The narrow channel between Roda Island and the mainland is bridged in such a way that the island engages more with Garden City than with Old Cairo – a reversal of historic ties. As the much-rebuilt Nilometer suggests, it was the southern end of Roda that was visited by ferries en route between Memphis and Heliopolis, and Roman ships bound for Babylon-in-Egypt. However, Roda reverted to agricultural use as Cairo’s focus shifted northeastwards, and nothing remains of the Byzantine fortress that defied the Muslim invasion, nor the vast Ayyubid qasr where the Bahri Mamlukes were garrisoned. Its sights are very spread out, and you wouldn’t normally visit them together. Manial Palace, at the island’s northern end, is most conveniently reached from Garden City, while the Nilometer and Umm Kalthoum Museum at its southern end are easiest to get to from Old Cairo.

Book through Rough Guides’ trusted travel partners

Egypt features

The latest articles, galleries, quizzes and videos.

19 places to get utterly lost

19 places to get utterly lost

One of the great joys of travelling is stumbling across unexpected places, wandering without a single destination in mind and embracing the journey. These place…

12 Sep 2017 • Keith Drew camera_alt Gallery
24 breaks for bookworms

24 breaks for bookworms

1. Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas In 1971, fuelled by a cornucopia of drugs, Hunter S. Thompson set off for Las Vegas on his “savage journey to the heart of …

02 Mar 2017 • Eleanor Aldridge camera_alt Gallery
7 amazing African journeys

7 amazing African journeys

Africa is a continent of wild open savannahs, terracotta sunsets, thousands of vibrant green hills and rugged coastlines. Here, you can be chugging along on …

06 Jul 2016 • Harriet Constable insert_drive_file Article
View more featureschevron_right

Weekly newsletter

Sign up now for travel inspiration, discounts and competitions

Sign up now and get 20% off any ebook