Overblog Suivre ce blog
Editer la page Administration Créer mon blog
/ / /

Cairo is best seen on foot

one of the very best walk you can do if from

BAB EL FUTUH to the big market KHAN EL KHALILI

from there you can even walk to BAB ZWUELA (tent makers street) and even to the CITADEL

 

the part betzeen bab el futuh and khan el khalili (less than 1 mile) is best done in the evenings after sunset, the medieval street has been renovated; lights are showing off the islamic architecutre, it really is one of the most beautiful part of Cairo; do no miss it!!!

you can do a big walk from bab el futuh to the citadel during the day and visit the different monuments during opening times but do go back at night as well from bab el futuh to khan el khalili; you will see it under a totally different light

 

from the hotel you can take a street cab to bab el futuh, get a white cab, make sure he puts the meter on; it should start at 2.50 EGP, the journey should cost you around 10 pounds depending on traffic

if you are there during the day do not miss the suheimy house (renovated merchants ottoman house) admission right now is around 30 egp per person

you can visit several mosques on the way (starting with AL HAKIM at the very begining of the stree)

do not miss the QUALAOUN mausoleum; entrance is free (you can leave a tip to the doorman) about 200 meters before the start of the big market khan el khalili, it is open until 10 pm

if you didnt bring a guide book with you we usually have some we can lend you for the duration of your stay with us

 

For photos of the MUIZZ street click on the link

http://www.sis.gov.eg/VR/almuizz/franch/gallery.html

 

Muizz_Street.png

 Real Cairo through souks (markets) and islamic quarters

For a full day walk follow the instructions (copied from Nile guide)

This walk will take you through the real cairo, it is a must-do to experience true cairo. Print it and follow the guide!!!!

 

  

Take a street cab  to Ataba  (about 5 egp from our hotel). Ataba is an absolutely crazy area full of street markets, that acts as a sort of

transition zone between Downtown Cairo and Islamic Cairo. Ask to be let off at Azbakia  and you will find yourself in the book

market. This consists of rows of white wooden stalls with brown shutters, crammed floor to ceiling with old and new books, magazines,

vintage film posters, and photographs. It’s a treasure trove for eclectic culture vultures, where with a bit of digging, you can ferret out

80 year old National Geographic magazines, and original photos of King Farouk! When you leave the market, keep going straight

with the concrete multi-storey car-park on your right, and turn right on to the main road. This whole area is a Cairo bazaar at its most

bizarre: stalls spill out into the road, crammed with everything from lingerie to luggage, and plastic flowers to perfume. Continue past

the bus station, and turn left just before the overpass. Walk parallel to the overpass, cross the road, and enter the seething mass of

humanity and clothing on Muski street (you might need to ask a local for directions). Muski is a Cairo bazaar at its most chaotic, a riot of

brightly coloured clothing, quilts and shoes, with vendors in full throated competition to win the never-ending battle for supremacy over

Cairo’s airwaves. Keep going straight, and you will soon hit another main road. Cross the road via the bridge to the left, and continue

up Muski street. You’ll notice that fireworks give way to household goods, more clothes, and finally spices. The market becomes ever

more touristy, until you arrive at a crossroads. The road straight ahead leads to Midan al-Hussein; Khan al-Khalili, the most famous Cairo

bazaar, is on your left. The road to the right leads down to Bab Zwayla, the medieval south gate. The road to the left (al-Muizz li-Din

Allah) leads to Bab al-Futuh, the northern gate. Spend some time exploring the wonders of Khan al-Khalili, not forgetting to stop at al-

Fishawi coffee shop for a spot of refreshment and people watching. Depending on how hungry you are, you may want to grab a bite to

eat at The Egyptian Pancake House. Continue your walking tour of Islamic Cairo by heading north towards Bab al-Futuh along Muizz li-

Din Allah street, famous for shisha pipes and Islamic monuments. This Cairo bazaar used to be the main thoroughfare of Islamic Cairo,

and is one of the oldest streets in the city. The mosques, madrassas and mausoleums that line the street have been restored, and are

open to visitors. Two nice sites to visit are the Sabil-Kuttab of Abdel Katkhuda, and Beit al-Suhaymi. The road forks at the sabil: to get to

Beit al-Suhaymi, take the left hand fork, and take the first right past the next mosque. The street is clearly signed Haret ed-Darb el Asfar,

and the exquisite Beit al-Suhaymi is just down the alley on the left. Once you have had your fill, head back to Muizz li-Din and continue

up towards Bab al-Futuh, the north gate. The imposing, fortress-like Hakim mosque will be on your right. It’s absolutely huge, and you

might be able to baksheesh the caretaker to climb the minaret. If you haven’t yet eaten (or even if you have!) get some spicy Alexandrian

sausage sandwiches from Zizo’s, just over the road from Bab al-Futuh. After this, head east along the main road for a hundred yards

 

 

or so, until you see the other imposing north gate, Bab an-Nasr, on your right. Go through the gate and walk down al-Gamaliyya street.

You are now heading south, parallel to Muizz li-Din, but the street feels totally different. It is dusty, cramped, dirty, and the handful of

Islamic monuments have fallen into a state of disrepair. It is, however, quite atmospheric, with metal workers, barbers, sunken general

stores, and lively food stalls. You need to watch your footing in this market, and be ready to dodge the procession of trucks, bicycles

and handcarts that engage in vicious running battles along the street. Keep going straight, even when the street narrows, and becomes

covered for a few yards (there is a striped mosque on the right hand side). Eventually you will come to a concrete wall, and must choose

either left or right. Head left, and all of a sudden you find yourself back in more familiar, touristy surrounds: a crafts market in a square,

and a narrow alley that leads past al-Hussein Mosque and ends back in Midan al-Hussein. It’s now time to head south: go back down

to the crossroads of Muski street and Muizz li-Din, and this time turn left towards Bab Zwayla. Once you have negotiated the straggling

remnants of the tourist bazaar, you will come to a main road. Cross it via the footbridge to the left, and continue straight down Muizz li-

Din. The Mausoleum of al-Ghouri is on your left, and the Mosque (well worth a quick visit) on your right. You are back in another busy,

local Egyptian market, similar to Muski. However, along with the household goods and brightly coloured clothing, sacks of raw cotton

now spill out on to the street. A few hundred metres down the street you will reach the absolutely stunning Sabil of Mohammed Ali, which

marks a great place to pause before continuing on to Bab Zwayla. You might want to take a quick break here, too, and visit the Sabil-

Kuttab of Nafisa al-Beida, and the Mosque of al-Mu’ayyad. Past Bab Zwayla, and you hit one of the oldest Cairo bazaars, the Street of

the Tentmakers. Shortly afterwards, you will find yourself in an incredibly vibrant food market. Wooden stalls piled high with fruits and

vegetables line the road, and the air is heavy with the scent of spices, fish and cooking. Be warned, though, this local bazaar is not for

the faint-hearted: buckets of offal are strewn around with gay abandon, and crimson organs drip blood on to the dirt floor. The market

also sells live animals: surprisingly placid rabbits, geese and chickens are tethered to wooden crates, awaiting a potential buyer. You

may be fortunate enough (or, depending on your point of view, unlucky enough) to witness an animal being selected, killed, skinned and

gutted, and then sold by the kilo as a hunk of meat. If this is not your cup of tea, don’t despair: your walking tour of Islamic Cairo will

finish at the end of this bazaar, where it meets the main road. From here, you can either turn right to walk a few km to Mohammed Ali

street, or simply flag down a taxi. Just make sure you find something relaxing to do tonight: you’ve experienced a good wedge of life and

culture in Islamic Cairo, and you definitely deserve a rest!

 

 

 

Partager cette page

Repost 0
Published by