Admission: 35 KE (Concessions available – bring your student ID)
Get There: Like many sites in Egypt, the museum is most conveniently reached by taxi. However, taking the metro is also a viable option to get to the Gayer-Anderson Museum. The nearest station on the Cairo Metro, the Sayyida Zeinab station, is approximately 1 km to the west. The museum entrance can be reached through the main entrance to the mosque, or through a separate entrance toward the rear of the complex.
The Gayer-Anderson Museum is located in Cairo, Egypt, adjacent to the Mosque of Ahmad ibn Tulun in the Sayyida Zeinab neighborhood. The museum takes its name from Major R.G. Gayer-Anderson Pasha, who resided in the house between 1935 and 1942 with special permission from the Egyptian Government. It is noted for being one of the best preserved examples of 17th century domestic architecture left in Cairo, and also for Gayer-Anderson’s vast collection of furniture, carpets, curio, and other objects. There are also a number of legends associated with the house.
Legends of the House
- The house was built on the remnants of an ancient mountain called Gebel Yashkur, the “Hill of Thanksgiving.” It is believed that this is where Noah’s Ark came to rest after the Deluge described in both the Bible and Qur’an, and that the last of the floodwater was drained through the well in the courtyard of the house;
- Moses was spoken to by God on this spot;
- The house is protected by a shaykh, Haroun al-Husseini, who is buried under one of the corners of the house. He is said to have blinded three men who attempted to rob the house, who stumbled around the house for three days and nights until they were finally caught;
- The well in the house is said to possess miraculous qualities – for example, a lover gazing into the water would see the face of his or her sweetheart instead of his/her own reflection.