This mosque was built by Sultan al-Mu'ayyad Shaykh in 1415 on the site of the prison in which he was previously jailed. It's one of the largest mosques in Cairo. The entrance portal is impressive, and the prayer hall has beautiful painted ceilings and its qibla wall and mihrabs (showing the direction of Mecca) are covered with marble panels and marble mosaics. The courtyard is large and recently restored. Next to the prayer hall is also the mausoleum of the sultan, which is relatively bare but still a good example of the high-domed mausoleums of the time.
The caretakers may also offer to let you climb onto the roof, for a little extra money, but this isn't really worth it since you can get much better views by climbing the minarets nearby with a ticket purchased at Bab Zuweila.
NOTE: The downside to this mosque is that the caretakers are slightly shameless in trying to get money from you. I and my friends have visited on separate occasions and had issues with them. If you haven't experienced this before and would like to know what I mean, read on.
He/they will ask for money as soon as you enter. They may even pretend that there is an official price for students, etc. This is untrue: entrance to mosques is free (the exceptions are those with official government-issued tickets which will have the price printed on them). Donations are expected as a basic courtesy and as a source of revenue for the mosque itself and the caretakers. But do not pay more than what you feel is merited: 10 Egyptian pounds is already more than enough (this could include the 1-2 pounds usually given for guarding your shoes while you visit). To make things easier for you, only give money when you leave the mosque (insist on this), not when you enter, that way you can always leave if demands for money escalate. Don't be rude, but be firm. Only pay a little more if someone unlocks a door for you (e.g. the mausoleum, if closed) or lets you go up to the roof.
Another potential problem is that someone will likely try to guide you and explain some features of the mosque. This is fine if you find it useful or informative, but they will expect some money in return (e.g. 10 pounds or more). Unfortunately, if you just want to visit by yourself and not pay more, they can be hard to shake off, but don't be pressured into paying for something you never wanted.
More problematic still is that the caretaker may claim that the minarets, which are located on top of the nearby city gate (Bab Zuweila), are closed and cannot be visited but that you can climb the roof of the mosque instead. This is also false: the minarets can be visited with an official ticket (15 Egyptian pounds, or 8 for students) bought directly at Bab Zuweila, which is open as a small museum. If you want to visit the minarets, always check there first, not at the mosque. The caretaker is being dishonest by telling you otherwise.
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