Planning a trip to Cairo? Artist Bahia Shehab shares her best insider tips and recommendations for the Egyptian capital with us.
7 Exciting Facts About Cairo
- Cairo has a population of around 21.3 million residents (as of March 2021)
- Thus, Egypt's capital is the most populous city in the Middle East - and also in Africa
- The average annual temperature is 22.1 °C
- It hardly ever rains in Cairo
- Cairo is the economic centre of Egypt and the centre of the Egyptian education system
- There are more than 4,000 mosques in Egypt's capital - it is not for nothing that the city is also called "City of a Thousand Minarets"
- Most of the pyramids were built west of the Nile
Cairo Is One of Africa’s Largest Cities: What Part of Town Is a Good One to Visit Right Now?
For a pre-modern version of the city, explore Islamic Cairo with its wonderful buildings, old shops, and jam-packed streets. The whole area in the process of being renovated, and historic Muizz Street – with its Islamic architecture from the Fatimid, Ayyubid, Mamluk, an Ottoman periods – was first up: the Egyptian Textile Museum, located here, is a jewel.
What Tips Would You Give Someone Who’s About to Go to Cairo?
The most important items to pack along with you are humour and openness, because lots of things here don’t work like they should. We use the phone apps by Swvl or Uber to get around; they’re more reliable than public transportation. And Uber also has scooters, which are ideal if you’re downtown and in a hurry. Cairo, by the way, is one of the few cities worldwide where you can pay Uber drivers in cash.
Tip: Be sure to check how much your ride will cost in advance, and give the driver exactly that amount when you get out!
What Else Should One Take Time for in Cairo?
Right near Muizz Street is the old and tradition-steeped Khan el-Khalili bazaar, and 15 minutes from there by car is Al Azhar Park, which offers a fantastic view of Cairo.
What Are Cairo Natives Fond of Eating?
The Egyptian national dishes are mulukhiyah, a sticky green soup with chicken and rice, and kushari, which was originally street food and consists of rice, lentils, chickpeas, vermicelli, macaroni, tomato sauce, onions, and dressing. Rabbit and stuffed pigeon are also popular specialities. And if you fancy the latter, check out Farahat near Khan el-Khalili.
Flights to Cairo With Austrian Airlines
Want to try the national dish Kushari, stroll through the traditional Chan-el-Chalili bazaar or admire the historic old town? If you're in the mood for a trip to Cairo, book your next flight with Austrian Airlines right here: