Stretching from north to south, 40 kilometers from the Nile River, Cairo is one of the main destinations that tourists choose to visit when they arrive in Egypt. The people of Cairo proudly call the city the “mother of all cities”. Cairo is not only the capital of Egypt, but also the largest city in the Middle East and Africa. Located on the strategic routes that lead to the three continents, Asia, Africa and Europe, Cairo is divided by the Nile into two zones: Rosetta and Damietta, hosting a host of amazing tourist places that have always fascinated historians and archaeologists.
Thousands of years old, Cairo is an amalgam of Islamic, Christian and Jewish culture, which flourishes to this day. If you are planning a first visit to this incredible city, we recommend adding the following tourist objectives to your travel itinerary:
The Egyptian Museum. Located right in the heart of the city is the largest and most popular history museum in Egypt, the Egyptian Museum, locally known as the Cairo Museum. Its collection of over 100,000 artefacts is amazing, featuring ceramic objects, jewelry, and, of course, mummies, all from Egypt’s ancient past. Probably the most popular exhibits in the museum are the artifacts from the tomb of the most famous pharaoh in the history of Egypt, Tutankhamun, including his famous gold funeral mask.
Khan el-Khalil Bazaar. To get a better experience of the city, you must go to the famous Khan el-Khalil Bazaar. The market is located on the narrow alleys of the Islamic Cairo district and has shops where you will find everything from fresh clothes and food to the most authentic Egyptian souvenirs, including spices, jewelry and hookahs. However, don’t buy products with the first price the seller gives you. – but rather negotiate. You will find the market open every day from 9:30 am until sunset.
Islamic Quarter. Cairo has many distinct neighborhoods, each with its own personality, historical sites and architecture. The Islamic quarter is in the eastern part of the city and is marked by a unique architecture and narrow, noisy and crowded alleys. Khan el-Khalil Bazaar and Salah El-Din Fortress are the most popular attractions in the neighborhood.
Christian neighborhood. This neighborhood, also known as Coptic Cairo, consists of the oldest part of the city and hosts a variety of ancient churches that are hundreds of years older than those in the Muslim Quarter. One of the places you should not miss here is the Coptic Church in Egypt, this is the first Christian church on the territory of Africa. Other attractions include the Ben Ezra Synagogue, Amr Ibn El Aas Mosque, Africa’s oldest mosque, and St. Mary’s Church, also known as the Hanging Church because it was built on a high hill, above the ruins of the Babylon Castle.
Al Azhar Park. Tourists who want a little relaxation between exploring the historic sites of Cairo can enjoy a peaceful place in the splendid Al Azhar Park, located in the eastern part of the Islamic Quarter. This is the largest park in Cairo and has an extremely beautiful scenery, with Mediterranean features, housing a lot of fountains, recreation areas, flower gardens and restaurants. In the park you can also visit the Ayyubid wall, built by Salah El-Din 800 years ago.
Memphis. Only 20 kilometers from Cairo is Memphis, an ancient city that was to be the first capital of Egypt. Memphis was founded in 2925 BC. BC, a thousand years before Cairo and is said to be the first imperial city on Earth, being dedicated to the mythical ruler, Menes.
Unfortunately, at present, few ruins can be seen in this ancient city, among them a few necropolis, statues and brick temples.
Pyramids of Giza. 18 kilometers from Cairo, in the southwest, you will find Egypt’s most fascinating attraction, the Pyramids of Giza. Thousands of visitors come here every year to see the three majestic, 4,500-year-old pyramids, which are considered one of the seven wonders of the ancient world. The pyramids mark the tombs of three pharaohs: Cheops (Khufu), Khafra (Chephren) and Menkaura (Mykerinos).
These are just some of the hundreds of tourist attractions you can visit in Cairo that you need to include in your travel itinerary. We also recommend trying local cuisine, visiting the desert and enjoying all the beautiful places that make this travel destination so unique and amazing.