This list of the best places to see in Cairo It will help you discover and not miss anything about all the charm of this chaotic and essential city.
The capital of Egypt, with its more than 20 million inhabitants and horrible traffic, is that kind of city that you hate at first sight but without knowing very well how, as the hours go by, it makes you fall in love with it little by little, while you discover its wonders and the kindness of its people.
Getting lost in the huge bazaar of Jan el-Jalil, looking for the great treasure of Tutankhamen in the Egyptian Museum, discovering the Coptic neighborhood, climbing to the Saladin Citadel to see the Mosque of Muhammad Ali or trying its delicious cuisine, are some of the many things to do in Cairo.
We cannot forget that in addition to all these experiences, you have less than 20 kilometers the only one of the seven Wonders of the Ancient World that is preserved, the impressive Pyramids of Giza.
Based on the experience of the time we spent in the city during our trip to Egypt in 11 days we have made a list of what we believe are the 10 essential places to visit in Cairo.We start!
1. Citadel of Saladin
The Citadel of Saladin, located on the hill of Mokattam, is one of the best viewpoints and one of the places to see in Cairo more essential
This old fortress with high walls and large towers, was built by order of Saladin in 1176, to defend the city from the crossed armies.
Inside the citadel are interesting buildings such as the beautiful Al-Nasir Mosque, with its tile-decorated minarets, the Ottoman-style Gawhara Palace, the Mohammed Ali Tomb, the Yusuf Well and above all, the impressive Mosque of Muhammad Ali. This mosque, also known as the Alabaster Mosque, was built between 1830 and 1848 following the model of the Hagia Sophia mosque in Istanbul and it is highly recommended to visit its interior, where you have to dress properly, to sit on the floor of the immense central vault, decorated with mosaics and precious stones, in which you will forget for a moment the chaos and the noise of the streets.
Visiting hours: every day from 08h to 17h. In winter it closes an hour before.
2. Bazaar of Jan el-Jalili
Getting lost in the old and endless Bazaar of Jan el-Jalili is, without a doubt, one of the Top things to do in Cairo. Its origins date back to 1382 when this place was a caravan, a resting place for traders' caravans and gradually became, over time, a large market with about 1000 stores. Stalls selling similar products are concentrated in certain areas of the bazaar, such as the alley of species or jewelry. In your walk you can also not miss streets like Sikka Jan el-Jalili and Badestan, which still retain the ancient essence of the caravazar in addition to other popular places on the market and what to see in Cairo, like Fishawi coffee, which has been open for more than 200 years without interruption.
After finding all these points, we recommend you forget the map and wander through its labyrinthine streets, while you hear the bargaining between merchants and tourists.
A great option to learn about the history of the most interesting places in the city such as this bazaar is to book this tour of Cairo with a guide in Spanish, which includes hotel pick-up and tickets.
Ibn Tulun Mosque
10. Bab Zuwayla Gate
Bab Zuwayla is one of the three doors that are preserved from the walls of the Old City and our last recommendation of places to see in Cairo. Product of the construction of a second wall to better protect the city during the convulsive eleventh and twelfth centuries, this door, in addition to its history, unleashes its two high minarets that were used to spot possible invaders and that today are two fantastic city viewpoints.
If you do not want to pay commissions when withdrawing money from ATMs in Egypt and always have the current exchange, we recommend using the N26 card to pay and the BNEXT card to get money, our two favorite cards for travel.
You can find much more information in the post of the best cards to travel without commissions.
Map of the best places to visit in Cairo
If you feel like helping us complete the list of the 10 places to see in Cairo, add yours in the comments.