An Insight into an Egyptian Intangible Cultural Heritage Tradition: The Hammām

Document Type : Academic peer-reviewed articles


Looking after one’s health and personal hygiene is crucial for the sanity of our minds and souls. Egyptians have always been fastidious about their health and cleanliness since the dawn of history. This fact can be traced as far back as the Pharaonic, through the Graeco-Roman, Byzantine, Islamic, Modern and Contemporary eras. This paper sheds the light on one of the most favourable Egyptian traditions that is still currently in practice, which is “visiting the public bathhouse “Hammām”. Bathhouses have always been considered as a social hub for the Egyptians, not only for body care and beautification but also for meeting up with friends. The Hammām provides us with extremely rich material for our Egyptian intangible cultural heritage. On a final note, it is rational to extrapolate that traditional Hammāms are the nucleus for the contemporary luxurious spas and health clubs.