Al Fayoum, Egypt
Although the name sounds like a city, Al Fayoum is actually an oasis. Better yet, it’s the largest in Egypt and you’ll find it 100 kms. South West of Cairo. As with most oases, you can definitely expect palm trees and amazingly verdant flora. History also records this location as having been settled since prehistoric times.
There are plenty of splendid sights to soak up, some of the most beautiful being the pyramids. The mud brick affair of the Lahun pyramid is truly an explorer’s dream come true. You can either accompany your guide and learn the history of the place or go it by yourself, with a map in hand.
Taking plenty of photographs is key to your visit. There are some seriously fabulous angles you can capture at this oasis and you won’t regret taking several more, even if they’re the same shots. Another thing to keep in mind is that an oasis doesn’t also mean a cool clime. After all, you find oases only in desert regions. To this end, take plenty of sunscreen and bottled water on your trip. You’ll find chances to buy other amenities on site or before heading out from your hotel, but come prepared just in case.
Speaking of hotels, be sure to check out the New Panorama Village or Helnan Auberge EL Fayoum Hotel for accommodations that are simply superb.
Karanis is an ancient town South of Cairo where you can find peace and quiet enough to explore the location. The town has an interesting history. The South Temple there dates all the way back to the 1st century BC. In 1 AD a Roman temple was built over the old one. Also, keep your eyes peeled for other amazing spots and zones here in Karanis.
Bahariya is the place to go if desert safaris are on your mind. Such safaris often end up being very educational and thrilling, so don’t hesitate to try them out because of the heat. There are, of course, several other locations where you can sign up for a desert safari but Bahariya is easy, has more options and is most efficient.
The White Desert is almost always the focus of these safaris, but there are other trips that take about four to nineteen days. These latter trips list remote locations like the Jebel Uwaynat, Gilf Kebir and/or Great Sand Sea. Be sure to book these months in advance as a lot of planning will be needed if you’re to make the most of such an extended desert safari. Be sure to know when each safari is open, meaning the seasons.
There are many city tours for you to enjoy as well. Keep in mind that though the tourist trade is pretty slim here, El Fayoum has so much to offer. Just think… Wadi Al Rayan, a protected area, and Madinet Madi are a couple of cool places to see. Then there are the three pyramids this place is famous for: Hawara, Lahun, and Lisht.