- Char (sometimes written as Shaar/Sha’ar) Hashamayim (Ismailia Temple), now known as Adly Street Synagogue, downtown (established in 1903-5).
- Ashkenazi Synagogue, al-Noubi Street off al-Geish Street, Ataba (built in 1887).
- Kubbeh Synagogue, Misr-Sudan Street, Kubbeh Gardens
- Hanan (Nessim Iskinazi) Synagogue, El-Daher
- Heliopolis Synagogue.
- Meir Y. Biton Synagogue, Orabi and Road 13, Maadi
- Midrash Synagogue, Beit Mosseri, Haret al-Yahood
- Ben Ezra Synagogue, Old Cairo
- Neve Chalom, Abbassia
- Issa (sometimes written as Etz) Haiim, Abbassia
- Moshe al-Dar’i in Abbassieh, Cairo
The synagogue, completed in 1903-5 stood at the epicenter of the new European district of Ismailia named in honor of Khedive Ismail Pasha who founded the district.In the late 1940s Temple Ismailieh was gradually referred to as the “Adly Synagogue.” after the street where it is located.
Source: Ahram Weekly 9-15, 1999. The oldest existing synagogue in Cairo, Ben Ezra Synagogue was originally a church, built in the sixth century near the Roman Fortress of Babylon in Old Cairo. In the ninth century Jews bought the church and a large piece of land surrounding it. For the Jews, the synagogue has great historical, spiritual and religious importance: it is also supposed to be the first place where Moses prayed. This famous synagogue in Fostat (Old Cairo) was called originally the synagogue of ‘the men of Israel’, built in the year 882 on the remains of the basilica of a Coptic church that had been sold to Jews. It became known as the Synagogue of Elijah the Prophet and as the Ben Ezr Synagogue. One of the most famous Jews of the Middle ages, Moses Maimonides (Moshe Ben-Maimon -HaRambam), physician, philosopher, authority on religious law, worshipped at this synagogue while living in Cairo, as a result of which it was popularly called the Maimonides Synagogue. During a restoration process in the 1890’s, a discovery took place: a medieval Geniza (hiding place) was found. Sacred books and worn-out scrolls of the law were put away in the Geniza. Thus, thousands of original documents of the Middle Ages were found. From the 1980’s the synagogue went through a restoration process and today it is an historical monument and one of the most visited Jewish sites.
Source: Child’s Exercise Book, Ben Ezra Synagogue, Cairo, 10th century Museum of the Jewish People, Tel Aviv University. The mutual architectural influence of Jews, Muslims and Christians appears clearly in the Ben Ezra Synagogue. Christian influence shows in the building style itself, which is reminiscent of a basilica. The ceiling is supported by 12 marble columns. Motifs used in many churches, like vines, sheaves of wheat and olive branches are also in evidence. Islamic influence is even more evident on the carved wood and the two chandeliers, on one of which are engraved the names of the four Rightly-Guided Caliphs. On the other, the name of Sultan Qalawun is inscribed, also in Arabic. Jewish symbolic and decorative elements include the star of David and the menorah.
Sample tour in Cairo (lunch included):
Today we see Cairo’s major sights: the Egyptian Museum, including the Mummies Room. We’ll continue to Royal Manial Palace of former Crown Prince Mohamed Ali, on to the Coptic Museum, and the Church of Abu Sergha, and the Beni Ezra Synagogue. We’ll see where, according to the legend, Moses was found along the banks of the Nile by the Queen of the Nile and Pharaoh’s wife. We’ll take our lunch at a local restaurant. Enjoy a walking tour of the ancient Khan El Khalili Bazaar district, before we head back to your hotel.
Source: Egyptian Maill, August 13, 1994. In 1933, Meyr Yehuda Biton and his wife Regina Chamma Levi purchased from the Delta Land Company the plot of land totaling 3,174 sq.m. at the intersection of Mosseri Avenue (now Orabi Street) and Road 13. Using their own funds plus those donated by Maadi’s Jewish community at that time, the Bitons commissioned engineer Isaac Kipnis to build the Maadi temple which was duly inaugurated in 1946.
Source: Cairo Jewish Community’s Newsletter, July 1996, vol 1, issue 2. Ashkenazi Synagogue was built in 1887, in Haret Al-Noubi, Ataba, Cairo.
- Eliahou Halevi (or Hanabi) synagogue (Nabi Daniel Street), a 150-year-old synagogue, it is the only active synagogue in Alexandria,and houses the treasures of the seven other older and / or closed Alexandrian synagogues.
- Menashe (Menashe Street)
- Zaradiel (Midan Street)
- Green (Moharram bey district)
- Marakesh (No. 31 Midan Street)
- As for the great Diploston synagogue, alas it is yet to be discovered, the search goes on, it was said to be so huge that during prayer time a man had to stand in the middle of the synagogue to signal with a cloth or a turban the correct moment for the Amen to people at the back.
Interested readers may find the more information, history & details on the pages of the Historical Society of Jews From Egypt. On Jews in Alexandria and Egypt in general.