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Old Cairo

Old Cairo, or Masr el-Qadima, provides a historical link between Pharaonic times and the Islamic period. This district was the center of Cairo during Roman times, until after the Arab invasion. The historical sites in this area, which has been continuously inhabited for around 2000 years, are surrounded by modern residences. Old Cairo is easily […]

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Nilometer

Nilometer (2 Al Malek Al Saleh St., Rhoda Island, Cairo) — Located on the lower end of Rhoda Island, in Cairo, the Nilometer was used to measure the level of the river in times past. The structure consists of a measuring device, or a graduated column sitting below the Nile’s level, reached by steps that […]

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Maidum Pyramid

Maidum Pyramid (100 km. south of Cairo) — Built by the pharaoh Snefru, the Father of Khufu, the pyramid of Maidum seems to stand alone on the edge of the desert, close to several smaller mastabas. The eight layers structure is believed to be the first attempt at a true pyramid and it is the […]

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Madrassa and Mausoleum of Sultan al-Zahir Barquq

Madrassa and Mausoleum of Sultan al-Zahir Barquq — In the late 14th century, Sultan Barquq decided to build a complex in the coveted surroundings of the Qalawunid monuments on the famous Mo’ezz Li Din-Illah Street in Cairo. Barquq was of Circassian origins, he was acquired by the Turkish Bahri Mamluks and after regaining his freedom […]

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Ibn Tulun Mosque

Ibn Tulun Mosque (Tolon, As Sayedah Zeinab,, Cairo) — This spectacular 9thth-century edifice with spiral minaret is one of the most striking pieces of Islamic architecture in Cairo. Ibn Tulun Mosque is one of the largest mosques in the world. Ahmed Ibn Tulun, the Turkish governour who founded it, declared his independence from the Ottoman […]

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Greek Orthodox Church of St. George

Greek Orthodox Church of St. George (Mar Girgis Street, Cairo) — The nearby Greek Orthodox Church of St. George has the same circular design of the Roman tower upon which it was built. Founded in the 10th Century, and alternating between Greek and Coptic ownership, the original building was damaged by fire in 1904, though […]

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Gawhara Palace

Gawhara Palace (The Citadel, Quesm Al Khalifah, Cairo) — First thing’s first, don’t expect to see any jewels in here.  Although “Gawhara” means jewel in Arabic, Gawhara was actually the name of Mohammed Ali’s last wife, Gawhara Hanem, after whom the palace was named. Dating back to 1814, the palace is a marvel of Ottoman […]

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Gawhar al-Lala Mosque

Gawhar al-Lala Mosque (overlooking Citadel Square, facing Rifai Mosque, Cairo) — At a short walking distance from the Citadel square, niched in a small street emerging from behind the grand Al-Rifai Mosque, lies the Gawhar al-Lala mosque. This relatively small mosque covers a surface of a little less than 200 square meters. Dating back to […]

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Egyptian Museum

Egyptian Museum (Al Ismaileyah, Qasr an Nile) — With over 120,000 artifacts, the museum houses an unbelievable exhibit depicting ancient Egypt’s glorious reign. Mummies, sarcophagi, pottery, jewelry and of course King Tutankhamen’s treasures, it’s all there. The boy-king’s death-mask – discovered in its tomb – is made of solid gold and it has been described […]

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El Muallaqa Church

El Muallaqa Church (Mar Girgis Metro Station, Cairo) – The hanging church is considered the most famous Coptic church in old Cairo . Its name derived from the fact of being built over the ruins of the Roman bastion (Babylon Fortess), visible at the back of the church. The church probably dates from the 7th […]