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- 2 hours to Half Day Time to Spend
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For the best taste of Cairo's vibrant, chaotic personality, make a beeline to Khan el-Khalili. Overflowing into the narrow streets of Islamic Cairo, this bustling market serves as the go-to place for authentic Egyptian souvenirs. Its labyrinth of alleyways houses a treasure trove of Egyptian jewelry, hookah pipes and spices.
A visit to Khan el-Khalili will certainly test your bargaining skills: Prepare for vendors to bombard you, and always assume that prices are marked up. Aim to knock the starting price down by at least 20 percent, and if you're facing a stubborn opponent, don't hesitate to walk away. Also, it's easy to lose track of young children at this market, so it's best to come without kids. And if you're on a tight schedule or aren't the best with directions, consider visiting Khan el-Khalili via a bus tour. Tours start at $60 and are available through companies like Egypt Tailor Made Tours and Emo Tours Egypt.
Getting to the Khan el-Khalili bazaar, which is free to visit, can be a bit tricky: The nearest Cairo Metro stop – Bab El-Shaaria – is about a mile northwest of the market, and it's very easy to get lost on Islamic Cairo's side streets. Consider hailing a taxi or taking a bus tour to the region instead. Most stalls open around 9:30 a.m. and close at sunset every day.
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