Close to the Bab Zuweila gate to Cairo’s old city, the 15th-century Al-Mu’ayyad Mosque stands atop the remains of a prison that once housed the mosque’s creator, Sultan Al-Mu’ayyad. While the structure has been extensively reworked over the years, its brilliantly colored marble and ornate decorations still stand out, as do the elegant twin minarets.The Basics
The Al-Mu’ayyad Mosque is one of the less-visited mosques in Old Cairo (also known as Islamic Cairo or Historic Cairo). Experience it on a guided walking tour, a tour of Cairo’s mosques, or an Islamic Cairo tour, or put it on your itinerary with a private guide. There’s a small fee to enter.Things to Know Before You Go
- The Al-Mu’ayyad Mosque is of interest to fans of Islamic architecture.
- The Al-Mu’ayyad Mosque is considered sacred to Muslims; women should cover their legs and arms and bring a scarf to cover their hair.
- Tip the attendant who looks after your shoes while you enter the prayer hall. A couple of Egyptian pounds will suffice.
How to Get There
The Sultan Al-Mu’ayyad Mosque sits in the heart of Cairo, right next to the Bab Zuweila gate to the old city. Public transit can be challenging if you don’t speak Arabic. The easiest option for visiting is to join a tour or hire a private driver for the day.When to Get There
The Sultan Al-Mu’ayyad Mosque is open Saturday through Thursday, morning through late afternoon. During prayer times on Friday, access is reserved for worshippers. The mosque is rarely crowded, except during major Islamic holidays, such as Eid al-Fitr and Eid al-Adha.Islamic Cairo’s Must-See Mosques
Medieval domes and minarets still grace the skyline of Historic Cairo, a UNESCO World Heritage Site. Besides the Sultan Al-Mu’ayyad Mosque, other signature sites include the Alabaster Mosque, the Sultan Hassan Mosque, the Al-Azhar Mosque, and the Mosque of Ibn Tulun, which dates back to the ninth century.