Cairo


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In A. Since ancient times the location of Egypt has made it a major trade route between Europe, Africa and Asia. The city of Fustat thus grew from a military encampment into a thriving port city known around the world for its markets offering spices, fabric and perfume.

Introductory Travel Guide to Cairo, Egypt

The Fatimid leader Jawhar built a new city near Fustat in A. It was called al-Mansuriyah, but the name was later changed to al-Qahirah, or, Cairo.

When the Fatimids became the rulers of Egypt, they began a dynasty which would last two centuries, with Cairo as its capital. The Fatamid Dynasty ended in A.

10 May, 12222

After evicting eighteen thousand of the Fatimid family, a strong new leader named Saladin re-created Cairo with a new vision. In contrast to the private palaces and gardens of the Fatimids, Saladin favored one strong city wall around Cairo, with no closed doors inside it. He refused personal wealth and instead designed a city for the people without royal enclaves, where a common religion bonded all together under the rule of a single monarch. Cairo continued to grow under the Ayyubid rule until its sultans became too weak to stay in power. From the middle of the thirteenth century until the beginning of the Ottoman Turk period in , Cairo was controlled by Mameluke soldiers with a military succession no longer tied to a bloodline.

This lasted until the middle of the sixteenth century. Next came the Ottoman Turks. Rivalries between Mameluke governors were stoked up by the Ottoman Sultan, in order to keep Egypt divided and weakened. The people of Cairo, however, kept their own language and identity during Turkish rule. After enough heavy taxation and corruption from the Turkish government the Egyptians revolted.

They succeeded in ridding themselves of the Turks in , but unfortunately Napoleon was already on his way with an army of 40, veteran soldiers. The French won Cairo in a very bloody battle and occupied the city for three years. Although this is a relatively short period of time, their influence was tremendous. After Cairo returned to Turkish rule, then occupation by the British.

Modernization of Cairo is credited to Mehemet Ali, "the father of modern Egypt", who ruled for almost fifty years. Egypt finally won independence in Cairo International Airport is now one of the fastest growing airports in the Middle East.

Cairo - latest news, breaking stories and comment - The Independent

It has a new 9km road that links it to the ring road around the city. Cairo is the capital of Egypt, the largest city in the Middle East and one of the largest in Africa and the whole world. Founded in by the Fatimid dynasty, Cairo covers over square kilometers with an estimated population of over 19 million, which makes it one of the most inhabited cities in the world. The most famous of them is Al-Azhar, which also doubles as the biggest Islamic university in the world. The Egyptian capital is also the home for the Arab League headquarters, and a number of continental and international organizations, including the Confederation Africaine de Football CAF.


  1. Introductory Travel Guide to Cairo, Egypt.
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Cairo Metro is the first in Africa and one of the busiest fifteen lines in the world. Proceed to Saint Sergius and Bacchus Church , which sports a brick-exposed interior, believed to be built at the spot where the holy family rested after their Egyptian excursion. Its most curious feature is a foot-deep crypt, revered for its reputation as a resting place for Mary, Joseph, and infant Jesus. While the main attractions of Coptic Cairo are its churches, there is also a small, sepia-toned market underneath the main street, featuring a jewelry shop and well-priced books about Egyptian architecture and history.

Built during the Mamluk period, the massive Mosque-Madrassa of Sultan Hassan was an ambitious attempt for the 14th century. Commissioned under the patronage of Sultan an-Nasir Hasan at a steep cost, this structure remains incomplete.

It never fulfilled its purpose of holding his body, which was not found after his assassination. However, the Sultan gave Egypt one of its grandest mosques, still among the largest in the world. The curious egg-shaped dome is made of wood. The gated park was originally a landfill, and was transformed into a park in under an initiative by Agha Khan IV, the 49th Imam of Nizari Ismailism. Sprawling over 74 acres of central city land, it is a veritable oasis among the urban hustle of Cairo.

Bordered by a 12th-century wall from the Ayyubid Dynasty, the gardens in the park follow traditional Islamic architecture, with prominent waterways and walkways gently dividing the green space into cozier enclaves. A variety of food courts and restaurants overlook wide views of the city, including the historic Mosque of Muhammad Ali on the western horizon. Visit an hour before sunset to bask in the golden light and watch the city transform.

Guides are usually found by the ticket counter, and can be hired on an hourly basis. Inside, the grand ground floor features a collection of New Kingdom — B. The first floor houses two rooms of mummies, arranged with notes on ingredients used in the processing of each body.

Known for its semiprecious and precious jewelry, the marketplace has trinkets of every color and price.

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Originally built as a mausoleum for the Fatimid caliphs, the structure underwent many changes over time, and was eventually remodeled in the 16th century by Sultan al-Ghuri.

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