This museum is situated within the citadel complex and therefore free to get in, once you have paid to go in the whole area. We nearly missed it, as we are not really into guns and both guide books were dismissive - 'OK for those with plenty of time and nothing better to do' was how one guide book recommended it. But it is a gem. It tells you everything, right from the beginning and how dynasties grew and diminished and the country emerged into how it is today. The building it is housed in is absolutely fab as well. Give yourself a minimum of an hour, better still two, and you won't regret it.
Within the walls of the Citadel.
There is a long chain of 87 pyramids running from El-Lahun (near El Faiyum) in the south to Giza in the north. At both Dahshur and Saqqara you can see pyramids to the north and to the south and so get a better idea of the extent of these monuments.
At Dahshur there is the Red Pyramid with its three corbelled rooms and the Bent or Rhomboid Pyramid. Halfway through building it, they changed the slope so it looks bent as the name suggests.
At Saqqara, the Step pyramid with its courtyard and surviving temples gives a much better idea of the way a funerary complex was more than just a tomb. It was a whole collection of buildings for the worship of the gods as well as the preparation of the Pharaoh's body.
These sites are best appreciated with a good guide or guidebook and a small group so you have plenty of time to explore and see the whole thing.
Dahshur is 40 miles south of Cairo.
Saqqara is roughly 25km south of Cairo.
Ask your hotel to hire a car and driver for the day and you can visit both sites.
The ancient Egyptians didn't have the arch so they used corbelling to create large spaces inside the Pyramids. Only a limited number are allowed in any of the Giza pyramids on any one day and you have to get there first thing to queue but it is well worth it.
The long Gallery is in the Great Pyramid and is some 60 feet long and slopes upward. It has been created by slightly overlapping stones as they go up to create a long-toothed triangular space. It is amazing.
If you haven't the time or patience to queue for tickets, the Red Pyramid at the Dahshur Pyramid has three much smaller corbelled rooms which are truly amazing.
Giza is approximately 20km southwest of Cairo.
Dahshur is approximately 40km south of Cairo.
Sultan Hassan Mosque is an amazing piece of Mamluk architecture and a must for anybody visiting Cairo. Bab al-Shariah is a place I visited with my friend's family. Native Egyptians live and work there amid the hustle and bustle and there are all kinds of shops with merchandise at affordable prices.
Sultan Hasan Mosque is near the citadel. Bab al-Shariah is near the Al-Azhar and Al-Hussein mosques
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