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Siwa is one of the world’s last remaining pristine oases, home to spectacular natural landscapes, ancient historical ruins and unique cultural traditions.

Famed as the location of the Oracle of Amon, whom Alexander the Great consulted before continuing his Persian conquest, Siwa exists today much as it always has. Majestic rock formations, lush groves and brilliant salt lakes that have nurtured and inspired its people since they settled here 12,000 years ago continue to enchant all who set foot in this secluded idyll in Egypt’s Western Desert.

Thousands of years of isolation in a vast and unforgiving desert have allowed the Siwan community to develop unique cultural traditions, building techniques, styles of embroidery and systems of agricultural production that are remarkable for their beauty and harmony with the natural environment.

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  1. 1. SIWA<br />Egypt<br />
  2. 2. Siwa Oasis is located in the western desert of Egypt.<br />It lies in a depression in the middle of the desert, approximately 18m below sea level.<br />Siwa is surrounded on all sides by diverse landscapes. To the north of Siwa is a range of stone outcrops and hills and to the south is the great sand sea of high rolling dunes. To the east is rocky desert stretching all the way to the Qattara depression<br />
  3. 3. The weather in Siwa is almost always fine and the sun never fails to shine, but there are some times of the year in which it may be better to come than others. <br />Here is a summary of the temperature and humidity throughout the year:<br />
  4. 4.
  5. 5. Fatnas Island<br />For a nice relaxed afternoon, it is hard to find a nicer destination than Fatnas Island. Just take a bike or a donkey cart for a slow ride through the oasis - about 7 km- on winding roads through shady groves and sunny fields, until you reach the oasis island.<br />
  6. 6. Fatnas Island<br />
  7. 7. Fatnas Island<br />
  8. 8. Fatnas Island<br />
  9. 9. FatnasIsland<br />
  10. 10. Fatnas Island<br />
  11. 11. Fatnas Island<br />
  12. 12. Cleopatra Spring<br />Variously known as “Cleopatra Spring,” “Ain Juba” or “Ain al Hammam,” in ancient times it was known as “The Spring of the Sun.” Herodotus described its bubbling waters in his Histories as boiling hot in the chilly evenings and cool during the heat of the day, and it was considered a wonder by ancients visiting Ammon. In reality, the spring’s waters are a constant 29 C; it’s the changing air temperature and bubbling water that give the impression of boiling water<br />
  13. 13. Cleopatra Spring<br />
  14. 14. Cleopatra Spring<br />
  15. 15. Gebel Dakrur<br />Gebel Dakrur lies 4 km east of town. The water table is deep down, so the surrounding area is dry and believed to be quite healthy. This is where people suffering from rheumatism come for curative sandbaths, and it’s also where Siwans used to camp out in the summer for a week of eating garlic.<br />Dakrur is also the home of the Siyaha Festival, held every October during the full moon .<br />Two tombs have been found at Dakrur that date back to Ptolemaic times, one of which bears a Greek inscription.<br />
  16. 16. Gebel Dakrur<br />
  17. 17. Gebel Dakrur<br />
  18. 18. Shali<br />Dominating the marketplace are the crumbling ruins of a 12th century fortress known as Shali. Siwans built it for protection from the hostile Bedouin tribes who periodically raided the oasis. The walls and houses are constructed not from mudbrick but karsheef, a stone made of sun baked clay, salt and fine sand which is dug from the edges of the salt lakes. Built atop a limestone hill, the fortress was quite solid and commanded a view of the open desert as well as the thousands of palm and olive trees that spill forth.<br />
  19. 19. Shali<br />
  20. 20. Shali<br />
  21. 21. Jebel El Mawta<br />Over 700 rock tombs are carved into this limestone hill, only a fraction of which have been excavated. Looming less than a kilometer north of the marketplace, in ancient times it would have been the main necropolis for the oasis with tombs dating to the Late Egyptian and Greco Roman periods. More recently, its tombs were used by Siwans as bomb shelters during World War II. Soldiers stationed in the oasis during the war also used the tombs, and according to Ahmed Fakhry not only left their graffiti but made off with bits of some of the best paintings. <br />
  22. 22. Jebel El Mawta<br />
  23. 23. Jebel El Mawta<br />
  24. 24. Jebel El Mawta<br />
  25. 25. Temple of Amon<br />The Temple of Om Obeda was also dedicated to the cult of Amun, and was part of a complex that included the Oracle Temple 250 meters away.<br />Local archaeologists recently uncovered a limestone-paved road connecting the two temple sand the remains of another Greek temple between them. <br />Om Obeda was built during the reign of Nectanebo II (359-341 BCE, 30th Dynasty) and stylistically resembles temples found in the Nile Valley from the same period. <br />
  26. 26. Temple of Amon<br />
  27. 27. Temple of Amon<br />
  28. 28. Ecological Village<br />Barely distinguishable from the surrounding landscape of salt lakes at the oasis of Siwa at the foot of the white mountain,» the Ecolodge is a luxury hotel even though guests have neither electricity nor air conditioning in the arid Egyptian desert. To cope with the extreme environment, the building which was completed in 1997 takes advantage of local techniques that have been developed over 2,500 years: walls of salt-bearing rock extracted from the beds of lakes burned by the sun, and roof, insulation, ventilation, plaster, furniture, and accessories designed and made by 150 local craftsmen using the oasis’ own resources. Economizing in the transport of materials and people minimized energy consumption, while the use of local human resources revived the region’s economy. Since the Ecolodge was built, almost 600 people make a living from the revival of interest in the architecture of Siwa.<br />
  29. 29. Ecological Village<br />
  30. 30. Ecological Village<br />
  31. 31. Ecological Village<br />
  32. 32. Ecological Village<br />
  33. 33. Ecological Village<br />
  34. 34. White Mountain<br />
  35. 35. White Mountain<br />
  36. 36. Khorishet<br />
  37. 37. Khorishet<br />
  38. 38. Abu Sheruf<br />Rimmed with palm trees, the spring at Abu Sherouf is one of the largest and most beautiful natural pools in the oasis. Its cool waters are so clear you can see the bubbles rising from the pool’s floor. Nearby is a hot spring; both springs empty into the lake behind<br />
  39. 39. Abu Sheruf<br />
  40. 40. Abu Sheruf<br />
  41. 41. Abu Sheruf<br />
  42. 42. How to get to the Oasis?<br />There are several ways to get to Siwa. Upon your arrival you will be assured of a warm welcome from the Siwanpeople. <br />
  43. 43. Thank You<br /><br /><br />