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Desert Travels - Motorcycle Journeys in the Sahara and West Africa!

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  #1  
Old 9 Dec 2009
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Info on tracks Western Desert of Egypt

Dear All,
I am planning a trip to the Western Desert of Egypt between 18th January – 1st February 2009. I will be travelling in a Toyota Hilux 2.5 Turbodiesel with Egyptian plate.
I am looking for any information regarding the four following tracks:
1) Siwa - Qara Oasis (Qattara Depression)- Areg Oasis;
2) Bahareya – Gara Cave – Farafra;
3) Darb al-Farafra (the old caravan route east of the asphalt road, between Farafra and Dakhla);
4) Darb al-Tawil/Darb al-Khashabi (the old caravan routes between Dakhla and Manfalut/Asyut).
Any information regarding possible required permits, tracks condition, difficult tracts, GPS points etc. would be much appreciated.
Best Regards,
Francesco Germi

Last edited by Francesco; 9 Dec 2009 at 17:21. Reason: missing bold title
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  #2  
Old 9 Dec 2009
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Francesco View Post
Dear All,
I am planning a trip to the Western Desert of Egypt between 18th January – 1st February 2009. I will be travelling in a Toyota Hilux 2.5 Turbodiesel with Egyptian plate.
I am looking for any information regarding the four following tracks:
1) Siwa - Qara Oasis (Qattara Depression)- Areg Oasis;
2) Bahareya – Gara Cave – Farafra;
3) Darb al-Farafra (the old caravan route east of the asphalt road, between Farafra and Dakhla);
4) Darb al-Tawil/Darb al-Khashabi (the old caravan routes between Dakhla and Manfalut/Asyut).
Any information regarding possible required permits, tracks condition, difficult tracts, GPS points etc. would be much appreciated.
Best Regards,
Francesco Germi
Hi,
Have done a couple of recent trips through Egypt, Gilf, western desert, Karkur tahl, sand sea etc etc and as far as I am aware:

1: Permissions req for Siwa - Bahariya on the road, so assume more permits required if venturing off road
2: ive only done this on the ashpalt road so not sure about permits but we had to have permissions to travel from Cairo - Dakhla on tarmac
3: Again unsure, but fairly confident that the Egyptian authorities will insist on some sort of permit (more revenue for them) if off road
4: Anywhere south of Dakhla, permit basically required & Army officer escort also.

Be warned that the Egyptian authorities are a bit of a nightmare when it comes to desert travel & permits etc, your best bet is to contact a local agency to help you through the minefield of beauracracy

Having said that I dont know if its any easier in a 'local' car ( i assume thats what you mean when you say 'Egyptian plate'), we've allways been in our own (UK registered) cars, but with Egyptian registrations, and very obviously foriegners!

Andy
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  #3  
Old 9 Dec 2009
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Trumpton View Post
Hi,
Have done a couple of recent trips through Egypt, Gilf, western desert, Karkur tahl, sand sea etc etc and as far as I am aware:

1: Permissions req for Siwa - Bahariya on the road, so assume more permits required if venturing off road
2: ive only done this on the ashpalt road so not sure about permits but we had to have permissions to travel from Cairo - Dakhla on tarmac
3: Again unsure, but fairly confident that the Egyptian authorities will insist on some sort of permit (more revenue for them) if off road
4: Anywhere south of Dakhla, permit basically required & Army officer escort also.

Be warned that the Egyptian authorities are a bit of a nightmare when it comes to desert travel & permits etc, your best bet is to contact a local agency to help you through the minefield of beauracracy

Having said that I dont know if its any easier in a 'local' car ( i assume thats what you mean when you say 'Egyptian plate'), we've allways been in our own (UK registered) cars, but with Egyptian registrations, and very obviously foriegners!

Andy
Hi Andy,

As far as I know, no permits are required for any track EAST of the asphalt road.

Yes the car is registered in Egypt, is my car as I live here.

Francesco
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  #4  
Old 9 Dec 2009
3M 3M is offline
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hope this will help

HI Francesco,

For information its better to get: western desert of Egypt by Cassandra Vivian, you can find in Cairo or from AUC press through internet, you will find valuable info in this book if you already don’t have it.

Permits: for Egyptian operators we get a quick permit from police to leave bahrya to white desert, and from there, there is no permits needed to do darb fafra or gara cave.

Siwa – arag: permits are a must for this one.

I’m not sure exactly what the situation in your case is, you better double check.

It also depends on check points when asked where are you going? You say going dakhla, and not off road to dakhla!

I have done gara which is a unique cave and a must see, also darb fafra is a pleasant off road drive and special landscape with a fantastic yet steep decent into dakhla depression.

I use hilux too, its super!

Best regards

Mahmoud Mohareb

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  #5  
Old 10 Dec 2009
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Quote:
Originally Posted by 3M View Post
HI Francesco,

For information its better to get: western desert of Egypt by Cassandra Vivian, you can find in Cairo or from AUC press through internet, you will find valuable info in this book if you already don’t have it.

Permits: for Egyptian operators we get a quick permit from police to leave bahrya to white desert, and from there, there is no permits needed to do darb fafra or gara cave.

Siwa – arag: permits are a must for this one.

I’m not sure exactly what the situation in your case is, you better double check.

It also depends on check points when asked where are you going? You say going dakhla, and not off road to dakhla!

I have done gara which is a unique cave and a must see, also darb fafra is a pleasant off road drive and special landscape with a fantastic yet steep decent into dakhla depression.

I use hilux too, its super!

Best regards

Mahmoud Mohareb
Thanks Mahmoud for the useful tips!

Francesco
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  #6  
Old 13 Dec 2009
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Hi to All,

If you know anything on the tracks referred to as No. 3) and 4) on my first posting Darb al-Farafra (Farafra to Dakhla) and Darb al-Tawil (Dakhla to Monfalut/Asyut), any information would be extremely helpful.

Many thanks

Francesco

Last edited by Francesco; 13 Dec 2009 at 06:09. Reason: typing error
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  #7  
Old 3 Jan 2010
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Just back from a week in the Western Desert, had a great time...

We where recommended the following guide / company, I'm very sure he will help with advice etc... we needed to registar with the police in Bahariya.

Ahmed Abed www.rahala-safari.com
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  #8  
Old 4 Jan 2010
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Quote:
Originally Posted by goodwoodweirdo View Post
Just back from a week in the Western Desert, had a great time...

We where recommended the following guide / company, I'm very sure he will help with advice etc... we needed to registar with the police in Bahariya.

Ahmed Abed www.rahala-safari.com
Hi, I've tried this site: no possible.
Can you tell me if they manage the boring border's crossing from Lybia?
And about their fares ?

RR.
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  #9  
Old 20 Mar 2010
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whats the petrol / water situation like? are petrol stations (if any) reliable? what range is required?

travelling on f650 twin but not having abundant sand riding experience i will assume the fuel consumption is higher than asphalt.

thanks in advance
dave
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  #10  
Old 20 Mar 2010
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I'll be heading through Egypt towards Sudan mid May and would love to get off the main roads and do a few days off roading in the area (we'll be in a old skool range rover) - if anyone's going to be doing the same and wants to buddy up then do let me know : )
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  #11  
Old 25 Mar 2010
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Hi folks

Sorry to hijack the thread, but I have a similar question.

We're in Aswan now and want to come up through the Western Desert to Cairo (on the tar - Luxor, Al Kharga, Bwiti, Cairo, with perhaps a few detours into the desert)

Do we need permits to take this road?
Is it possible to head off the road into the desert without needing permits, if so, where?
What are road blocks like on these routes?
Would anyone suggest taking this road, or is the Red Sea road from Luxor to Cairo better?

We unfortunately have very limited time as we got stuck in Aswan for 2 weeks waiting for our truck to come over on the barge from Sudan. We only have 2 weeks left to get to Jordan, and want to spend at least a few days in Dahab doing some diving, plus a day in Luxor and a day in Cairo seeing the sights (we are in Aswan now, hoping to leave for Luxor this morning)

Can anyone suggest some routes for the Western Desert road? (ie: where to leave the road, where to stay)? We're in a 4x4 overland truck with 1200km range on tar roads and 220l of water, so most things should be possible.

Thanks in advance
Steve
OverAfrica - overland, over Africa
www.overlandcamperforsale.com

Last edited by steve.lorimer; 25 Mar 2010 at 08:09. Reason: Change a lot!
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