Al Bagawat – A Sprawling Necropolis Of Ancient Tombs
Located close to other sites in the Kharga Oasis, the Christian Cemetery of Al Bagawat is a unique and fairly unknown attraction to see in Egypt. Since many people do not know about this, it is not crowded and certainly worth seeing.
The burial ground is situated about 1 km to the north of the Temple of Hibis, and it is reachable by vehicle. If you are staying in Cairo for your Egypt vacation, you can easily plan a guided tour to the burial grounds. Other names that you may see for this site include the Al-Bagawat Cemetery or simply Al Bagawat.
What To See At The Al Bagawat Cemetery?
What can you expect from a visit to Al Bagawat? The cemetery is home to more than 250 different tombs that were constructed between the fourth and sixth centuries.
Right in the central area of the cemetery, you will be able to view one of the oldest structures that can be found in all of Egypt. The Temple of Al-Ghuwaytah which was originally built some time during the 11th century BC and is believed to be a part of the 27th Pharaonic dynasty.
Because the temple was originally built by Coptic Christians, it is a unique site within a pagan cemetery. Within the walls of the temple are numerous different Christian murals, and most are so well-preserved that you can easily see what they were.
When you visit, be sure to look for a mural of Moses and the Jews on their way out of Egypt. This mural is almost perfectly preserved.
The whole Al Bagawat burial ground is regarded as one of the oldest Christian cemeteries in existence, and it is certainly better preserved than any other Christian cemeteries dating back to the ancient times. Because some of the burial ground actually was built before Christianity, the whole place is a unique and interesting mix of pagan and Coptic Christian images.
Don’t Miss Out
Easily reachable by air-conditioned vehicle, the burial grounds of Al Bagawat are certainly worth your attention when you visit the Kharga Oasis area. Not only will you get to enjoy the ancient history, but you will also see some of the most well-preserved imagery from early Coptic Christianity.
The dome-shaped tombs that surround the area date well before Christianity while the temple in the center is an excellent example of early Christian art and beliefs. While many people do not know about the cemetery, you do not want to be one of those who miss out on this little-gem known as Al Bagawat.
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