Saturday 10 of December, 2022
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Ministry of Tourism Rescues Abu Mena Holy Site With Restoration Effort

The project successfully implemented 53 wells on site, 12 of which are around the tomb area. It also added a modern water extraction system, via expulsion lines spreading to 6150 linear metres.

Cairo Scene

The Ministry of Tourism and Antiquities has been working on rescuing the Abu Mena tourism site in Burj el Arab from the high levels of groundwater that has threatened it for 21 years, which earned it a place on the UNESCO List of World Heritage in Danger all those years ago. Now after an extensive amount of work, the Ministry is preparing to request the site’s removal from the list, signalling a successful restoration effort.


The Abu Mena site dates back to between 4th and 6th century AD, and is one of the most important Christian pilgrimage sites in Egypt due to the presence of St. Mena’s tomb. The site has had a lot of work done over the past few years, the most notable being the lowering of groundwater levels by installing water collection drains, pipes, parcel lines and manholes. 


The project successfully implemented 53 wells on site, 12 of which are around the tomb area. It also added a modern water extraction system, via expulsion lines spreading to 6150 linear metres.


The Ministry also worked on restoring the architectural integrity of the site, and is currently restoring the columns and the basilica on site.


The restoration process of the site started in 2019, and cost EGP 50 Million so far, all of which were self-financed by the government. 


After a successful test run in 2021, the Ministry is preparing to send the request to UNESCO in 2022. The ministry started by sending UNESCO a report of all the changes done on site, and the trials done to ensure its safety.