Built in 958 by Gawhar El Sakaly, during the Fatimid Period, Cairo is “the victorious”, capital of Egypt since then, with the famous mosque El Azhar in its centre.
Its most glamorous times were the 14th/17th century (the Mamlouk period). The reign of Ismail pasha (1859 – 1869) is the inauguration of a new era of urban development with a European touch and of the creation of new districts.
Today, with its 18 million inhabitants, Cairo is considered among the greatest cities of the world. It is the biggest of Africa and the Middle East. It is the cultural and intellectual centre of the Arab world.
From the great pyramid to the citadel of Saladin, from the treasures of Tut Ankh Amen to the extremely rich Coptic museum, from the modern tower to the big bazaar of Khan El Khalili, Cairo is the extraordinary mixture of all civilizations: Pharaonic, Greco-Roman, Christian, Islamic and modern.
Founded in 1901 by Auguste Mariette, more than 120,000 objects offer what another museum cannot, a complete panorama of a civilization..
In addition to the treasures of Tut Ankh Amen, many chefs-d’oeuvre of different periods give an excellent idea of that great Egyptian Civilization.
First capital of Ancient Egypt, around which many Pharaohs built their necropolis. Memphis, ”the land of Ptah”, always played an important role in Egyptian history even until Roman times. Unfortunately, not much remains. Only some statues and a sphinx!!
The most famous necropolis of all. The three pyramids are the greatest miracle of the Egyptians 4500 years ago. Their positioning and their advanced architecture confirm the genius of the builders.
The so called “solar Boat” of Cheops and the Sphinx are not to be missed.
The unique step pyramid and the funerary complex of Zoser (2800 B.C.)are considered the first stone construction of the whole world.
The tombs of the noblemen with their exquisite reliefs depict scenes from their daily lives.
Dahshour is the third necropolis of Memphis. The “Bent” pyramid of snefrou (2700B.C.) offers the first example of a “perfect” pyramid with its smooth sides. On the other hand the angles of construction were not accurately calculated.
The other pyramid of Snefrou, the “Red” pyramid is however considered as the first perfect pyramid in Egyptian history.
Walking about the streets of Old Cairo brings us back thirteen centuries to the Arab conquest and to the foundation of the city.
The Coptic museum and the old churches revive those times when all Egypt was Christian.
A short pilgrimage to the origin of the city:
The Mosque of Ibn Touloun is not only the oldest but also the most beautiful monument dating back to the ninth century.
The Mosque of Sultan Hassan is a remarkable evolution in Islamic architecture dating back to the fourteenth century.
The citadel of Saladin is a twelfth century military construction that has become the seat of the Sultan as of the 13th century. The mosque Mohamed Ali is one of the most famous mosques built inside the citadel.
The small streets of Khan El Khalili and the show of the” whirling dervishes” are such a medieval experience!!.
Visit the Old Cairo, known as well as the Coptic Cairo. In this neighborhood, many monasteries and churches exist. One of the most important is the Suspended church, built on the ruins of one of the towers of the Roman fortress of Babylon, dating back to the 5th century and gathering icons from different periods. Then, visit the oldest Egyptian church, 4th century, the church of St. Sergius, built above the crypt that hosted the Holy Family during their stay in Egypt. Finish the tour by the visit of the Synagogue of Ben Ezra, dating back to the 10th century, and built replacing a church from the 5th century.
Sound and light at Giza Pyramids:
Departure to assist the Sound & light show at the Pyramids of Giza; for about an hour, a glare of this site, thanks to the history very well narrated and a superb music accompanying the whole show.
Discover Cairo otherwise, oriental dinner and show during the marvelous navigation along the docks of Cairo illuminated. This dinner cruise is a completely different look at Cairo in a great atmosphere.