Things To Do In Asyut
Although Asyut is an ancient city, there are not too many tourist attractions or historical sites to visit there. The hills contain ancient tombs, but they haven’t been visited or excavated yet.
1) Holy Virgin Dirunka Convent
The location of the Holy Virgin convent was chosen because it is close to a cave in which the Holy Family took refuge after they came to Egypt. It is 11km away from Asyut. The convent was constructed inside of a cliff. Roughly 120 meters below the convent is a valley. You’ll find 50 monks and 50 nuns living in the convent. If you want to visit the convent, there is always a monk available to show guests around.
During the last two weeks of August, there is a saint’s festival held at the convent in honor of the Virgin Mary and Jesus Christ. Millions of pilgrims visit the convent to pray and worship them. A taxi is the only mode of public transportation that will bring you to the convent.
2) Khet Tomb
During the 10th dynasty, there was a prince named Khat East. This tomb is in honor of him. Tefye, who was his wife, is also honored in the tomb. You can see a lot of text on a partially destroyed wall which references King Merikare.
In the main room, the southern wall has one pillar and several rows filled with armed warriors. These are supposed to be the statues of the dead. If you take the underground passage in the main room, it will lead to the tomb of Tefyeb Prince Home.
3) Coptic Chapel
You’ll find a tiny Coptic chapel on a hill with rock surrounding it. The views from the hill give you a wide glance of the other hills throughout the western Libyan desert.
4) Arab Cemetery
If you travel north, you will find the ancient cemetery, which contains the graves of hundreds of Arabs. Also, if you go west of the Sharia el-Mahatta station and move over the Channel Sohagiya, there are tombs on slopes just past the foothills. The tombs contain the bodies of people from Ancient Asyut.
Activities to Try in Asyut
The Asyut Barrage is a newly renovated building from the 19th century. The barrage is really a monument to signify a time when Asyut was a wealthy city. The original construction of the barrage had started in 1898 and finished in 1902. Its purpose was to manage the water flowing into the Ibrahimiyya Canal so that the valley could be irrigated properly. It even is useful as a bridge for getting from one side of the Nile River to the other side.
You are not allowed to take photographs at the barrage, so it is best that you leave your phone or digital camera in your pocket or purse. If you travel north, you will find Banana Island, which is a great location for a picnic because it is relaxing and offers some nice shade from the trees. You need to take a felucca to get to the island, which means you must negotiate with the captain of the boat. Roughly 140 EGP per hour is the average cost.
The Old Town contains a popular marketplace along the Nile riverbank. If you go past the bridge in the north and reach the Ibrahimiya Assy dam, head west from the railway and you will find the Old Town.
Updated On May 04, 2020