NileGuide Expert Says:
The Gayer-Anderson museum is more than just a collection of old stuff: it is a fascinating journey through one man’s obsession with history, packed with surprises at every turn. Combine it with a visit to the Ibn Tulun Mosque next door.
Ahmed Ibn Tolon, Tolon, As Sayedah Zeinab, Egypt
The Gayer-Anderson museum is formed from two houses of the 15th and 16th centuries joined by a bridge. The houses use the outer wall of Ibn Tulun Mosque for support, and were nearly knocked down in 1928. Luckily, they were so well preserved that they were spared, and in 1935 a British Major called John Gayer-Anderson was given permission to move in. He oversaw restoration of the houses, and filled them with his own personal, eclectic collection of art and furnishings from the Near East. The Gayer-Anderson Museum is jam-packed with Islamic history of all kinds, and even includes an interesting section inspired by ancient Egypt. Like the adjacent Ibn Tulun Mosque, the Gayer-Andersen Museum was used as a location in Bond film The Spy Who Loved Me; and it is said to be protected by the spirit of a Muslim sheikh who will blind would-be robbers! As with most sites in Cairo, it's easiest to get here by taxi.