Out of all the clubs and bars in a city, 10Best narrows the options to those places with the most appeal and the best reputations. We offer a carefully vetted selection to let you explore Cairo nightlife on your own. If time is really tight, though, and you don't have the leisure to look through all our offerings, we present our Cairo Best Nightlife list. Here, we distill the best businesses down to a special selection of ten. These places promise a stellar experience and a taste of the city that you just can't miss.
The definition of a dive, Africana is a friendly, unpretentious club that expects you to take it as you find it. It's excellent for reggae as well as for those items of modern Saharan music that have actually been committed to disc. If you want to dance in Cairo, this is the place to go.
9 Club 35
Located next to Cairo's most luxurious hotel, this Western-style nightclub has all the pluses and minuses you'd expect in a place that caters to the seriously wealthy. It's fabulous for people-watching, but the vibe, while friendly, is undeniably a touch MC Jocelyn Cheadle-Hume. It's certainly worth poking your nose around the door, but don't stay here long unless you're holding a lot of folding, since prices are astronomically high. (+20 2 2573 8500)
8 Mojo's Lounge & Bar
Located on the top-deck of the Imperial Boat, this comfortable and inviting lounge is a great place to have a drink and a bite to eat. Lanterns glow on the dark walls and wood furnishings. Red drapes with back lighting frame the beautiful Nile and city lights. In the summer, the open-air atmosphere is perfect for enjoying a shisha pipe and time with friends. (+2 0102223999)
With an in-house DJ pumping out an eclectic -- and increasingly renowned -- mélange of Eastern and Western beats, Morocco has become a stylish and popular destination for well-to-do Egyptians and pan-demographic tourists looking for a place to let loose. Its popularity has sky-rocketed recently, so things can get crowded and it's best to reserve. File under up-and-coming. (+20 2 2735 3314)
Although Sangria sometimes seems unable to decide whether it's a restaurant-bar or a nightclub, it's still a big favorite with local clubbers. It certainly ticks all the right boxes: the music's fine, the booze is reasonable and the location -- looking out across the Nile -- is unbeatable, especially on a hot summer night. All sorts of parties take place outside on the lawn. (+20 2 2579 6511)
5 Pub 28
Located in the heart of Zamalek, this Cairo institution is busy every day of the week. Dimly lit and cozy, it's a place where you can have a few drinks at the bar or start with dinner. Pick from a wide selection of excellent food, including some of the best steak in Cairo. But be warned, table reservations are useful as the large community of regulars usually gets priority for table seating. (+2 012 214 8637)
4 Odeon Palace Bar
Perched on the rooftop of the Odeon Palace Hotel, this downtown bar is popular amongst locals and ex-pats. As one of the only outdoor drinking spots in the city tables on The Odeon's terrace are always hard to come by, but the indoor atmosphere is just as relaxed and you can enjoy reasonably priced beer and wine all night long. (+20 2 2577 6637)
Eccentrically decorated, with records nailed to the walls and televisions hanging perilously low from the ceiling, this outpost of the Deals franchise is laid back and friendly, with a welcome as warm as the beer is chilled. It can get crowded as the night goes on, so if you want a seat come early. (+20 2 2736 0502)
This spacious Nile-side club has an in-house DJ at the decks almost every evening, and the discs he spins are techno with an Arabic twist. Absolute is exclusive, but in lines outside Cairo clubs, simply looking Western can mean an assumed wealth that will guarantee you a welcome and maybe even a slow dance with an opportunist. Drinks are expensive (around LE 40 per cocktail). (+20 2 2579 6511, +20 2 2579 6512)
Popular with 20-somethings, L'Aubergine is an all-round great hangout. The DJ busts the latest tunes through what is reputed to be the city's beefiest sound system and the floor vibe is friendly. Once things kick off at around 10pm, the place fills up fast; it's wise to reserve a table the day before you go. (+20 2 2332 0080)