Al-Matariyyah – Once a Great City of Grandeur, Now Forgotten
Al-Matariyyah – Once AN EXCELLENT City Of Grandeur, Now Forgotten
The town of Al-Matariyyah which is based on the northern region of Cairo is among the country’s oldest cities, and was once renowned because of its unrivaled beauty and grandeur. Visit this marvelous historical city in comfort and style with among our guided Cairo tour packages.
Architectural fragment of basilica in Al-Matariyyah (Heliopolis), Cairo
It appears that no matter just how many ancient and gloriously fascinating attractions you visit in Cairo, you can find always more Cairo places of interest coming, and the town of Al-Matariyya is really a perfect example. This ancient city that is also known by other names, including Heliopolis and Mataria, is in fact also among the country’s oldest cities.
NOT JUST A Must-See Site…
While Al-Matariyyah may not feature prominently on the map of present day tourists, it had been once a city of spectacular grandeur, in addition to a city of immense fiscal value. Unfortunately, it had been only as recently as 2001 that archaeologists begun to uncover the real value of the spot. Up until this aspect, the city had generally been doomed due to urban development. Thankfully many restrictions have since been set up in a bid to regulate any more destruction.
Perhaps one of the most interesting recent discoveries at Al-Matariyyah may be the giant Obelisk that is thought to be the oldest such statue ever discovered in the united kingdom. Carved from bright red graphite, the Obelisk that was largely hidden from view, also once stood alongside somebody close to the entrance to the Temple of Amun.
The present day city of Al-Matariyyah is situated on top of that which was once an enormous temple dedicated to sunlight, or sunlight god referred to as Re. The Ancient Egyptians believed that the temple marked the positioning that all living beings came, now many experts think that the website was also home to a massive temple which was a lot more massive than any temple ever built, like the enormous Karnak Temple in Luxor.
THE ULTIMATE Destruction of Al-Matariyyah
During history however, several invading armies, in conjunction with the increasing urban sprawl of Cairo all but destroyed the website. Plunderers made off using its many columns, an enormous obelisk, and even a number of the boundary walls.
Despite the fact that the red granite obelisk was restored in the 1970s, the rapid growth of Cairo continued at an alarming pace. It had been only once a construction project unearthed statues and sarcophagi that construction work around Al-Matariyyah was halted. By 2001, the nation’s archaeological experts were exploring the website and discovering remains of once rich tombs.
Birth Of A FRESH Open Air Museum
Because of the countless recent discoveries which were made in the region, plans are underway to gradually convert the complete site into an open air museum. Today, visitors can follow a route that takes them from the enormous obelisk to the recently discovered tomb where they are able to see the sarcophagi that was discovered on the website.
From the tomb visitors can proceed to the famous “Tree of the Virgin Mary”. This can be a tree planted in the 1600s, but that is thought to have replaced the initial tree under that your Holy Family used to rest throughout their travels through Egypt.
Al-Matariyyah is obviously a must-see destination, and particularly for all those thinking about Pharaonic Egypt since there have been numerous fascinating discoveries made which relate with several dynasties. From Ramesses II to Teti, the website is providing an extraordinary glimpse in to the past, and visitors can enjoy touring an archaeological site that’s “in the works”.
The encompassing neighborhoods may also be nice places to explore since this Cairo suburb offers visitors many interesting sites and attractions, including from the newer eras too.
If you want to go to this open air museum that is still in the making, please make sure to explore our Cairo tour packages. Without our packages include a stop by at Al-Matariyyah, our experienced team of representatives could be more than pleased to customize some of our existing Egypt guided tours to suit your exact needs.