Scenic Beauty At Saputara
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 Saputara- the charming hill station on the border of Maharashtra and Gujarat is where the Nature resides. A short drive scenic drive from Mumbai covering lush green fields and fauna and flora of nature will make your journey memorable and you may check in any of the deluxe hotels or resorts in Saputara and unwind and chill out over a glass of beer or fresh juice and start your sight- seeing the  [...]

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Bibliotheca Alexandrina: Cultural centre and library

Posted on December 14, 2010 | Art MuseumsNo Comment


Also known as the Alexandrian library, the Bibliotheca Alexandrina is a great manifestation of the old library in Alexandrina. The old one since 288 B.C. was the home of the world’s largest manuscript collection as well as was the learning center for more than 500 years until the 3rd century. In comparison with this one, the new dramatic Bibliotheca Alexandrina featuring a great sundial or an angled discus since 2002 holds four museums as well as art galleries for temporary displays, a planetarium, 15 permanent exhibitions, a manuscript restoration laboratory, and libraries of multimedia, maps, youngsters, children, and visually impaired.


This Alexandrian library also holds religious significance as it was a temple in olden days, was closely related with the Christian theologians, and had boasted several religious manuscripts even of Qur’an. Nestled on Mediterranean coast in Egypt’s Alexandrina, Bibliotheca Alexandrina is now the home of over eight million books with an equally surprising structural design. Its main reading room is under a glass-paneled roof of 32 m tilting outwards looking similar to a sundial. Even the walls are not left unsculpted; these gray Aswan granites show figures from more than 100 human scripts. In short, it aims to be the window of world in Egypt and vice versa along with a centre of learning.

The amazing Main Reading Hall spreads until 70,000 sq m and that too on more than 10 cascading levels. Such an unimaginable hall has the capacity of taking in 2,000 readers simultaneously. Within, there are some 200 study rooms meant for researches as well as scholars. So, you know how 8 million books are stored in this awesome and awful Bibliotheca Alexandrina. Kept in elegantly lit shelves spreading across the hall, these books are given by the people and institutions from all over the world on an assortment of languages as well as subjects. This collection actually focuses on meeting the above stated aims of the new library.


Nestled in the library’s heart is the Manuscript & Rare Book Exhibition Gallery where you will come across 12 showcases that were given away by Italy as well as 20 Egyptian show cases. In these cases, there are some very rare books as well as approximately 120 manuscripts. Over the Islamic manuscripts, the wall are festooned with the dual kiswa pieces, which are adorned black brocade cover of the Holy Kaaba inflated with the Quran’s verses and gold.

Next in the line of the attractions is the Antiquities Museum that is today the home of artifacts found at the site of construction of Bibliotheca Alexandrina. Herein, there are 1,100 items and reveals much about the different ages of Egyptian civilization right from the Pharaonic until the Islamic eras, the Greek settlement that came with the Alexander’s conquest, and the Coptic as well as Roman settlements.


Speaking about some more displays in this splendid library, you will surely admire the ‘Impressions of Alexandrina’ that refers to a collection of initial designs, early photographs, lithographs, and Alexandrina maps from the travelers as well as artists of the time period from 15th to 19th centuries. Also, look for the permanent display that honors cinematic works, literary, and paintings of the famous director of Egypt as well as production designer named Shadi Abdel Salam.

Among the libraries, check out for the special Nobel zone wherein you can find books of the Nobel Prize winners since 1901. Coming to its museums, look for the antiquities, manuscript, science, and sadat museums.

Do not forget to explore the CULTURAMA hall dedicated to the 3 eras of ancient Egypt. There is a big 180-degree interactive computer holding nine flat screens in semicircle way along with the nine video projectors. Here, you can explore Ancient Egyptian Period, Modern Egypt, and Islamic Civilization. Also, discover the VISTA – Virtual Immersive Science and Technology Applications that incorporates the CAVE technology via which you can see the BA model recreating the library, Sphinx, and socio-economic data visualization.

Also, check out its planetarium that exists as the big dome on the roof, manuscript restoration laboratory, and a big conference center.

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