Although the revolution in Egypt ended rather peacefully with the resignation of Hosni Mubarak on February 11, it may be a while before the country appeals to international travelers again.
With its rich heritage and ancient treasures, Egypt tops the list of many travelers’ bucket lists. But if you’re shelving your Egypt travel plans for another time, here are some other destinations where you can explore Egypt without worrying you’ll have to make a sudden exodus.
Egypt Attraction: King Tut
Where to See It: St. Paul, Minnesota, Houston, Texas, and Melbourne, Australia
The blockbuster King Tut and the Golden Age of the Pharaohs exhibit left New York City in January, but portions of it will be on display at three other locations in 2011. Beginning February 18, The Science Museum of Minnesota will be host to Tutankhamun: The Golden King and the Great Pharaohs, which will feature more than 100 artifacts associated with the Boy King and other ancient rulers. The exhibit will also travel to the Museum of Fine Arts Houston, running from October 16 to April 15, 2012. Lest Americans be the only beneficiaries of the traveling Tut show, the Melbourne Museum will put on a show of pharaonic treasures beginning April 8, 2011.
Egypt Attraction: Cleopatra
Where to See It: Cincinnati, Ohio
After King Tut, Cleopatra has the best name recognition among Egyptian royalty. Beginning February 18, 2011, items associated with Queen Cleopatra will be exhibited in the “Queen City” at the Cincinnati Museum Center. Artifacts such as the Colossus King and Queen statues from Heracleion will be on display, as well as busts, small sphinxes, papyrus, pottery, coins, and more. There are plans for Cleopatra: The Search for the Last Queen of Egypt to travel to other North American cities after the Cincinnati show ends on September 5, but those cities have yet to be announced.
Egypt Attraction: Egyptian Museums
Where to See It: London; Runners-Up: New York City and Paris
A number of museums throughout the world have small to sizeable Egyptian collections. However, the most impressive store of Egyptian artifacts can be found at The British Museum. The British Museum houses the largest collection of Egyptian antiquities outside of Egypt, including the Rosetta Stone, the Tomb Chapel of Nebamun (which dates from the 14th century BC), and an entire gallery of mummies’ coffins. Through March 6, the British Museum is also showcasing a special exhibit on the Ancient Egyptian Book of the Dead.
Coming in at a very close tie for second are New York City’s Metropolitan Museum of Art and Musee du Louvre in Paris. Highlights from these two museums include the imposing Temple of Dendur, which occupies one of 40 Egyptian galleries in the Met, and the Chapel of the Tomb of Akhethotep in the Louvre.