Head deep into the oldest part of Cairo to see some of Egypt’s most important cultural and historical sights. Explore the Babylon Fortress, built in 100 AD by Emperor Trajan to defend his empire. Often called the ‘birthplace of Cairo’, this ancient fortress has a traditional Roman design and houses six churches and the Coptic Museum within its walls.
Visit the 4th-century Church of Saint Sergius and Bacchus, where Mary, Joseph and Jesus were said to have rested on their journey through Egypt. Then tour the Coptic Museum, which holds the world’s largest collection of Coptic Christian artefacts. Admire its collection of sculptures dating from pre-Christian times to the 5th century and see remarkable frescoes, colourful cloths and bone carvings up close.
A visit to the Hanging Church will help you grasp how this Basilica-style building – once the seat of the Coptic Patriarch – got its name. Suspended over a passage above the southern gatehouse of Roman-built Babylon Fortress, the church is one of the most beautiful in Coptic Cairo. Inside, elaborate bone and ivory artwork adorn the walls.
You’ll come away from this experience with a far better understanding of Coptic Cairo.
Additional notes about the tour
You will be required to wear clothing that covers your shoulders and knees. Comfortable walking shoes are recommended. Light cotton clothing is advisable for the warmer months (April to September) and a light jacket for the evenings during the cooler months (October to March).