Thanks to plans by the Egyptian Ministry of Antiquities, tourists may soon glimpse the relics of the Lighthouse of Pharos, the tallest man-made structure of its time, and now one of the Seven Wonders of the World, which has been at the bottom of the Mediterranean Sea in the Alexandria harbor for centuries.
The museum, which would be the first of its kind, was originally envisioned 19 years ago, but economic and political unrest prevented execution of the plan. In 2008, French architect Jacques Rougerie reached out to the Egyptian Ministry of Antiquities to propose a design, and while plans to build are now back on, he has not been officially commissioned to build the museum.
The design, which was inspired by Jules Verne, notable for his novel 20,000 Leagues Under the Sea, features an above water section to display recovered relics. Running 23 feet below the surface will be a network of underwater tunnels that will give visitors a glimpse at some of the artifacts still buried in the harbor.
UNESCO has offered support to the project since 1997, but Egypt, still reeling from the Arab Spring, may not have the finances to bring the plan to fruition. Despite this, Chinese corporations are showing interest, and if the project moves forward, tourists will be able to visit the Lighthouse, the sunken court of Cleopatra, statues, temples, and much more.
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