Life in Cairo...
In the past few years Cairo has been through some dramatic changes. Since I've been here, I lived in a place called New Cairo - effectively, Cairo's suburbs. Over the last twelve months alone, there have been new malls, new roads even new CITIES have popped up. Times are changing in Egypt, there is a lot more investment happening and it's a great time to visit. If you're not sure what to do in Cairo, this is your ultimate guide! If you require extra information, drop me an email. Whether a few hours, a day or a week, I'm here to help!
Of course, no trip to Cairo is complete without a trip to the famous ancient pyramids at Giza. If you're not travelling as part of a large group, be wary of anyone approaching you with offers of 'help'. No formal assistance is required with buying a ticket - 80LE and going through the security scanners before entering the complex.
Once in, you will be approached by various sellers. A firm 'no' will get rid of unwanted attention.
Take your time walking around the Sphinx and great pyramids. Visit Waheed at the panormaic viewpoint and he'll do a great rate on a camel ride with no hassle. 50LE per camel will suffice.
Don't end your pyramid experience here, take a quadbike tour through the desert for 150LE. Ride solo or pair up, the price is per bike. Additionally, drive a further 20km to Dashur and Sakkara. Once there, you can see the 'wonky' pyramid and go inside the less crowded Red Pyramid. Definitely both fantastic experiences to behold. Entry to each site is 80LE. There is also a fantastic museum at Sakkara.
Al-Azhar Park & Citadel
When most people think of Cairo, they see pyramids and camels. One of the less well known gems of the city is Al-Azhar Park. A huge patch of green amongst Cairo's busy roads and historical buildings. Walk around the paved pathways, eat ice-cream by the lake, visit various restaurants or sit on the grass and watch the world go by. Tickets are 50LE.
Just nearby to the park is the infamous Citadel and Mohamed Ali mosque. You can easily lose a day strolling around, admiring the architecture and looking at the almost panoramic views of Cairo. If you're luck enough, you'll be able to see the pyramids!
Ladies, take a scarf to cover your head or borrow from the supplies offered outside. Tickets from 50LE for tourists.
Khan el Khalili
My absolute favourite place in Cairo is the old market. Here you can pick up the usual touristy 'tat'. Alternatively, you can wander down the ancient alleyways and enjoy friendly conversation with the locals. The Khan el Khalili is a wonderful experience from start to finish. In order to truly benefit, try not to take people too seriously. The locals enjoy the banter. Also, don't accept the first price you're given. Quite often, you can halve it and still not be close to the correct price! Sit at Al Fishawy's coffee shop and watch the world go by. Alternatively, enjoy some local food at Mahfouz Naguib restaurant. Visit the infamous old bookbinding shop of Abd El Zaher, go inside Al-Azhar mosque or simply lose yourself in the winding network of alleyways and cobbled streets.
Cairo Tower is Egypt's tallest building. Located on the downtown island of Zamalek, it boasts great views of the surrounding area and even the pyramids on a clear day.
There are several options - the revolving restaurant, the stationary, less-formal cafe and the 360 degree open air rooftop viewing deck. It's a great way to take in everything that Cairo has to offer.
Tickets are 70LE for non-Egyptians.