Cairo is the capital of Egypt and the largest city in Africa. Located on the River Nile at the base of its delta in northern Egypt, the site has been settled for over 6,000 years, and long served as the capital of historic Egyptian civilizations. The city is a restless crossroads of creeds and cultures and the teeming streets and bazaars contrasts with the reflective mood of the Egyptian Museum. Its countless treasures include the gold death-mask of the boy-king Tutankhamun.
On Cairo's western edge are Giza's towering Pyramids, the tombs of the Pharaohs - constructed nearly 5,000 years ago and among the most awesome man-made structures on earth - and the Sphinx, whose enigma remains unsolved to this day. The Citadel, in the eastern part of the city, is famous for its mosques and fort. Built by Sultan Salahuddin al-Ayoubi in 1176 AD, the Citadel commands Cairo from high ground. Its ornate structures are part of Cairo's skyline, and the Mohammed Ali Mosque is particularly notable for its storeyed domes and twin minarets, two of the city's famed "thousand minarets". Old Cairo, or Fustat, has famous gates, the remains of an earlier wall around the city. Of eight original gates only three-Bab Zeuela, Bab al-Nasr, and Bab al-Fotouh-remain, but each is large and imposing in its own style.
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