The Citadel

Posted on Sunday 25 March 2007

The Citadel is a walled compound built on the hills on the outskirts of Cairo.

It started out as a small pavilion built in the early 800′s.

It was fortified and made into a fortress and royal city by Salah Al Din (aka “Saladin”) in the late 1700s 1100s [Thank you Kelley]
More details and history can be found here.

We visited with a group of the ALI (Arabic Learning Institute). The guide is a professor of Islamic Art. She has an astounding knowledge of the history of architecture and art in the Islamic world, and Cairo in particular.

We usually jump at the chance to go on one of her tours.

We toured all the mosques and other buildings, in chronological order, inside the Citadel. Some guide books play down the citadel as uninspiring and even a waste of time with all the other things to see in Cairo. I can see that if you were to go to the Citadel without a guide, or at least a good guide book.

Our guide greatly enriched our experience.

I took just a handful of shots. Flash is not allowed inside most of the buildings, so not alot of the shots came out. Here they are.

2 Comments for 'The Citadel'

  1.  
    rachel
    March 25, 2007 | 2:42 pm
     

    sundial:
    5 points = 5 prayer times?

    Jack: I thought so too, at first. But the last prayer of the day is well after sunset. And even the first prayer is held when the sun just peaks over the horizon (traditionally) so even that time wouldn’t show up on a sundial.

    So I dunno.

  2.  
    Kelley
    March 26, 2007 | 11:28 pm
     

    But Jack,

    Saladin was around during the 1100′s, not the 1700′s. (I give you a wet willie!!)

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