Catacombs of Kom el Shokafa

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Alexandria, Egypt

Catacombs of Kom el Shokafa Alexandria Reviews

trinademattei trinadem…
63 reviews
When in doubt always tour Catacombs. Aug 10, 2014
First off, let me say that I am not claustrophobic. If I were then maybe this would not be my favorite Alexandria site.

Second, I love all Catacombs, I love delving into history and feeling like an explorer. These underground tunnels date back to the 1st century AD and were used until the 4th century AD. Rumor has it that the catacombs were re-discovered in 1900 when a donkey cart fell into a pit. Whether this is true or not does not matter. There are steps and three levels, I would recommend the catacombs only to those who are able bodies. Spend a morning exploring one of the most unique sites in Egypt. Delve into history.

Visited September 2010
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Johnpro Johnpro
208 reviews
Roman Catacombs . Apr 04, 2010
Catacombs of Kom el Shokafa or Kom el Shoqafa cata-comb as they write in the main entrance photo , Is a really historical place of Alexandria .

Egypt is famous not only for its Pyramids which are tombs for the dead and rise to tremendous heights so as to kiss the heaven, but these tombs of Kom el Shoqafa or Mound of Shards (Lofus Keramikos in Greek) do just the opposite; they go deep in to the grounds to embrace the netherworld. The Catacombs of Kom el Shoqafa may not be as famous or visible as the pyramids but they are equally astonishing and perhaps more intriguing than the Pyramids –the mother of all wonders. No wonder they are listed as one among the Seven Medieval Wonders of the World.

These Catacombs are subterranean funeral halls; cut in rock; with galleries for the dead one’s coffins, places for conducting last rites; staircases and dining halls for the ritual feasts to be held associated with the funeral etc all carved in rock. In olden days Christians of the Roman empires also were resorted to bury their dead in subterranean catacombs to evade desecration by the oppressive regimes. Kom el Shoqafa structures were of Pagan sects. The Pharaoh-Cult members believed in rebirths of the dead; hence placed the bodies of the dead intact in sub terrene caves cut in rocks.

The Catacombs are located in a fishing village of Rhakolis; the old part of City of Alexandria in Egypt (Alexandria is known as the Paris of antiquity) where Influence of Greek culture is still very much visible in architecture and artworks scattered throughout the city. The historical turmoil taken place during the past centuries have either eliminated or shattered much of the rich monuments those were standing on the ground (Pyramids though battered to great extents withstood all adversities). The ‘necropolis’ (meaning the city of the dead) by which such sites are called are underground cemeteries could escape damage because of their advantageous location. The Kom el Shoqafa Cemetery is the most beautiful as well as one among all the catacombs.

The whole complex is nothing short of a complete funeral complex; all cut in a rock with a depth equal to the height of a five storied building a shaft of six meter in diameter provided to let light and fresh-air in. This shaft had holes with the stairways to light up the stairs. The real delight for the archeologists is the names provided on the tombs of the dead. The scripts written, the motif, the engravings, statues and even the coffins are all treasures not only to the archeologists but all who love their heritage and history.

The pictures prohibited inside so just some pictures from outside :)

I recommended to you because are very beautiful and specially if are archaeological style :)
3 / 3 TravBuddies found this review helpful/trustworthy
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Johnpro says:
Thank you too Carlos :)
Posted on: Dec 09, 2011
montecarlostar says:
Another of the places I will surely visit if I go to Egypt. Thanks for sharing!!
Posted on: Dec 09, 2011

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