This makes it the largest city in the Arab World and the 2nd in Africa in terms of population.
Cairo has quite a distinctive centric location in Egypt. Situated in the Northern section of the country, Cairo is located just before the Nile Valley is transformed into the Nile Delta when the river begins to have two banks. It is remarkable to mention that Cairo was established around 20 kilometers to the East South of Memphis, the first capital of unified Egypt, established more than 5000 years ago. Greater Cairo is a term to define Cairo and the cities and areas around it which hosts a large number of Egyptian population.
Cairo hosts a unique variety of Pharaonic, Greco Roman, Christian, and Islamic monuments that is quite difficult to be found anywhere else in the world. This makes it one of the most important touristic destinations for tourists who spend their vacations in Egypt.
The foundation of Cairo took place during the 10th century AD. This was when the Fatimids, coming from Northern Africa, took control of Egypt. In 969, Gawhar Al Seqely, the Fatimid king, ordered the construction of the new capital that was called Al Qahera, or the Victorious.
There are two interpretations for this name. The first is that it was a symbol of the victories of the Fatimids, while the second affirms that it was called after a star in the sky that the king saw while thinking about a name for his new city.
The most important landmarks of Cairo include the Pyramids of Giza, the Egyptian Museum of Antiquities, the Saladin Citadel, Khan El Khalili, Saqqara, Coptic Cairo. These are the most visited sites. However, Cairo is considered an open-air museum of historical sites dating to various periods of the Egyptian history.
Related to Cairo
Frequently Asked Questions
Egypt is safe country to visit with notable low crime rate, tourist attractions are well secured and there is no common negative attitude towards foreigners, with some sensible precautions and preparations you will feel at home and as safe as you'll ever be.
There is no special dress code when visiting Egypt tourist sites, modest dress is recommended in less tourist sites and there is no special concern for women traveling alone.
Egyptian Arabic is the most commonly spoken language in Egypt, it is also the national language in the country but Egyptians speak and understand English as they study it in school. Fewer Egyptians can speak other languages like French, Italian, Spanish, and German. Egyptians working in tourism sector are accustomed to speak enough English and other languages to fulfill the needs of most travelers.
Egypt is very connected to the world, it has many direct flights with Africa, Asia, European Union and United States. Visit Cairo Airport website for a full list of Airlines that fly to Egypt.
Duty free allowances on arrival to Egypt are 1L alcohol, 1L perfume, and either 200 cigarettes, 25 cigars or 200g tobacco. Duty free shops are available in Egypt airports and major tourist cities (Cairo, Luxor, Hurghada, El Gouna and Sharm El Sheikh).
Giza Pyramids and most monuments and Museums in Egypt open between 8 Am to 5 Pm. During Ramadan, the holy month of the Islamic calendar, be aware that these hours will change significantly.
Shops and stores in Egypt are usually opened from 10 Am to 10 Pm however in major cities it opens much later and some are open 24 hours.
Visitors are welcome in most mosques throughout the year. Modest dress is recommended, women should cover their hair, arms and legs. Both Women and men will remove their shoes before entering.
Taking pictures for people and streets is fine after people permission While Taking pictures for official type or army structures is not permitted. In most historical sites and museums in Egypt it is allowed to use camera, some of them may charge you for camera but at the Egyptian Museum and some similar historical sites it is prohibited and you will be asked to leave camera at reception before entering.
Egypt enjoys big hotel variety from world class luxury to simple hostel accommodations; Check in time in most hotels in Egypt is around midday, 12 or 1 PM.
There in no health concerns or vaccinations required to visit Egypt but we recommend to check with your own doctor, he knows you and your medical history best.
The currency in Egypt is the Egyptian pound (LE), it is about ,06 to USD. Money exchange is widely available, Credit cards are largely used in Egypt major cities and tourist spots.
We do not recommend the public buses in big cities. Taxi and limousine service are fine every where but price is negotiable. Trains go to all big cities in Egypt except Sinai and the Red Sea. Flights from / to tourist cities are always available.
Tipping in Egypt is an appreciated habitual attitude but is Not obligatory. Generally 5 to 10 EGP for small favors is fine for carrying luggage, parking a car or to guys who clean bathrooms. 10 % is fine in restaurant and spa. Tipping your tour guide and vehicle driver should be considered if you're provided with good to great service, feel free to give what you think your experience was worth.