Flights to Cairo (CAI)

Flights to Cairo exhibit an elegant fusion of old and new: historical landmarks and modern architecture.

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Flights to Cairo

Egypt’s capital is home to more than 17 million people, making it the largest city in Africa and the Middle East.

The hustle and bustle contributes to the city’s charm though – Cairo is meant to be seen, heard and felt. The key is to gradually wade into this magnetic metropolis – perhaps take a tour of the main sites the day after your flight to Cairo lands, before making your way to the quieter, lesser-known landmarks the next. Once you’ve got your head around the city, you’re ready to venture through Cairo’s busy crowds and narrow streets.

Cairo and its neighbouring district of Giza are home to some of the world’s biggest treasures, most notably the Great Pyramids and the Sphinx. The three iconic pyramids of Khufu, Khafre and Menkaure, as well as the monument that’s believed to represent the Pharaoh King Khafre’s face (the Sphinx), are a testament to ancient planning and engineering. It is also here that you’ll find the River Nile, which seems to bring together all of its other landmarks, such as the Cairo Tower, the great Mosque of Muhammad Ali, and the renowned Cairo Opera House. Beyond the city’s fascinating history, Cairo has plenty of entertainment on offer.

The locals love nothing more than a bit of al fresco dining. Young groups of friends can be spotted hanging out at the newest cafe or restaurant, while older generations opt for the more traditional coffee shops, where you can enjoy a refreshing espresso alongside some shisha.

Drink at El-Fishawi Coffeehouse

Downtown Cairo is home to Khan El-Khalili, the city’s best bazaar, which sells everything from carpets to souvenirs. Ignore the first shops you come across and make your way through the maze-like alleyways to the renowned El-Fishawi Coffeehouse, which has been in business since 1773. It has served everyone from kings to celebrities, and its coffee – or qahwa – is exquisite.

El-Fishawi Alley
Khan al-Khalili (Arabic language site)

Take a boat trip along the Nile

One of the best places to take some time out and watch the world go by is along the River Nile. Avoid the evening crowds by taking a traditional felucca during the day. These boats usually wait for customers on either side of the Nile or at larger mooring spots, like the one that also houses Nile Maxim, a great spot for lunch.

Maxim Restaurants
Saraya El Gezira Street
In front of Marriott Hotel
+20 2 2738 8888

Immerse yourself in Cairo’s nightlife

Cairo’s nightlife is one of the most exciting in the region. Enjoy the VIP treatment at either Riverside or TIU. For a laidback evening and relaxed dress code policy, Cairo Jazz Club is the best venue around. Don’t be fooled by the name – they host everything from jazz to indie.

Cairo Jazz Club
197 26th of July Corridor
Sphinx square
+20 2 3345 9939

Try some Egyptian street food

Almost everywhere you go in Cairo, you’ll find a food cart or stall selling delicious street food and drink. Try a refreshing sugarcane or mango juice, prickly pear (cactus fruit), falafel, koshari, and foul (a form of baked bean). Also, check out Zooba Cafe, which serves street food with a twist in a cafe setting.

Zooba Cafe
26th of July Street
+20 10 2315 2510

Visit Tahrir Square

Cairo’s famous Tahrir Square is the icon of modern Egypt, and is framed on one side by the Mogmaa Al Tahrir (Tahrir Palace). Situated a stone’s throw away is the Egyptian Museum of Antiquities, home to the majority of the country’s historical gems, including the treasure of Tutankhamun.

Tahrir Square
Meret Basha
Qasr El-Nile

Admire the Great Pyramids of Giza and the Sphinx

The number one thing on your Cairo to-do list should be a visit to the Sphinx and the Great Pyramids of Giza. Nearly every hotel in the city organises daily trips to this fascinating complex of monuments. This marvel is the oldest of the ancient wonders of the world, and the only one still in existence.

Giza Necropolis
Al Haram Street

Koshary Abou Tarek (Egyptian)

For the best koshary in town, this is the place to go to. Simple, fuss-free and super affordable, Abou Tarek attracts locals, Egyptian expats visiting from abroad and a few tourists. Don’t go looking for other menu items, as there are none, but if you have room, share a rice pudding for dessert.

16 Marouf
Qasr El-Nile
+20 022 577 5935 

Abou El Sid (Egyptian)

Starting out with a single restaurant in central Cairo, Abou El Sid – named after the famous chef – has branches all over the city. And that’s testament to the restaurant’s quintessential, authentic Egyptian cuisine. The menu is full of exciting dishes; go for the traditional experience in the Zamalek branch.

Muhammad Mazhar
AZ Zamalek
Giza Governorate
+20 227 359 640

Mori Sushi (Japanese)

You might not think that the words ‘Cairo’ and ‘sushi’ go together, but in recent years the demand for Japanese cuisine in Egypt has skyrocketed. Mori Sushi is a firm favourite in the city, specialising in fusion sushi and sashimi creations, as well as grilled wagyu beef dishes.

19 El Gabalaya Street
+20 122 297 4444

Le Deck (International)

For a fancy lunch with a spectacular view, this intimate lounge and restaurant is the only hot spot of its kind that’s slap bang in the middle of the River Nile area. With a wide variety of tasty international dishes on offer, there’s something on the menu for even the fussiest eater.

Sofitel El Gezirah Cairo
3 El Thawra Council Street
+20 2 2737 3737

Fairmont Nile City Brunch (International)

This legendary Friday brunch is a favourite among trendy locals, with the buffet selection here being big, bountiful and delicious. Anything you can think of is served, from waffles, pancakes and muffins to Peking duck, sushi, pasta and salads. There are loads of desserts on offer too.

Nile City Towers- 2005B
Corniche El-Nile
Ramlet Beaulac
+20 2 2461 9494

El Morocco (Middle Eastern)

Located on a boat by the Nile, this authentic eatery offers a wide variety of Middle Eastern specialties, endless types of shisha, and traditional Arabic music and dancing. It is highly recommended to book in advance, as it can get busy after dark – particularly during the weekends.

Blue Nile Boat
9a Saray El-Gezira Street
+20 2 2735 3112

Talisman Hotel

Out towards the east of the Nile, the Talisman Hotel is a retro-style property with plenty of traditional charm. The rooms are elegant and decorated with locally sourced art. There are also hot tubs, free Wi-Fi and a library, while the restaurant serves good local food.

39 Talaat Harb Street
Downtown Cairo
Ganayen Al Waileyah
+20 2 2393 9431

Staybridge Suites & Apartments – Citystars

This hotel is a very convenient place to stay in Cairo, particularly if you have children. Staybridge is attached to the Citystars Mall, one of the biggest shopping complexes in Egypt, so you’re never far from dining or entertainment options. Additionally, there’s a laundry room that’s free to use, so you won’t have to worry about the little ones getting messy.

Emtedad Makram Obeid Street
Nasr City
+20 2 2480 3333

Mena House Oberoi

Fancy waking up to a view of the Great Pyramids of Giza? The legendary Mena House Hotel provides just that. Surrounded by acres of lush gardens, and with a spa and swimming pool to boot, the suites are named after famous figures who have stayed at the hotel, including the wartime British Primer Minister Winston Churchill.

Bab El-Louq
+20 2 3377 3222

Freedom Hostel

Located a short walk from the famous Talaat Harb Square, Freedom Hostel offers everything you need for your stay at rates that won’t blow your budget. The spacious rooms are split into shared or private areas, and there’s a small guest kitchen.

6 Bank Misr Street
Off Sherif Street
In front of Central Bank of Egypt
+20 2 2392 6157

Four Seasons Cairo, Nile Plaza

With the city centre just a short drive away, this luxurious five-star property is one of the best placed in Cairo. Featuring delightful panoramic views of the city, the Four Seasons Cairo is perfect for relaxation and downtime with a luxury spa and outdoor pool open to guests.

1089 Corniche El-Eil
Garden City
+20 2 2791 7000

Fairmont Towers, Heliopolis

Right in the centre of the super trendy Heliopolis district, the Fairmont Towers may not be near the city centre, but it’s only a 10-minute drive from Cairo International Airport. Boasting spacious, luxurious rooms with floor-to-ceiling windows, the hotel offers plenty of activities for the whole family.

Uruba Street
+20 2 2267 7730

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