Egypt has opened three tombs in the ancient city of Luxor to the public, hoping to spur tourism interest despite the shadow of last weekend's airline crash in the Sinai Peninsula.

The most significant tomb opened Thursday is that of Huy, Viceroy of Kush under the famed King Tutankhamun. It has wall paintings of Nubians bringing tributes.

Antiquities Minister Mamdouh Eldamaty says the tombs, in the Qurnat Marey area of Luxor, are among the most important ones made for nobles of the New Kingdom period, which ended over 3,000 years ago.

Eldamaty says that the opening is part of his ministry's general plan to highlight new archaeological sites to encourage tourism.

Tourism, a key foreign currency earner for Egypt's economy, is making a gradual recovery after years of political upheaval.