Egyptian Museum Guide: 7 Places to Visit for History and Archaeology

7 Archaeological Museums to Visit in Egypt

You’ll eventually see why many people are fascinated to learn more about Egypt.

Egypt is one of the most interesting countries in the world. Rich in history and culture, it is a land of legend, myth, ancient civilizations, and the Pyramids of Giza. That said, it’s a fascinating country to visit if you love history and artefacts. 

As one of the world’s oldest civilizations, you can find plenty of historical places and symbols in Egypt. These include the famous pyramids and the Valley of the Kings. There are approximately 118 pyramids that have been discovered in Egypt. Most of them were built to house the tombs of pharaohs. So, these are considered sacred and precious by Egyptians.

Aside from the pyramids, Egypt is also known for the Nile river, gold deposits, the Sphinx, and never-ending deserts. Furthermore, due to its rich and long history, you can find plenty of Egyptian museums that showcase ancient Egypt and its development. Here are some of the best archaeological museums in Egypt to learn more about the ancient world and explore the country.

Also read: Inside Egyptian Pyramids: How It Really Looks Like

1. The Egyptian Museum

egyptian museum

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The Egyptian Museum is the oldest museum of ancient artefacts worldwide. It is found near Tahrir Square in the centre of Cairo. It showcases many important ancient Egyptian history pieces and the most extensive collection of pharaonic antiquities worldwide. You can find many things from before the dynasties to the Greco-Roman time.

The Egyptian government built the museum in 1835 near the Ezbekieh Garden. However, it was moved to the Cairo Citadel later on. On the ground floor, you can see old coins, papyrus exhibits, metal artefacts, and more. At the same time, the first floor is dedicated to the excavation made in the Valley of the Kings. You can see some pieces of work like King Tutankhamun’s funerary mask.

Additionally, the museum houses the fantastic statues of great kings Khafe, Khufu, and Menkaure, the founders of the pyramids at the Giza plateau. It keeps more than 100,000 items, and many artefacts were never displayed because the museum is crowded.

2. Nubian Museum

egyptian museum

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The Nubian Museum is one of the most substantial museums in Egypt. This award-winning Egyptian museum focuses on the cultural and historical heritage of Nubia. It was created through the combined efforts of local researchers and archaeologists with the help of UNESCO to preserve ancient Egyptian monuments rescued from the waters of the Nile.

It has over 500,000 displays that show the history and culture of Nubia. The museum allows visitors to understand the complicated history of the region. And every exhibit has a written description in English and Arabic. Most visitors are attracted to the museum garden, where over 80 historical rocks and statues are hosted. Some of these rocks and figures are dedicated to the gods of ancient Nubia. 

Also, some artificial waterfalls and lakes demonstrate the Nile river and its flow to the lands of Nubia. There is also a theatre where visitors can witness Nubian dances to see the unique folkways of Nubian people.

The museum has a section that shows the history of the new civilization in Nubia after the decline of the pyramid-building period or the Sixth Pharaonic Dynasty. It also displays several masterpieces, such as tulip pots from the Kerma Culture, a Meroitic offering table, a statue of Harawa and King Taharq, and many more.

3. The Luxor Museum

egyptian museum

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From the capital city of Cairo, you can get to Luxor by plane, cruise, or express train, where you can see the great Luxor Museum. However, many visitors prefer to travel to Luxor city by night train. Buying these cheaper train tickets provides a more affordable way to travel around compared to other transportation modes.

The Luxor Museum was launched as the first modern museum in Egypt. It is one of Egypt’s most precious assembled exhibits of Egyptian antiquities that comes from the Old Kingdom to the Mamluk period. Most of its pieces are gathered from the Theban necropolis and temples. It highlights the sculptural representations of Amenhotep III. During his reign, several Luxor temples were built.

Some objects from the opening of Tuntankhamun’s tomb are also displayed in the exhibit. The mummies of pharaohs Ramesses I and Ahmose I were unveiled in 2004 and became the top attractions. They were displayed without their bandages, which is quite frightening yet fascinating.

Also read: 12 Coolest Pyramids in the World (That Aren’t in Egypt!)

4. Bibliotheca Alexandrina

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Here, we have the reincarnation of the ancient Library of Alexandria, which was built during the reign of Ptolemy II Philadelphus but destroyed during the Roman occupation in the third century AD. Construction of the new library started in 1995 and was officially reopened after seven years. Bibliotheca Alexandrina houses four Egyptian museums: the Museum of Rare Books and Manuscripts, the Sadat Museum, the Museum of History Science, and the Museum of Antiquity.

The Bibliotheca Alexandrina aims to be the world’s window on Egypt and vice versa. It is dedicated to being the centre of excellence, a primary institution of the digital age, and a learning centre.

The current library has much space to store 8 million books and a 20,000 square meter reading room. There is also a conference centre, as well as specialized libraries for multimedia, the visually impaired, children, and maps. Furthermore, it has more space for a manuscript restoration laboratory, four art galleries, and more.

5. The Coptic Museum

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The Coptic Museum in Cairo is a large, secure building with thousands of artefacts and art pieces. It contains the most extensive Christian-Egyptian artefacts and chronicles of Egyptian history.

The museum focuses on the artefacts and art of Egypt’s Coptic civilizations, Christians’ discovery of their faith in the first century AD, and St. Mark’s evangelical work. It displays sculptures from the fourth and fifth centuries showing subjects borrowed from Greco-Roman mythology featured with Christian symbolism.

6. Grand Egyptian Museum

The Grand Egyptian Museum was designed by Heneghan Peng Architects, who won the architectural design competition. The construction of the new museum started in earnest in 2005. It is just a mile from the monumental Great Pyramids of Giza and is set to open in late 2023. 

This Egyptian museum was arranged to be the world’s largest archaeological museum complex dedicated to Egyptian civilization, showing more than 100,000 artefacts. The statue of Ramses II stands in the centre of the great court.

This cultural centre is committed to years of egyptology and research. It will house artefacts, ruins, and antiquity, showing Egypt’s rich history and culture. It will also include a children’s museum, exhibition space, education facilities, a conference, and a large conservation centre. 

Meanwhile, the main galleries will be organized according to these themes: Kingship and Power, Beliefs and Eternity, and Society. The museum will display an entire narrative to show King Tut’s lifestyle, from what and when he ate to what he wore. 

7. Islamic Museum of Cairo

The Islamic Museum of Cairo is located in the centre of Islamic Cairo. It is one of the largest museums in the world that is dedicated to Islamic artefacts and art. However, many of their relics were acquired outside of Egypt. These masterpieces represent most of the significant events in Islamic history and most regions of the Islamic world.

Its collections include significant artefacts, such as rare Qurans, an engraved jug, and a restored Maluk mosaic fountain. It is an ideal place for historians, researchers, and visitors interested in learning more about the intricacies of Islamic sciences, such as Engineering, Medicine, and Astronomy.

Also read: How to Spend 6 Days in Egypt, According to This Writer From Manila

Visiting Egypt and exploring its culture and history can be a fantastic experience. These Egyptian museums are some of the places you should visit for a fully wonderful and unique experience in the country. You’ll eventually see why many people are fascinated to learn more about Egypt.

Featured image credit: aldboroughprimaryschool | Pixabay

About Author

Ivan Serrano
Ivan Serrano

A technology and business writer since 2015, Ivan has been working with companies like SmallBizClub, StartupNation, Namecheap, and Time Doctor. He is obsessed with the constantly evolving and fast-paced society, and finding new ways to integrate that into amazing content that teaches the readers something new.


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