pharaoh's solar boat

Egypt is relocating the Pharaoh’s solar boat to a new mega-museum

Authorities in Egypt announced on Saturday that the Pharaonic solar boat of ancient King Khufu has been relocated to the Grand Egyptian Museum, which is located near the world-famous Giza Pyramids. The boat was discovered in 1954 in the southern corner of the Great Pyramid of Khufu, the largest of the three Giza Pyramids, and dates back 4,500 years.

The Ministry of Tourism and Antiquities said in a statement that it had been on display in a museum on the Giza Plateau. The museum has been closed since August in order to prepare for the transportation, according to the statement.

According to a report by the state-run MENA news agency, the boat, which is 42 meters long and weighs 20 tons, was carried on a smart vehicle after a 10-hour journey that began late Friday.

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The transportation was designed to “protect and preserve the largest and oldest organic artifact made of wood in the history of humanity for future generations,” according to the ministry. It will be displayed at the Grand Egyptian Museum alongside tens of thousands of artifacts, including Tutankhamen’s famous mask and other treasures currently housed in the century-old building in Cairo’s congested Tahrir Square.

Egyptian authorities conducted a grand procession four months ago to commemorate the transfer of 22 of the country’s famous Pharaonic royal mummies from the Egyptian Museum in Cairo‘s heart to their new burial place in the National Museum of Egyptian Civilization, further south in the capital. The events are part of Egypt’s aim to promote its historic relics in order to attract foreign tourists.

Following the 2011 popular revolt that deposed longstanding tyrant Hosni Mubarak, the tourism business has been hit hard by political uncertainty, as well as the recent coronavirus outbreak.