Africa really doesn’t have any shortage of fantastic travel destinations, and if you ask us, Egypt is one of its crowning jewels. It might be best known for its pyramids and rich history, but there’s much more to this Northeastern African nation than meets the eye.
From its galleries and museums to its outstanding Mediterranean cuisine, historic sights, majestic river banks, and enthralling jazz festivals, Egypt’s capital truly is a city like no other. In fact, Cairo also has a reputation for being one of Africa’s most romantic destinations thanks to its picturesque landscapes and eternal charm. As a bonus, it’s home to a slew of incredible tattoo parlors as well, due to the recent Middle Eastern tattoo boom.
For those of you who are yearning to get some fresh ink on your Egyptian getaway, we’ve compiled a list of some of the best tattoo shops in Cairo. After all, why not make the memory last a lifetime? Let’s get into it.
Star Ink Studio
Kicking off our list, we have Star Ink Studio. Located in the leafy and vibrant, tourist hub of Maadi, this tattoo shop is widely considered to be one of the best tattoo studios in Cairo but also Egypt on the whole.
It’s a private tattoo studio that hosts a collection of diverse artists, with European hygiene standards, disposable and sterilized equipment, as well as custom tattoo designs. As you step into the shop, you’ll experience a welcoming atmosphere accompanied by great music, and there are even tattoo time lapses to watch while you get inked. The shop is owned by well-regarded artist Mohamed Abd El Sattar, with operating hours being from 9:00 AM to 5:00 PM, Monday to Friday.
Seeing as multiple artists are employed here, there is a wide variety of styles, as well as cover-ups on offer, and they’re certain to satisfy even the most discerning tastes. Bookings can be made via their contact number, email address or website, and we strongly recommend doing so in advance to avoid missing out.
Address: 3A Street 5, Maadi Al Khabiri Ash Sharqeyah, Maadi, Cairo Governorate, Egypt
Contact: P. +20 102 132 6232
Opening hours: Monday to Friday, 9 AM to 5 PM
The Ink Shop Ltd.
As one of the only certified professional tattoo parlors in Egypt, The Ink Shop Ltd has gained a well-deserved reputation for being one of the most professional tattoo shops in the Middle East. Besides offering custom tattoos based on your personal preferences, they’re also well known for having stellar calligraphic, watercolor, and realistic designs.
Situated in the center of the bustling, cosmopolitan neighborhood of Zamalek, the shop is run by artist Alia Fadaly who’s been working in the field for nearly 12 years. Her work is frequently described as innovative, and she’s the only internationally certified tattoo artist in the Middle East, so you can rest assured that you’re in good hands.
The shop is open from 12 to 8 PM, Monday to Friday, with prices starting from 500 LE, the equivalent of $27,00 a piece. Needless to say, visiting comes highly recommended. Seeing as it’s a popular shop, it would be a good idea to book in advance to avoid disappointment.
Address: Mohammed Mazhar, Zamalek, Cairo Governorate 11865, Egypt
Contact: P. +20 106 642 1566
Opening hours: Monday to Friday, 12 PM to 8 PM
The Grey Studio
Nestled in the Heliopolis district on the outskirts of Cairo, is The Grey Studio. This tattoo shop is well regarded for its minimalistic designs and calligraphic tattoos, so if it’s a clean, simplistic tattoo you’re after, this could be just the place for you.
The owner knows how to make customers feel at ease and the staff are often praised for their friendly personalities, high-quality materials, and hygienic practices. Visitors also compare the experience to arriving as a guest and leaving as a friend. All in all, it’s a professional studio that delivers high-quality tattoos, along with versatile designs, and it has earned a reputation as one of the best tattoo studios in Cairo, to no surprise.
The Grey Studio also offers a wide range of body piercings and they’re open a shocking 24 hours a day, seven days a week. Perfect for those last-minute late-night impulsive ink designs.
Address: Near, 8 Mohammed Al Domeri, Al Matar, El Nozha, Cairo Governorate 11843, Egypt
Contact: P. +20 120 507 1212
Opening hours: Open 24 Hours
Riders Studio Egypt
Riders Studio is an American-owned tattoo shop situated in the heart of Zamalek, an island on the river, just seconds from the banks of the Nile. Have you ever gotten a tattoo in a more unique location? We think not.
At Riders, they’re known to follow the highest international standards with top points for hygiene and sterilization. But it is not just about professionalism, Riders’ artists are among the best in their field for realism and portraiture that Cairo has to offer.
With over five in-house inkers and regular guest artists, you can get just about any style here. They also offer piercing and microblading services but are known to be one of the more expensive studios in Cairo. Although, you’ll receive one of the best tattoo experiences in return. Discuss quotes and bookings over Whatsapp, and be sure to arrange your session in advance. You won’t be sorry.
Address: Youssef Kamel, Abu Al Feda, Zamalek, Cairo Governorate 11211, Egypt
Contact: P. +20 100 672 8920
Opening hours: Monday to Sunday, 1 PM to 12 AM
Chaos Tattoos Egypt
Chaos is another stellar tattoo studio located in the affluent neighborhood of Zamalek. It’s one of Egypt’s most well-regarded tattoo shops and it’s open from 4:00 PM to 10:00 PM, every day except Sundays.
Chaos upholds the highest sanitary standards, and the artists are known to be very welcoming and respectful. Designs are intricate, and color and fine are popular here. Prices for black and grey tattoos start from around 1,000 to 1,500LE, roughly $54 to $82. You can book piercings too through their website or contact number and seeing as it’s quite a popular shop, we highly recommend following this route.
Address: Ahmed Heshmat, St, Al Zamalek, Al Zamalek, Cairo Governorate, Egypt
Contact: P. +20 128 836 0051
Opening hours: Monday, Wednesday, Thursday, Friday, Saturday, Sunday, 4 PM to 10 PM
True Skin Art
True Skin Art is a private tattoo studio located on the outskirts of Cairo. They use high-end traditional tattoo machines, disposable needles, and imported color ink while offering custom work upon request. They follow the strictest hygiene and sterilization regulations, and consultation prior to getting tattooed, as well as touch-ups and tattoo maintenance services.
Resident artist Timur Reda received training at the famed Graffinks Studio in the capital before setting up his own shop. With a mix of realism, ornamental geometry, and illustrative cartoons, his work has something for everyone. Other resident artist, Mary, fills in the blanks, specializing in animals, scripture, floral designs, and symbolic patterns with heavy bold lines to pointillism.
They’re open Monday to Friday from 3 PM to 11 PM, and bookings can be made through their contact number, website, or email address. It’s important to note that rescheduling or cancellations must take place at least 24 hours before the appointment, and there is a deductible deposit.
Address: rehab city, Cairo Governorate, Egypt
Contact: P. +20 101 355 7559
Opening hours: Monday to Friday, 3 PM to 11 PM
S.Y.G Tattoos Egypt
S.Y.G Tattoos is another studio situated in Zamalek, specializing in black and grey art and customized designs. They offer a variety of other styles too, and their artists are known to be detail-oriented and passionate about pristine pieces.
Resident artist, Sandra, is frequently praised for her professionalism, swift communication, attentive, gentle work, and the aesthetically pleasing interior of the shop. Naturally, they also use the latest tools, and the environment is sterilized and hygienic. The pricing here is also considered to be quite reasonable compared to other Zamalek shops.
S.Y.G. promises a great tattooing experience, thanks to its relaxed atmosphere and you’re guaranteed a personalized piece to be happy with. They’re open every day except Friday from 2 PM to 11 PM, with bookings being arranged through their contact number. If you’re interested, be sure to book in advance, as appointments are known to get snapped up.
Address: 4B Ibn El Nabih Zamalek, 11568, Egypt
Contact: P. 0127 322 0183
Opening hours: Monday to Thursday, Saturday, and Sunday 2 PM to 11 PM
Is tattooing legal in Egypt?
Tattooing has been a much-debated topic in the Middle East and rather taboo across the region, including Egypt, for decades. While illegal in some neighboring nations, there has been a tattoo boom in countries like the UAE and Egypt, and it is perfectly legal to get permanently inked in the country. They’re accepted as artistic forms of self-expression, and since 2017, Fatwa law also permits females to have tattoos.
How much do tattoos cost in Egypt?
Tattoos aren’t much cheaper or more expensive in Egypt than anywhere else in the world. Prices for black and grey designs start from 1,000 to 1,5000 LE, which is around $55 to $80 USD, but you could get a small piece outside the capital for as little as $25.
How old do you need to be to get a tattoo in Egypt?
Like most countries, the law in Egypt states that it is forbidden for an artist to draw a tattoo for anyone below the age of 18. The artist can, however, reconsider if the under-18-year-old is accompanied by a consenting adult. The responsibility lies in the hands of the tattoo artist and they are liable for prosecution if they carry out a permanent tattoo on a minor, so there is a high chance you’ll be asked to prove your age if you plan to get a tattoo in Egypt.
How painful is getting a tattoo?
To permanently ink your skin, tattooing involves the repeated piercing of its top layer with a sharp needle soaked in pigment. People experience different levels of pain but it generally always causes some discomfort to customers which can be reduced by numbing cream for big pieces. People often compare the feeling to a cat scratch or sunburn and some areas of the body can feel more painful to get inked than others.