Blogs from Aswan, Upper Egypt, Egypt, Africa - page 5


Africa » Egypt » Upper Egypt » Aswan January 18th 2012

Today was the day I was going to head back to Cairo. I had until 4pm before my flight. So I woke up early this morning, at about 8am, and had a day trip planned to the Temple of Philae. I had to first get to the entrance of the site, then take a boat to the island which the temple was situated on. It was an intriguing journey. I took it all in. I think this is the site I've spent the most time at. It's simply beautiful and breathtaking, and the surrounding land and water scapes made it even more so. I spent a good hour admiring the place. It was going to be the last attraction of its kind that I would see. Getting off the island was a bit of a problem ... read more

Africa » Egypt » Upper Egypt » Aswan January 16th 2012

Today I had to get to Aswan. So I checked out of my hostel and made my way to the train station. One guy passing by on a motorbike asked me if I was looking for a hostel or place to stay. I said no; but as if that answer wasn’t enough, he proceeded to ask “Why?”. And he kept on following me and repeating it until I crossed to the other side of the road. Anyway, so I got to the train station, only to find out that there were no trains running to Aswan that day, despite what the online timetable showed me. I was aggravated. Looks like you can’t rely on anything here. Thank goodness I have a flight back from Aswan to Cairo, otherwise the train might “not run” and cause me ... read more

Africa » Egypt » Upper Egypt » Aswan October 5th 2011

From Cairo we set out to Aswan by overnight train. What was supposed to be a twelve hour train ride turned out to be 15 hours. Aswan marks the country’s ancient southern frontier. In ancient times, it was of strategic importance serving as a garrison town for military campaigns against Nubia, its quarries provided the valuable granite used for so many sculptures and obelisks, and it was a prosperous marketplace at the crossroads of the ancient caravan routes. Here the Nile is wide and stunningly beautiful, flowing gently down from Lake Nasser. Aswan is also the site of the Old Cataract Hotel & Spa. It was in this hotel that Agatha Christie is said to have written part of her novel Death on the Nile and the hotel featured in the movie. Its banks are lined ... read more
View of Philae Temple from the Nile
The right gate of Philae Temple
Sunset at Philae

Africa » Egypt » Upper Egypt » Aswan May 26th 2011

Since Egypt was cooperating and decided to stop at toppling the government but avoid full scale civil war we left it on the itinerary. After learning a lesson from India we decided to start in the south of the country and work or way north… instead of backtracking and going north – south –north as we had originally planned. We started our trip out deep in the south of Egypt (the upper Nile) in Aswan. Most people have never heard of Aswan but while researching the country I came upon rave review after rave review of the city. Most of the city’s fans focused on how relaxed and laid back the city was in contrast to either Luxor or Cairo, which can be a hassle as the competition for your tourist dollar there can be fierce. ... read more
Abu Simbel
Dilapitated mosque & tomb of nobles in background
Camel ride in the desert

Africa » Egypt » Upper Egypt » Aswan April 4th 2011

I woke up before Michael. I glanced at my watch and it was 9:00am. It wasn’t a bad night’s sleep at all considering we were on a moving train the whole time. Almost as if the conductor was listening for movement, he knocked on our door and asked if we were ready for breakfast. I replied yes and Michael jumped right out of bed at the mention of food. Men. We were given assorted pastries, jam and tea. Not too bad. As we ate we admired the view out our window. The farms along the Nile were luscious and green. Egyptians were hard at work towing the fields. The handmade scarecrows made me laugh to myself. They were literally t-shirts on a cross with some metallic ribbon tied to the top. It is simple, yet probably ... read more

Africa » Egypt » Upper Egypt » Aswan March 24th 2011

Two day feluca ride to Luxor ended up being a day and a half moored as it was too windy to sail! So a relaxing day and a half of reading, talking, card playing, and dancing round the campfire at night :) As well as sailing, the felucca crew of two also cooked us three delıcous meals a day. Nice way to travel when it's not too windy but don't expect any prıvacy on a felucca. Was ınterestıng to watch one of the felucca crew sayıng hıs prayers wıth Westerners playıng drınkıng games rıght next to hım.... read more
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Africa » Egypt » Upper Egypt » Aswan March 23rd 2011

A sleepless night on the night train to Aswan - lights on, legs bent with no hope of stretching out, loud arabic ring tones, smokey carriages, and then the conductor tapping his stick to check my ticket when I had finally fallen asleep! 12 hour journey to Aswan travelling next to the Nile and with lots of lush greenery out the window - fields, bullrushes, palm trees, camels, donkeys, goats. People are working in the fields, riding donkeys, carrying things on their heads. Aswan is warmer than Cairo and a nice change from a chaotic sprawling city. Went to a Nubian village, Abu Simbel, Philae Temple, and Aswan Souk which went on for miles. Stayed at Orchida St George, Sharia Mohammed Khalid. Good hotel, basic, clean, central. US$25-35.... read more
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Africa » Egypt » Upper Egypt » Aswan March 22nd 2011

Hello all, Didn't sleep much on the train last night, we were all in reclining seats with plenty of legroom but we didn't try to sleep until after 1am and then it was still too noisy and uncomfortable. The train conductor woke us all up three times to inspect our tickets!! Still we must have slept at some point as when we were all awake this morning Graham told us that a man had come in and sat down and stared at us all for awhile. Creepy but not unusual apparantly, we get stared at quite a lot with all sorts of comments thrown at us (mostly 'welcome to egypt', 'what is your name', and 'you are a beautiful lady'). You would have thought that Egyptians would be quite used to foreign tourists by now, and ... read more

Africa » Egypt » Upper Egypt » Aswan March 21st 2011

Hello all, I'm actually writing this a day later in Aswan where I've finally had time to catch up with everything!! We were up early in the morning for a very busy day around Cairo. There are a total of 15 in the group a and a fairly even mix of boys and girls. There's Inge (dutch), Suzanna (Scot), Kim (Aussie), George (Kiwi), Marianna and Joe (English), and then we also met Emma and Jason (Kiwis), Q (South Korea), and Greg, Jason, and Paul (Aussies). We're all mixed between 18-32. A good group so far!! We had our breakfast of breads and eggs (scrambled/boiled/omelette) with coffee, and then met our tour guide Ishmet and our security man. The police presence is not very evident since the revolution as the people do not trust them and they ... read more
doing the tourist thing
the Sphinx
inside the perfumery

Africa » Egypt » Upper Egypt » Aswan March 19th 2011

It has been awhile since I have had access to internet so I have been typing entries up below are the entries for day 3 & 4, I have much more written and to write about but without further ado: DAY 3 - Aswan Our hotel in Aswan was under renovations and in a lot of parts in the world would be closed while the ground floor is gutted, but hidden above an entrance of mud and missing walls is a very nice set of hotel rooms on the third floor with everything brand new, and a balcony overlooking the Nile, they say don't always trust your first impression and this hotel may be the best example I have ever seen. Once settled into our hotel we did a brief walk about through the local bazaar, ... read more
On the Nile
Sand Dunes

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