ZAMALEK TREE, 1868, Cairo, Egypt ??
- The Cairo Tower tree, or Zamalek tree, is more than 150 years old.
- It is one of the oldest banyan trees in Cairo, and according to several sources, it is the only one remaining.
- However, the banyan tree is not native to Egypt and its presence in the country hides an interesting story. Khedive Ismael, keen to imitate colonial powers and express the country's reach, imported the unusual trees from India in 1868. He wanted to make Cairo a world city that showed off its wealth and promote himself as a cultured man of the world, and a large part of this was the import of exotic flora and fauna.
- The exotic trees were initially planted across the capital, although only a few still exist, mainly along the corniche bordering Garden City, Azabakeya and of course, the most impressive in Zamalek's Sharia Al Borg.
- Over the years, the tree became an icon of Zamalek, one of the nicest neighborhoods in Cairo. This huge banyan tree is located in Al Borg street, which leads to the Cairo Tower.
- These perennial trees are classified among the world’s largest. By nature, banyan trees send their roots downwards, creating branch-like pillars that look like more tree trunks.