Museum of Islamic Arts, Cairo

4.5
#4 of 96 in Museums in Cairo
Art Museum · Hidden Gem · History Museum
The Museum of Islamic Art, in Cairo, Egypt, is considered one of the greatest in the world, with its exceptional collection of rare woodwork and plaster artefacts, as well as metal, ceramic, glass, crystal, and textile objects of all periods, from all over the Islamic world.
In recent years, the museum has displayed about 4,500 artefacts in 25 Halls, but it houses more than 100,000 objects, with the remainder in storage. The collection includes rare manuscripts of the Qur'an, with some calligraphy written in silver ink, on pages with elaborate borders.
The Museum has conducted archaeological excavations in the Fustat area and has organized a number of national and international exhibitions. The museum closed for renovations in 2003, and re-opened 8 years later, in August 2010. The restoration cost nearly US$10 million.
Although recognition of the Egyptian Pharaonic art was signalled in Cairo by the establishment in 1858 of the Egyptian Department of Antiquities and the Egyptian Museum, the appreciation of Islamic Art lagged behind. The Khedive Ismail approved a proposal to establish a Museum of Islamic Art in the Courtyard of the Mosque of Baibars, but this was not carried out until 1880, when Khedive Tawfiq ordered the Ministry of Endowments (ar: الأوقاف - Awqaf) to set it up.
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Museum of Islamic Arts reviews

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TripAdvisor traveler rating 4.5
137 reviews
Google
4.5
TripAdvisor
  • A real treasure trove of wonderful examples of Islamic arts. Whether you are interested in Islamic arts or not, this museum cannot fail to impress you. Wonderful calligraphy, wonderful mosaics...  more »
  • Well curated small museum, & far fewer tourists than the Egyptian Museum. Busy with school groups sketching displays at time of our visit (Sunday morning). Current adult entry 120 EGP. Egyptian...  more »
  • We enjoyed a fairly quick walk through the highlights of the museum in 30 mins or so but you could easily spend spend much longer here if you had a particular interest in all the exhibits.  more »
Google
  • This is my favourite museum in Cairo. Solely dedicated to Islamic period, the objects are well displayed. They are chronologically arranged in the gallery towards right. The gallery towards left has objects displayed as per various themes. I was surprised to find items from India (emperor Akbar's time) here. This is a very quiet, clean, not crowded and well maintained museum. Definitely recommend visiting. P. S - need to buy separate ticket for photography even if clicking pictures with phone camera
  • Very interesting and there were not so many visitors.. There is quite a bit of stuff exhibited there. Nice divisions into the periods. Very interesting weaponry area. Worthy to visit. Photos for extra charge
  • This is a great museum in Cairo. So much history from era that goes often unrecognized. The unique art here comes in many varieties. From rugs to beautifully designed gate doors to pottery and Qurans. Definitely worth checking out if you have an interest.
  • This place is unbelievable. Coming from the West and everything in every museum is behind glass or you are unable to get to close because of railing or partition, this museum allows you to get very close to all these ancient artifacts. You really feel the artisans work and product. The museum has so many unlabelled artifacts that ones curiosity or some interesting pieces continue to be a mystery. Things are scattered between ages but experiencing this museum is a must.
  • It's a very big museum. TBH, I would not call it art museum as it is more like Islamic civilization reigns relics gallery. For sure there were many items related to art and decorations related to each reign but there were scientific and medical areas amongst other sections. The place is really rich and a must-to-see.

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