Cairo Bucket List: Amazing Places to Visit in Cairo, Egypt
When we think of Egypt, we immediately think of the pyramids in Giza—these great pyramids are the perfect remnants of the past and are sometimes even theorized to be made by aliens.
However, aside from learning about the pyramids, what else is there to do in Cairo – Egypt’s main city and capital? We’ll you’re in luck because, in this article, we’ll be listing all the great and awesome activities that you can incorporate in your itinerary when you go visit Cairo.
Tour around the Pyramids of Giza
Let’s first get the most obvious activity out of the way. After all, the main attraction in Cairo is the pyramids of Giza. To this day, the construction of these symmetrical and mathematically perfect pyramids remains a mystery.
Thank god for modern tourism, though, as it’s now possible for people like us to marvel and learn more about these landmarks of the past. There are lots of day tours that will take you around the pyramids.
These usually already have a well-versed tour guide who will also tell you some interesting facts about the pyramids, their construction, and all the other stories surrounding them. You will especially enjoy this if you find ancient Egypt to be fascinating.
Marvel at objects of the past at the Egyptian Museum
The Egyptian Museum is basically a time capsule about everything that bloomed and took place in this ancient civilization. It is a direct look into the artifacts that were excavated in Egypt over the years.
You can find the gold masks of various pharaohs, including King Tutankhamun’s. There are also statues, tiles, and plates, unearthed from inside the pyramids’ multiple chambers.
Cruise through the Nile River
This ancient river that powered the starting foundation of the ancient civilization is now open to tourists. The Nile River remains a popular tourist attraction in Cairo.
There are many fun things on the Nile River—cruising, kayaking, bungee jumping, swimming, white rafting, etc. These were certainly not activities the ancient Egyptians enjoyed during their time, but the fun is definitely the same.
Our suggestion is to book tours and activities with a trusted company before landing in Egypt.
Visit Coptic Cairo
Coptic Cairo or Old Cairo is a cluster of twisting laneways within Old Babylon. These streets used to be the fortress of Roman Emperor Trajan within the Nile River area.
Now, Coptic Cairo is a tourist hotspot as it houses lots of ancient Egyptian landmarks. These include the Coptic Museum, the Hanging Church, the Ben Ezra Synagogue, the Mosque of Amr Ibn al-As, etc.
Stroll around Al-Azhar Park
Let’s take a break from pyramids, museums, and buildings for now. Al-Azhar Park is a patch of green within this sprawling city of wonder. It’s a beautiful place to stroll and get some fresh air, away from this city that has been breathing since the dawn of civilization.
It’s easily reachable through a taxi. There are a lot of well-recommended restaurants nearby as well. We should warn you, though, as Al-Azhar Park can get pretty packed on the weekends.
Shop at Khan el-Khalili
Experience an authentic and top-notch Egyptian shopping experience through this Middle Eastern souq (bazaar). It was first established in the same site in 1400 AD and is still one of Cairo’s premier shopping districts.
What should you expect from these shops? There are antiques like lampshade and silverware, locally-woven textiles, and other traditional products. Know your vocabulary and etiquette beforehand as the locals won’t cater to your foreign self.
Be at peace at the Mosque of Muhammad Ali.
The Mosque of Muhammad Ali is better known as the Great Alabaster Mosque due to its tall but disproportionate marinets and white stone walls. It was originally commissioned by the old Turkish pasha (similar to a governor-general) during the 1800s. It is not one of the most notable monuments within Cairo’s Citadel.
Many day tours include this Alabaster Mosque and other nearby Citadel monuments in its itinerary. To save on time, expenses, and effort, we suggest booking a day tour.
Applaud at the impressive Memphis and Sakkara Open-Air Museum
The Memphis and Sakkara is a one-of-a-kind museum as it is open-air and not closed off. It has many interesting ancient artifacts, like Rameses II’s burial site, statues, plaques, etc. It also provides a clear view of ancient Memphis.
Know more about Islam at the Al-Azhar Mosque
This isn’t just a mosque but a vast complex that houses the cradles of civilization. It has one of the world’s oldest universities on-site: Al-Azhar University is a leading theological university in Islamic studies. Additionally, it has a prayer hall that is 3,000 square meter-wide.
Climb the top of Bab Zuweila
This is a medieval relic built in the 11th century. Arguably, it is the most interesting monument within the district gates of Islamic Cairo.
Nearby are the Sheikh al-Mu’ayyad Mosque and the Street of Tentmakers stalls that are also worth visiting.
Get lost in the ancient walls of MonastirIi Palace.
This remarkable palace was once the residence of a high-ranking Ottoman pasha. Now, it is a must-visit for Cairo tourists.
It houses the Umm Kulthum Museum for the Arab diva in its palace grounds. It is also the home for Cairo’s Nilometer, which actively measures the Nile River’s water levels.
Wander through fantasyland at the Manyal Palace
Up in Cairo’s Roda Island’s northern tip is the Manyal Palace, a modern fantasyland.
After an extensive restoration, it is now a palace of great symphonies adapted from Arabic and European cultures. If you’re going to get lost in Cairo, the Manyal Palace is the ideal place to do it.
Capture modern Egypt through downtown Cairo
Get an authentic feel of what 21st century Egypt feels like by strolling through downtown Cairo.
Downtown Cairo is filled with street vendors, food stalls, restaurants, cafés, etc. It’s the place to be if you’re shopping for travel amenities and essentials.
Live like a 21st-century Egyptian goddess at the Le Meridien Pyramids Hotel and Spa.
This is a luxurious 5-star hotel right in the middle of Cairo. It features an interior design that is a cross between ancient Egyptian and modern architecture.
Live out your 21st-century Egyptian goddess dreams through this exquisite hotel with relaxing spas, breathtaking pools, grand suites, and most of all, restaurants serving feasts fit for the gods.
See the Cairo skyline through the Cairo Tower.
Cairo Tower is on Geriza Island and is the tallest building in the whole of North Africa. It stands at 187 meters tall and provides a beautiful view of the Cairo skyline.
It’s a fantastic place to visit during sundown/sunrise and will certainly take your breath away.
Cairo Travel and Tour Packages
To help you plan out your visit to Cairo, we listed places to visit and other amazing things in Cairo, Egypt. We also listed some of the best travel deals and tour packages and excellent flight deals and accommodation.
Searching for the best hotels, resorts, and affordable flights in the nearby Cities? Check out our list of cheap Cairo hotels and resorts via Agoda, Booking, or you may also see available Airbnb properties in the city.