© aegyptus Intertravel 2011

:: 05.06.10 ::

Desert Expeditions and Tours

Jeep Safari and Expeditions

 

We organize jeep safari (5-14days) or walking tours (4-7days), as well as camel caravans (4-10days) through the colorful canyons and high mountain ranges of Sinai or the oases of the Western Desert with their characteristic culture. Visit Siwa, Baharija, Farafra,  Kharga and Dakhla, and cross the Great Sand Sea or the White Desert. Our programs also include expeditions to Gilf el Kebir and Djebel Uweinat. Our programs are designed as independent modules that can be combined with each other or one or two days in Cairo to see the Pyramids and the treasures of the Egyptian Museum. There is also the possibility of attaching some days in Luxor to see Karnak temple and the Valley of the Kings, or have a relaxing time on the beach in Sinai or Hurghada. We will help you to find the program best suited to your clients’ needs and your flight schedule.

We operate all tours with a min. of 2 pax per group at any given time.

Some routes in the Western desert must be done with two jeeps. In this case, this is noted in the program.

 

Trekking Tours and Camel Caravans:

 

Surrounding the Western oases are areas well known for their scenic beauty, which provide ample opportunity for walking trips, accompanied by pack or riding camels.  There is, for example, the “Wadi Mushroom”, with its typical white limestone formations resembling mushrooms, which is only a part of the White Desert. Then there is Djebel el Makhroum, a rock formation with a natural hole, and its surroundings, as well as Khayyam el Inglis with its tent-shaped rocks. Walks begin after breakfast, for app. 2-3 hrs. After lunch the walk can be continued for another 2 1/2 or 3 hrs until one hour before sunset, when the camp is made. Tents and bags are unloaded, and everybody prepares his or her sleeping place in the tent by daylight. Beneath the sparkling stars a hot soup and a hearty Egyptian-style meal is dished out. The bedouin prepare dinner bedouin style, with bread baked in the ashes (Libda), and sometimes sweet pancakes (Faraschih). After dinner there is singing and music with hand drums and double flute (Arghul). The starlight and the fire’s warmth make an unforgettable setting for a gregarious evening.

 

Exploring the heart of the Sinai Peninsula you have to resort to your own feet - and those of the Bedouins' trustworthy pack animals, the camels.  After climbing the summits of Djebel Musa, where the Ten Commandments were revealed, and Djebel Catherine, both overlooking the mediaeval monastery of the saint, founded by emperor Justinian, you may want to follow the trails of the Bedouin at a leisurely pace. Nestled among Sinai's mountain ranges you will discover amazingly green oases as well as carefully cultivated olive groves tended by black-veiled women. The famous Arab hospitality is demonstrated during tea breaks in goat-hair tents along the way. Our well-trained staff and our Bedouin guides take care of your well-being by choosing picturesque spots for lunch as well as the night camp,  and by preparing lavish Egyptian dishes for a well-deserved dinner in the evening. You will explore a part of Djebel et Tih, the central massive of Sinai, discovering the White Canyon and the Wadi Arada, the ruined palace of Abbas Basha and the waterfalls of Talaa. During your trip, you'll also see the biblical Hazeroth, the little oasis of Ain Hudra, and its neighbouring canyons, as well as the bizarre perforated sandstone formation of the Djebel Makhroum. Afterwards you may decide to take a break on one of the beautiful beaches of South Sinai for swimming and snorkeling.

 

A Day in the Desert:

 

In the morning the drivers have already been up to prepare breakfast when everyone gets up. Afterwards the guide takes the clients for a short stroll. Meanwhile, the drivers dismantle and stow the tents and equipment, then the tour commences. The routing is designed to show a change of scenery every day. Lunch break is at a well-suited, beautiful spot, sometimes providing an opportunity to wash or swim. After lunch the tour continues to the landscapes and points of interest of the day’s program until finally, app. one hour before sunset, the site of the nightly camp is reached. Tents and bags are unloaded, and everybody prepares his or her sleeping place in the tent by daylight. Beneath the sparkling stars a hot soup and a hearty Egyptian-style meal is dished out. The starlight and the fire’s warmth make an unforgettable setting for a gregarious evening.

 

Felucca Sailing:

 

After crossing the desert or even as extension to a tour in the Nile valley a sailing trip on local sailing boats known as feluccas, along the most beautiful stretch of the river Nile has become more and more popular.

Nubian sailors welcome you aboard the typical Nile felucca with its up to nine metres high mast and triangular sail, which is in use since ancient times. An average felucca takes 2-8 passengers. The space between the benches is used for storing luggage and covered by planks, which form the deck. Rugs are provided for comfortable sitting. Sailing usually starts at 8.00a.m., with stops for lunch.  The Nile valley between Luxor and Aswan is considered the most beautiful stretch of landscape in Egypt. Lush vegetation on the riverbanks contrasts sharply with golden sand dunes and rock formations in the background. You pass colourful Upper Egyptian and Nubian villages, cattle bathing and children splashing in the water. In Kom Ombo visit to the Ptolemaic twin temples set between reeds and islets used for grazing. Another attraction is a stroll through the lively camel market in the Upper Egyptian hamlet of Darau (Tuesdays only!). In Edfu you'll see the temple of Horus, nearly fully preserved and dating back to the Ptolemaic kings. Especially beautiful are the Nile islands of Aswan, set in front of a desert background.

Days begin with breakfast on board, consisting of coffee or tea, cheese, eggs, jam, and bread. Sometimes there are fuul beans or eggs with tomato sauce. At noon there is a break for lunch. Usually lunch is the lightest meal of the day and consists of different kind of cheese and vegetables, or scrambled  eggs with bread and salad, tuna fish or the like, with tea or coffee afterwards. About 1hr before sunset the boatman starts to prepare for the night. Dinner is cooked in the Upper Egyptian or Nubian way and spicy. It is the main meal of the day and leisurely prepared: soup of the day, rice or pasta and vegetables with meat or chicken, fruit for dessert and coffee or tea. During the night the deck is covered with a kind of tent, which opens to one side for ventilation.

Four or five days aboard a felucca can be combined with an extension in Luxor and /or Aswan, as well as a tour to the Western oases, and a short stay in Cairo!