Day 1: Adventure the whale valley, magic lake, water falls, and then camping at the desert
Stop At: Wadi El-Rayan, 65 km southwest of Faiyum city 80 km west of the Nile River, Al Fayyum Egypt
The valley of Wadi El-Rayan is an area of 1759 km2, 113 km2 of which are the dominating water body of the Wadi El Rayan lakes. It is located about 65 km southwest of Faiyum city and 80 km west of the Nile River. The Wadi has been used for man-made lakes from agricultural drainage which has made a reserve of the two separate Wadi El Rayan Lakes.
The reserve is composed of a 50.90 km2 upper lake and a 62.00 km2 lower lake, with waterfalls between the two. Among the springs, there are three sulphur springs at the southern side of the lower lake, with extensive mobile sand dunes. Wadi El Rayan Waterfalls are considered to be the largest waterfalls in Egypt.
At the south and southeast of the springs is Gabal Manqueer Al Rayan, where marine fossils and archaeological remains are found. Gabal Madwera, near the lower lake, is known for its extensive dune formations.
In the northwest is Wadi El Hitan, a protectorate containing fossils of extinct whales
Duration: 1 hour
Stop At: Valley of the Whales (Wadi Al-Hitan), Western Desert, Giza Egypt
Wadi Al-Hitan, (Arabic: وادي الحيتان, "Whale Valley") is a paleontological site in the Faiyum Governorate of Egypt, some 150 km southwest of Cairo. It was designated a UNESCO World Heritage Site in July 2005 for its hundreds of fossils of some of the earliest forms of whale, the archaeoceti (a now extinct sub-order of whales). The site reveals evidence for the explanation of one of the greatest mysteries of the evolution of whales: the emergence of the whale as an ocean-going mammal from a previous life as a land-based animal. No other place in the world yields the number, concentration and quality of such fossils, as is their accessibility and setting in an attractive and protected landscape. This is why it was added by the UNESCO to the list of protected World Heritage sites.
The fossils found at the site may not be the oldest but their great concentration in the area and the degree of their preservation is to the extent that even some stomach contents are intact. The presence of fossils of other early animals such as sharks, crocodiles, saw fish, turtles and rays found at Wadi El-Hitan makes it possible to reconstruct the surrounding environmental and ecological conditions of the time, adding to its justification to be cited as a Heritage site.
The first fossil skeletons of whales were discovered in the winter of 1902-3, For the next 80 years they attracted relatively little interest, largely due to the difficulty of reaching the area.
At 1980 interest in the site resumed as four wheel drive vehicles became more readily available. Continuing interest coincided with the site being visited by fossil collectors, and many bones were removed, prompting calls for the site to be conserved. The remains display the typical streamlined body form of modern whales, yet retaining some of the primitive aspects of skull and tooth structure. The largest skeleton found reached up to 21 m in length, with well-developed five-fingered flippers on the forelimbs and the unexpected presence of hind legs, feet, and toes, not known previously in any archaeological sites, Their form was serpentine and they were carnivorous. A few of these skeletal remains are exposed but most are shallowly buried in sediments, slowly uncovered by erosion. Wadi El-Hitan provides evidences of millions of years of coastal marine life.
Duration: 3 hours
Accommodation included: On night camping at the desert next to the lake, there is availability for rooms or camping tents as well.
Day 2: Explore Giza pyramids, Great sphinx with an opportunity for shopping Egyptian handcrafts.
Stop At: Great Sphinx, Al-Haram, Giza Egypt
The Great Sphinx of Giza, commonly referred to as the Sphinx of Giza or just the Sphinx, is a limestone statue of a reclining sphinx, a mythical creature with the body of a lion and the head of a human. Facing directly from West to East, it stands on the Giza Plateau on the west bank of the Nile in Giza, Egypt.
Duration: 30 minutes
Stop At: Pyramids of Giza, Al Haram Str., Giza 12611 Egypt
The Giza pyramid complex is an archaeological site on the Giza Plateau, on the outskirts of Cairo, Egypt. It includes the three Great Pyramids (Khufu/Cheops, Khafre/Chephren and Menkaure/Mykerinos), the Great Sphinx, several cemeteries, a workers' village and an industrial complex. It is located in the Western Desert, approximately 9 km (5 mi) west of the Nile river at the old town of Giza, and about 13 km (8 mi) southwest of Cairo city center.
The pyramids, which have historically been common as emblems of ancient Egypt in the Western imagination, were popularized in Hellenistic times, when the Great Pyramid was listed by Antipater of Sidon as one of the Seven Wonders of the World. It is by far the oldest of the ancient Wonders and the only one still in existence.
Duration: 2 hours
No accommodation included on this day.