Great. These association adds to the historical allure of the site, drawing visitors and believers from various backgrounds.

El Nabi Daniel Mosque Entrance
El Nabi Daniel Mosque Entrance

Beneath the Nabi Daniel Mosque

Below the ground, about 6 meters deep, the Nabi Daniel Mosque features marble and granite finishes. Aside from Nabi Daniel’s crypt, there are at least two more chambers to the north and east. Sidi Luqman el-Hakeem’s crypt is on the right side, attached to the marbled wall.

Mosaic of Alexander the Great
Mosaic of Alexander the Great

El Nabi Daniel Mosque

Opening Hours: Always Open
Entrance Fee: Free
Location: 21 Al Naby Danyal, Kom Ad Dakah Gharb, Al Attarin

6) Visit the Abbo Elabbas Mosque

When visiting Alexandria, the Abbo Elabbas Mosque is a must-see attraction. Located across from the old harbor, it is known as the prettiest and largest mosque in the city. Its size and intricate architectural details make it a captivating sight for visitors, showcasing the city’s rich cultural and historical heritage.

Architecture and Design

The mosque’s grand entrance features horseshoe arches, distributing structural weight while adding beauty. Inside, colorful mosaic tiles create harmony and serenity. The central dome, adorned with intricate calligraphy and designs, serves as a focal point.

The Sidi Morsi Abu al-Abbas Mosque integrates design elements to improve practicality. Arched doorways and windows permit abundant natural light, fostering a cheerful ambiance indoors. The prayer hall’s layout and column placement prioritize unobstructed views, facilitating worshippers’ undisturbed prayer experiences.

How to Get to the Abbo Elabbas Mosque

Upon arrival in Alexandria, reaching the Sidi Morsi Abu al-Abbas Mosque is straightforward. It’s conveniently situated in the city center, making it easily accessible. For those who enjoy walking, the mosque is within walking distance of many popular landmarks, offering a pleasant stroll through Alexandria’s streets. Otherwise, taxis are readily available for a quick and hassle-free ride to the mosque.

Abbo Elabbas Mosque
Abbo Elabbas Mosque

Abbo Elabbas Mosque

Opening Hours: 10:30am-9:00pm
Entrance Fee: Free
Location: Al Gomrok, Alexandria Governorate 

➡️Day-Trip to Alexandria from Cairo by Private Car

17) Take Pictures of the Unknown Soldier of Alexandria Memorial

The Unknown Soldier of Alexandria Memorial is a significant site honoring the sacrifice of unnamed soldiers who lost their lives in the sea battles. It’s a place for reflection and gratitude for their service and bravery.

The Unknown Soldier of Alexandria Memorial is situated in the Mansheya district. The memorial stands proudly on Alexandria’s Corniche near Mansheya Square. It is Open Daily for visitors.

It was constructed when Muhammed Ali of Egypt was in charge because Alexandria was essential for his son Ibrahim Pasha’s journey to Greece during the Greek War of Independence.

The Unknown Soldier of Alexandria Memorial
The Unknown Soldier of Alexandria Memorial

Architectural Features and Artistry

The monument features a marble base encircled by intricately carved circular marble columns forming a semi-circle around the tomb of the Unknown Soldier. Each column showcases four cube-shaped marble blocks adorned with elaborate inscriptions and decorations.

An ornate cornice embellished with inscriptions and designs graces the monument’s midsection, previously housing the statue of Khedive Ismail.

Soldiers in front of the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier
Soldiers in front of the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier

Unknown Soldier of Alexandria Memorial

Opening Hours: Always Open
Entrance Fee: Free
Location: Mansheya district

18) Explore Old Downtown

Visiting the Old Downtown in Alexandria was like stepping back in time. The local historical architecture is truly fascinating. Everywhere you look, there are buildings showcasing beautiful Baroque-style designs, making the area so unique.

The charm of Old Town lies in its mix of Italian and French-style properties. The streets are lined with vintage buildings housing unique boutiques, cozy bakeries, antique shops, lively bars, and delightful restaurants. Every step you take feels like a journey through time.

One thing that made getting around so easy was the free King Street Trolley. It stops every few blocks and runs all day long, making it convenient to explore this historic area. And let’s not forget the Old Town Farmers’ Market! It’s been running for over 260 years, offering fresh produce, delicious bread, meats, cheeses, and so much more every Saturday morning.

The Old Downtown is a treasure trove for architecture lovers and history enthusiasts like me. Exploring the streets felt like exploring a living museum, with each building having its own tale to tell. It’s a must-visit spot to experience the diverse architectural heritage of this vibrant city.

St Catherine's Cathedral is neo-Baroque
St Catherine’s Cathedral is neo-Baroque

Old Downtown

Opening Hours: Varies
Location: Al Mesallah Sharq, Al Attarin

19) Shop at the San Stefano Grand Mall

San Stefano Grand Mall in Alexandria offers various activities and experiences. You can explore a wide range of shops featuring international and local brands, fashion boutiques, electronics stores, and more. There are numerous restaurants, cafes, and eateries offering various cuisines.

Things to do include watching movies at the cinema, gaming zones, or visiting recreational areas within the mall. And there is a beautiful view of the Mediterranean Sea!

San Stefano Grand Mall is so pretty!
San Stefano Grand Mall is so pretty!

San Stefano Grand Mall

Opening Hours: 10:00am-12:00am
Cost: Varies
Location: El-Gaish Rd, San Stefano, El Raml 2

20) Take Pictures of the Ras el-Tin Palace

Ras el-Tin Palace stands as a significant historical landmark in Alexandria, Egypt, renowned for its connection to various pivotal moments in Egypt’s history. Originally constructed as a summer retreat for the Egyptian monarchy, Ras el-Tin Palace eventually became the primary residence of King Farouk I.

This grand palace, built in the early 19th century, boasts impressive architecture with a blend of European and Arabic styles. Its strategic location provides stunning views of the sea and the Alexandria harbor.

Notably, Ras el-Tin Palace witnessed significant historical events, including the abdication of King Farouk I in 1952. Over time, the palace saw the passing of Muhammad Ali Pasha and the departure of Khedive Ismail. Additionally, it was where the last ruling monarch of Egypt resided before leaving the country.

While the interior of the palace is not accessible to the public, visitors can admire the beauty of its exterior and appreciate its historical importance from the outside. Nearby stands the Ras El-Tin Lighthouse, one of the oldest lighthouses globally.

Ras el-Tin Palace
Ras el-Tin Palace

Ras el-Tin Palace

Opening Hours: Not open to visitors
Cost: Free
Location: On the coast of the Mediterranean Sea

21) Mahmoud Said Museum

The Mahmoud Said Museum stands as a tribute to the prominent Egyptian artist Mahmoud Said, celebrated for his significant contributions to the country’s art scene. The museum, formerly Said Pasha Palace, showcases Said’s exceptional collection of artworks, reflecting his mastery in portraying Egyptian culture and heritage through paintings.

One of the museum’s rooms showcases female nude portraits, a surprising choice given Alexandria’s present more conservative atmosphere. Said’s artworks depict diverse women and their graceful bodies, adorned simply with accessories like headscarves, jewelry, or bracelets, celebrating the beauty of everyday Egyptian women. Notably, some of his paintings have recently fetched millions of dollars at auctions in Europe.

Conveniently situated just .6 miles north of the Royal Jewelry Museum, visiting both places together is easily manageable.

Mahmoud Said Museum
Mahmoud Said Museum

Mahmoud Said Museum

Opening Hours: 9:00am-4:00. Closed on Monday and Friday
Cost: Free
Location: Ganaklis

22) El-Maamoura Beach

El-Maamoura Beach is a picturesque coastal destination, renowned for its sandy shores and serene ambiance. This beautiful beachscape offers visitors a delightful escape from the city’s hustle and bustle. It held a prestigious reputation in ancient times as Alexandria’s premier beach.

You can revel in the soft sands and crystal-clear waters, making it a perfect spot for sunbathing. It invites visitors to soak in the stunning views of the Mediterranean and enjoy the calming sounds of the waves. The beach is divided into private and public sections, known for its somewhat pricey nature. Even if you opt out of paying an entrance fee, you’ll likely want to rent sun loungers and an umbrella for a more comfortable experience.

Visitors often combine their trip to Montazah Palace with a visit to this beach. During the winter months, the beach is less crowded, whereas in the summer, it tends to get considerably busier. The nearest and most recommended accommodation option by the beach is the Paradise Hotel.

El-Maamoura Beach
El-Maamoura Beach

El-Maamoura Beach

Opening Hours: Always Open
Cost: EGP 50
Location: Al Mandarah Bahri, Montaza 2

23) Explore the Antoniadis Garden

The Antoniades Gardens, among the oldest in the world, hold the distinction of being the oldest gardens in Alexandria. In the 19th century, a wealthy Greek individual owned these grounds, naming them “Basteria Gardens.” Later, Muhammad Ali Pasha acquired the gardens and constructed a palace within the premises.

Initially spanning around 50 acres, the gardens underwent expansions ordered by Khedive Ismail, increasing their size. Khedive Ismail’s fondness for bird hunting led to the addition of numerous rare trees and plants. Besides its natural beauty, the garden showcases splendid sculptures, decorative statues, along with installations featuring Greek-style architecture.

Antoniadis Garden
Antoniadis Garden

Antoniadis Garden

Opening Hours: 8:00am-5:00pm
Cost: EGP 3
Phone #: +20 127-339-5826
Location: Smoha Sq., Sidi Gabir

24) Tour the Greco-Roman Museum

The Graeco-Roman Museum, located in Alexandria, Egypt, is renowned for its remarkable collection of artifacts dating back to the Graeco-Roman period. This museum houses a diverse array of relics, sculptures, statues, mosaics, and other archaeological finds that highlight the fusion of Greek and Roman influences in ancient Egypt.

The museum’s exhibits include an assortment of sculptures depicting deities, rulers, and everyday life during the Greco-Roman era. It showcases the artistic and cultural exchange between Egypt and the Mediterranean civilizations. You can explore intricately designed mosaics, intricate jewelry, coins, pottery, and various artifacts that provide insights into the daily lives, traditions, and beliefs of the people from that period.

Greco-Roman Museum

Opening Hours: 9:00am-5:00pm
Cost: Adult: EGP 300 Student: EGP 150
Location: Al Mesallah Sharq, Al Attarin

25) Pay Respects at the Anfushi Tomb

The Anfushi Tombs are ancient burial sites dating back to the Greco-Roman period. These tombs represent a blend of Egyptian, Greek, and Roman architectural styles and burial practices.

These tombs, hewn out of rock, feature ornate decorations, intricate reliefs, and artistic motifs that reflect the multicultural influences prevalent in Alexandria during that era. The architectural design often includes elements like columns, friezes, and inscriptions.

Accessing the Anfushi Tombs can be a bit challenging due to limited parking availability in the vicinity. It’s advisable to park your vehicle at a nearby location and walk the remaining distance to reach the tombs.

Anfushi Tomb

Opening Hours: 9:00am-5:00pm
Cost: EGP 40
Location: Ibrahim Al Awal Sq., Ras at Tin, Al Gomrok

26) Shop at the Alexandria Souk

The Alexandria Souk is a vibrant and bustling marketplace in the heart of Alexandria, Egypt. Steeped in history and tradition, this souk offers a diverse array of goods, from traditional handicrafts and souvenirs to spices, textiles, jewelry, and local artisanal products.

Here you’ll experience the sights, sounds, and scents of an authentic Egyptian marketplace. The labyrinthine alleys and bustling streets are filled with colorful stalls and shops, each offering unique and fascinating items.

Apart from shopping, the souk provides an opportunity to engage with local merchants and artisans, gaining insight into Egyptian traditions and craftsmanship. Whether you’re seeking unique souvenirs or simply wish to explore the lively ambiance of a traditional Egyptian market, a visit to the Alexandria Souk will be an enriching experience.

Alexandria Souk

Opening Hours: 10:00am-10:00pm. Closed on Sundays
Cost: Free
Location: Montaza 2

27) Visit the Mustafa Kamel Hellenistic Necropolis

The Mustafa Kamel Hellenistic Necropolis is an ancient burial site located in Alexandria. It dates back to the Hellenistic period, approximately from the 3rd to 1st centuries BCE, during the rule of the Ptolemaic dynasty.

It’s an archaeological site featuring a collection of tombs, burial chambers, and structures carved into the rock. The necropolis demonstrates the unique burial practices and architectural styles during the Hellenistic period. You can can explore the various tombs, observe the architectural features, and witness the historical significance of this burial ground.

Mustafa Kamel Hellenistic Necropolis

Cost: EGP 20
Location: Al Moaaskar Al Romani, Mustafa Kamel WA Bolkli, Sidi Gaber

28) Explore the Museum of Fine Arts

The Museum of Fine Arts in Alexandria, Egypt, is a renowned institution dedicated to showcasing a diverse collection of artistic works, including paintings, sculptures, and artifacts. This museum houses an extensive range of art pieces from different periods, highlighting both local Egyptian artists and international contributions.

Here you can explore various galleries displaying a rich array of artworks, spanning different artistic movements and historical periods. The museum’s collection includes ancient Egyptian artifacts, contemporary paintings, sculptures, and decorative arts, offering a comprehensive overview of artistic heritage and cultural evolution.

Museum of Fine Arts

Opening Hours: 10:00am-3:30pm. Closed on Mondays and Fridays
Cost: Free
Phone #: +20 12 73784455
Location: El-Mohandes Ahmed Ismail, Emberouz WA Moharram Beik, Moharam Bek

29) Visit the Cavafy Museum

The Cavafy Museum is the same apartment where the Alexandrian-Greek poet Constantine Cavafy resided during his last 25 years. The apartment is located above a brothel on the former Rue Lepsius.

The museum preserves Cavafy’s living space, with two of the six rooms arranged exactly as Cavafy kept them during his time there. Throughout the museum, you’ll find editions of the poet’s publications. And there are photocopies of his manuscripts, notebooks, and correspondence, spread out on tables in the other rooms.

Cavafy museum also houses a collection of portraits and paintings of Constantine Cavafy, which adorn the walls of the last room.

I think it’s an emotional experience for the more poetic souls. Plan for 30-45 minutes for the visit.

Cavafy Museum

Opening Hours: 10:00am-4:30pm. Closed on Mondays
Cost: Free
Location: Rue C.P. Cavafy, 4, Attarin

30) Experience Art at the Alexandria Opera House

The Alexandria Opera House (Sayed Darwish Theatre) was inaugurated in 1918  during the reign of Sultan Fuad I. It was originally named the Mohammed Ali Theatre. Later in 1962, it was renamed after the renowned Egyptian composer Sayed Darwish.

Alexandria Opera House serves as a platform for both local and international artists to showcase their talents. It hosts a diverse range of performances, including opera, ballet, classical music concerts, theater productions, Cultural Weeks, and Arab and international festivals.

The theater underwent major renovations and expansions in 2000, restoring the building to its former glory.

Alexandria Opera House

Opening Hours: 11:00am-3:00pm (Sunday, Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday), 11:00am-3:30pm (Thursday). Closed on Fridays and Saturdays
Cost: Free
Phone #: +20 3 4800138
Location: 22 El Horreya Rd., Raml station

31) Explore the El Alamein War Museum

The El Alamein War Museum was established in 1956 and was extensively renovated in 1992. The museum’s artifacts includes tanks, military vehicles, artillery pieces, and personal items belonging to the soldiers.

The permanent display showroom

The permanent display showroom is divided into two parts:

  • The Main Lobby: It is decorated with graffiti depicting war stories and images of army commanders like Bernard Montgomery and Erwin Rommel. It also exhibits war maps of North African states. There is a memorial in the center symbolizing the transition from war to peace.
  • Five halls (Combined Hall, Britain Hall, Egypt Hall, Germany Hall, Italy Hall): The fours separate halls honor the four main countries in the conflict: Great Britain, Italy, Germany, and Egypt. Combined hall displays military items from all participating countries in the war. And there are exhibits that include soldiers’ cutlery, models of soldiers, and soldiers’ holy books.

Outside, visitors can see weapons and artillery used in the battle (canons, tanks, personnel carriers, airplanes, armored vehicles.)

El Alamein War Museum

Opening Hours: 9:00am-4:00pm
Cost: Adult: EGP 120, Student: EGP 60
Location: Marsa Matrouh Rd, Al Alameen City, El Alamein

Where To Stay In Alexandria

From budget-friendly options to luxurious hotels, Alexandria accommodates travelers of all types. The coastal areas boast stunning views of the Mediterranean, while the city center offers proximity to historical sites and vibrant local markets.

📍Budget Option (Cherry Maryski Hotel)

Situated just 200 meters from the picturesque waterfront of Alexandria on the Mediterranean Sea, Cherry Maryski Hotel seamlessly blends modern comforts with traditional charm. The hotel’s restaurant offers a delightful fusion of continental dishes and local specialties from Northern Egypt.

Cherry Maryski Hotel boasts an idyllic location in the downtown area, within a 5-minute walk to various historical sites. The hotel provides easy access to vital zones and is strategically positioned for exploring remarkable areas in Alexandria. Noteworthy landmarks such as the Alexandria Citadel (1.9 km) and the Catacombs of Kom el Shoqafa (1.6 km) are in close proximity.

For travelers, the Borg el Arab International Airport is conveniently located 37 km away from Cherry Maryski Hotel.

Click here for online reservation!

➡️Click here to book your stay at Cherry Maryski Hotel!

📍Mid-Range Option (Hotel Cecil Alexandria)

Hotel Cecil Alexandria is in a great spot, right in the business district, and it has a lovely view of the bay and yacht club. It’s known for its classic charm and has been a part of Alexandria’s history.

The rooms at Cecil Hotel Alexandria are spacious and have French beds, chandeliers, and nice carpets. The furniture and decorations are all matched in patterns and colors to make the place look really artistic.

Cecil Hotel Alexandria is perfect for people who appreciate excellent service and attention to detail. It’s right in the heart of Alexandria, making it super convenient.

Click here for online reservation!

➡️Click here to book your stay at Hotel Cecil Alexandria!

📍Luxury Option (Four Seasons Hotel Alexandria at San Stefano)

Four Seasons Hotel Alexandria at San Stefano is part of the renowned Four Seasons chain and is situated along the waterfront. It offers upscale amenities, stunning views, a luxurious experience, and an unforgettable stay in Alexandria. On one side of the hotel, there’s the sparkling Mediterranean Sea, and on the other, a lively city full of energy.

Click here to experience an unforgettable experience at Four Seasons Hotel Alexandria.

➡️Click here to book your stay at Four Seasons Hotel Alexandria at San Stefano!

FAQs

There are many Frequently Asked Questions for Alexandria, Egypt. I have answered the most common below.

Is it worth visiting Alexandria?

Alexandria is a captivating city renowned for its historical significance, Mediterranean coastline, and cultural heritage. Visitors are treated to an array of ancient sites, museums, vibrant markets, and a unique blend of Greco-Roman and Egyptian history, making it a worthwhile destination for history enthusiasts, culture seekers, and beach lovers alike. Its rich tapestry of attractions and storied past ensure a memorable experience for those exploring this iconic city.

Alexandria Corniche and Stanley Bridge
Alexandria Corniche and Stanley Bridge

What are the two greatest attractions in Alexandria Egypt?

Alexandria is famed for numerous remarkable attractions, but two of its most prominent are the Library of Alexandria, a modern homage to the ancient library, and the Citadel of Qaitbay, a historic fortress built upon the ruins of the legendary Pharos Lighthouse. These sites encapsulate the city’s rich history and cultural significance, drawing in countless visitors seeking to explore Alexandria’s past grandeur.

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Are there Pyramids in Alexandria?

No, there are no pyramids in Alexandria. The pyramids, including the famous ones in Giza, are located near Cairo, which is quite far from Alexandria.

Alexandria is known for its rich history, ancient landmarks, and its role as a major port city on the Mediterranean Sea.

Should I go to Cairo or Alexandria?

If you have time, spend a few days in both. Otherwise, it depends on what you are looking for. In Cairo you can see hundreds of ancient Egyptian artifacts at the Egyptian Museum, including King Tut’s death mask and burial items. And you can go to the nearby world renown Pyramids of Giza.

Alexandria, known for its coastal charm and Greco-Roman history, offers a more relaxed atmosphere and proximity to the Mediterranean Sea. However, the historic sites are not as spectacular as those in Cairo. The choice depends on your interests and the experiences you seek.

How do you get from Alexandria to Cairo?

To travel from Alexandria to Cairo, you have several transportation options. Choose theones that best fits your preferences and schedule. You can:

  • By Car: You can drive from Alexandria to Cairo, which takes approximately 2 to 3 hours, depending on traffic conditions.
  • By Train: There are trains connecting Alexandria and Cairo. The journey takes around 2 to 3 hours, and trains offer a comfortable and scenic ride.
  • By Bus: Buses also operate between Alexandria and Cairo, with varying travel times depending on the type of bus and traffic.
  • By Private Transportation Services: Taxis and private car services are available for a more personalized and convenient travel experience.
  • By Plane: While not common for such a short distance, there are flights available between Alexandria and Cairo if you prefer air travel.

Is Alexandria Egypt Safe?

Yes, Alexandria is considered safe. The city sees people walking and traffic on the streets until after midnight, and it’s not uncommon for individuals to be out and about until early morning.

Additionally, many people walk safely in the streets towards mosques for dawn prayers at dawn. The city’s vibrant atmosphere and the normalcy of people’s activities contribute to a sense of safety in Alexandria.

What are the Best Things about living in Alexandria?

Living in Alexandria offers a unique blend of historical charm and modern amenities. Among the best things in the city are the Citadel of Qaitbay, the Bibliotheca Alexandrina, and the Catacombs of Kom El Shoqafa. The Mediterranean coastline adds to the city’s beauty, providing residents with scenic views and pleasant seaside experiences.

The city also boasts a lively cultural scene, with various museums, art galleries, and theaters. Residents can explore the vibrant street markets and enjoy delicious local cuisine.

Is Living in Alexandria Cheap?

Living in Alexandria can be relatively affordable compared to other cities like Cairo. The city offers a range of options for various budgets. Housing costs, including rent and utilities, are generally lower than in many major cities.

Additionally, everyday expenses like groceries, transportation, and dining out are reasonably priced, making it more cost-effective for residents. Thus, Alexandria often provides a balance between affordability and quality of life.

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Final Thoughts

And there you have it, a complete guide on things to do in Alexandria Egypt.

Alexandria is a captivating destination with a myriad of experiences for visitors. The city’s rich historical tapestry, from the ancient Library of Alexandria to the Catacombs of Kom El Shoqafa, offers a fascinating journey through time.

Whether exploring ancient wonders, enjoying the coastal beauty, or immersing in the city’s contemporary arts and culinary scene, there is no shortage of things to do.

Plan your visit to Alexandria today and uncover the treasures that await you. Your adventure starts here!

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