Free Things to Do in Cairo

Top Free Things to Do in Cairo, Egypt

Best Free Things to Do in Cairo

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Things to do ranked using Tripadvisor data including reviews, ratings, photos, and popularity.
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What travelers are saying

  • Grumo
    New York City, NY812 contributions
    We had a great visit to the churches in Coptic Cairo as part of our Egypt tour with Overseas Adventure Travel.

    It was incredible to see in the Saints Sergius and Bacchus Church the cave where the Holy Family stayed for three months during the Flight to Egypt. The church, built in the 4th century when Christianity became the official religion of the Roman Empire, is beautiful with stunning icons. There is a lovely latticework through which you can enter the congregation.

    The Hanging Church is so named as it was built over a Roman fortress, which you can see as you approach the church. If I understand it correctly the Hanging Church is the seat of the Coptic Papacy,

    Churches have the same design as temples form of temples with the “holy of holies”/altar only available to the priest. The altar is in a private room that is closed off and in front of the congregation. The priest’s words are broadcast to the congregation.

    Our guide being Copt provided special insight into the history and liturgy of the Copt faith and these specific churches.

    What is especially poignant are the parallels between the ancient Egyptian religion and Christianity. All we learned during visits to the ancient Egyptian temples, tombs and pyramids about rebirth, virgin birth, rebirth from an enclosed stone tomb, three gods; father, son and spirit; son of god in form of a man made the adoption of Christianity by Egyptians relatively easy.

    I had always thought that Christianity’s roots were in the Old Testament with the foretelling of Christ in the book is Isaiah. Now I see the deep roots and influence of the Ancient Egyptian religion on Christianity.

    If you have any interest in the history of Christianity, Coptic Cairo is a must see,

    An extra treat was walking by the Ben Ezra Synagogue at the site where baby Moses was retrieved from the Nile.

    Our appreciation for Copt Cairo was enhanced greatly by the explanations by our excellent guide Osama Petro. I strongly urge visitors to do research in the Copt faith and/or go with a guide.

    Coptic Cairo is a good respite from the activity and intensity of Cairo.
    Written May 29, 2022
    This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
  • scotdoc2015
    Birmingham, UK149 contributions
    Enter near the AL Azhar mosque entrance. Only worth going along to the middle cross junction area. Beware of pushy sellers. Don't be fooled by converted prices.
    Difficult to arrange an Uber taxi from here.
    Plenty of choice. Buy all souvenirs here.
    Written April 13, 2022
    This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
  • mcrtex
    Decatur, TX117 contributions
    A visit here is needed to really do this church justice. Hand carved out of the mountain. Plus to get to it you must travel thourgh the city of garbage ( Amazing in itself)
    Written June 24, 2022
    This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
  • Trip802753
    Chennai District, India2 contributions
    Sizzler and Paul were my 2 favorite places to eat in my 3.5 year stay (2018-21)- will require 3 to 4 hours to cover- all high end to medium brands - European, American, Turkish & Egyptian brands
    Written May 31, 2022
    This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
  • Jazzumbo
    Romania1,578 contributions
    For those passionate about the Islamic architecture, the Mosque of al-Azhar is a must see. Founded by the Fatimid conqueror Gawhar al-Siqilli in 970, it is currently a great mixture of styles and periods. For example, the qibla wall dates from the 14th century, Sultan Quaytbay added one of the minarets in 1475 and the main façade is from 19th century, while the double arched gate of the main façade belongs to the mid-18th century.
    Briefly, the visitors can admire the Fatimid, Mameluke and Ottoman architectural features blended together in majestic building.
    It is important to mention that the mosque-madrasa complex of al-Azhar is one of the oldest universities in the world.
    Another detail that makes al-Azhar so unique: it was a Shiite theological center until the 1260s when the mosque was re-inaugurated as a Sunni institution.
    Written May 29, 2022
    This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
  • TTOverseas
    Cairo, Egypt206 contributions
    Islamic Cairo has long been a center of religion and learning- It is worth the visit, but there are lots of ways to experience this. We combined Islamic Cairo with the Citadel/Muhammad Ali Mosque, so we were able to discuss a lot of the history while overlooking from the Citadel.

    Walking tours are popular, but we chose to only walk at the more popular locations and use a van to take us around, while getting more history about the areas. We also took the tour guides recommendation for a local Egyptian restaurant (yes, we are aware how this normally works, but we were very happy with the recommendation and value- Have the discussion on value and expectations before you agree!).

    It is difficult to get an understanding of the Egyptian people and experience without discussing the history of Islam in Egypt, this is the best place to have that discussion.
    Written April 30, 2022
    This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
  • Gene R J
    Silver Spring, MD8,099 contributions
    We took an Uber($3) for 4.2 km east to the entrance of this historic part of Old Cairo. Once getting over the limited access highway, we took a 1.2 km walk to see a 13th C mausoleum, the 13th C Qualawun Complex and up to the 14th C Beshtak Palace, then retraced to the classic El Fishawi Cafe and a view of the 10th C Al-Azhar Mosque. From here, we easily accessed a taxi back toward Tahrir Square.
    Written March 29, 2022
    This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
  • mcrtex
    Decatur, TX117 contributions
    I have been here numerous times over the past 15 years. Always interesting . Sometimes I have had the pleasure of someone playing music here.
    Written June 24, 2022
    This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
  • Ahmed AL-HABBAA
    Qaha, Egypt567 contributions
    Still one of the favorite destinations in Cairo, where you can find what ever you want with plenty of international and national brands. With also alot of restaurants and cafes, every choices is there too.
    Written June 16, 2022
    This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
  • Muratovich77
    Hawalli, Kuwait120 contributions
    Cozy and in the middle of Cairo, now for Posh incomers, but still has its own heritage of shorter building and green tree streets, close to downtown Cairo, & Giza pyramids.
    Written May 6, 2022
    This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
  • Myo M
    Coquitlam, Canada21,257 contributions
    Quite impressive here is the spaciousness of the "interior square" of this mosque although its corridors on the four sides & the round-shaped pavilion in the middle are all quite plain I would say (nowhere as elaborate as the similar square at the Muhammad Ali Mosque at the Cairo Citadel visited just prior to here although it's one of smaller size than this one). Then yes, what can be done here which is likely not possible at many mosques of the world (my first such experience among those I've been to) is to go right up above the Mosque where there are actually "2 parts": its rooftop with a fairly spacious area to walk around on the four sides (where you can go "right to the edge" to see the big square down below); and its minaret which you go up along an "exterior staircase" (for some great views of the city to some distances all around including the view of the Citadel located not too far away from this mosque).

    So, it was actually "4 mosques" that I visited on the same day with the fourth one (apart from this one, Muhammad Ali at the Citadel as mentioned above & also the smaller mosque just within the Citadel) being the mosque right beside this one which is actually one seemingly "not in use" with signs of decay around its small square inside but with its minaret also being one available for going up (a "tighter space" to move around at the top of that one though compared to the top of the minaret at this mosque). And also located right beside this mosque (in the "opposite direction" as that to the fourth mosque just mentioned which was actually the third one in my "order of visit" just before this mosque) is Gayer-Anderson House Museum which despite its 3-story structure is not much one for impression with a "dreary look" from outside (and which is all I saw of it arriving at about their closing time of 3 pm).
    Written May 14, 2022
    This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
  • Nab
    Giza, Egypt9 contributions
    One of my favorite malls in greater Cairo, always has the essentials with a vast selection of stores. I would recommend the mall any time of the week besides the Weeknd’s
    Written June 27, 2022
    This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
  • mcrtex
    Decatur, TX117 contributions
    The HOLY Family stayed in cave that is located beneath the Church that you can go down to see. Very special place for me.
    Written June 24, 2022
    This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
  • podrozniczka60
    New Jersey14,335 contributions
    This church can be seen as a part of visit to Coptic Cairo. The Church of St. George is within the Babylon Fortress, and it is Greek Orthodox not Coptic Orthodox. The original church was from 10th century but was destroyed by fire and current structure was built in the beginning of 20th century.
    Graceful well balance complex on the outside - reveals beautiful interior on the inside.
    Written January 12, 2022
    This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
  • podrozniczka60
    New Jersey14,335 contributions
    Heliopolis used to be a suburb of Cairo but it is now a part of this eclectic city. It was created by a Belgian industrialist in the very beginning of 20th century. It feels more upscale and metropolitan, having a worldly vibe without loosing its identity. It feels safe and well organized. It is a friendly district of Cairo to stay in.
    Written January 11, 2022
    This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.