Cairo Sights

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Al-Ghuriyya Review

This medieval landmark stands on either side of Shar'a al-Mu'iz where it crosses Shar'a al-Azhar. The surrounding area was the site of the Silk Bazaar, visible in David Robert's famous 1839 etching of the same name.

Built by Sultan al-Ghuri, who constructed the Wikala al-Ghuri three years later, al-Ghuriyya was the last great Mamluk architectural work before the Ottomans occupied Egypt. On the right side of the street (facing Shar'a al-Azhar) is the madrasa; opposite it stands the mausoleum. The former is a large-scale project, with almost Brutalist proportions (picture large, modern, exposed-concrete buildings). Note the unusual design of the minaret, its square base topped by five chimney pots.

The mausoleum was rebuilt several times during al-Ghuri's reign. After spending a reported 100,000 dinars on the complex, al-Ghuri was not buried here. He died outside Aleppo, and his body was never found. The bodies of a son, a concubine (both victims of a plague outbreak), a daughter, and Tumanbay II (his successor) are interred in the vault.

    Contact Information

  • Address: Qasr al-Ghuri, Shar'a al-Mu'iz, Islamic Cairo South, Cairo
  • Phone: 02/2735–4234
  • Cost: £E25
  • Hours: Daily 9–5
  • Location: Islamic Cairo South

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