Khan El – Khalili Established in the 14th century, Khan El-Khalili in Old Cairo has always been an important district for cultural and economic activities.
There is a great number of cultural and historic structures in Khan El-Khalili. So, it’s no surprise that the area has featured in many movies and literary works such as Naguib Mafhouz‘s famous novel Midaq Alley. Once you’re there, you’ll be steps away from Muizz Street which has many examples of Islamic architecture. You’re also close to Al-Hussein Mosque as well as Wekalet El Ghouri, and Al-Azhar market. It’s like stepping back in time to authentic Cairo.
While you walking around in the market, you may find your eyes becoming lost between the unique mix of items displayed in shops. There is a variety of goods from silverware, gold and antiques, to glass lamps, incense, handmade accessories and ancient Egyptian souvenirs. Also, the soft touch of the handmade carpets will take your breath away. There are also some areas for gold, copper made things and spice.
The area is home to many classic cafes, there’s El-Fishawi cafe one of the oldest in Cairo 1797, and one of Naguib Mahfouz’s favorite cafes. As for food, there is a multiple places serving traditional Egyptian food.
You’ll have a new type experience if you’re lucky enough to go the area at the same time as the Mawlid Al-Hussein celebrations, which is a Sufi celebration of Imam Hussein’s birth. During this time, Sufists perform litanies and do other traditional activities. A few steps away you’ll find Wekalet El- Ghouri where you’ll enjoy another type of Sufi spiritual activity, the Tannoura show. There are also many carnivals taking place in Muizz Street every now and then.