CAIRO – 1 December 2022: As part of the visitor services development project, which is being implemented in cooperation with the UNESCO Regional Office in Cairo, the Ministry of Tourism and Antiquities has completed the installation of informative and explanatory panels at the Abu Mena Archaeological Site.
Secretary General of the Supreme Council of Antiquities Mostafa Waziri explained that this project comes within the framework of the Ministry's keenness to develop and raise the efficiency of all archaeological sites nationwide, especially the World Heritage Sites, given their great historical and archaeological importance.
According to Waziri, the 19 panels that were installed at the site include defining the path of the visit and also includes historical and archaeological information about the Abu Mena Archaeological site. A designated visit path for individuals with special needs has also been created to ensure that the site is available for facilitated tourism.
For his part, Director General of the General Administration of Services at Tourist and Archaeological Sites and Museums Basem Ibrahim stated that work is currently underway to install umbrellas and wooden benches for visitors to rest, increase the number of toilets, and rehabilitate a parking lot for cars and tourist buses in a way that guarantees raising the efficiency of the services provided, improving the tourist experience for all visitors, and providing all means of easy access to the archaeological site.
Moreover, the Abu Mena Archaeological Site is located west of the city of Alexandria, 12 km from the city of Burj Al Arab, and dates back to between the fourth and sixth centuries AD.
It was registered as an archaeological site in accordance with Resolution No. 698 in 1956, and in 1979 the site was registered on the UNESCO World Heritage List.
Furthermore, Abu Mena Archaeological Site is the most important Christian pilgrimage center in Egypt. It consists of the remains of the outer walls that surrounded the entire site, the northern and western gates, and some streets surrounded by rows of columns that carried roofs. There are houses, bathrooms and private restrooms for pilgrims coming to the area. The courtyard of the pilgrims in which they gather is surrounded by rows of marble columns. Behind the columns numerous shops sell souvenirs to the pilgrims, which often include statues, amulets and small pottery bottles of oil.
South of this courtyard is a group of churches, a place for inpatient care, as well as water tanks and housing units.
Excavations have so far revealed 10 buildings that make up the huge architectural complex of Abu Mena, namely the Great Basilica, the Burial Church, the Baptistery, the Guest House, the Double Bath, the Northern Bath, the Northern Basilica, the Eastern Church and the Western Church.