Khan El Khalili, in Cairo, Egypt was named and built by the Emir Djaharks El Khalili in the heart of the Fatimid City. This area was known for its Caravansary. The Caravansary is a rest house with storage rooms that surround a courtyard for horses and camels and the merchants slept upstairs. The Caravansary is still standing on Sikka Khan El Khalili and Badestan. The market was built in 1382 and quickly became a major trade center. It is believed that this market may have inadvertently caused Columbus to discover America. The Mamluks were a ruling class in power during this time and had established a monopoly on the spice market. It is said that this monopoly encouraged the Europeans to search for alternate routes to the East and caused Columbus to discover America.
The famous main gate of Khan El Khalili is still standing today. This entrance opens to the original courtyard which is in the center of Badestan St. In this same area is the famous El Fishawi Café. This famous café is a must see on a visit to Cairo. The El Fishawi Café is frequented by artists and area celebrities. One of the café's most famous regulars was the Nobel Prize winning Naguib Mahfouz. Khan El Khalili market is filled with intriguing alleys and streets. There many areas specializing in just one craft. There is the brass area, a jewelry neighborhood, spice market, vendors, and so much more. Whether its history that draws you or the more than 900 shops, Khan El Khalili is the destination you must see after the pyramids of course!
Brief History of Khan EL Khalili Cairo
Khan El Khalili5826A Seminary Rd. Falls Church, VA 22041 USA Tel: (703) - 671 - 1286 Fax: (703) - 671 - 1287