Explore Fayoum .. Where History Meets Nature

11 November 2022

Fayoum Grand Tour .. Discover Secrets of Fayoum

 Fayoum Grand Tour .. Discover Secrets of Fayoum

To visit Fayoum one day not enough so Fayoum Grand Tour covers important places in Fayoum to discover the Secrets of Fayoum .

Day 1 East Fayoum

- Kom Ushim Karanis

Kom Oshim is a town date back to Greek Roman in Fayoum at western desert of Egypt, this city went through many changes and it was totally occupied for about seven centuries .

The northern temple, constructed on an earlier site, also dates to the end of the 1st century AD, but has no inscriptions at all. This grey limestone structure faces north, is smaller than the southern temple and was once surrounded by a mudbrick temenos wall which is now mostly destroyed. There are two small entrance pylons and the outer corners of the temple are decorated with four slender columns. A large stone altar, also with an oracle niche, dominates the sanctuary.

In addition to the cult of the crocodile-god, Karanis is known to have had devotees of the divine triad of Isis, Serapis, and Harpocrates, as well as numerous other ‘domestic gods’, both Egyptian and Greek.

Today the remains of the city include two temples dedicated to the crocodile gods and a Roman bath, it also includes a museum that has an interesting display of glassware, jewelry and pottery discovered in the site.

- Kom Ushim Museum Karanis

Explore Karanis Museum which is small but shows the design of the Ptolemaic Roman Empire, it also includes two of the famous Fayoum portraits which were painted on wood to cover the face of the mummy, The museum has antiques belong to Fayoum's different subsequent eras and it is really worth the visit. 

The Museum is Good Place to pick guides to all parts of Fayoum. The Museum was originally erected in 1974. It Exhibits artifacts dating from Prehistoric to Roman Periods it Also Exhibits Fayoum Portrait .

 It consists of two floors and exhibits collections from the Prehistoric era to the Greco-Roman era as well as a collection from the Coptic and the Islamic era. The masterpiece of the museum is a Fayoum Mummy Portrait of a man. Labels are in Arabic and English.

- Hawara Pyramid

Hawara or Hauwaret is an Egyptian locality, also called Hawara el-Maqtà, in the region of southeastern Fayoum site of an important necropolis of the Middle Kingdom dating from around 1844 - 1797 BC. In Hawara there is the second pyramid of the two erected by Amenemhat III but which appears to be the most important for the architectural innovations used and which will influence the constructions of the last pyramids.

The pyramid of Hawara is very ruined and today only a gigantic heap made up of millions of bricks remains and its funerary temple called Labyrinth of Meride is also ruined, of which only small fragments and sections of the wall have survived, both being served as a quarry of  stone since the time of the Romans.

South of the pyramid complex of Amenemhat III is the tomb of Princess Neferuptah, the king's favorite wife. But the locality remains famous for Flinders Petrie's discovery in 1888 of the 146 painted portraits used as funerary masks, preserved today in the Cairo Museum and known as Portraits of the Fayyum.

The Labyrinth , built in Egypt in Hawara near the lake of Meride in the Fayyum, is a labyrinth construction which is an integral part of the mortuary temple of Amenemhet III (1842 BC-1797 BC), as Manethon mentions:" ... He built the Labyrinth in the name of Arsinoe, as a tomb for himself"

The area in which it was built, south of the pyramid of Amenenhat III, must have been around 70,000 m² on which 3,000 rooms were built on two floors, one of which underground, and twelve courtyards.

Ancient historians have described the Labyrinth, such as Diodorus Siculus, Strabo and Herodotus, of which unfortunately only a few fragments have survived. The Labyrinth was discovered in 1888 by Flinders Petrie who explored it before and during 1911 and where he found the names of Amenemhet III and his daughter Sebeknofru.

- Lahun Pyramid
t is considered the first of the giant mud brick pyramids. It had a length of 106 m, a slope of 42 35 and a height of 48.6 m (Lehner, 1997). The structure of the pyramid is supported with a natural rocky core that was cut to accept a pyramid top, large limestone cross walls provided support for the brick sectors, which were then cased in limestone.

The layout of Lahun pyramid reflects the fact that the pyramid marks a complete departure of the usual arrangement of an entrance on the north. Instead, the pyramid is entered by a narrow vertical shaft at the east end of its south side.

The king’s body and funerary furniture were probably carried down this shaft, but it was too narrow for the red granite sarcophagus and blocks of the burial chamber. This disguise, which required a new position for the pyramid’s entrance, may be the architect’s solution to the risk of the pyramid being robbed (Lehner, 1997). A sarcophagus was found in the burial chamber. It was built using great slabs of granite (Silliotti, 2003). The layout of corridors and rooms within the pyramid is unique and may reflect beliefs concerned with Osiris and the afterlife.
Fayoum Obelisk مسله الفيوم

- Fayoum Obelisk (rare Obelisk)

About 13 meters high red-granite obelisk, Originally, it was erected in a village called Abgig few kilometers/miles far from the Fayoum City.

it was restored and re-erected at Medinet El Fayoum’s northern entrance. Though it’s decoration and inscription are much worn down and difficult to make out . 

it was still standing at its original site near Abgig, when Richard Pococke visited the fayoum in the 1740, but sixty years later a French artist, Jomard, recording monument for the description de l’Egypte”, found it lying on the ground ,broken in two, and thus it remained until the 1970s when the great stone, weighing altogether 100 tons, was transported, reconstructed and erected on its present site by the local department of Antiquities.

Day 2 West Fayoum

We’ll start this adventure with visiting the upper lake of Wadi Rayan National Park and have an introduction about the protected area of Wadi Rayan. Then, we’ll proceed to the Panoramic View overlooking the lower lake of Wadi Rayan  after that a visit to the Magic Lake we’ll be made. then we’ll have the chance to vist Fayoum’s Extraordinary Wadi Hitan, the first and the only UNESCO natural heritage site in Egypt.

-Wadi Rayan National Park Water Falls

The Wadi El Rayan reserve consists of seven parts; the upper and lower Lakes , El Rayan springs, El Rayan Falls, El Modawara Mountain (or Jabal El Modawara in Arabic), El Rayan Mountain (Jabal El Rayan) and Wadi El Hitan (The Valley of the Whales). All these areas are full of amazing landscapes such as oases, mountains, rock formations and waterfalls.

Only five kilometers away, Jabal El Modawara is the definition of beauty. When you climb this amazing mountain– which isn’t too bad to climb by the way– the view from above will easily take your breath away. It’s also a great spot for bird-watching, especially if you plan on catching a glimpse of eagles or falcons.

- Magic Lake

The Magic Lake is a beautiful lake located in Wadi El Hitan in Fayoum, Egypt. It was named the Magic lake because it changes its colors several times a day depending on the time of year and the amount of sunlight it receives, making for a remarkable sight!

- Wadi Hitan UNESCO heritage site

Valley of the Whales is a paleontological site in the Faiyum Governorate of Egypt, some 150 kilometres (93 mi) south-west 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, nor their accessibility and setting in an attractive and protected landscape. The valley was therefore inscribed on the UNESCO World Heritage List in 2005.

- Fossils and Climate Change Museum
The centerpiece of the museum is a 37-million-year-old and 18-meter-long skeleton of a legged form of whale that testifies to how modern-day whales evolved from land mammals. In addition, a substantial collection of fossils and other distinctive items from across Egypt exhibits the climate change process on planet Earth The museum is following the same architectural character of  an indoor museum is being built. It is half buried under the ground, only exposing the curves of the domes and vault.
The museum’s fossils explain 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. The fossils of Wadi Al-Hitan dating back to 50 million years show the youngest archaeocetes, in the last stages of evolution from land animals to a marine existence.  Many of the whale skeletons are in good condition as they have been well preserved in the rock formations.

Day 3 North Fayoum Qarun Lake National Park

- Qaroun Lake National Park 

lies at the north of Fayoum Governorate. It is about 20 km north of Fayoum city, 80 south west of  Cairo. The lake is considered one of the most important ancient natural lakes. It is the remaining part of the ancient Moeris Lake. It persists today as a smaller saltwater lake called Birket Qarun. The lake’s surface is 43 m (140 ft) below sea-level, and covers about 214 square kilometers.

UNESCO is currently considering this area as a World Heritage site. Until now only three percent of the area has been excavated. Last year the excavations uncovered a complete fossil of a prehistoric whale species. This has not been found elsewhere in the world.


The Jebel Qatrani Open Air Museum is located inside the Petrified Forest area, the north of Lake Qaroun few kilometers from Jebel Qatrani and the ancient basalt quarries. 

The museum was built early 2018 and yet to be inaugurated soon. It is showcasing fossils of both marine (started in Eocene with the fossil ancestors of Archaeocetes: whales) and continental (with the fossil ancestors of monkeys: Aegyptopithicus; elephants: Phiomia, Palaeomastodon; Arsinoitherium); and several other terrestrial and marshland mammals.

The Museum was built by (SUPPORT TO THE EGYPTIAN PROTECTED AREAS (SEPA) PROJECT) and reflects the outstanding universal value of Jebel Qatrani site and will positively impact the Eco tourism industry in Fayoum.

- World's Oldest Paved Road

The Lake Moeris Quarry Road is recognized as the oldest surviving paved road in the world. Dating from the Old Kingdom period in Egypt, it transported basalt blocks from the quarry to a quay on the shores of ancient Lake Moeris.

The Lake Moeris Quarry Road, in the Faiyum District of Egypt, is the oldest road in the world of which a considerable part of its original pavement is still preserved. This road was used to help transport the heavy blocks of basalt from the quarry 43 miles southwest of Cairo to the royal sarcophagi and pavements for the mortuary temples at Giza just outside Cairo. The road covered the 7.5 miles from the quarry to Lake Moeris which, at that time, was 66 ft above sea level. When the Nile flooded and its waters reached a gap in the hills separating the Lake from the Nile, the Egyptians were able to float the blocks down to Cairo.

The road averaged a width of six and a half feet and was created with slabs of sandstone and limestone. The builders even included some logs of petrified wood. Since the pavement stones bore no deep grooves or other marks, geologists have speculated that logs were laid over the stones as a sled was drawn toward the lake. The stones prevented the sled from sinking into the desert sand.

- Qasr Al-Sagha

My trusty ARCE key fob serving as scale against the enormous blocks of limestone that make up the Middle Kingdom temple of Qasr al-Sâgha (now) north of Lake Quran in the Fayoum. 

The temple is a bit of a puzzle as it consists only of 7 large niches and a few store rooms — one with no obvious original entrance. There is also a long corridor entered from the outside which appears to relate to the locking mechanism of the door. Unlike the regular slabs most often found in temples, the slabs here have been fitted together in a way that reminded me of Incan walls!

- Soknopaiou Nesos

Soknopaiou Nesos is located in the desert north of lake Qarun, far away from the cultivated and inhabited part of the region. Until a few years ago it could be reached only with 4x4 cars driving on a rather difficult terrain. Now a paved road get close to the site and the desert track is limited to the last few kilometers.

Soknopaiou Nesos was the ancient Greek name of the site in the Hellenistic period, but its origin dates back the time of the pharaohs, when it was know as Ta may Sobek neb Pay pa ntr aa, "The Island of Sobek, the Lord of the Island, the Great God".

It is one of the prominent archaeological sites in the Fayyum region, and one of the most important source of information on the Graeco-Roman Egypt,

Book your Tour Now

Check Availability Contact Us

For more information and inquiries on how to book one of the tours please contact us 

For quicker communication contact Anas via Whatsapp: 

+2 01001918549 . 

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Fayoum Grand Tour .. Discover Secrets of Fayoum

 Fayoum Grand Tour .. Discover Secrets of Fayoum To visit Fayoum one day not enough so Fayoum Grand Tour covers important places in Fayoum ...