Experience Antiquity: 10 Best Things To Do In And Around Cairo

things to do in cairo
Contributing Writer
| 4 min read

Egypt is a fascinating country that has mesmerized travelers from all around the world, due to its rich history, towering pyramids, and varied artifacts. So, there’s much to see and plenty of things to do when one lands in Egypt’s capital city – Cairo. In fact, the city can be rather intimidating due to its metropolitan sector being the largest in the Middle East, and also the 15th largest city in the world!

Therefore, when travelers wish to find the best things to do in Cairo, they’re inevitably spoiled for choice. There’s a vast array of religious sites, museums, historic landmarks, and of course, those stunning monuments everyone learned about in history class. And let’s not forget about the glorious Nile River, which is another important focal point for both locals and visitors to Cairo.

There’s no time to waste, let’s discover the 10 best things to in Cairo.

Tip from tour guide



Video of Cairo shared by Egypt tour guide, Sama.

1. Explore the past at the Egyptian Antiquities Museum

Egyptian museum 🇪 🇬 🇪🇬

Posted by ‎Mohamed Elsayed محمد السيد‎ on Thursday, 29 December 2016

A visit to one of Cairo’s many museums should be on top of every visitor’s list. And there’s no better starting point than popping by the Egyptian Antiquities Museum, which features over 120,000 ancient Egyptian relics. There are several rooms dedicated to various timelines and key events in Egyptian history. Make sure to visit the mummy room and see them unwrapped in front of your eyes!

Egyptian Antiquities Museum

Address: Meret Basha, Ismailia, Qasr an Nile, Cairo Governorate

Website: Egyptian Antiquities Museum

Tip from tour guide



Egyptian Museum Prince Rahotep and his wife Nofret
Make sure to check out the details of the unfinished head of Queen Nefertiti, the wife of King Akhenaton. Her statue was excavated near Tell el Amarna and brought to the Egyptian Museum for preservation. Another notable attraction in the museum is the limestone statue of Prince Rahotep and his wife Nofret (The beautiful) from the 4th dynasty - one of the best-preserved masterpieces with vivid colors.
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2. Discover another aspect of the city at the Coptic Museum

Posted by Sarra Ben Attia on Saturday, 1 April 2017

Visiting museums are some of the best things to do in Cario, especially when they explore the multi-religious facet of this city. The Coptic Museum gives visitors a glimpse into the foundations of the Coptic Christian faith in Egypt. A large collection of ancient artifacts, bibles, sarcophagi, and icons should fascinate both history and religious buffs.

The Coptic Museum

Address: 3 Mari Gerges, Kom Ghorab, Misr Al Qadimah, Cairo Governorate

Website: The Coptic Museum

Tip from tour guide



If you're interested in deep diving into the religious facets of the city, check out the rest of the Religious Complex around The Coptic Museum in Old Cairo. Wear comfortable shoes to prepare for a lot of walking and be sure to stop and admire the unique architectural details and embellished walls.

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3. Enter the beautiful Mohamed Ali Mosque

Mohamed Ali Mosque at Salah El Din Citadel in #Cairo <3 #MohamedAliMosque #SalahElDinCitadel #OldCairo #thisisegypt #SpringToursEgypt

Posted by Spring Tours Egypt on Tuesday, 13 September 2016

Egypt is a predominantly Islamic country, and it only makes sense to visit the Mohamed Ali Mosque to gain greater insight into its rich Islamic history. This mosque was built in memory of Muhammad Ali’s son, Tusun Pasha, and surrounded by a stunning citadel. The mosque is very active and attracts both worshippers and foreign visitors who come to admire the architecture and the expansive views of Cairo.

Mohamed Ali Mosque

Address: Al Abageyah, Qism El-Khalifa, Cairo Governorate

Website: Mohamed Ali Mosque

Tip from tour guide



While you're exploring this mosque, make sure to also visit Al-Rifa'i Mosque adjacent to the Midan al-Qal'a (Cairo Citadel). It's the royal mausoleum for the members of Muhammad Ali's family.

Once you're done marveling at the glorious domes of this mosque, remember to drop by the local markets in the vicinity. Fall in love with Cairo in these bustling markets and learn about the city's history and economy while shopping for souvenirs.

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4. Witness one of the seven wonders of the world at the Gizeh Plateau

An early morning view the Pyramids at the Gizeh plateau.

Posted by Minnie Tours on Thursday, 23 February 2017

If you can handle the high temperature, then a guided tour through the Gizeh Plateau is absolutely essential! Here you’ll be exposed to the ancient sphinxes, temples, and pyramids, which are over 4,500 years old and some of the finest attractions Egypt has to offer. You can travel on horseback, camel, or even hire a taxi and the sites can be accessed between 9:00am to 11:00pm.

Gizeh Plateau

Address: Al Haram Str., Cairo 11511, Egypt

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Cairo Tour Guide

Sama Nagy

Sama Nagy

I’m Sama your tour guide for your pleasant stay, I am an active licensed professional tour guide, I have been working at it with great enthusiasm,I welcome you to Egypt and I will support you during the tour, and you are going to enjoy your stay here in Egypt . This is a beautiful city where you can relax-and enjoy Egypt’s powerful history civilization,It is extremely important for all guests... Read more

Tours by Sama

Cairo Tour Guide



With this private arrival transfer you will save your time, effort and avoid any hassle or trouble dealing and bargaining with cab drivers. No more rip-off or cheats with this punctual, smooth transfer.Save time and avoid hassle by pre-booking your transportation between Cairo Airport and your hotel in Cairo or Giza. you will need to get your luggages, go through the final security check, and t... Read more

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5. Ride on horseback to the Saqqara Pyramids

Saqqara💖💖 ⚘Perla⚘

Posted by Egypt Smiles To You on Saturday, 8 April 2017

The Saqqara Pyramids are the oldest pyramids in Egypt and are highly praised by archaeologists and visitors alike. One of the reasons is that’s easier to make out the hieroglyphics in the tomb areas. The best way to access these pyramids is by hiring a horse for the day. Just wear something cool including headwear as it’s incredibly hot in this area.

Saqqara Pyramids

Address: Saqarah, Al Badrashin, Giza Governorate

Website: Saqqara Pyramids

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6. Get close and personal with the Giza and Keops Pyramids

Giza Plateau - Great Sphinx with Pyramid of Khafre in background
Source: Photo by Wikimedia Commons user Daniel Mayer used under CC BY-SA 4.0

Another major highlight for travelers to Cairo is visiting the great pyramids of Giza. They’re very well preserved, which is quite a fete considering how ancient these structures are. The best part is that visitors are permitted entry and may climb up the burial chambers of the Pharaohs.

Giza and Keops Pyramids

Address: Al Haram, Nazlet El-Semman, Al Haram, Giza Governorate

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7. View the gorgeous Hanging Church

Hanging Church, Old Cairo ...

Posted by Egyptology Temple on Monday, 19 June 2017

The Hanging Church also goes by the names of El Muallaqa, St Mary, or Sitt Mariam, and is notable for its stunning exterior façade, which is exquisitely decorated. Visitors can view the icons and mosaics that adorn the interior of the church that dates back to the 3rd-century and is another important landmark of the Coptic Christian faith.

Hanging Church

Address: Kom Ghorab, Misr Al Qadimah, Cairo Governorate

Website: Hanging Church

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8. Catch a movie or do some shopping at Festival City Mall

Posted by Cairo Festival City Mall on Friday, 16 June 2017

Exploring all those pyramids and museums may get a little tiring. You might want to take things slow, perhaps catch a movie or do a bit of shopping. The Festival City Mall is a nice contemporary shopping venue that has all the amenities one could ask for. It’s also not too large, or over-commercialized so it’s an easy venue to explore without the hustle and bustle of larger malls. Operating hours are between 10:00am to midnight.

Festival City Mall

Address: Cairo 171-11835, Egypt

Website: Festival City Mall

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9. Bargain to your heart’s content at the Khan Al-Khalili

El Fishawy Coffeeshop - Khan Al-Khalili

Posted by Friends of Egypt on Saturday, 17 September 2016

While shopping malls can be a lot of fun, nothing comes close to bargaining for great deals at an authentic Egyptian bazaar. At the Khan Al-Khalili bazaar, visitors have an opportunity to browse the excellently displayed curios and chat with the friendly and helpful dealers. The stalls are perfectly arranged, and it’s easy to navigate the bazaar to find exactly what you’re looking for. Expect to find plenty of great souvenirs and gifts here such as spices, t-shirts, statuettes, jewelry, and galabiyyas.

Khan Al-Khalili

Address: El-Gamaleya, Qism El-Gamaleya, Cairo Governorate

Website: Khan Al-Khalili

Tip from tour guide



Khan el Khalili1 Khan el Khalili2 Khan el Khalili3

No trip to Egypt would feel complete without spending an afternoon in the lively heart of Cairo—the oldest market district of Khan el Khalili. Established in 1382, it has been beloved for centuries by Egyptians and foreigners alike.

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10. Enjoy the best view of the city at the Cairo Tower

Revolving Restaurant

Posted by Wadi Degla Sporting Club on Thursday, 16 April 2015

Since Cairo is such a sprawling city, it’s very difficult to gain a sense of its vastness on ground level. The Cairo Tower offers visitors an opportunity to view the city and all its important landmarks from its top-level revolving restaurant. Spend some time enjoying a local meal or cocktail, while your eyes fixate on the Nile River and the many important landmarks in the distance.

Cairo Tower

Address: El-Gezira, Cairo 11511, Egypt

Website: Cairo Tower

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Cairo gives travelers a taste of the ancient world

Few cities on the planet have the same amount of ancient artifacts, monuments, and structures that one will find in Cairo. The Pyramids of Giza are the main draw, but as we’ve already seen, there are so many other wonderful things about Cairo. The diverse range of important landmarks and museums available will delight even the most ardent of history buffs.

Any must-sees we missed? Tell us about them in the comments section or write a post here to help out fellow travelers!
Disclosure: Trip101 selects the listings in our articles independently. Some of the listings in this article contain affiliate links.


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Demos, a freelance writer, boasts an entrepreneurial background that informs his diverse writing portfolio. His articles span across various topics, encompassing travel, business, technology,...Read more

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