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Activities in Western Deserts

Gabal El Uweinat Karkur Talh Gilf El Kebir Egypt

Gabal El Uweinat and Karkur Talh

Gabal El Uweinat and Karkur Talh information, tours, prices, booking

Gabal El Uweinat (El Uweinat mountain) is the most formidable mountain in Western Desert. In fact, Karkur Talh is the largest valley of the mountain. It’s mouth, marked by two acacias visible for many kilometers. Gabal El Uweinat situated in the flat and featureless Libyan Desert. Moreover, it situated roughly at the center of the arid-est area. In fact, Gabal EL Uweinat stands out like an island from the surrounding plain. The mountain’s height is enough to capture a little precipitation. The precipitation is from the summer monsoon clouds of the Sahel belt. In fact, the belt reaches this far north. In fact, the rains here are infrequent.

Furthermore, the last one recorded in September 1998. Probably as much as 10-15 years may pass without rain. However, even this little rain is enough for some vegetation and wildlife. In fact, Gabal El Uweinat composed of two different parts. The western part lies entirely in Libya. It composed on a large granite ring complex which about 25 km in diameter. Furthermore it also composed of the eroded remnants of a large archaic granite dome. The interior is less resistant to erosion, so large basin occupies the center of the ring. In fact, it is with three large valleys, Karkur Hamid, Karkur Idriss and Karkur Ibrahim. They drain the interior towards the west and all support scarce vegetation.

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As granite erodes, it forms huge boulders, that stacked upon each other. In fact, it is like an emptied bag of potatoes. Moreover, the southern half is less eroded and it has a large crescent shaped plateau. It fills the interior of the ring and much dissected by shallow water courses. This plateau acts as a large reservoir after rains. In fact, two permanent springs, Ain Ghazal and Ain Doua found at the southern foot of the mountain. Since the base of the mountain is well above the permanent aquifer. So, the source of the water can only be rain. However they never went dry in living memory.

The eastern part consists of a large block of Paleozoic sandstone. The sandstone slab forms a large elevated plateau. In fact, it dissected into several large units. Karkur Talh is the largest valley of Gabal El Uweinat. It’s mouth opens onto the broad sand plain flanking the mountain on the north east side. In fact, the narrow mouth choked with sand dunes. Karkur Talh winds for some 25 km towards the base of the sandstone plateau. In fact, it forms the highest part of Gabal El Uweinat. Except for a few kilometers in the beginning, most of karkur Talh lies within Sudan.

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If you proceed inwards, the spaced vegetation become more frequent. It is with a dense acacia forest and continuous tufts of panic-um grass. Moreover, it features colocynths which covers the valley floor in the broad middle section. In fact, climbing Gabal El Uweinat is not an easy option. It takes about 16 hours for both ascent and descent. Moreover, you’ll need plenty of fuel and water to reach and enjoy this part of the desert. If your guide doesn’t summit, then you might want to take more time.

In fact, Karkur Talh valley, named after the acacia trees which still grow here. Moreover, the valley is the home to vast quantities of rock art- both drawings and engravings. Furthermore, the valley is definitely worth a visit. Though not as amazing as those of El Mestikawy Cave they extend over a much wider area. Guides will know the locations of the best rock art examples. Actually, you may, in the side Wadis (Valleys), even find some new examples of your own.

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Regenfeld Gilf El Kebir Egypt

Regenfeld Gilf El Kebir

Regenfeld Gilf El Kebir information, tours, prices, booking

Regenfeld was a storage place of the Rohlfsschen expedition in El Dakhla Oasis, Egypt. Moreover, the site is an archaeological site located in Gelif El Kebir, Egypt. If you reached one day Gilf El Kebir, you shouldn’t miss a chance to visit Regenfeld. In fact, the site features a flat topped plateau. The plateau crosses several deep Valleys and towering dunes. Moreover, Regenfeld is the site where rainfall saved the life of Gerhard Rohlfs. It was during his exploration of the desert in 1874. Over there, you can still find the cairn Rohlfs which used to mark the area. Furthermore, there’s also a marble tablet which set up since 1933. In fact, it set up by Almasy. He was a Hungarian explorer. In fact, he depicted in The English Patient, in honor of the Egyptian explorer, Prince Kamal el Din. Finally, Regengeld is an Arabic word means Rain Filed.

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Bir Sigam Bahariya Oasis Egypt

Bir Sigam Egypt

Bir Sigam hot spring in Bahariya oasis, Egypt information, tours, booking

Bir Sigam is one of the most famous hot springs in Bahariya Oasis, Egypt. In fact, Bir Sigam located seven kilometers east of Cairo Bahariya oasis road. Bahariya oasis located 375 south west of Cairo in the Western Desert. In fact, it is bout 5 hours driving. Take a short vacation and soak in the heat of this amazing hot spring. In fact, a hot spring can help overcome rheumatism. The hot spring usually crowded in the day but empty at night.

Moreover, the hot spring located against hills which sculpted out of black quartz. Furthermore, the area houses palm groves date and olive trees. The area also comprises other ten hot springs which create a sense of relaxation. Renowned for its healing powers, the hot spring eases some pains. In fact, the pains are of stiff joints and digestive issues.

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Alexander The Great temple Bahariya oasis Egypt

Alexander The Great temple Egypt

Alexander The Great temple Bahariya, Egypt information, tours, booking

Alexander The Great temple located in Bahariya Oasis in Western Desert, Egypt. In fact, the temple is the only one in Egypt which has Macedonian ruler’s. Alexander The Great temple built during Alexander’s lifetime and dedicated to Amun and Horus. In fact, Alexander arrived with his army in Memphis. It is where he made an offering to the Apis bull. Moreover, he crowned king of Egypt. He took as his Egyptian throne the name of “Setp n Ra Mery Amun”. Alexander’s visit to Siwa Oasis in the Western Desert was to consult with the Oracle of Amun. It is where his kingship made divine as the son of Amun.

In fact, Alexander The Great temple is one of the largest in the Bahariya Oasis. Moreover, the temple features at least 45 chambers which built from mud-brick. Furthermore, the chambers encased in sandstone. The valley of the Golden Mummies situated only three hundred yards from the temple. The entrance to Alexander The Great temple was on the south end of the structure. In fact, it accessed through a gate. A red granite altar discovered just outside the temple. In fact, the red granite not found in any of the western oasis. So, it maybe carried a great distance to the temple through the vast desert by donkeys.

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Just to the right of Alexander The Great temple entrance is a scene. In fact, the scene depicts only the lower half of two individuals facing each other. It is probable that one of these individuals is Alexander the Great. He dressed as a traditional Egyptian pharaoh. Moreover, he makes offerings to a principle Egyptian deity. On the lower register on the north wall of the second room, Alexander revealed. Alexander The Great temple also comprises a relief. In fact, the relief retains some of its original colors. Moreover, it depicts Alexander while offering two vessels. The vessels maybe contain Bahariya wine as an offering to Horus and Isis. Horus and Isis hold a scepter on one hand an the ankh symbol in the other.

In the background a priest wearing a long robe stands. He holds incense and an unknown tool. Furthermore, there are also an offering table bearing bread, meat and cucumbers. Moreover, there are also pomegranates and other fruits. Along with vessels for ointments also displayed. Alexander The Great temple also features another carved relief. In fact, it depicts Alexander while he makes an offering of incense to the god, Amun. God Amun who followed by various goddesses, one of which is Mut, Amun’s consort. In this scene, the governor and high priest of the Oasis stand behind the pharaoh. In fact, they stand with offerings of incense. Just visible in the depiction is an offering table. In fact, it laden with bread, meat, vegetables, wine and flowers.

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Alexander The Great temple complex surrounded by auxiliary storage rooms and houses. In fact, the storage rooms and houses used by guards and priests. On the east side of the temple, a building which used for administrative purposes. Only two of the buildings chambers roofed with large limestone blocks. In fact, they inscribed with Greek graffiti which now lost. One of the most interesting artifacts which found in the temple complex is a bronze statue. In fact, the statue is a royal lady. It believed that this lady was the wife of Alexander the Great. A small statue of a priest of Re also discovered in one of the temple’s corridors. Moreover, smaller artifacts discovered in and about the temple. In fact, they include Greek, Roman and Coptic pottery shards.

Moreover, they also included painted vases, fragments of bronze statues and Greek amulets. Furthermore, they also included coins from the 5th and 6th centuries AC. Some of the pottery which discovered feature rectangular marks and human figures. They appear to be of Semitic origin from Asia. The other shards and lamps are from the Coptic Period and later. The Christians inhabited the Alexander the Great temple until the 12th century AC. Moreover, some chambers may occupied as dwellings into the Middle Ages. In fact, the mentioned discoveries led Egyptology men to believe that.

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Ain El Muftella temple Bahariya Oasis Egypt

Ain El Muftella temple Egypt

Ain El Muftella temple Bahriya Oasis, Egypt, information, tours, booking

Ain El Muftella temple located in the center of Bahariya oasis in Western Desert, Egypt. In fact, Ain El Muftella temple served as the city center of El Qasr. Al Qasr is today the modern town of Bawiti in the Bahariya Oasis. Moreover, the temple built around the time of the 26th Dynasty. Though, some sections of the temple date back to the earlier in the New Kingdom. Furthermore, the temple added by both the Greeks, and later the Romans. In fact, some parts of the temple built by a high priest who named Zed-Khonsu-efankh. Moreover, he was the brother of Sheben-Khonsu. The last one was governor of the district during the reign of Ahmose II.

After the death of Khonsu, Zed-Khonsu-efankh took his brother’s role as governor. The temple center in fact consisted of four chapels. In fact, the chapels decorated and painted. Moreover, they had sunk relief like the other Egyptian temples of this period. The first chapel had two large halls. Furthermore, it had vaulted ceilings which painted with geometrical designs. Each of the halls adjoined by small storage rooms. In fact, Ain El Muftella temple was a rural temple. So, the temple served as a general purpose place of worship for for different gods. Scenes in the first hall depict Zed-Khonsu-efankh and sometimes his brother Sheben-Khonsu.

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Moreover, the scenes also depict Ahmose II who wears the double crown of Upper and Lower Egypt. He stands side by side and makes offerings to thirteen gods. The temple also houses another set of reliefs in the side entrance. In fact, the reliefs depict Ahmose II while stands with an ankh in his right hand. It is along side the hippopotamus goddess, Tausert, Horus and the cow goddess, Hathor. Behind them is another scene which depicts a child, several unrecognizable gods and goddesses. Moreover, the scene also depicts the goddess Ma’at with her feather. In the second chapel, there is a scene which portrays the high priest. In fact, the priest has a shaved head and worships Osiris.

Furthermore, the second chapel in Ain El Muftella temple features other scenes. In fact, the scenes show the sisters of Osiris who mourns his death. It is along with a list of the names of various deities. The wall to the right of the entrance to the second chapel also features another scene. The scene depicts an unknown priest who makes offerings to Osiris. And then, the king stands before Thoth. On the west wall, there is a mummified Osiris. The third chapel of the temple dedicated to the goddess Bes. In fact, the chapel has two entrances at either end of it. The entrances built from dole-rite and sandstone. Furthermore, one wall within this chapel devoted to a large figure of that deity.

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The fourth chapel in Ain El Muftella temple is more simple. In fact, the chapel made of brick and stone but never painted. The only notable scene in this chapel depicts Ahmose II in the presence of Khnum and Horus. Many of artifacts recovered from this temple over the years. In fact, the discoveries in the first chapel consist of a statue of the goddess Bastet. The discoveries also included a stone emblem of a head of Hathor and a statuette of an unknown king. Moreover, they also includes another statuette of Thoth and fragments of a bronze vase.

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Bir Setta hot spring Farafra oasis Egypt

Bir Setta Farafra Oasis

Bir Setta hot spring Farfara, Egypt information tours, booking

Bir Setta which means “Well number six” is a natural hot spring located in Farafra Oasis, Egypt. In fact, Bir Setta is a sulfurous hot spring which located about 6 km northwest of Qasr Al Farafra. In the well, the water gushes into a Jacuzzi-sized concrete pool. And then, it spills out into a larger tank. This is a good place for a night-time soak under the stars.

In fact, Bir Sitta helps relieve back pain and joint ache after Camel Riding. The large hot bath contains traces of sulfur, which aids muscle and joint to recover from the pain. It is about 5 kilometers from the main town and easy to reach by car.

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Djara cave Farafra Oasis Egypt

Djara Cave Egypt

Djara Cave Farfara oasis, Egypt information, tours, booking

Djara Cave located in the middle of the Western Desert on a limestone plateau. In fact, you can get to Djara Cave from Farafra Oasis and Asyut as well. The cave itself can easily entered and has a level floor. Make sure you bring a flashlight and wearing a helmet. Djara Cave is a normal result of the dry Desert climate over millions of years of formation. In fact, the cave is unlike any other in the region. The cave presents its viewers with a fairy-tale. It is like an atmosphere of staggering depth and proportions. To the common visitor and residents of Egypt, Djara Cave almost unknown. Yet, a true vacation or tour to Egypt ought to involve true discoveries. In fact, the cave by far, is one discovery which will be unforgettable.

Moreover, the cave contains a ceiling of what appears to flute limestone formations. The formations mimic the effect of frozen dripping water. In fact, it is almost like asymmetrical folds of drapery in stone and crystal. Djara Cave is a result of immense amounts of water which accumulated over an extended period of time. In fact, the water seeps through the Desert sands. It creates an underground cave of aesthetic splendor and geological heaven. Djara Cave discovered in the 19th-century by the German explorer Gerhard Rohlfs. And then, the cave neglected for 120 years later. Recently, the cave rediscovered by the German team from the BOS. In fact, BOS is Historians of the Settlement of the Eastern Sahara. Rohlf’s discovery was on Christmas eve in 1873.

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In fact, he described the revelation of the prehistoric cave as follows:

“A chalk stone cave opened out of the ground. Its beauty and size surpassed our dreams. Stalactites three to four feet long hung from the roof in elegant draperies. Purer and more transparent than any we saw elsewhere. These stalactites indeed are mysterious. They formed by dripping fresh water in a Desert which now completely devoid of water”. In fact, his expedition aimed at different target. It was to establish a direct route through the Desert from the Nile to Libya. Moreover, his expedition involved several surprising discoveries. The discoveries included heavy rains in the middle of the vast Desert terrain, an element far from consideration. Besides, taking new routes that involved climbing and descending countless dunes.

In fact, a phenomenal discovery of an ancient cave made in the midst of the arid planes of the Desert. Moreover, Rohlf himself was in shock. In fact, he received three awards because of this discovery. His awards acknowledged his discovery of Djara. He had unusual experience of torrential rain under which he survived for several days. In fact, he took refuge in a camp and named the place Regenfeld or “field of rain”. Furthermore, he discovered a rare bed of ammonites. In fact, they brought to the surface due to sudden rains. The Djara Cave remains as one of the most stunning examples of the effect of chemical activity. In fact, it is over millennia. Moreover, it is a unique treasure of nature’s own version of cave art.

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Qasr Al Farafra Oasis Egypt

Qasr Al Farafra Egypt

Qasr Al Farafra in Farafra oasis, Egypt information, tours, booking

Qasr Al Farafra located at Farafra oasis in the Western Desert, Egypt. In fact, Qasr Al Farafra is where the old city of Farafra Oasis located within the fortress. Al what you can see there are just the ruins of the fortress. In fact, the ruins still deserve to make an interesting walk. You can walk within the ruins and try to imagine how the generations of peoples used this as a shelter. In fact, they also used it as a protection from external aggression. There is a small hill inside the fortress which you can climb. Moreover, from there you will see the view of the old houses and the new red brick houses as well. Furthermore, you will be also able to watch the greenery and the desert.

If you visit Qasr Al Farafra on a Thursday morning, you can catch the market there. In fact, it is where locals sell fruits, vegetables and other products. The Farafroni women usually handle the market. If you want to trace back the glory of the Roman civilization, then visit this unique castle. Most of the Roman ruins centered around this castle. It stands today as the capital town of the oasis. In fact, it was the only village in ancient times. Moreover, the fortress located on the northern side of the town. In fact, it dominated the top of a ridge overlooking the surrounding desert. It built on the site of an original Roman structure and constructed from stone and mud brick.

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The present fortress enlarged or rebuilt during medieval times. In fact, it was after contained at least 125 rooms. Furthermore, there is also an ancient cemetery near Qasr Al Farafra. In fact, it is where a few non decorated rock-cut tombs completely buried by sand. Other rock tombs can seen in areas nearby. Some of them used as dwellings by early Christian hermits. In fact, the hermits are the ones who scratched and painted their crosses on the walls.

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Silica Glass Field Gilf El Kebir Egypt

Silica Glass Field

Silica Glass Field Gif EL Kebir information, tours, booking

Silica Glass field located in the Gilf El Kebir, Western desert, Egypt. In fact, it is near to the Libyan edge of the Great Sand Sea. Indeed, Silica Glass field is one of the great mysteries of the region. In fact, site has Natural green silica glass. You can find them between the dunes. Pieces vary in color, clarity and size. The site indeed is an astonishing geological wonder. In fact, it houses the amazing pieces of yellow-green color which discovered in it. The exact origin of this tektite material still unknown. In fact, the scientists speculate is a result of the impact of a meteor. The meteor taken place centuries ago and caused sand to fuse due to the intense heat.

However till this day no crater proved this theory. The glass worn with wind and has a polished feel. In fact, it used by the pharaohs in making jewelry. When you visit the Silica Glass Field in the Western Desert, you will have a great temptation. In fact, it is to take some of the shiny pieces of desert with you. Silica Glass Field rediscovered in the 1840. In fact, this glass of this site known to the ancient Egyptians. In 1998, a member of an Italian team investigated the origins of the glass. Moreover, he also examined Tutankhamen‘s jewelry. The boy King left a green scarab which dominated his pectoral. In fact, it made from a piece of Silica Glass Field.

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Actually, the glass known about –and valued- in antiquity. But in fact, this does not shed any light on the origins of the glass. Extreme heat needed to form this glass. So, it gives rise to many theories about forming it. Maybe, there was a volcanic activity. There is also a possibility that an extraterrestrial body crashed into the earth. There is a suspected meteorite crater 150 km away from Silica Glass Field site. However, there is no glass at the actual crater site. In fact, the source of the glass remains a mystery till nowadays. The site accessible through safaris and tours of the Great Sand Sea.

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Swimmers Cave Gilf El Kebir Egypt

Swimmers Cave

Swimmers Cave Gilf El Kebir information, tours, prices, booking

Swimmers Cave is and the ancient rocks art located in the mountainous of Gilf El Kebir plateau. In fact, the plateau located in the New Valley govern-orate. The New Valley located southwest Egypt near the borders with Libya. Swimmers Cave and rocks art discovered in October 1933. it was by the Hungarian explorer Laszlo Almasy. In fact, Swimmers cave contains Neolithic pictographs (rock painting images) of people who swim. The painting images are about 10,000 years ago. In fact, it was during the time of the most recent Ice Age.

Almasy devoted a chapter to the Swimmers cave in his book “The Unknown Sahara” which issued in 1943. In the book, he postulates that the swimming scenes are real depictions of life at the time of painting. He also mentioned that there was a climate change from temperate to Xeric desert since that time. In fact, this theory was so new at that time. In 2007, Eman Ghoneim discovered an ancient mega lake which is 30,750 km². Actually, the lake buried beneath the sand of the Great Sahara in the Northern Darfur region, Sudan.

Furthermore, the Swimmers cave mentioned in Michael Ondaatje’s novel “The English Patient”. Moreover, it also mentioned in a movie which based upon it. In fact, the cave shown in the movie not the original but a film set created by a contemporary artist. In fact, some portions of the Swimmers cave damaged by visitors over the years. It is especially since the movie released in 1996. Fragments of the paintings removed as souvenirs.

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Moreover, some surfaces cracked after water applied to enhance their contrast for photographs. Modern graffiti inscribed upon the wall. In fact, the tourist littering indeed is a problem. Some steps taken to reduce the future damage. The steps include training guides and clearing litter from the vicinity. In fact, this important rocks art site remains fragile. Moreover, there are also risks future disturbances. In fact, it is because the tourist traffic to the region increases.

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