ًThis old palace in the heart of Heliopolis has many stories and myths about the strange voices and lights that come out of it in the middle of the night. Baron Empain Palace, aka El Palais Hindou, is one of the most breathtaking structures in Egypt. In the late 19th century, Baron Empain, a Belgian engineer who loved traveling, arrived from India after many stops around the world and decided to stay in Cairo. Naturally, he built himself a palace but this one stands out from others in the city because its design was inspired by Angkor Wat temple in Cambodia. After the baron died, the palace was deserted for years, but hosting events and photo-shoots has now given it a new lease of life.
What could be a better place to take some amazing photos than an open museum in the streets of the old city? Muizz Street, one of the oldest and most vibrant streets in Cairo and named after the Fatimid caliph Al-Mu’izz li-Din Allah, is full of medieval Islamic architecture. All along it, you’ll find yourself surrounded by historic constructions from different periods including the Tulunid, Fatimid and Mamluk eras, as well as several markets.
One of the oldest spots in Cairo, 200 years ago this was a deserted island in the middle of the Nile, used by fishermen only. Things started to change when Mohamed Ali, the Ottoman governor and father of modern Egypt, decided to build a palace for himself there. Now its beautiful streets and gardens are considered one of the most vital places in Cairo and home to many politicians and elites, in addition to embassies, and art galleries. The area is famous for many things including the Marriott Hotel—first built by Khedive Ismail for the reception of royal guests during the the opening of the Suez Canal in 1869. There’s also Cairo Tower—built by Gamal Abdel-Nasser and seen as a symbol of the fight against capitalism. The tower is a good spot to appreciate Cairo’s beautiful scenery and take some crazy shots. Another good spot is the Cairo Opera House, rebuilt in the 1980s after the old one, also commissioned by the Khedive, burnt down in 1971.
Prince Mohamed Ali’s palace
Located on Rhoda Island in the Nile, the palace was built for Prince Mohamed Ali, uncle of King Farouk, the last King of Egypt. A masterpiece of architectural design, it is all the more special for showing the lifestyle of the royal family in the 19th and 20th centuries. With six large buildings designed in a mix of historical styles including Ottoman, Mamluk and rococo, it contains a large number of paintings, wall hangings, books and items from the royal collection. The palace also boasts a wonderful garden and nature parks with rare plants—the place is just amazing.
Al Azhar Park
Listed among the world’s sixty magnificent public spaces, Al Azhar is Cairo’s biggest, most spectacular park. You’ll find yourself surrounded by numerous beautiful gardens, grass, and fountains. You can also enjoy the view while having a nice meal in one of the park’s restaurants. It’s a perfect place for taking photos, especially given that you’re going to be surrounded by the view of old, historic Cairo.