Cairo — By Sunny Land Tours | TravelResearchOnline

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Cairo — By Sunny Land Tours

Long considered to be the jewel of the orient, Cairo is an international city overflowing with different cultures. It is a city steeped in the early civilizations of the ancient pharaohs, blended with the history of Christian and Islamic cultures. It is all brought together by the modern sights and luxuries of a sophisticated and cosmopolitan city. The great pyramids of Giza are the most famous attractions in Cairo. But there are many other places to experience and explore, from the mosques of Islamic Cairo to the churches of Coptic Cairo, and even the Jewish community of Cairo. Be prepared for an expansive history lesson and cultural education of the religious and cultural blending which has taken place in this city. Cairo also swells with markets and bazaars to explore. And for the cosmopolitan visitor, there are luxury hotels and boutiques to explore for unforgettable jewels, clothes and antiques. The city offers an extensive array of international cuisine to soothe the palate of any culinarian; but of course while in Egypt, one should also experience the delicious and unforgettable cuisine of Egypt.

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60-Second Geography

Cairo, Egypt

Cairo is the capital of Egypt, the largest city in Africa and the Arab World, and one of the most densely populated cities in the world. Cairo has long been a center of the region’s political and cultural life. Even before Cairo was established in the 10th century, the land composing the present-day city was the site of national capitals whose remnants remain visible in parts of Old Cairo. Cairo is also associated with Ancient Egypt due to its proximity to the Great Sphinx and the pyramids in adjacent Giza.Egyptians today often refer to Cairo as Masr, the Arabic pronunciation of the name for Egypt itself, emphasizing the city’s continued role in Egyptian influence. With a population of 6.8 million spread over 175 square miles, Cairo is by far the largest city in Egypt. With an additional ten million inhabitants just outside the city, Cairo resides at the center of the largest metropolitan area in Africa and the eleventh-largest urban area in the world. Cairo, like many other mega-cities, suffers from high levels of pollution and traffic, but its metro (public transit) – currently the only on the African continent – also ranks among the fifteen busiest in the world, with over 700 million passenger rides annually.
  • The Pyramids of Giza. On the outskirts of Cairo, these pyramids are the sole survivors of the Seven Wonders of the World. Admission to the larger Pyramids is limited to 300 people per day. 150 tickets are released for sale at 8am, the remaining 150 are released at 1pm.
  • Solar Boat Museum (at the Pyramids of Giza). Houses the barques (boats) that were most likely used to bring the mummies of dead Pharaohs across the Nile to the temple tomb chambers.
  • Egyptian Museum. More than 12,000 artifacts from every period of Egyptian history are housed in this sprawling structure.
  • The Citadel. A series of palaces and mosques which housed Egyptian rulers for more than 700 years make up a compound which offers fabulous views of the city.
  • Museum of Islamic Art. This largely overlooked museum houses one of the world’s finest collections of Islamic Art.
  • Coptic Cairo. This compound is home to Egypt’s Christian community as well as being the oldest area of Cairo. It just is a wonderful place to explore the juxtaposition of an ancient Christian community in an Islamic country.
  • Coptic Museum. Dating from 1908 this museum is home to Coptic Art from Greco-Roman times to the Islamic era.
  • The New Camel Market. About 20 miles northwest of Cairo, this is a must-see. Sudanese traders haggle over the sale of camels in a carnival-esque atmosphere. It is difficult to find so it is best to arrange transportation through your hotel or travel supplier.
  • Northern Cemetery / City of the Dead. An unusual area where thousands of Cairo natives, both living and dead are “housed”. The popular ancient ritual of building entertainment rooms alongside of the tombs, have now become spaces inhabited by transients.
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