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Egypt’s White Desert, A Once in a Lifetime Destination

09.16.2009 · Posted in Home and Garden Articles

Egypt definitely has a lot of world famous sights to see. Of course everyone should check out the Pyramids and the Antiquities Museum, the Nile and Luxor. Yet as exciting as these sites can be, a trip to the White Desert in central Egypt is one of the most exciting and rewarding experiences you will ever have. It is a unique experience that not many people even think of doing.nnYou can see the White Desert on a 3 day trip from Cairo. Book it from the place you are staying or head to the Dahab Hostel downtown where you will find a great deal. For less than $30 per day, you will receive transportation, accommodation, meals and excursions during your trip to the White Desert. The highlight of the safari comes on the first night when you sleep under the stars in the middle of the desert in an authentic Bedouin camp.nnIn 5 short hours you will find yourself transformed from the hustle and bustle of Cairo to the desert town of Bahariya. This is where all tours begin. After being picked up by your guide, it won’t be long until you are ready to go out and explore the vast Sahara Desert. But not before your bellies are filled and you are properly hydrated.nnSweet tea, Bedouin stew and pitas are placed on the table for all to dig in. It is early afternoon when you will be taking off for the Sahara desert, but this section is special because it houses the awesome White Desert, like nothing you have ever seen. nnDon’t be surprised if you are asked to buy a Bedouin Scarf. It is a good idea to accept, although there is no pressure. It is just a very good item to have in the desert. It keeps you warm at night being able to wrap it around your head and neck and keeps the fine sand out of your nose and eyes during a wind storm.nnYou are now ready for the excitement to begin. Hop in the back of a jeep and you are in for a bumpy ride. This portion of the desert is amazing, not only will you witness the vast dunes of the Sahara but soon the desert turns black before your eyes. This phenomenon is cause by tiny particles blowing in from the mountain and forming a film atop the sand. Amazing.nnDon’t be alarmed when you come to a guard booth. Seeing the armed guards can be a little unsettling, but that is the way of Egypt. It is simply a check point and since it is so difficult to get through any other way, you will feel safe sleeping in the deserted white desert. And it is after these check points that you enter it.nnWords can not do justice to the giant white formations that stand magestically in the middle of this barren land. You will be camping right in the middle of pure chalky white sand structures shaped as mushrooms, birds, and camels. It feels as if you are standing on another planet. Formed by mother nature through erosion, these chalk rocks are solid enough to walk upon.nnBedouin guides prepare the camp putting up traditional walls made of thick material. They cover the ground with woolen blankets and start a fire to keep you warm. Three colorful walls surround the camp to block the wind with the front open to the fire. The shelter remains roofless to reveal the starry sky and everyone huddles together to settle in for a thrilling evening in the middle of the Sahara Desert.nnThe sun is a welcome sight after the cold night under the stars and it is perfect timing to watch it come up over the awesome shapes. Hot tea and a warm breakfast give you the fuel to move on and it is time to head back and enjoy your Jeep ride through the dunes. What a thrill to be tossed around the high dunes with the fear of rolling at any minute. Never fear, these guys have been driving this desert for years and they know every twist and turn. One quick stop at the hot springs and you are at a high plateau to watch the sunset over the desert one last time. nnMany people don’t think of the white desert when traveling to Egypt, but they should. It is one of the most unique and beautiful destinations in the country. Step back in time and experience life in a simpler time and get a taste of what it was like for the ancient Bedouins of the great Sahara Desert.

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