Siwa: a million miles away but worth the journey.
With huge sand dunes, many natural oases and limited mobile phone reception; this is the ultimate getaway for anyone looking for an escape. When you think of Egypt, Siwa is not a place that comes to mind. It should!
Do take plenty of mosquito repellent as we got absolutely totally and utterly completely eaten alive whilst visiting. I recommend something stronger than 'Off!'
During our visit, someone had the crazy idea to film a horror movie. It was a really hilarious way to spend our time as Siwa is a place where you could fall over from being so relaxed. The horror movie kept us entertained and gave the locals much enjoyment too. After all, there are no rules when you travel so why not make a movie! For the trailer, click here or scroll down to the bottom of the page.
The Town of Siwa
The town of Siwa stands in its own category. After more than ten hours driving through the desert, west of Cairo, suddenly, life appeared before us.
Historically, Siwa was part of Ancient Libya. Today, it's a sleepy, dusty town that feels like you've travelled back in time. I half expected to see horses and carts and no vehicles but as usual, there were plenty of tuk-tuks racing around.
We spent five days in Siwa, travelling around the area and embracing all that it had to offer. The natural oases cropped up here, there and everywhere and we took every opportunity to swim in them. They are the main source of life for the Siwa people, producing fresh water which is bottled and sold as a main source of income.
Our visit was during April and it was definitely very hot so the cool (and sometimes naturally heated) pools were a welcome refreshment!
Sandboarding and Dune Driving
Siwa has so many sand dunes that it's famous for 4x4 driving. Join a local guide as you race up and down the dunes across the desert.
Stop off at a particularly high dune and prepare to slide down on a sandboard. Not for the unfit as the climb back up is super challenging!! It's a case of take two steps and fall back down five!
Whatever your reason for visiting Siwa, there is no escaping the beautiful scenery. Take a walk at sunset, go on a bicycle ride through the desert or sit back on the roof terrace of your hotel and admire the view.
There is a lot of history in Siwa and it varies from Middle Eastern, Ancient Egypt and Roman culture.
All around the town there are different buildings and structures combining the two cultures.
There are also very few tourists around so you can visit everywhere at your leisure, without feeling rushed. Local children will approach to sell you handmade goods.
The Horror Movie
Unfortunately, due to a loss of footage, editing was cancelled and the movie was never actually made.
We will try again next time! After all, it's good to have an excuse to go back.