The Berenike Project is a scientific mission to excavate, document, analyse and preserve the Graeco-Roman port of Berenike on the coast of the Red Sea and the archaeological remains of the Eastern Desert of Egypt. Berenike functioned from the 3rd century BC to the 6th century AD. Originally founded by Ptolemy II Philadelphus and named after his mother, Berenike was central to the elephant hunting expeditions of the Ptolemy dynasty along the east coast of Africa, and then later to the global Roman trade network that connected the ancient Mediterranean world to the Indian Ocean.
The Mission brings together an international team of scholars, scientists and experts from North America, Europe, Asia and Africa who travel to this remote edge of the world to expand our knowledge of the past and explore new methods in science and technology for research.
The Eastern Desert Survey focuses on the ancient mines, quarries, military outposts, watering stations, and settlements between Berenike and the Nile Valley, together with the network of ancient roads that crossed this harsh and forbidding region. This remote expanse of mountainous desert was exploited for its geological wealth in antiquity and strategic position in ancient trade.