When Khan El Khalili was built and who built it?
Established in the 14th century, the Khan El-Khalili market in Cairo has been always an important spot for cultural and economic activity.
Built by Emir Dajaharks Al-Khalili to be a large market complex on the site of the Za’afran Tomb, which is the burial place of the Fatimid rulers of Egypt. This building was part of the process of reconstruction started under Sultan Barquq (ruled 1382-1399) to help the city recover from the devastating ravages of the Black Death throughout the 13th and 14th centuries.
Today the market has been modernized remarkably, but there are still portions of the old construction that display the original Mamluk style architecture, which featured great archways and vaulted ceilings. The market has several restaurants and cafés spread throughout where you can take a break from shopping.
So what you can do in Khan El Khalili Bazaar?
With many historical places to view, and a huge bazaar area to walk by so, it’s no surprise the area has featured in many movies and literary novels such as Naguib Mahfouz’s novel Midaq Alley.
Once you’re there, you’ll be steps away from Muizz Street which is a live example of medieval Islamic architecture. You will be so close to Al-Hussein Mosque as well as Wekalet El Ghouri and Al-Azhar market. It’s like time traveling to medieval Cairo.
What can you buy in Khan El Khalili?
While Waliking the market, you may find your eyes getting lost among the blend of merchandise on display. There are a variety of goods to buy then – from sparkling silverware, gold artifacts, and antiques, to stained-glass lights, incense, and handcrafted accessories. Also, the soft touch of the handmade carpets will take your breath away. There are also devoted sections for gold, copper, and spices.
Where to eat and drink in Khan El Khalili?
Khan El Khalili is Known for many old cafes that you will be intrigued to try them all. There’s El-Fishawi, one of the oldest cafes in Cairo (established in 1797) and one of Naguib Mahfouz’s favorite cafes. Also worth checking out is El-lord where you’ll get to enjoy the songs of Umm Kulthum. As for food, there are plenty of places serving traditional Egyptian food.