Beni Suef Travel Guide, Egypt
Beni Suef Travel Guide – The City of Linen and Alabaster
Beni Suef is the capital city of the Beni Suef Governorate, in the centre of Egypt. Located on the west bank of the Nile River, 115 km south of Cairo, and 159 miles from Alexandria, Beni Suef is an important agricultural center, famed in the Middle Ages for its linen. The city still keeps continuing the tradition of processing cotton and it has some small industrial installations of carpet-making as well. It is also known for its quarrying of alabaster marble from the hills on the opposite side of the Nile River.
With a population of more than 150,000 inhabitants, Beni Suef is the capital of a poor region where the unemployement rate is significantly high in spite of those 5 cement factories located nearby.
Beni Suef Travel Guide – The Ancient City of Hatnennesut
15 km west of Beni Suef, on the right bank of the Bahr Yusuf, the site of the ancient Heracleopolis Magna, the capital of the 20th nome of Upper Egypt, known as Hatnennesut, lies in desolation. Nothing remains of the city’s great temples. Four columns, probably belonged to a Byzantine church, stand up in the middle of a deserted area. On the other side of the Bahr Yusuf, the remains of the ancient necropolis lie close to Sedment el-Gebel. All the statues, canopic jars and sarcophagi discovered here, are now displayed at the Museum of Beni Suef. It also exhibits a great range of various Greco-Roman items as well as different Muslim items.
In the desert, 2 km northeast of the village of El-Lahun, situated on the right bank of the Bahr Yusuf, not far away from Beni Suef, the travelers can reach the Pyramid of Sesostris II, differed from the usual pattern in having its entrance on the south side instead of the north side. Two narrow passages run down to the granite tomb chamber where the Pharaoh’s impressive red granite sarcophagus and an alabaster table can be seen.
Other eight rock carved tombs and the remains of the much smaller Queen’s Pyramid are situated on the northeast. On the south, there are other four shaft tombs belonging to Pharaoh’s relatives. The Valley Temple is located 3 km east and offers a spectacular archeological site of the 12th Dynasty.
The main tourist attraction in the region is also the pyramid of Meidum. It is believed to have been built for Huni, the last pharaoh of the Third Dynasty. The pyramid was originally built in steps, and then it was changed into an ordinary plain-faced pyramid, probably on the command of the pharaoh Sneferu, his successor. On the south side, there is a subsidiary pyramid, and a memorial temple lies on its east side.
Beni Suef Travel Guide – Transport & Accommodation
As many Beni Suef travel guides point out, the city is well-connected to other urban centres of Egypt by road, rail and river boats. A good network of buses, service taxis and pick-up taxis connects the main sites in the region. Rental cars services are also available at cheap deals.
Low hotel rates can be found almost everywhere in Beni Suef. The range of accommodations varies from luxury hotels to cheap guest houses, but travelers should be aware that there are some places where standards of sanitation are quite poor. Booking in advance can also be done online.
It is worth to know that every visitor should be warned that he will have to do a bit of walking to see the various temples and pyramids. He might also endure the heat while walking from a site to another.
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