Alexandria, Bride of the Mediterranean
Alexandria as local calls it the “Bride of the Mediterranean” is the largest city on the Mediterranean Sea and second-largest city of Egypt. It was founded in 331BC by Alexander the Great when he conquered this area. Primarily, it is best known for the “Lighthouse of Alexandria” which is known as one of the “Seven Wonders of the Ancient World”. In addition, its Great Library was the largest in the ancient world.
How to Get there
If you are in Egypt, then you can make a day trip from Cairo to visit this coastal city, as we did in our case. Our one-day tour was a part of a week-long itinerary to Egypt and we went there by air-conditioned coach. However, there are many other means of transport available to reach there. You can go to Alexandria by
Conveniently, you can take a 50-minute flight from Cairo and the fare starts from 50$. You can check the best fare and can book by Skyscanner.
An important tip! While booking, if you change your location to Egypt, then you can get a better rate for you flight.
In the same way, you can go to Alexandria by choosing one of the bus services which includes Golden Arrow, West Delta, Super Jet, Pullman, and El Gouna. In addition, the one-way fare is 25-30 Egyptian Pounds. Another option is to go by Go Bus which is a good option and the online fare is 80-90 Egyptian pounds.
Indeed, train is another option and it take around 2 hours and fifty minutes to reach there. You can book by Seat61
By Private Taxi
You can book a private taxi from 25-30 USD and it takes around 2 hours to reach there.
Get around the city of Alexandria
Alexandria has a coastline of 32 km, So, we need to take a vehicle to go around to see the must-visit attractions there. The main sources of transportation are private taxis, Public bus or Tuktuk. Of course, you can enjoy the tram within Alexandria too.
Places to Visit in Alexandria
The vibe of Alexandria is quite different from Cairo. There are a number of historical sites which lie at different locations. I will discuss the sites which we visited during our day tour.
Pompey’s Pillar is a city’s prime site. It is a sandstone pillar, which is erected between 298-302AD in the honor of Roman Emperor Diocletian. Indeed, it is a complete site for history lovers and you can see the ruins of an ancient temple named “Temple of Serapeum” beside the pillar. In addition, you can also visit the underground storerooms which are the only remains of the Great library of ancient Egypt. Moreover, we can admire the two giant sphinx which are part of the site. The entrance ticket is 80 Egyptian Pounds.
Citadel of Qaitbay
This castle was built in the exact place where the Alexandria lighthouse used to be a part. It is built in the 15th century for defense purposes. The Citadel is situated at the entrance of the Eastern harbor. The entry ticket was 60 Egyptian pounds. There wasn’t any rush due to Corona Pandemic when we visited it. We took a couple of pictures on the lawn and then took our way to go upstairs. We climbed and see all the four floors of the Qaitbay. The large number of rooms it has and the view from the top floor was magnificent.
We strolled along the waterfront from Qaitbay to the newly built jetty and found many awesome views from a different perspective.
Cafes of Alexandria
Alexandria is famous for its café culture. So, People go to cafes and enjoy shisha and Huqqas there. It is also the best place to visit for seafood lovers. We did our lunch at a famous restaurant CHICKEN TIKKA and enjoyed our seafood with an awesome view of the Mediterranean.
Great Library of Alexandria
It used to be the world’s largest library in ancient times. It was built around 323 to 317BC and after serving around 300 years, it was partially burnt out. The new library was established in the new era and primarily, it is famous for its architecture. We went there after closing time.
Down Town and Denial Nabi Mosque
After lunch, we went to see a famous mosque which is assumed to be related to Denial Prophet and his companion Luqman Hakeem. Although we went there after the closing time our guide made it possible to visit the place inside the mosque. There was a small shrine inside the basement. We went there through the street of the old city.
Picturesqu Stanley Bridge
Finally, we went to this famous bridge at sunset time and it is a good reason to visit it at sunset time. The magnificent panoramic views of the bay make this 400m long bridge a beautiful place to spend a little time there.
where you can stay
As we went to Alexandria for a day trip so we hadn’t made a night stay there and came back to Cairo. We stayed at Holiday Inn Maadi in Cairo and found it a reasonable place to live for a few nights.
Is a day trip to Alexandria worth it?
Of course, a big yes and definitely it worth for the time which we have spent there. However, we recommend doing it as a day trip. Although a day trip makes our day a long day as it includes the to and from the journey of Cairo. However, if you have time, then you can spend a couple of days here and see more of its urban life. You can feel the difference in its vibe when you compare it with Capital Cairo.