In the middle of the Sahara desert, the Siwa Oasis is one of Egypt’s most remote locations and a hidden gem. It can be reached from the coastal city of Marsa Matrouh and is located in the western part of the country, not far from the Libyan border.
Because Siwa is surrounded by a vast desert, it is protected as a cultural landmark. After Gilf Kebir National Park, Siwa Oasis is the most remote and exotic location in Egypt in some ways. Although getting there sounds like an adventure in the desert, the north coast and western oasis are connected by a road system.
The trip to Siwa Oasis, the hidden gem of Egypt, is a unique and captivating culture, spectacular desert scenery, and a plethora of outdoor activities. Siwa Oasis is a desert oasis located in the Western Desert of Egypt, near the border with Libya. It is home to a population of around 25,000 Berber-speaking people, known as Siwans.
This oasis is one of the most isolated and least-visited places in Egypt, making it the perfect destination for those looking for an adventure in the desert.
Activities in Siwa
The Siwa Oasis is a unique place that offers a range of activities for visitors to explore. From ancient ruins to modern-day markets, there is something for everyone to enjoy. From exploring the local culture to taking part in outdoor activities, here is a guide to the best things to do in Siwa Oasis:
- Visit the Temple of the Oracle of Amun: The Temple of the Oracle of Amun is one of the most popular tourist attractions in Siwa Oasis. This ancient temple was built in the 4th century BC and is dedicated to the Egyptian god Amun. This temple is one of the most important archaeological sites in Egypt, and it is believed that it was here that Alexander the Great consulted the Oracle of Amun before his conquest of Egypt.
- Explore the Siwa Salt Lakes: The Siwa Salt Lakes are a series of natural salt lakes located in the desert surrounding the Siwa Oasis. These salt lakes are home to a variety of wildlife, including fish, birds, and reptiles. Visitors can take part in a variety of activities, including swimming, fishing, boat trips, and bird watching.
- Visit Siwa Town: Siwa Town is the main settlement in Siwa Oasis. It is home to a traditional Berber-speaking population, and visitors can explore the local markets, visit the historic fort, and learn more about local culture and customs.
- Shop at the Siwa Markets: The Siwa Markets are a great place to pick up souvenirs and local crafts. The markets are full of colorful hand-crafted items, such as jewelry, pottery, carpets, and clothing.
- Go Desert Trekking: The desert around Siwa Oasis is the perfect place to go trekking. Visitors can explore the sand dunes and caves, and see a variety of wildlife.
- Visit the Siwa Oasis Hot Springs: Siwa Oasis is home to a number of hot springs, which are believed to have healing properties. Visitors can take a dip in the warm waters and relax in the natural environment.
- Take a 4×4 Safari: For an adrenaline-filled adventure, visitors can take a 4×4 safari through the desert. This is a great way to explore the desert and see some of the stunning scenery.
These are just some of the many activities that visitors can take part in during their visit to Siwa Oasis. The oasis is a truly unique destination, and visitors can feel like they’ve stepped back in time to an ancient world. If you’re planning a visit to Siwa Oasis, here is a suggested itinerary:
- Day 1: Arrive at Siwa Oasis, explore the Temple of the Oracle of Amun, and visit the Siwa Markets.
- Day 2: Spend the day exploring the Siwa Salt Lakes and go desert trekking.
- Day 3: Take a 4×4 safari and visit the Siwa Oasis Hot Springs.
- Day 4: Spend the day exploring Siwa Town and learning about local culture and customs.
- Day 5: Depart from Siwa Oasis. Siwa Oasis is an incredible destination that offers something for everyone.
Whether you’re looking for a relaxing getaway or an adventure in the desert, Siwa Oasis is the perfect destination for your next holiday.
The Siwa Oasis has its own history
A footprint dating back three million years has been found by archaeologists. Throughout history, it served as a resting place for nomads and travelers in search of food and water. There is proof that people have lived here since the 29th century BC.
For instance, travelers like Alexander the Great and the Persian emperor Cambyses were drawn to the famed Amun temple’s 3000-year-old oracle.
The Siwa people are descended from desert nomads who lived in North Africa, and they still uphold their unique culture and language. The Moroccan Berber language and the Siwi language are closely related. When they arrived at the oasis, they developed their own crafts and a distinctive building style using local stones made of clay and salt.
The Siwa Oasis was influenced by Roman and Egyptian culture despite its isolation. Ancient ruins show a bustling, international trading post where people could come to trade away from the hot desert and where politicians could get prophecies and validation from the renowned oracle.