The traffic in Cairo is a nightmare.
There are traffic jams day and night.
There doesn't appear to be any road-rules.
Lane markings are ignored.
Pedestrians risk life and limb crossing in amongst the lines of traffic.
Taxis weave in and out of the queues of cars, buses, trucks and horse-drawn carts.
People hang off the back...and side...and top of trucks and buses.
It is complete mayhem and it is fabulous!!
The Midan Ramses is at the northern side of central Cairo. Huges amounts of traffic, cars, buses, taxis, minibuses and so many roads. It was not easy to get an overview. When we stepped out our hotel at the square early morning, we realized to be in a city of millions. We just had to undergo all with the exhaust gases, smog and at that time a lot of yellow dust, in the air, on the cars, just everywhere. This was our first meeting with Cairo by daylight. Wow, what an overwhelming experience, I will never forget.
And in the middle of that all we saw the statue of Ramses II (this statue is discovered near Giza and erected at Midan Ramses in 1955). See at the left side of the picture.
The shortest way we took from Khan El Khalili to the Citadel took half an hour.
This route was rather crowded with a lot of local pedestrians. We didn't see any tourists.
There was not many other traffic in the street, only a few donkey carts, small cars and pick ups, so it didn't bother the pedestrians.
Even in the 1980's traffic in Cairo was a very interesting experience. Cairo had lots of highways some with as many as 6 lanes but it also had lots of cars to fill them. Most of the cars should have been off the road and were really old. The standard way to exit at a junction was to stay in the outside lane as long as possible, beep and then pull across at least 3 lanes of traffic at the last minute and then exit to a screeching of brakes and horn blasts as you caused mayhem in your wake.
However, off the main roads there were plenty of more tranquil traffic scenes...including even a camel walking down the road.
I am sure all this has changed since these photos were taken in the central parts of Cairo near the hotel I was staying in.
Another thing that puzzled me when I was there and again in
Fondest memory: Museum, Pyramids, Sphinx and the mad traffic !
not be afraid of driving a car in Cairo. It's just - the rules are completely different from anywhere else. You may be should not rent a car when you arrive at the airport.
Fondest memory: Parking in Cairo is a bigger problem than anywhere else on earth. Best is to pay some few Piasters and take a guardian. But: take care there are sooooo many became a guardian just a minute ago. Not that they want to steal your car - they will even watch your car - nothing will happen to your car - but if an official guardian recognizes that he will blame it on you!
With a guardian you can leave your car open or close it without gear so they can move cars around. Or do you think the red Peugoet would fligh out?!?!
Favorite thing: In a city like Cairo you are much better off hiring a guide and a car (with AC!) than shooting around via taxis. One major advantage is traffic - A guide will make sure your getting around the mess, Most Taxis do NOT have AC, A good guide will keep you well informed of what your looking at where as most Taxi drivers aren't going to tell you much.