Things to do in Cairo

About Cairo

Visitors should not miss the iconic Great Pyramids of Giza, the Sphinx, the Egyptian Museum which is teeming with ancient artifacts, the bustling Khan El-Khalili bazaar, and the historic sites of Old Cairo, including Coptic churches and Islamic monuments like the Al-Azhar Mosque.
Families with kids will enjoy the interactive Pharaonic Village, the fun and educational KidZania at Mall of Egypt, the Giza Zoo, and the entertaining Dream Park, one of the largest amusement parks in the region.
For outdoor enthusiasts, there's the serene Al-Azhar Park, Nile felucca rides, exploring the ancient Saqqara necropolis, or simply enjoying a leisurely stroll through the lively streets of Zamalek with its scenic vistas.
Indoor activities range from visiting the immersive Grand Egyptian Museum, the Coptic Museum, enjoying a performance at the Cairo Opera House, to exploring the treasures at the Museum of Islamic Art.
Notable tours include the Cairo Day Tour, featuring essential landmarks, the Cairo Night Tour, highlighting the city's evening charm, and specialty tours like the Islamic Cairo or Coptic Cairo tours that delve into the city’s religious heritage.
The most visited museums are the Egyptian Museum, housing the world's premiere collection of pharaonic antiquities, the Grand Egyptian Museum, the Coptic Museum, and the Museum of Islamic Art, each offering a unique glimpse into different facets of Egypt's rich cultural tapestry.
On rainy days, visitors can opt for indoor audio tours of the Egyptian Museum, exploring its vast collections, or enjoy engaging exhibits at the Museum of Islamic Art. Another option is the Gayer-Anderson Museum, housed in a historic building adjacent to the Mosque of Ibn Tulun.
Short tours that can be completed in an hour or less include quick visits to the Al-Suhaymi House, a historic Ottoman-era mansion, the compact Manial Palace Museum, or a brief audio tour highlighting the essentials of the Egyptian Museum's collection.

Best Things to Do In Cairo

Unearth Cairo's ancient secrets and modern marvels. Experience a captivating mix of history and culture.

Cairo: Al-Azhar Park

What is it?
A verdant expanse in the heart of bustling Cairo offering lush landscapes and serene walkways.
Why you should go?
Among the greatest escapes within the city, Al-Azhar Park is a lush haven that stands out amongst Cairo activities. Created from what was once a landfill, this green space delights visitors with its beautifully landscaped gardens, fountains, and stunning views of the historic city walls. The park provides a tranquil spot for family picnics, leisurely walks, or simply a peaceful retreat from urban life. It also hosts occasional cultural events, making it an enriching part of the Cairo experience.

Cairo: The Museum of Islamic Art

What is it?
A world-renowned institution showcasing an impressive collection of Islamic art pieces.
Why you should go?
For art lovers and history enthusiasts, the Museum of Islamic Art is a treasure trove of over a thousand years of culture. Visitors can admire intricate ceramics, textiles, manuscripts, and metalwork, each telling a story of the Islamic world's heritage. The museum not only highlights Egypt’s history but also showcases the richness of Islamic civilizations from Spain to India. This attraction is indeed one of the intellectual highlights and a top thing to do in Cairo.

Cairo: El Fishawy Cafe

What is it?
The oldest cafe in Cairo located in the heart of Khan El-Khalili, bustling with history and local ambiance.
Why you should go?
El Fishawy Cafe has been serving patrons for over two centuries, offering a sensory journey back in time with its mirrored walls and traditional decor. Frequented by both locals and tourists, the cafe serves traditional Egyptian coffee and tea, an array of shisha flavors, and offers a glimpse into Cairo's social life. Joining the hustle and buzz of this historical establishment provides a taste of traditional Cairo hospitality and charm.

Cairo: Dahshur

What is it?
An ancient royal necropolis home to unique, less-crowded pyramids including the Bent and Red Pyramids.
Why you should go?
If you’re seeking things to do in Cairo away from the usual crowds, Dahshur offers a more tranquil yet equally impressive historical site. The Bent Pyramid and the Red Pyramid stand as remarkable examples of early pyramid construction and evolution. visitors have the rare chance to enter the pyramids and explore the chambers within, making for a more personal encounter with Egypt's ancient past.

Cairo: Cairo Tower

What is it?
A 187-meter tall tower with a revolving restaurant, offering 360-degree views of Cairo.
Why you should go?
For the best panoramic views of Cairo, the Cairo Tower is the place to go. This notable landmark allows visitors to rise above the hustle of city life and get a bird's eye perspective of Cairo's vast landscape, including views of the Nile, the Pyramids, and beyond. The tower also features a revolving restaurant, providing a unique dining experience with scenic views. A stop at Cairo Tower can add a memorable chapter to any Cairo itinerary.

Cairo: Cairo Citadel

What is it?
A historic fortress with breathtaking views, museums, and ancient mosques.
Why you should go?
Dominating the skyline, the Citadel of Saladin stands as a monument of military might and architectural ingenuity. Offering panoramic views of Cairo, it houses several well-preserved structures including the grand Muhammad Ali Mosque. Visitors can steep themselves in history at the on-site museums or simply enjoy the tranquil gardens. The fusion of cultural significance with stunning vistas makes the Citadel an unmissable experience.

Cairo: The Solar Boat Museum

What is it?
A unique archaeological museum showcasing an ancient pharaoh's solar ship.
Why you should go?
Adjacent to the Great Pyramids, the Solar Boat Museum invites history aficionados to gaze upon a beautifully preserved piece of ancient Egyptian royalty. The ship is believed to have transported the pharaoh to the afterlife, and its preservation is a marvel. It provides immense insight into the customs, beliefs, and craftsmanship of ancient Egyptian culture and is a truly unique experience amidst Cairo’s plethora of ancient artifacts.

Cairo: The Nilometer

What is it?
An ancient structure on Rhoda Island used to measure the Nile's floodings.
Why you should go?
This off-the-beaten-path attraction is worth visiting for its blend of science, history, and architecture. The Nilometer reflects ancient Egypt's advanced understanding of engineering and the environment. The serenity of Rhoda Island provides a perfect backdrop for visitors to explore this marvel and reflect on the Nile’s significance to Egyptian civilization. The Nilometer is a serene getaway from Cairo's hustle and bustle while still being steeped in the city's rich past.

Cairo: Zamalek District

What is it?
An upscale, leafy district in Cairo brimming with art galleries and restaurants.
Why you should go?
Zamalek, located on Gezira Island in the Nile, offers a chic escape with its avant-garde art scene, trendy cafes, and designer boutiques. It's a peaceful neighborhood ideal for couples or anyone interested in experiencing a more contemporary facet of Cairo. The area is also home to the Cairo Opera House and the Mahmoud Khalil Museum, making it a haven for culture lovers looking for a sophisticated outing.

Cairo: Street of the Tentmakers

What is it?
A historic street known for its intricate handmade textiles and vibrant atmosphere.
Why you should go?
Known locally as Sharia Khayamiya, this is the go-to place for experiencing one of Cairo’s most traditional crafts. The market is full not only of the colorful tents that earned the street its name but also of other textile products, each telling a story through its patterns and colors. Engaging with the artisans provides a more personal understanding of Cairo’s culture, making it one of the fun things to do in Cairo for those looking to experience the city’s living heritage.

TOP-5 tours in Cairo for first time visitors

  • Dive into the 'Pyramids of Giza and Sphinx' audio tour and explore the ancient wonders that have stood the test of time, providing a gateway to Egypt’s glorious past.
  • The 'Historic Cairo' tour weaves through the city's vibrant heart, from the bustling Khan El-Khalili bazaar to the towering minarets of the Mosque of Muhammad Ali.
  • Egyptian Museum: Discover treasures untold in the informative 'Egyptian Museum' tour, home to an unrivaled collection of artifacts including the precious relics of Tutankhamun.
  • Step back to the Roman era with the 'Coptic Cairo' tour, featuring the Hanging Church and the Coptic Museum, a testament to the city's diverse religious heritage.
  • 'Cairo by Night': Experience Cairo's transformation as dusk falls with the 'Cairo by Night' tour, encompassing the shimmering Nile and the city's lively nocturnal pulse.

Fun things to do in Cairo with kids

Cairo, brimming with history and adventure, offers an array of attractions perfect for family fun. Engage your kids in the wonders of ancient Egypt with a trip to Pharaonic Village where history comes alive through vivid reenactments. A felucca ride on the Nile provides a gentle and scenic introduction to Cairo's waterfront and is a relaxing activity for all ages. For those moments when energy levels peak, Magic Galaxy, an indoor amusement park in City Stars Mall, offers a universe of games and rides to keep younger travelers entertained. Each attraction is tailored to foster both fun and educational experiences for children and families, making them top choices for visitors looking to add a dash of enjoyment to their Cairo explorations.

Things to do in Cairo with family

Cairo is a captivating destination that offers a delightful mix of educational and recreational activities for families to enjoy together. A visit to the Giza Plateau, where the iconic pyramids and Sphinx reside, is a must for an unforgettable glimpse into ancient Egyptian civilization. Families can revel in the rich history and even delve into the chambers of these ancient wonders. For a more immersive cultural experience, the Cairo Puppet Theatre presents enchanting performances that charm both children and adults alike, showcasing traditional stories and folkloric music. The Cairo Zoo, with its diverse collection of wildlife housed in landscaped gardens, provides a pleasant day out for nature and animal enthusiasts. Each of these attractions serves up a blend of learning and leisure, ensuring that a family trip to Cairo is filled with lasting memories.

Free things to do in Cairo

Cairo, the city of a thousand minarets, offers an eclectic array of attractions that are free of charge for those looking to explore on a budget. Saunter through the bustling lanes of Khan El-Khalili, where the vibrant market life offers an authentic taste of Egyptian culture and history without spending a penny. Art enthusiasts will appreciate the wealth of street art in areas like Zamalek, where colorful murals bring the city's walls to life. To soak in Cairo's natural beauty, nothing beats a leisurely walk around Al-Azhar Park's lush green landscapes—considered one of the city's best-kept secrets—with panoramic views of the city, it's a perfect spot for picnics and relaxation. These cost-free activities allow visitors to revel in Cairo’s rich tapestry of sights, sounds, and experiences, making them some of the best things to do in the city.

Cheap things to do in Cairo

Exploring Cairo on a shoestring is both possible and rewarding with numerous budget-friendly attractions on offer. Delve into Egypt's rich Islamic heritage with a visit to the many historic mosques around the city, like the illustrious Al-Azhar Mosque, which requires only a small donation for entry. Nature lovers can revel in the beauty of the Nile by taking an affordable felucca ride at dusk, a serene experience that offers stunning views without denting the wallet. Immerse yourself in the daily life by indulging in the local staple, koshari, at one of the many bustling street food stalls. It’s not only delicious and hearty but also incredibly pocket-friendly. These cost-effective experiences showcase Cairo’s cultural charm and natural beauty, making them highly recommended for visitors wanting to stretch their funds while absorbing the city’s essence.

Things to do in Cairo for couples

Couples visiting Cairo will find a romantic blend of history and charm. A felucca ride on the Nile at sunset offers an intimate setting to enjoy the city's rhythms from the tranquility of its life-giving river. For those seeking culture, the Cairo Opera House stages world-class performances that make for an elegant night out. Wander hand-in-hand through the enchanting, lantern-lit corridors of Al Moez Street after dusk, absorbing the historic grandeur. This selection of attractions provides the perfect combination of romance, culture, and serene beauty to ensure a memorable experience for every couple.

Things to do in Cairo at night

Cairo emerges as an entirely different city as the sun sets. For an unforgettable nocturnal experience, nothing compares to the Sound and Light Show at the Pyramids of Giza, where the stories of the pharaohs are told against a backdrop of illuminated ancient wonders. Cairo's nightlife thrives at places like Cairo Jazz Club, offering great music and a lively atmosphere for a fun night out. Alternatively, a leisurely cruise down the Nile on a dinner boat combines fine dining with picturesque river views, providing a serene way to experience the city's beauty. These night activities present a wide array of entertainment and cultural experiences, perfect for those looking to explore Cairo after dark.