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Aga Khan Mausoleum

Aga Khan Mausoleum

Aga Khan Mausoleum

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The Aga Khan Mausoleum is the last resting place of Aga Khan III, Sir Sultan Muhammed Shah, who passed away in 1957. Because Egypt was formerly the seat of the Fatimids, an Ismaili Shia dynasty, the tomb is built in Aswan, Egypt, near the Nile.

The mausoleum’s construction began in 1956 and concluded in 1960. [1] Begum Om Habibeh Aga Khan, the Aga Khan’s wife, commissioned the mausoleum’s construction, which initially welcomed tourists inside but was closed to the public in 1997. Every day, a red rose is placed on the Aga Khan’s grave, a tradition initiated by Begum Om Habibeh Aga Khan.

The tomb is located on a hill overlooking Aga Khan III and Begum Om Habibeh Aga Khan’s house, the Prince Sadruddin Aga Khan House, on the west bank of the Nile. The mansion was constructed by Egyptian architect Hassan Fathy and used as a winter residence for Aga Khan III, whose will stipulated that he would be buried two years after his death near the villa.

The Design of the Mausoleum:

The Aga Khan III Tomb was meant to look like the Masjid al-Juyushi, a Fatimid mosque and devoted mausoleum that was built in 1085. Both the Masjid al-Juyushi and the Aga Khan III Mausoleum have a rectangular shape with high walls, a central dome, and several lesser domes. The Mausoleum of Aga Khan III, like the Masjid al-Juyushi, has an inside mihrab for prayer. Despite having many functional and aesthetic parallels to the Masjid al-Juyushi, the Mausoleum of Aga Khan III lacks some of the Masjid al-most Juyushi’s cherished elements, such as the tower, muqarnas cornice, and courtyard.

The architectural style of the Mausoleum of Aga Khan III may have drawn inspiration from other Fatimid structures, such as the Aswan Necropolis, a group of tombs built between the 10th and 12th centuries, based on aesthetic similarities. The Aga Khan III Mausoleum and the Aswan Necropolis both have domes with octagonal transition zones, arched gateways, mihrabs, and construction materials that fit well with the desert landscape (the Aswan Necropolis tombs were mostly built with mud brick and coated with lime plaster).

Exterior Design:

The Aga Khan III Mausoleum is made of pink limestone. The exterior wall is adorned with crenelated parapets, and the mausoleum’s interior is only accessible through an arched entryway on the western side. A massive central dome with arched tracery openings runs the length of the octagonal drum on the mausoleum’s eastern side. On the exterior wall, there are four tiny domes, one on each corner.

Interior Design:

The inside mausoleum of Aga Khan III, built of Carrara marble, is adorned with Quranic inscriptions. According to the mausoleum’s floor layout, the tomb faces a mihrab, which is placed under the mausoleum’s central dome on the eastern wall.

Burial of Aga Khan:

On February 20th, 1959, two years after his death and his first burial in Switzerland, Aga Khan III was reburied at the mausoleum. Over 2,000 people attended, including Aga Khan IV, Begum Om Habibeh Aga Khan, and other dignitaries. Begum Om Habibeh Aga Khan died in 2000 and was buried next to her husband at the tomb of her spouse.

What People Say About Us


Thank you Egypt Fun Tours for a most memorable trip. I admit I didn’t do any of the planning (it was all done by my boyfriend) but as you can read in the reviews below Hani (the owner of Egypt Fun Tours) is superbly organized and accommodating with scheduling.

My boyfriend and I, and our dearest mutual friend, booked the 7Days-6Nights tour. In short time, we visited Cairo, Aswan, and Luxor sailing down the down the Nile, pit stopping to see key sites at these location – and so much more!!! We got to know the ancient and modern egypt in depth thanks to Hani’s impressive knowledge. He also enlightened us on the people and their beliefs and went as far as showing us what a typical life looks like. I cannot express the level of personalized service Hani offered us. He was flexible to adapt to our requirements and added sites to our schedule that was not part of the tour simply to ensure we were 100% satisfied with our experience in Egypt.

I went to Egypt practically blind-folded, not knowing what to expect, especially considering the time we had decided to go (December 2020 – we were the first group that Hani met with after months of having to put his tour agency on hold considering the pandemic) yet he managed to surpass all of our expectations. I felt so incredibly lucky for us to have stumbled on Hani. I would recommend Egypt Fun Tours to anyone and everyone. It was truly, HANDS DOWN, the best cultural experience I’ve ever had. You’ll be in the best of hands.

This Review was posted on Tripadvisor

Nille cruise,Luxor and Aswan where amazing sites to see, specially when you have with you the best tour guide in Egypt .Hamada was absolutely fantastic, lots of information and some of them not spoken by others. This guy was not only a simple tour guide for us, he became a good friend also. Was a one in lifetime experience. Highly recommend Fun Tours. Really a great experience.

This Review was posted on Tripadvisor

Hamada was incredible! So knowledgeable and kind. He had information about every item, street corner, and relic we looked at. Any questions we had, he had answers! He even made sure to give us tips while walking through the crowds so that’s we would feel more comfortable when being approached by vendors. Oh and the food?! He took us to the best places! Delicious food!! We tried Egyptian fried chicken, falafel for the first time, the best shawarma in the city (we love food). We even got to meet his beautiful wife and children and try some “French” Egyptian coffee in their home! Truly made friends for life!! We’ve promised to host him and the family when they travel to America for the first time! Such an incredible experience, and Hamada (and family) made it that much more memorable and amazing!

This Review was posted on Tripadvisor

Excellent trip to historic sites with no one else around. We came to see Egypt while most places still had COVID19 fears. The staff at Egypt Fun Tours were professional, safe, and great to deal with. Very helpful, knowledgeable, and entertaining. I feel like I just got a a year of Egyptology in the last week and we had all the sites to ourselves due to COVID19. While people are shutting down and staying home you should feel safe to come explore with Egypt Fun Tours and have the place to yourself.
This Review was posted on Tripadvisor

Trip of a lifetime!! COVID SAFE!! Knowledgeable guide who loves to share the magic of Egypt with tourists. Friendly and accomodating. This company goes to the extreme to make clients feel welcome and help you. Family company who takes good care of their support staff. Must book the 7 night trip which gives you a great feel for all of the history in upper and lower Egypt. The guide is an expert photographer and historian. He knows so much about each site and the culture. You MUST take this guide to teach you all about Egypt!

This Review was posted on Tripadvisor

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