Gilf el Kebir

White Desert sunset

White Desert sunset

Expedition through the Great Sand Sea to Siwa

An expedition into one of the last white spots on the map - to the fossilized whales in Wadi Heitan, through the wonderland of the White Desert and into the valleys of Jebel Uwaynat and the Gilf el Kebir with ist neolithic rock drawings, with a breathtaking journey through the Great Sand Sea and to Siwa oasis as a finale!

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, approximately 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.


(subject to change without prior notice)

1. Arrival

Arrival at Cairo Airport, assistance and transfer to Hotel. Overnight in Cairo.

2. Cairo - Fayum - Wadi Rayan - Wadi Heitan

Departure by jeep to Fayum, an oasis that was cultivated during the reign of the pharaohs. Proceed to Wadi Rayan, where a branch of the Nile pours into the Qarun lake, and then to the National Park of Wadi Heitan. The fossilized bones of ancient sea mammals have given the area its name of "Valley of the Whales". Tent overnight.

3. Wadi Heitan - Baharija - White Desert

After arrival in Baharija drive through the picturesque palm groves of the oasis and stroll through the town of Bawiti. Afterwards proceed to the White Desert, overnight.

Atop a dune

Atop a dune

4. Day: White desert - Farafra - Dakhla

In the morning two hours walk through the White Desert near Wadi Mushroom and its famous mushroom-shaped rocks, with enough opportunities to linger and take photos. Afterwards drive to Farafra, visit to the local museum. You will have the possibilities to bathe in the springs. After lunch drive to Dakhla and visit to the old town of El Qasr with its covered walkways and carved doorlintels. Overnight at a lodge.

5. Dakhla - Gilf el Kebir

After breakfast the adventure begins - the jeeps leave Dakhla and go towards the Gilf el Kebir. After hours of adventurous driving the camp is set up at the eastern flank of the plateau. Tent overnight.

6. Jebel Uweinat - Karkur Talh

At first the route passes an ancient volcanic area, the Clayton craters which were formed by gas eruptions. Then we leave the Gilf area behind and go south. In the Karkur Talh or "Acacia Valley" we enter the area of the Gebel Uwainat. Situated roughly at the centre of the most arid area, its height is sufficient to capture a little precipitation from the summer monsoon clouds of the Sahel belt that occasionally reaches this far north. These rains are very infrequent, the last one was recorded in September 1998, and probably as much as 10-15 years may pass without rain. However even this little rain is sufficient to allow some vegetation and wildlife in the larger valleys. Tent overnight.

Karkur Talh

Karkur Talh

7. Karkur Talh

This day is dedicated to the exploration of the area and its rock drawings. In the 1930's Winkler recorded the rock drawings here - the first prehistoric rock drawings ever found in this part of the Sahara. Karkur Talh (Valley of Acacia) offers a very dramatic change in scenery just in time, this valley offering trees, shade, and savannah like greenery. The traces of wildlife scattered all around the valley exposes the presence of a big variety of living creatures. Tent overnight.

8. Karkur Talh - Wadi Sura - Aqaba

Today we turn north again and pass the hills of Peter and Paul, ancient volcanoes that are a geologist's heaven, and then to Wadi Sura in the western Gilf el Kebir. There we approach one of the highlights of the tour - a cave with neolithic rock paintings depicting game, domestic animals and humans, among them the famous picture showing swimmers that was first discovered by Count Almassy. Afterwards the tour leads up by the pass of Aqaba on to the plateau. Tent overnight.

9. Aqaba - Wadi Homra

From the western escarpment one has a singularly beautiful view. We descend into the Wadi Homra, named for its red rocks and sand. This valley also has some prehistoric rock drawings. Night camp in the wadi.

10.-12. Great Sand Sea

Three days of adventurous driving through the Great Sand Sea are one of the highlights of the tour. Single dunes combine to an endless Sea of Sand. Overnight in tents in the dunes.



13. Siwa Oasis

The last part of the tour through the sand sea and then entrance into Siwa oasis, the most remote oasis of the Western Desert. Hotel overnight in Siwa.

14. Siwa - Matruh

Sightseeing in Siwa: after a stop at the baths of Cleopatra we proceed to the old acropolis of Shali, then to the famous temple of Amun and the temple of pharaoh Amasis, and to Gebel Mawta with its rock tombs. Afterwards drive to Marsa Matruh on the Mediterranean coast. Hotel overnight in Matruh.

15. Matruh - Alamein - Alexandria - Cairo

Early morning departure on the coastal road, passing el Alamein. In Alexandria short city tour, then proceed to Cairo. Hotel overnight.

16. Departure

Transfer to Cairo airport and final departure.

Services included

  • Entry visa to Egypt
  • Transfers and visits acc. to program with modern a/c Toyota Landcruiser 4x4 (3 Persons per jeep)
  • GPS navigation and satellite phone
  • All necessary permits
  • English speaking guide
  • Entrance fees according to program
  • 2 nights Cairo in Grand Pyramids Resort 5* on H/B
  • 1 night Dakhla in simple lodge on H/B
  • 1 night Siwa in Siwa Paradise Hotel 3*+ on H/B
  • 1 night Marsa Matruh San Giovanni Hotel 5* on H/B
  • The remaining nights in tents
  • Full board during the desert tour from 2.-15. day (expedition kitchen)
  • Portage

Services not included

  • International flights
  • Tips for guide and drivers
  • Personal expenses

Optional Services

  • Single room supplement: 120 EUR


  • A prepayment of some sort with Nile cruises and hotel bookings has to be paid directly after reconfirmation. Final payment becomes due distinctly before starting date of the tour.





minimum: 6

maximum: 12


Duration: 16 Days

Our programme is currently under review. We ask for your patience ...
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