Talking about Siwa, hmm how many of you have heard of the name? I bet not many. Siwa maybe is not as popular as Luxor/Aswan when it comes to historic remains. I’ve never been to Luxor/Aswan but I know that foreigners love exploring the historical temples there and the accommodation is pretty up to standard – you can even take a cruise along the Nile River! Back to Siwa, it’s just a tiny town in the middle of plain, brown Sahara desert and it lies pretty close to the Libya border. It’s very, very, very far from Alexandria, around 400 kilometres. What more, Cairo. Here’s a visual map for you – imagine Siwa at the west, Alexandria at the north, Sinai at the east, Cairo lies at the centre (kind of) and Luxor at the south.
Talking about the journey itself, we departed from Alex at 8 am and there were 11 of us inside the 12-seater van. I could still remember how cold that morning was and being outside wasn’t the thing you would want to do. Especially when you were near the sea. The winds, urghh, made everyone freezing. And as expected, the van doesn’t come with any heater so please brace yourself for the ride, since the driver would pull down the window a bit to let the wind to enter. Air-conditioner would be turned off, so enjoy each other’s heat. Haha. The journey was too long that I got bored of sleeping and waking up but still, we had not reach Siwa. Internet was slow but pretty okay for Whatsapp/Instagram but Internet couldn’t entertain me much, so I opted for sleeping and mp3.
On our way to Siwa, we stopped by Cleopatra Beach near Marsa Matrouh. Oh, I love the beach there. So beautiful even during winter! Matrouh is a town located along the Mediterranean Sea and if you’re going to Siwa, you’d see the blue sea. Prettiest blue hues I’ve ever seen in my whole life. Except for the wind, though. It’s winter, so what do I expect? Hahah. And obviously winter is a low season, so the beach town is quite deserted. Most hotels and shops were not operating, and I got excited seeing Fathalla grocery store and KFC but they were all closed. So, now you know when to head to Matrouh, okay. Summer!
You see those two big rocks there? That was the place where the great Cleopatra took a dip.
In opposite, it was a blessing for us to have the beach completely to ourselves. No photobombs in our pictures and definitely more privacy. Although I saw an old couple dating there..must be the locals, aww so sweet 🙂 After spending about 20 minutes at the beach, we continued the neverending ride to Siwa.
Love how classic their petrol pump is.
There were only few vehicles on the road, mostly lorries. Several times, we had to stop at the military checkpoints but idk, it made me felt safer. No big deal when the soldiers opened the door, because you’ll be fine as long you don’t commit something dumb in other’s country. Please don’t.
Our view for the first 3 hours vs. what we witnessed after 6 hours on the road.
There you go, my first desert experience – the Sahara. And do you know that I went sandboarding??? Will blog about it later on!
And finally, after 10 hours………………..
Amazing sunset along the desert. Spot the crescent moon, guys!