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CULTNAT Center in South Sinai


Seeking to document the heritage of Sinai, CULTNAT established a new center in Serabit el-Khadim area. The center works on preserving the cultural and natural heritage of the area and developing it to be a local and international touristic attraction.
Dr. Yasser ElShayeb says that this center was established as the last phase of a project of documentation of the cultural heritage of the Bedouins of South Sinai. The project lasted for four years, from 2007 to 2011 and was sponsored by the European Union, under the auspices of the South Sinai Regional Development Program and managed by CULTNAT. He added that the center was named “Beit Hathor” after the ancient Egyptian goddess “Hathor”, the Lady of Turquoise (a precious stone). Dr. ElShayeb stressed on the center’s aim to create a cultural resource management model of South Sinai cultural heritage by documenting and preserving Serabit el-Khadim area with the help of the local inhabitants.
Dr. Yasser ElShayeb also mentioned that the center is located on the Red Sea shore close to Abu-Zenima town on the way from Cairo to Sharm el-Sheikh. The cultural and archaeological heritage of Serabit el-Khadim area has a unique taste that is shown clearly in the remnants of the mining activities. The Hathor center hosts an information center including documentary movies, cultural publications, portraits describing the area of Serabit el-Khadim, portraits written in Braille, as well as a collection of references in the cultural, social and archaeological fields that are related to the area and its surroundings. Moreover, the center has a rest place for the visitors and a small shop for selling Bedouin handicrafts.
The showrooms of Hathor Center display the different aspects of Serabit el-Khadim area. This includes a 3D model of the temple of Hathor, the Egyptian goddess; this temple is the only ancient Egyptian temple in South Sinai and is considered one of the biggest and oldest temples in Sinai.
In addition, the center offers guided tours for researchers and experts who are interested in the area, as well as consultation services in documenting the cultural and natural heritage of Sinai.