In a wider move to boost tourism to Egypt’s various archeological site, the ministry of Antiquities has opened the bent pyramid of the Old kingdom ruler Senefru in Dashour to the public.
The bent was closed for major development and renovation; it is the first time that it opens to visitors since 1965, as per Minister of Antiquities Khaled El Enani.
The pyramid, one of the key highlights of Dahshour, is registered in UNESCO’s World Heritage list. It affectionally got its name from the sudden shift in its incline, about halfway through the construction.
It was meant to look like its northern counterparts in Giza, however, the pyramid’s instability suffered as it was being built on silty clay, thus its angle shifted from 54 degree to 43.
The pyramid, intended to be the burial place of the founder of the fourth dynasty King Senefreu, reflects an important stage of the development in the construction of the royal tombs. Following the step pyramid of Djoser, it was meant to be the first ‘true’ pyramid in perfectly triangular form.
In terms of renovation work, Secretary of the Supreme Council of Antiquities, Mostafa Waziri revealed that the restoration work inside the pyramid included setting up a lighting system, a walkway for visitors and consolidation of the internal structure.
The Minister also announced a new archaeological discovery carried out by an Egyptian archaeological mission that has been excavating southeast of the pyramid of Amenhotep II. The mission was able to unearth a number of wooden coffins, some of which still retaining mummies, as well as pottery and tools.
Egypt’s only Middle Kingdom pyramid, Senusret II’s Lahun pyramid located in Fayoum, was also officially opened to the public at the end of June.
Pyramids are considered one of Egypt’s greatest attractions with millions of tourists visiting the country every year to see the ones in Giza and Djoser’s Step Pyramid in Saqqara. As such, historical and archaeological sub-branches of tourism are considered pivotal to the industry as a whole with tourism accounting nearly 12 percent of the country’s GDP in 2018.