In the chaos of the traffic, the noise and fuel pollution, the crowds and the aggression of a megacity, there has to be a way to take shelter.
In Cairo, where to go to find peace, calm and a space to collect your Self?
My favourite retreat is into El-Azhar Park, a “green lung” on a rise to the east of the city, between the densely populated streets of Darb El-Ahmar and the Moqattam Hills where limestone was quarried by the pyramid builders thousands of years ago. Read more
Two walks downtown, two contrasting gardens – each one remarkable in its own way. I have no preference. Every garden has its points of interest, “wow” factor(s) and features that provoke an “I don’t think I’d put that there!” reaction. Always food for thought – and ideas to take home.
The gardens of Manyal Palace (above left) on Rawdah Island form a park of rambling greenery. It’s a haven of peace among the manic traffic and pollution of a super-crowded corner of the city. By contrast, El-Andalus Garden (above right) near the Tahrir Bridge is neatly laid out with terracing, severely clipped trees, and architectural elements drawn from southern Spain. Read more
Taking the air in Maadi
Tuesday: Time for a day out from the Jasmine Garden, and a chance a) to learn about the fascinating art and science of aromatherapy, and b) to wander along the tree-lined streets of Maadi, admiring other people’s gardens – always fun – and checking out the local nurseries.