Abu Al Abbas al-Mursi Mosque, Alexandria, Egypt (PhotoDisc)

Boats in harbor, Alexandria, Egypt (Hemera/Thinkstock)


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What to do in Alexandria

There's nothing eerie about sunny, seaside Alexandria—but the ghosts of some of history’s biggest names loom large in this Mediterranean city. It was founded by Alexander the Great in 331 B.C., later ruled by Ptolemy, captured by Julius Caesar, and then settled by Cleopatra. In more recent years, the remains of Cleopatra's gilded palace and a trove of artifacts were discovered just off Alexandria's shores. Plans are in place to create the world's first underwater museum here. Until then, however, the city offers plenty of ways to acquaint yourself with its splendid past. Scattered across town are pink granite sphinx statues, ancient Roman theatres, and centuries-old pillars. For a modern taste of history, head to Trianon Café and sip coffee next to the regal Saad Zaghloul Square, haunted by the spirit of former expat resident E.M. Forster.

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  • Alexandria Travel Q&A