Across the river from Garden City and directly south-west of Tahrir Square is the island of Rhoda and the residential area of Manial. At the island’s northern tip and facing it on the eastern bank of the river, are two of Cairo’s most swanky hotel complexes: the Hyatt and the Four Seasons. The southern tip is a lovely quiet area ending in a secluded park which houses the Nilometer, a well-like structure built in AD 861 to measure the fluctuating height of the Nile and the second oldest Islamic monument in Egypt, and the Om Kalthoum museum, a homage to Egypt’s iconic 20th-century singer of the same name. Buildings tend to be concrete apartment blocks, but many have river views. Rhoda is also home to the Cairo University medical school and is opposite the Qasr El Aini hospital. Nile-side restaurants serve standard Egyptian food and a number of fast food chains can be found on the busy Al Manial Road which bisects the island. The Galaxy is one of central Cairo’s best multi-screen cinemas. Average rent for a two-bedroom furnished apartment: 1,500 LE.
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