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Siwa



Siwa
Introduction

1. Ruins of Shali

2. Around Shali

3. The town

4. The oasis

5. Gebel al-Mawta

6. Alexander's oracle

7. Temple of Amon

8. Cleopatra's Pool

9. Gebel Dakrur

10. Tourist Festival

11. Fatnis Island

12. Alexander's Tomb

13. Birket Siwa

14. Birket Zeitun

15. Well of Abu Shuruf

16. Libyan sunset

17. Bir Wahed

18. Night images

19. Losing paradise?

Practicalities




















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SIWA
The sweetest oasis

Overlooking the western part of Siwa, Egypt

View from the Gebel Dakrur, overlooking the oasis and the Birket Siwa in the distance, dominated by the White Mountain.

Siwa appears at first as a sweet and innocent place deep in the desert which has just opened its eyes to the modern world and still let's itself be amazed. Which is not wrong, the asphalted road opened first in 1984.
But the history goes deep beyond the earliest civilizations, to Paleolithic times. In the 1st millennium BCE, Siwa was famous with the ancient Egyptians, thanks to its oracle. The oracle was though to be so true and powerful that generals feared its predictions. Both when the Persian king Cambyses invaded in 525 and with Alexander the Great before his expeditions into Asia in 331 BCE, was the oracle consulted.
During these times, Siwa was a wealthy place, well illustrated by the Gebel al-Mawta and its rich tombs. In early Islamic times, Siwa went into decline and sometime in the 13th century was down as little as 200. Today the population is on the rise, and has since long passed 20,000. Most live in the town Siwa, the rest are spread across over 10 smaller villages.
The town of Siwa and the Shali at night

The town of Siwa and the Shali at night.




By Tore Kjeilen