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-   -   Alex to Siwa, can we camp? (http://www.horizonsunlimited.com/hubb/sahara-travel-forum/alex-siwa-can-we-camp-63981)

Vleis 28 Apr 2012 21:37

Alex to Siwa, can we camp?
 
If all goes well we should depart from Alexandria in the next 3-4 days. The plan is to head to Siwa but after speaking to the locals I am a bit confused. Any help on the following would be greatly appreciated...

The advise here today is not to try get to Siwa in one day but rather to sleep over in Mersa Matruh. I originally thought we would stock up on fuel and food and make our way to Siwa and make camp away from the road en-route. So I am a newbie at this desert travel and you read a lot about "yes you can just pull off the road for a couple of 100 meters and make camp...", but that is not what I heard from 1 or 2 people on Alex today. Lots of funny looks and the words "bad people in the desert" was the replies.

I know the stretch between Siwa and Bahariya we will do in one shot and not camp and possibly have to have a guide/guard. Also a couple of people I have been in touch with said wild camping on the Oasis loop is fine,but what about going to Siwa - can we wild camp or is this not advisable?


Thank you
Hentie

Squire 28 Apr 2012 23:00

no need to camp
 
Hi Vleis, good you're here!

Alex-Siwa is roughly 600 km, no need to sleep in between. The truth is many Egyptians fear the desert, although many never went. I find it fascinating, and quite puzzling. I get that look all the times from Egyptians, that look and the query whether I carry or not a firearm. Sure there are problems reported, mainly related to smuggling activities with Libya, but none that should be a concern from Alex to Siwa.

Once in Siwa, I recommend not to book with the first guide around, it's mainly a formality. It could very well be that others want to cross to Bahareya as well, and you'll be able to share costs. Ideally you could find a guy traveling back to Bahareya, the price could then become negotiable.

Do fill-up every time you can, in Marsa Matrouh for sure in case of shortage of fuel in Siwa. This has become a real bugger.

PM sent, let's talk soon!

jamieT 29 Apr 2012 05:16

Not a problem to camp
 
Hi,

As squire says, Alex to Siwa in one day is no big deal if you make a reasonably early start.

However if you need to camp then it's no big deal once you turn away from the sea. The Marsa Matruh to Siwa section is empty, bleak and doesn't see much traffic. Simply turn off and get out of sight... sometimes easier sad than done.

Vleis 29 Apr 2012 08:48

Thank you gents, all depends on when and what time of day we get the car. Also how long it takes me to get out of Alex with the crazy traffic :). Maybe we have to do 1 more night in hotel on the way to Marsa.

Looked at the maps last night and seems like the easiest is to try to hug the coast line from the port to Al-Alemein. From where hopefully no more big cities for a while.

Squire got your PM thank you

h

omar mansour 29 Apr 2012 23:29

Quote:

Originally Posted by Vleis (Post 377254)
Thank you gents, all depends on when and what time of day we get the car. Also how long it takes me to get out of Alex with the crazy traffic :). Maybe we have to do 1 more night in hotel on the way to Marsa.

Looked at the maps last night and seems like the easiest is to try to hug the coast line from the port to Al-Alemein. From where hopefully no more big cities for a while.

Squire got your PM thank you

h

hi Velis
welcome in Alexandria ,
well you can make it easy in one day from Alex to Siwa ,
the road is good ,and if you drive of 80 to 100 km per hour sure you can make it in one day
its totally safe to camp between Marsa matrouh and Siwa ,but just be aware of land mines ,yes land mines ,specially the first 80 km when you the sea is behind you ,
the route you are taking will be following the Alexander the great steps to Siwa he went from that way more or less
here is a link for a route from the main gate of Alexandria port all the way to Swia and i made it to go through the center of marsa matrouh so you can stop for a meal and fuel ,
Alexandria -Siwa route - Google Maps

the best place to stay in Siwa is desert rose Lodge ,suggested also by lonely planet ,
the view is the great sand sea
hope i was helpfully and if you need any more info please contact me

itchyfeet38 30 Apr 2012 14:02

We camped in the desert all round the Western Desert loop but were warned about landmines when traveling between Siwa and Alex (esp along the coast). No idea if that was true though.

When you get to Siwa my top tip for camping would be to head for Fatnis Island. It's a popular spot for sundowners. There's also a freshwater pool. We didn't camp there but the caretaker who runs the tea stall thought he recognised us and ran up to ask if we were back to camp again, apparently some overlanders in a Landy with a roof tent had camped there with his blessing in recent months. There will be tourists during the day but it would be an awesome spot in the evening. If you fancy treating yourself we stayed at Albabenshal built right into the walls of Shali for EGP250 (check it out on TripAdvisor).

Siwa was magical - well worth the trip but be prepared for the runaround finding a (mandatory) guide to get you to Bahariya - it may end being easier backtracking to Alex.


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