The second largest city and the main port of Egypt, Alexandria was built by the Greek architect Dinocrates (332-331 BC) on the site of an old village, Rhakotis, at the orders of Alexander the Great. The city, immortalising Alexander’s name, quickly flourished into a prominent cultural, intellectual, political, and economic metropolis, the remains of which are still evident to this day. Alexandria lies north-west of the Nile delta and stretches along a narrow land strip between the Mediterranean Sea and Lake Mariut (Mareotis). It is linked to Cairo by two major highways and a railway line. It is one of the most notable summer resorts in the Middle East; its beaches, with white sands and magnificent scenery, stretch for 140 kilometres along the Mediterranean Sea, from Abu Qir in the east to Al-Alamein and Sidi Abdul Rahman in the west.