Finally Conquered the Citadel! (kinda)


It’s crazy, we are rapidly approaching the end of the semester, and just like back home, that means lots of final projects and papers, so I have been keeping fairly busy. One sign to me that things are really winding down is that we finally went on our trip to see the Citadel, which I have pretty much been considering to be the end of the semester. As I have mentioned, we have been seeing this building from all over the city, and I was so excited to finally see it up close.

The view on the way to the Citadel; it is completely different from the other mosques in Egypt because of the sheer amount of domes, which is more the Turkish style. This design was brought into the country by Muhammad Ali (the king, not the boxer) when he came from Turkey, and my friends who have been to Istanbul say that over there the design style is basically just “throw like 5 or 6 domes on it”. Apparently the style didn’t really catch on in Cairo, because more modern mosques are usually built with the traditional Egyptian style, sans domes.

Here’s a closer view of the mosque, with a cool bush with  Allah i don’t know, pruned(?) into it. The main structure with all the domes is the mosque, but the Citadel itself refers to the fortifications around this, as well as the palace that we visited after the mosque.

This is the inside of the mosque; notice the how ornate and decorated it is compared to other ones that I have taken pictures of. I actually really liked the rings of lights thing they had going on, but it was a little weird being somewhere so showy.

It just made me think…

After the mosque we headed to the old palace, which has been converted to the Egyptian Military Museum, where we got to wander around and look at military stuff dating back to the pharaohs. There was an open air part that had tanks and planes and stuff; I like how sad and impotent they managed to make the Israeli tank on the left look…

I’ve been to a lot of museums at this point, so things are starting to get a little weird after I spend a while looking at exhibits…

Possibly the most amusing thing about the museum was the huge number of bad translations on signs and labels. This was probably our favorite; it seems like somewhere along the line someone heard the phrase cold steel and decided to try to use it in the signs, but didn’t quite get it right. I would love to have a job traveling around and fixing museum signs, as long as I don’t catch the Sudanese cold, I hear it steals arms.

So anyways, finals week is coming up, and I have to start making a bucket list of things to make sure I do before leaving, so the end of my semester will probably get pretty hectic. I’m looking forward to getting through it all and hopefully uncovering so hidden gems in Cairo that I haven’t seen yet!

Categories: Egypt Study Abroad | 1 Comment

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One thought on “Finally Conquered the Citadel! (kinda)

  1. Excellent write-up. I certainly love this
    site. Keep writing!

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