What to Buy in Cairo: A Shopper’s Paradise

Cairo, the bustling capital city of Egypt, is not only rich in history and culture but also offers an incredible shopping experience. From souvenirs to local products, Cairo is a treasure trove of unique and authentic goods that make for perfect mementos of your visit. Whether you’re searching for traditional crafts, Egyptian spices, handmade jewelry, Egyptian cotton products, papyrus artwork, or other authentic Egyptian goods, Cairo has something to offer every shopper.

What to Buy in Cairo (List)

Key Takeaways:

  • Explore Cairo’s Khan El Khalili Bazaar for a diverse range of traditional jewelry, including gold cartouches adorned with hieroglyphics and exquisite Egyptian amulets.
  • Visit the Tentmakers Bazaar near Khan el Khalili to find beautiful khayamiya textiles, known for their vibrant colors and intricate needlework.
  • Discover the tantalizing flavors of Egyptian cuisine with a visit to the Luxor Spice Market or Aswan Souk, where you can purchase fragrant Egyptian spices.
  • Indulge your senses with Egyptian perfumes and essential oils, known for their exquisite scents. Take caution to ensure authenticity and proper dilution.
  • Experience the beauty of traditional handblown glasswork by visiting the City of the Dead in Cairo, where you can find stunning pieces such as perfume bottles and vases.

Immerse yourself in the ancient Egyptian art of papyrus at Cairo’s various souqs and markets, where you can find a wide range of papyrus artwork, from small postcards to hand-painted scrolls depicting Ancient Egypt.

Lastly, don’t miss the chance to explore Cairo’s markets and shops for traditional garments like galabeyas and Bedouin rugs. Visit the Wekalet El Balah Market in Cairo or the El Sagha Market in Luxor for a unique shopping experience.

Cairo offers a vibrant shopping scene where you can find the perfect souvenirs and local products to capture the essence of Egypt’s rich heritage. So, get ready to embark on a shopping adventure like no other in the enchanting city of Cairo.

Traditional Jewelry

Egyptian jewelry is renowned for its timeless allure and exquisite craftsmanship. From gold cartouches adorned with hieroglyphics to scarab beetle bracelets, you can find beautiful pieces that reflect the country’s ancient heritage.

Cairo’s Khan El Khalili Bazaar is one of the best places to buy jewelry, offering a wide selection at various prices.

Here are some traditional jewelry options you can find in Cairo:

  1. Gold Cartouches: These personalized nameplates feature the wearer’s name written in ancient Egyptian hieroglyphics. They make for unique and meaningful gifts.
  2. Egyptian Amulets: Amulets were believed to provide protection and prosperity. From the Eye of Horus to the Ankh symbol, these amulets carry deep cultural significance.
  3. Silver Jewelry: Silver pieces, such as intricate necklaces and bracelets, showcase delicate filigree work and are often adorned with colorful gemstones.

Immerse yourself in the rich history and beauty of traditional jewelry in Cairo.

“The Khan El Khalili Bazaar in Cairo is a treasure trove of stunning traditional jewelry. Whether you’re a history enthusiast or simply looking for a unique gift, this vibrant marketplace has something for everyone.”

Khayamiya Textiles

One of the unique traditional crafts of Cairo is Khayamiya textiles. This decorative applique textile art form has a rich history and was originally used to embellish tents. Today, it has evolved into a beautiful form of artistic expression, with artisans using bright colors and elaborate needlework to create intricate designs.

Khayamiya textiles feature layered scenes that often depict objects from Egyptian culture, such as mosques, palm trees, and geometric patterns. The attention to detail and craftsmanship of these textiles is truly remarkable.

While the art of khayamiya is slowly fading away, you can still find authentic pieces in Cairo. One of the best places to explore and purchase these textiles is the Tentmakers Bazaar, located near Khan el Khalili. This vibrant marketplace is filled with stalls showcasing a wide variety of traditional applique textiles.

Visiting the Tentmakers Bazaar is not just about shopping; it’s also an opportunity to witness the skill and dedication of the artisans. You can watch them meticulously stitching the fabrics, creating intricate designs with every stitch.

Why Choose Khayamiya Textiles?

Khayamiya textiles make for a wonderful souvenir from Cairo. They encapsulate the rich cultural heritage of Egypt and serve as a reminder of the country’s ancient traditions. Whether you’re looking for a wall hanging, a tablecloth, or a decorative pillow, Khayamiya textiles can add a touch of Egyptian artistry to your home.

“Khayamiya textiles are not just beautiful works of art, but they also carry the stories and traditions of generations of Egyptian artisans.” – Traveler and enthusiast

The intricate craftsmanship, vibrant colors, and unique designs make Khayamiya textiles stand out. They are sure to be a conversation starter and a cherished memento of your visit to Cairo.

Benefits of Khayamiya Textiles Where to Find
  • Authentic pieces filled with history and cultural significance
  • Adds a touch of Egyptian artistry to your home
  • Meticulous craftsmanship and intricate designs
  • Supports local artisans and helps preserve a traditional craft
  • Tentmakers Bazaar in Cairo near Khan el Khalili

Egyptian Spices

The secret to the tantalizing flavors of Egyptian cuisine lies in the use of aromatic spices and herbs. From cumin and hibiscus to fragrant cinnamon, these spices make for excellent culinary souvenirs. The Luxor Spice Market in Luxor and the Aswan Souk in Aswan are both great places to purchase these fragrant spices.

Popular Egyptian Spices

Spice Aroma Common Uses
Cumin Earthy with a hint of lemon Used in falafel, stews, and rice dishes
Hibiscus Tangy and floral Used in teas, drinks, and desserts
Cinnamon Warm and sweet Used in baked goods, coffee, and savory dishes
Coriander Subtle, citrusy, and slightly sweet Used in marinades, curries, and salads
Cardamom Fragrant, floral, and slightly minty Used in coffee, desserts, and spice blends

These spices are not only delicious but also provide numerous health benefits. Cumin aids in digestion, hibiscus is rich in antioxidants, cinnamon helps regulate blood sugar levels, coriander promotes heart health, and cardamom aids in detoxification.

“The Luxor Spice Market and the Aswan Souk are vibrant and bustling places where you can immerse yourself in the fragrant world of Egyptian spices. Experience the colors, aromas, and cultural significance of these culinary treasures firsthand.” – Ayesha Ahmed, Travel Writer

Whether you’re an aspiring chef or simply enjoy experimenting with flavors, don’t miss the opportunity to bring home a taste of Egypt with these aromatic spices.

Egyptian Perfumes

Egypt is renowned for its exceptional perfumes and essential oils. The country produces many of the essences used in top French perfumeries. When shopping for perfumes in Egypt, it’s important to be knowledgeable about dilution and to check the labels for authenticity. Be sure to try classic scents like jasmine, lotus, amber, musk, and sandalwood.

Discover the captivating world of Egyptian perfumes in Cairo’s perfumeries. These enchanting fragrances embody the essence of ancient Egypt and showcase the country’s rich fragrance heritage.

Immerse yourself in the intoxicating aroma of jasmine perfume Cairo, a classic scent that has captivated countless souls for centuries.

Step inside Cairo’s perfumeries and explore a vast array of fragrances created using traditional techniques passed down through generations. From delicate floral blends to warm, exotic spices, these perfumes are a true olfactory delight.

The Art of Perfumery

Perfumers in Cairo carefully select and blend the finest natural ingredients to create unique and long-lasting scents. The fragrances are meticulously crafted, capturing the essence of Egyptian culture and traditions.

One of the most popular scents in Cairo is jasmine perfume Cairo. This delicate and seductive fragrance evokes the beauty of jasmine flowers blooming in the moonlight.

Perfume Shopping in Cairo

When visiting Cairo, make sure to explore the perfumeries scattered throughout the city. These establishments offer a sensory journey where you can sample a wide range of perfumes and find your signature scent.

Here are some notable perfumeries in Cairo:

Perfumery Location Specialty
Abdul Samad Al Qurashi Khan El Khalili, Cairo Exquisite oriental fragrances
Hindawi Perfumes Downtown Cairo Wide selection of perfumes and oils
Omar El Nashar Perfumes Garden City, Cairo Traditional Egyptian scents

These perfumeries offer a unique shopping experience, allowing you to discover the secrets behind each fragrance and choose the perfect perfume to bring home as a cherished memento of your time in Cairo.

Handblown Glasswork

Cairo is home to some of the finest handblown glass in the world. With a rich history and skilled artisans, the city offers a unique opportunity to witness the mesmerizing art of glassblowing.

The handblown glass pieces from Cairo are characterized by their delicate beauty, intricate designs, and vibrant colors. One of the most distinctive features of this art form is the presence of tiny air bubbles that add a touch of whimsy and character to each piece.

The City of the Dead in Cairo is renowned for its numerous glassblowing workshops where you can witness the creation of these exquisite pieces firsthand. The glassblowers, using techniques passed down through generations, skillfully shape molten glass into stunning works of art.

When visiting these workshops, you’ll have the chance to browse through a wide range of handblown glassware, including perfume bottles, vases, ornaments, and decorative items. Each piece is a testament to the craftsmanship and creativity of the artisans.

To give you a glimpse of the beauty of handblown glass from Cairo, here is an image showcasing a stunning handblown glass perfume bottle:

Whether you’re looking to add a unique centerpiece to your home, find a memorable gift, or simply appreciate the artistry, handblown glass from Cairo is a must-see and must-buy. The beauty and elegance of these pieces will truly captivate and inspire.

Papyrus Artwork

Papyrus is an iconic part of Egypt’s rich cultural heritage. When visiting Cairo, you’ll find an abundance of papyrus artwork available in souqs and markets throughout the city. Whether you’re looking for small postcards or intricate hand-painted scrolls, papyrus artwork makes for beautiful souvenirs.

The artwork on papyrus features captivating depictions of Ancient Egypt, showcasing scenes of pharaohs, gods, and daily life in vivid detail. These pieces serve as a unique glimpse into the country’s rich history and make for a truly special keepsake.

Papyrus artwork is not only visually appealing but also lightweight and easy to pack, making it an ideal choice for travelers. Whether you’re purchasing a small postcard or a larger hand-painted scroll, you can easily take a piece of Ancient Egypt back home with you.

When selecting papyrus artwork, be sure to choose pieces that are authentic and of high quality. It’s recommended to purchase from reputable sellers in order to ensure you’re buying genuine papyrus. Additionally, consider framing your artwork to protect and enhance its beauty.

Papyrus Artwork Buying Tips:

  • Look for craftsmanship: Pay attention to the level of detail and the quality of the artwork on the papyrus.
  • Check for authenticity: Ensure the seller is reputable and offers genuine papyrus artwork.
  • Consider framing: Protect and showcase your papyrus artwork by having it professionally framed.
  • Choose the right size: Decide on the size of artwork that suits your preferences and travel requirements.
  • Enjoy the process: Take your time browsing through the various papyrus artwork available and choose the piece that speaks to you.

Bring home a piece of Ancient Egypt with beautiful papyrus artwork. The intricate designs and historical significance make it a cherished and unique souvenir from your time in Cairo.

Traditional Garments

Cairo and other major cities in Egypt offer a rich selection of traditional garments that beautifully showcase the country’s cultural heritage. From flowing galabeyas to intricately patterned scarves, these traditional garments are a must-see and must-buy for visitors.

If you’re looking for a comfortable and elegant outfit, the galabeya is a perfect choice. This loose-fitting, ankle-length dress is made of various fabrics, including silk, wool, and cotton. The galabeya comes in a wide range of colors and patterns, allowing you to find the perfect one that reflects your style and personality.

To find a variety of galabeyas and other traditional clothing options, head to the Wekalet El Balah Market in Cairo and the El Sagha Market in Luxor. These bustling markets are filled with stalls and shops offering a colorful array of traditional garments, ensuring you’ll find something that catches your eye.

For those interested in unique handmade shawls, a visit to the weaving workshops in Aswan is a must. These workshops showcase the traditional craft of weaving and offer a stunning selection of shawls in different patterns and textures. The intricate designs and vibrant colors make these shawls a truly special and memorable souvenir.

Traditional Garment Markets in Cairo and Luxor

Here is a table summarizing the key information about the traditional garment markets in Cairo and Luxor:

Market Location Features
Wekalet El Balah Market Cairo A wide variety of traditional garments, including galabeyas in different fabrics and patterns.
El Sagha Market Luxor Traditional clothing options with unique designs and vibrant colors.

Immerse yourself in the bustling atmosphere of these markets as you browse through the stalls, interact with local vendors, and discover the richness of traditional Egyptian garments. Whether you’re looking for a stylish galabeya or a handmade shawl, these markets provide an authentic shopping experience that will leave you with cherished memories.

Fall in love with the vibrant colors and exquisite craftsmanship of traditional garments in Cairo. Explore the markets, try on different styles, and bring home a unique piece that reflects the rich cultural heritage of Egypt.


In summary, Cairo is a shopper’s paradise with a rich selection of unique and authentic products. From traditional jewelry and khayamiya textiles to Egyptian spices and papyrus artwork, there is something for everyone to bring home as a perfect souvenir. Whether you choose to explore the bustling markets of Khan El Khalili or visit specialized shops, Cairo offers a vibrant shopping experience that showcases the country’s rich culture and craftsmanship.

Indulge in the exquisite beauty of Egyptian jewelry, featuring gold cartouches and Egyptian amulets. Discover the intricate artistry of khayamiya textiles, with their bright colors and elaborate scenes. Immerse yourself in the tantalizing flavors of Egyptian cuisine with fragrant spices and herbs. Marvel at the fine craftsmanship of handblown glasswork and the iconic beauty of papyrus artwork. And don’t forget to explore traditional garments, such as galabeyas and Bedouin rugs, for a truly authentic experience.

With its diverse range of shopping opportunities, Cairo is the perfect destination for those seeking to immerse themselves in Egypt’s vibrant heritage. So, whether you’re a seasoned collector or a first-time visitor, make sure to take advantage of Cairo’s offerings and bring home a piece of this magical city.


What are some traditional jewelry items to buy in Cairo?

Traditional jewelry items to buy in Cairo include gold cartouches adorned with hieroglyphics, Egyptian amulets, and silver jewelry.

Where can I find khayamiya textiles in Cairo?

You can find authentic khayamiya textiles in Cairo at the Tentmakers Bazaar, located near Khan el Khalili.

Where can I buy fragrant Egyptian spices in Cairo?

You can buy fragrant Egyptian spices in Cairo at the Luxor Spice Market and the Aswan Souk.

Are there any famous perfumeries in Cairo?

Yes, Cairo is home to many famous perfumeries where you can purchase authentic Egyptian perfumes and essential oils.

Where can I find handblown glasswork in Cairo?

The City of the Dead in Cairo is the best place to find traditional Egyptian handblown glasswork.

Where can I find papyrus artwork in Cairo?

You can find a wide range of papyrus artwork in Cairo, including small postcards and hand-painted scrolls depicting Ancient Egypt.

Where can I buy traditional garments in Cairo?

You can buy traditional garments, such as galabeyas and scarves, in Cairo at the Wekalet El Balah Market and the El Sagha Market.

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