Wednesday, March 24, 2010

Foreigners falsify land ownership in Sinai

Foreigners have forged their ownership of 100 housing units in Coral Beach Resort in Sharm el-Sheikh, according to Assistant Justice Minister Hassan Badrawy.

"One foreigner alone falsified their ownership of 800 km in Sinai," Badrawy said.
According to the assistant justice minister, the foreigners involved have resorted to international arbitration in their defense.

"Arbitration doesn't apply in cases violationg internal public order," Badrawy said. "This is why the Ismailia attorney general has challenged 173 court orders that were issued in favor of these foreigners."

There are legal restrictions on foreign ownership of land in Sinai. The peninsula was occupied by Israel during the 1967 war and returned to Egypt in pieces between 1979 and 1982.

Discussing an interpellation on foreign ownership in Sinai, MP Farid Ismail said the government is unaware of an Israeli plot to falsify ownership of land and real estate in Sinai, and alleged that the Egyptian Sinai Tourist Development Company is a facade for a German company that forges foreign ownership.
"The company managed to falsify ownership of 1000 flats in Coral Beach and 278 acres of land in Sharm el-Sheikh for Israelis," he said.

South Sinai Secretary General Gamal el-Ghamry, for his part, said: "We do our due diligence on any new company applying to work in Sinai."

Meanwhile, the Ismailia Misdemeanor Court held its first session to hear the testimonies of defendants accused of forging the title deeds of state-owned land in Sinai and selling it to foreigners.

Thursday, March 18, 2010

Serabit el Khadim

The Temple and Mines at Serabit el-Khadim
In the Sinai

by Jimmy Dunn

The road to Serabit el-Khadem. Things have not changed too much. These roads mostly exist due to local mining operations today.SERABIT El KHADIM.

While the Egyptians seem to have known, crossed and visited the Sinai even before the dynastic period, we have found little evidence of their building activities in the region. Of course, inhabitable areas are usually small, and scarce, and so have been inhabited and built upon continuously over the ages. It is probable that what was built has been built over many times. Today, wondering through the Sinai and viewing its unusual landscape, it is not difficult to imagine a land rich in minerals. Egyptians discovered its mineral wealth very early on, perhaps at the beginning of the dynastic period. The path leading up to Serabit el-Khadem from the valley below, where there is a small lodgeArchaeologists have found that the very earliest known settlers in the Sinai, about 8,000 years ago, were miners. Drawn by the region's abundant copper and turquoise deposits, these groups slowly worked their way southward, hopping from one deposit to the next. By 3500 BC, the great turquoise veins of Serabit el-Khadim (Khadem) had been discovered.
The Mines
The ancient mining complex of Serabit el-Khadim lies on a small plateau north of modern Al-Tor.  It is located about halfway down the western coast, around 40 kilometers due east of Abu Zanima, and about There is some interesting rock graffiti along the route to the templeten miles from Wadi Mughara. It was one of the most important sites for the Egyptians on the peninsula. Today, it is not difficult to reach the Serabit el-Khadim area, though the trip must be made by jeep. There are no paved roads to the base of the mountain. From a parking area, one takes a well marked path that has an elevation gain of over 2600 feet above sea level and is somewhat rigorous Although many of the region's pharaonic reliefs were destroyed by a British attempt to re-open the mines in the mid-nineteenth century, along the path to the temple are a number of engravings that were written by the ancient minors. Stela found along the route to the templeSome of the most interesting portray the ships that would carry the turquoise to Egypt. There is also an excellent bas relief of King Sekhemkhet on the east face of the plateau, revealing him smiting Egypt's enemies. Other antiquities are found along the path, including ancient tunnels, miner's huts and stele.
Serabit el-Khadim, a large, systematic operation was set up that would flourish for thousands of years. It was important enough to the Egyptians that a number of policing actions and protective measures were taken to protect the mines throughout most of A depiction of a ship used to carry turquoiseEgypt dynastic period To mine the turquoise, the Egyptians would hollow out large galleries in the mountains, carving at the entrance to each a representation of the reigning pharaoh who was the symbol of the authority of the Egyptian state over the mines. A huge quantity of turquoise over that period was mined, carried down the Wadi Matalla to a garrisoned port located at el-Markha (south of Abu Zenima), and loaded aboard ships bound for Egypt. The turquoise was then used both for jewelry and to make color pigments for painting.
The Temple
A general view of the temple site at Serabit el-Khadem
A general view of the temple site at Serabit el-Khadim
The temple at Serabit el-Khadim, though really only scattered ruins, is one of the few phraonic monuments we know of in the Sinai.  In 1905, Flinders Petrie investigated the site, and found the famous proto-Sinaitic script", which is believed to be an early precursor of the alphabet. These scripts were hieroglyphic signs used to write the names of the West Semitic names of the people who worked the mines, and keep account of their labors. They developed an Alef-Bet with which they could record their Proto-Canaanite language. The The actual temple site at Serabit el-Khadem is mainly rubble, with a few standing stela and obelisksscript they developed is called Proto-Sinaitric (First-Sinaitic) and the language was a Pan-Canaanite language often called Old Hebrew
 Hieroglyphic signs were used to write their West Semitic names and keep correct accounts of their days of labor. This was a great motivation for them to learn the sound signs that phonetically articulated their names. Very soon they had an Alef-Bet with which they could record their Proto-Canaanite language. The script they developed is called Proto-Sinaitric (First-Sinaitic) and the language was a Pan-Canaanite language often called Old Hebrew
The Serabit El Khadim temple looks like a double series of steles leading to an underground chapel dedicated to the Hathor Goodness. Much of the temple's large number of sanctuaries and Mostly, the site of the temple complex at Serabit el-Khadem is rubble, perhaps waiting someday to be partially restoredshrines were dedicated to Hathor, who among her many other attributes, was the patron goddess of copper and turquoise miners. It is the only temple we know of built outside mainland Egypt and mostly dedicated to Hathor. The earliest part of the main rock cut Hathor Temple, which has a front court and portico, dates to the 12th Dynasty The temple was probably founded by Amenemhet III, during a period of time when the mines were particularly active. The 12th Dynasty was a period of considerable mineral wealth for Egyptians and some of the finest jewelry from Egypt's past have been discovered in the tombs of 12th Dynasty women.

Map of the Temple
A number of scenes portray the role of Hathor in the transformation of the new king, upon ascending the throne, into the deified ruler of Egypt. One scene, for example, depicts Hathor The way down from Serabit el-Khadimsuckling the pharaoh. Another scene from a stone tabled depicts Hathor offering the pharaoh the Ankh.
This older part of the temple was enlarged upon and extended by none other then Queen Hatshepsut, along with Tuthmosis III and Amenhotep III during the New Kingdom. This was a restoration period for the mining operations after an apparent decline in the area during the Second Intermediate Period.  These extensions are unusual for a temple in the manner in which they angled to the west off of the earlier structure.
On the north side of the of the temple is a shrine dedicated to the pharaohs who were deified in this region. On one wall of the shrine are numerous stele. A little to the south of the main temple we also find a shrine dedicated to the god of the eastern desert, Sopdu, which is smaller then the northern shrine.

As a Tourist Destination
Serabit el-Khadim is not a particularly easy place to find or to reach. Indeed, one will probably not find it without the aid of a knowledgeable guide and then, some stemma is needed to reach the actual site of the temple. The local tribes are responsible for protecting the site from looting and are open to assisting tourists and hiring out as guides. Furthermore, a significant segment of Perhaps strangely, considering its remote nature, Serabit Khadem is a relatively well developed tourist spot, even including a lodge, which appears not yet to be openthe route leading to the area off of the western Sinai coastal highway is not paved. One must climb up a long series of steps to the top of a mountain and then trek back along mountain ridges. It takes about two hours for the average person to reach the temple. Bring lots of water, as there is none to be found along the route. As a pharaonic tourist attraction, Serabit el-Khadim is not nearly as spectacular as many of the Nile Valley sites, though the surrounding area is interesting. It should be considered more of a trek adventure than a pure pharaonic sightseeing tour.

Monday, March 15, 2010

HEPCA Hurghada Environmental Protection and Conservation Association


Emperor Divers

 Emperor Divers

Scuba Diving in the Red Sea

Angelfish, Red Sea
Dive students at beach
Diver and coral
Dolphin at sunset
With its year-round sunshine, the Red Sea is the ideal place to enjoy the sport of scuba diving. The underwater scenery is rich with coral-covered reefs, famous dive sites such as Ras Mohammed and Elphinstone and historic wrecks, including the Thistlegorm.

Here, you'll have the very real opportunity to see exotic marine life in their own environment including turtles, dolphins, soft and hard corals and reef fish of every size, shape and colour.

Emperor Divers

Emperor Divers has provided top quality diving holidays in the Red Sea since 1992. Superior customer care is our ethos and you can relax knowing that all your diving needs will run smoothly and that the instruction from the training arm of Emperor Divers - Emperor Scuba Schools - is second to none.

The Schools include PADI 5 Star CDC (Career Development Centres), which means we are certified by PADI as providing the highest standard of education and professionalism, borne out by the 'PADI Excellence in Dive Centers Award'.
Your hotel choice ranges from the Hilton to the Tropicana chains. Details of each hotel are on the resort pages and whichever Emperor resort you stay in, you're well placed for both the diving and the hotel!

Red Sea Liveaboards

Our extensive fleet of dive boats offer great value and cover all the main routes offering wrecks, reefs, dolphins and sharks! Your dive guides will take you to the best sites and share with you their passion and knowledge - and give some of the most informative dive briefings!
The food on board is great, too! And Emperor's liveaboards range from really comfortable to simply luxurious. Choose to sail from Sharm El Sheikh, Hurghada or Marsa Alam.

Emperor Divers

Blue O Two Reef Clean Up Schedule and Prices

’HAYAH’ - Reef Clean-up (Subsidised)

'Not for profit... for the Red Sea!'

We are running reef clean-up safari's in support of marine conservation and HEPCA's new 'HAYAH' campaign. 

Hayah' meaning 'Life' in Arabic, is HEPCA's most ambitious environmental project yet, aiming to involve all sections of the Red Sea community to work towards; raising awareness, education and responsibility and active participation. 
The 'Hayah' safari follows a North & Ras Mohamed itinerary and focuses on 'problem reefs' in the Northern Red Sea.  
2-3 clean-ups will take place during the week - allowing an opportunity for divers to get involved and make a real contribution to the preservation of this unique ecosystem.

*All dive sites visited are subject to weather conditions and is at the discretion of your dive guides and vessel captain.

Evening seminars on reef conservation will also be conducted by blue o two's expert dive guides.

Blue O Two run these trips at a subsidised price in an attempt to make ecotourism more accesible to the masses - Everyone should be able to afford to help!
Guests will experience a week of stunning Red Sea liveaboard diving with the added value of giving something back to the marine environment that they love.

          HAYAH Itinerary info sheet  

Please see our schedules and prices for the next available 'Hayah' reef clean-up safari.  For more information or to book, please call our UK team on 01752 480808

Guest Comment from previous 'HAYAH' trip:
"We did the reef clean-up - it was excellent! Shame we did not have more space for rubbish and clean-ups. I really think if every liveaboard had one extra clean-up dive - well imagine how much help it could be!" Helen Fraser.

"The information regarding conservation for the reef was excellent! The idea of subsidised trips was fantastic to make eco-tourism more attainable for divers on a budget. For the less confident diver the opportunity to learn more about diving ethos from the crew and boat guides was amazing and full of encouragement." Abigail Chambers.

"I enjoyed the trip very much, the diving was great. The presentations on coral reefs by Elke and Karin were very interesting, they were both very knowledgeable. The reef clean-up was fun, we amongst other things collected almost a full wardrobe of clothes!" Paul Thomson.

Coral reefs vs Climate change

For most people, the Red Sea's coral reefs are little more than pretty to look at. But for those living near the Red Sea coastline, the reefs are at the very heart of their livelihoods. It is a fragile relationship, one dependent on the reefs’ ability to attract the thousands of tourist and divers who bring their money and enthusiasm to the Red Sea coast each year.
The threat of climate change and the accompanying warmer seas looms large over the reef ecosystems' health and the livelihoods they sustain. More and more people are asking what exactly we can expect to happen to this precious cornerstone of the tourist industry over the next 20 years.

It’s a pertinent question. Tourism pumps an estimated US$7.8 billion into the Egyptian economy each year, providing employment for 12 per cent of
 the national work force.
A significant portion of Egypt's tourism is from the approximately 540,000 divers that visit the Red Sea each year to see its coral. Does climate change mean it’s just a matter of time before these divers cease to have anything to see, anything to lure them to the Red Sea?

In the case of Australia, famous for the Great Barrier Reef, the largest single structure ever built by living organisms, the clock is already ticking. Charlie Veron, former chief scientist of the Australian Institute for Marine Science, was recently quoted in The Times saying that rising water temperatures will leave the Great Barrier Reef virtually unrecognizable within 20 years. “There is no way out, no loopholes,” he said conclusively.

In the Red Sea, however, there is a mystery that continues to baffle marine biologists: its corals are not bleaching, at least not to the degree seen in dying corals elsewhere in the world. Few claim to know the reason behind this. “There are many theories, but no one really knows why,” says Amr Ali, the managing director of the Hurghada Environmental Protection and Conservation Agency’s (HEPCA).

Ali suggests that among the likely reasons Red Sea coral isn't bleaching is the sea itself, which is quite warm due to the chain of mountains on either of its coasts. “Red Sea corals have proven resilient to climate change so far partly because they are already adapted to warm waters,” he says, emphasizing that resilience, the ability to spring back to life despite environmental pressures like rising sea temperatures, is key to the survival of the reefs.

According to Ali, this means that ensuring the reefs are managed in a way that sustains their resilience should be the highest priority. “Overfishing, stress from excessive diving, pollution, thoughtless urban planning … all these things increase the likelihood of bleaching,” he says, "And it's these things we need to worry about right now."

One of the more significant, though as yet tentative, measures recently drawn up to help aid reef resilience is the Hurghada Declaration,  a government-approved, though as yet unimplemented, fishing law that practically transforms the entire Red Sea into a no catch zone.

If executed, the law will dramatically reinvigorate the coral reef systems in the Red Sea, as much of its fish stocks are presently depleted--a major cause of stress for the ecosystems that coral reefs are a part of. Ali explains that “the entire Red Sea contributes only 0.5 per cent to total fish catch in Egypt, so banning net fishing here will make no real difference to the agricultural and fishing industry, but it will make a huge difference for the environment and the tourism industry.”

Despite the potential impact of this law, few would conclude that it would be sufficient. Researchers and conservationists highlight the need to tackle this problem from every possible angle. Arguably, one of the most vital of those angles is awareness, specifically among tourist divers and operators, who interact daily with these stressed ecosystems.

A recent study conducted in the Egyptian Red Sea by Australia’s Commonwealth Scientific and Industrial Research Organisation and the International Union for Conservation of Nature, interviewed 150 dive tourists and 35 dive operators.

The study found that 90 per cent of tourist divers stated that they are more likely to choose a dive operation that was “environmentally friendly,” while 60 per cent of dive operators reported that they noticed a lot of “dead looking coral.” Nevertheless, the researchers concluded that, ultimately, there was a notable disparity between dive tourists and operators in terms of awareness, with the former significantly more concerned with the importance of being as eco-friendly as feasibly possible.

For Frederique Morisod, Guest and Ground Services Manager of Blue O Two, one of the larger diving centers in the Red Sea, “lack of awareness among other dive operators is probably only a short-term problem.” Given the increasing demands for eco-friendly diving packages by tourists in recent years, operators who are unable to adapt will simply fall out of the competition.

Blue O Two

Blue O Two is already offering a week long diving safari based around “reef-clean ups.” This dive package, which is called Hayah and is subsidized by HEPCA as part of a larger campaign, emphasizes raising awareness among divers and involves dives dedicated to clearing plastic bags and other debris in and around reefs. Eight of these so-called safaris will be held this winter, each expected to include around 25 divers.

Blue O Two, however, is not alone in its optimism about a more eco-friendly and sustainable diving industry in Egypt. Sharon el-Shoura, manager of Emperor Divers, another of the larger diving centers in Egypt, is hopeful that the worst can be avoided with the right steps, noting the recent ban on plastic bags in the Red Sea Governorate.

Despite increasing concerns about climate change, many dive operators in the Red Sea expect that the next decade will attract more divers than ever before. “As flights get taxed more heavily to help reduce demand and therefore carbon emissions, prices will go up and fewer people in Europe will be able to afford traveling to dive in the Pacific,” says Morisod. “The Red Sea will be a closer, cheaper option--not to mention possibly having the least bleached corals also.”

The Australian study supports this line. In the study, 34 per cent of tourist divers listed “proximity to home” as the most important factor in choosing their destination. “You can see this happening even this year with the economic crisis forcing people to pick cheaper destinations,” notes Morisod.

Ultimately, the signs, in the short-term at least, appear to be positive. The Red Sea’s coral reefs seem to be more resilient than others, and the industry may well continue to grow as more divers flock to its relatively cheaper shores. “But you can never tell,” concludes Ali, “We will do everything we can to sustain the reefs’ resilience, but it’s possible that once climate change really kicks in, it won’t matter just how resilient they may be.”


A compelling documentary: Caring for the Red Sea

HEPCA - Caring for the Red Sea from NOCTILUCA on Vimeo.

Hurghada Environmental Protection Conservation Association (HEPCA) is a misleading name for an NGO working in the field of marine and land conservation.

Though based in Hurghada, this organization is involved in myriad environmental and protective projects stretching in and around the entire Red Sea.

Recently, HEPCA released a free online documentary highlighting the environmental challenges facing the Red Sea and the communities sustained by it, while also surveying the different projects HEPCA has initiated to face these challenges.

In many ways a PR campaign for the organization itself, the documentary also proves to be an eye-opener on just how vulnerable the Red Sea and its dependents are to enviro-political decisions.

Starting with a look at HEPCA’s establishment of the world’s largest mooring system in Egypt and neighboring countries, the 18 minute clip assesses issues raised by illegal fishing, waste management, tourism encroachment, and the need for using science to keep track of the effects of climate change on the Sea’s ecology.
Tantamount among these concerns is ensuring that sustainable choices are made within the tourism sector. In this regard, the documentary is bitingly critical of the Tourism Development Authority, saying: “Blinded by the tourist dollar, it’s marked the entire Red Sea coast for development.”
Similarly, while HEPCA has succeeded in convincing government heads to sign the Hurghada Declaration in June 2009, which bans net fishing in the entire Egyptian Red Sea, the reality reported is that this declaration is far from being implemented and enforced.
Encapsulating the crux of the problem, the narrator says: “Egypt now faces the choice between protecting its natural treasures for future income, or selling out to tourism for short-term gain.”
HEPCA’s Managing Director Amr Ali concludes with: “Caring for the Red Sea is not a luxury anymore. People have to move from the passive status that they are in, to a more active status.”
Ultimately, the documentary is calling for a shift from a phase of raising public awareness on environmental issues and the organizations involved, to a phase of concerted action.
“People have to take action and they have to take it now,” says Ali.


Document reveals govt gave bin Talal extra land in Toshka

Mon, 08/02/2010

Al-Masry Al-Youm has obtained a copy of a document confirming that the Egyptian government sold Saudi prince and billionaire Al-Walid bin Talal more acres in the Toshka land-reclamation project for agricultural investment projects than what had been officially announced. According to the document, bin Talal received an additional 128,000 acres as a "buffer zone"--ostensibly meant to protect the land initially allocated to him--bringing the total amount of land granted to the Saudi prince to 228,480 acres.

A number of commentators criticized the government for handing out such vast tracts of land without ensuring the rights of the state in the clauses of the contract.
"The government should have the upper hand in all contracts that allocate land for investment," said law
professor Georgi Sari. "In this contract, the government is the weaker party." "According to the way this contract was drawn up, one could say the land was sold--not allocated--on a usufruct basis," Sari added, comparing it to the contract with which the United States bought Alaska from Russia in the late nineteenth century. "The Egyptian Constitution, however, prohibits the sale of all state lands."

According to the terms of the contract, bin Talal paid only LE50--less than US$10--per acre. He also received discounted rates for water and electricity, in addition to tax exemptions and the right to own the land after completing payment.

Several members of parliament, for their part, accused the government of squandering public funds by granting bin Talal so many privileges. Independent MP Mustafa Bakri requested an explanation for the low sale price, noting that per-acre land prices in Toshka stood closer to LE20,000.

"Talal has so far developed only 800 acres of the land he purchased," said Bakri, who intends to submit an interpellation to the government on the matter.
Al-Wafd MP Salah Sayegh said that bin Talal would probably resell half the land later--without developing it--at a higher price. Sayegh went on to urge the government to withdraw all lands allocated to the Saudi investor.

Govt says Saudi land deal in Toshka was a mistake

Thu, 18/02/2010 Link

Sharm el-Sheikh--

Minister of Agriculture Amin Abaza admitted on Wednesday that the government made a mistake in the contract signed with Saudi prince Al-Walid bin Talal for his land reclamation project, in southern Egyptian region of Toshka.
Abaza said the contract did not give a deadline for the investor to complete his project, which means the government is powerless to withdraw the land from Talal.
"But we have reached a compromise," Abaza said. "We will only supply him with the amounts of water that are enough for each stage he has completed in his project."
Talal was given 100,000 acres and good terms of payment for his project.

"Talal owns the land but we have the water, which is the main source for his project to survive," he added.
The minster said El-Raghi Company, another investor in Toshka, has completed a good part of its project, compared to Talal.
"We back up serious investors," Abaza said.

Govt to encourage investment in Sinai

Sun, 14/03/2010 
Minister of Agriculture and Land Reclamation Amin Abaza announced that the government will allow Egyptian investors to begin agricultural projects in Sinai, projected to reach a total value of LE100 billion. The plan, which comes amidst government efforts to boost exports to LE200 billion a year, includes some 50,000 feddans of land in Sinai using a usufructury rights system for a period of 49 years.
In a statement to Al-Masry Al-Youm, Abaza said his ministry is currently working on providing such plots of land in South el-Qantara, Bier Abd and other areas. He added however that the arrangement excludes foreign investors because of government restrictions on foreign ownership of land in Sinai.
Abaza affirmed that the government will provide investment incentives by providing water, energy and transport requirements for these projects to succeed. It will also help investors export their products, the minister added.
Abaza further said that negotiations are taking place with Saudi Prince Walid bin Talal--whose company owns 120,000 feddans encompassed by the Toshka Project--to ensure that his company uses its total land area, of which only a limited part has so far been reclaimed.
Abaza said they will present Talal with three alternatives: full cultivation of the entire area of land with government-procured water, a partnership with Egyptian investors, or relinquishing his rights to part of the land.
Al-Masry Al-Youm had published on 8 February the full text of the contract allocating 120,000 feddans in Toshka to Prince Talal's project. The contract gave Prince Talal what seemed to be unreasonable privileges, given the scale of the Toshka undertaking which has cost more than LE6 billion.

Tuesday, March 9, 2010

Sheikh Sina Bedouin Treks


 شيخ سيناء

 Sheikh Sina was founded by an EU initiative intended to equip Bedouin guides with hospitality management and language skills. The overall aim of the project is to improve mountain tourism operations in South Sinai by raising the quality of the already existing mountain hikes. Safety is of utmost importance, as are a stress on lowered environmental impacts. We also take the empowerment of local guides seriously and make sure that they are securing livelihoods through Sheikh Sina. Hikers will have a rich experience interacting with the Bedouin guides and experiencing South Sinai nature. 

Currently there are native English, German and French speaking tour leaders working alongside the Bedouin guides.

The initiative also assists in building several Ecolodges in the South Sinai region.

The treks offer spectacular mountain views and well deserved relaxation at the various garden oases along the way. These gardens offer the opportunity to take a break and sample the delicious fruit in season. Tucked away in a network of valleys or wadis these green areas have been cultivated by Bedouins for centuries. As the trek progresses, the hiker will encounter diverse terrain, ancient ruins, various rock formations and the beautiful colors accompanying them. The rich variety of plant and animal life will also be of interest. The chance to experience this desert world and unique Bedouin way of life should not be missed.

Leisure Treks 
Our Leisure Treks are very accessible, designed with most anyone in mind; anyone that is, who is looking for a bit of exertion along with their vacation. Walking days can be upwards of 6 hours often over mountains and down into valleys. The reward for tired legs are beautiful views, fresh mountain air and the satisfaction of arriving at your destination whether that be a remote ecolodge, an oasis in the desert, a walled orchard or your guesthouse in St. Catherine's. >>> more

arrow Mountain Vistas trek (5 days)
arrow Five Canyon trek (5 days)
arrow Sand and Sea trek (10 days)


Adventure Treks 
Our Adventure Treks are not for everyone. They are designed for experienced trekkers in mind, those who are up for long walks often over difficult terrain without footpaths and in very remote locations. Walking days can be upwards of 8 hours. You will leave comforts behind and sleep in the often harsh conditions of the desert. These treks are not for the weak of body or spirit but those who choose them will come back having learned much by pushing the limits and experiencing a new way of life. You won’t easily forget this adventure! >>> more

arrow Peak to peak to peak... (5 days)
arrow Off the beaten path (5 days) arrow Great Escape (8 days)


Speciality Treks 
Our Specialty Treks are unique, long, and logistically complex. Involving guides and camels from different tribal territories is always a political challenge, but despite the possible hiccups, hikers will discover the whole of South Sinai, either by walking from the Gulf of Aqaba to the Gulf of Suez, or by circling the peninsula to catch the most stunning mountains on offer. After these treks, you will know South Sinai better than many Bedouin! >>> more

arrow Coast to Coast – An Exodus (14 days)
arrow Fangs of the Moon (15 days)


Short Walks 
Our Short Walks are easy and accessible. Never exceeding four hours of walking a day, they are designed with families and less thrill seeking hikers in mind. Families, couples, or anyone looking to get away from the hustle and bustle of city life will enjoy our relaxation walks and come back feeling fully refreshed. >>> more

arrow Towards the Desert Lodge – 2 days
arrow Secret Gardens Walk – 2 days
arrow Mt. Sinai Sunset Walk – 2 days arrow Blue Pool – 3 days

glyphIn the summer months, an early start and long rests in the midday heat is in order, while in the winter, camp is folded later with a shorter break for lunch. All the equipment and food is carried by camel to the camp site each night, the hiker need only carry a daypack with water, some snacks and small personal belongings. (see trek information for further details)

Monday, March 8, 2010

World Peace Vases Global.

View where peace vases have been placed globally.

World Peace Vase Project Global and Egypt.


Treasure vases or terbum are containers filled with medicines, precious substances and mantra that have traditionally been used by Tibetans to protect important places against misfortune and to promote positive, healing energies. Similar sacred vases are used by some North American Indian tribes to heal the land and to restore peace. It was the vision of His Holiness Dilgo Khyentse Rinpoche, one of the greatest Tibetan teachers of this century, to launch a global scale project using treasure vases to restore peace, harmony and well-being to our planet, Earth.
In 1991, Dzongsar Khyentse Rinpoche agreed to take responsibility for the project from H.H Khyentse Rinpoche and applied traditional vase placement criteria, including Tibetan Buddhist Astrology, to select the particular places on Earth for the location of 6200 treasure vases.

Eventually, along with the sincere wish to restore peace and harmony in the world, vases will be placed in the major oceans, lakes and rivers, holy places, places of war, strife and ecologically degraded or endangered natural sites.
Through individuals and coordinators in many countries, approximtely 4000 vases have now been distributed to many far flung countries, with around 2000 remaining in India awaiting transfer to their destined locations.
Although so far vases have been placed in many extraordinarily remote and exotic locations there are still many difficult to access countries waiting to receive their vases.

Locations of the Peace Vases for Egypt.
(Tick denotes vases in place.)

Agama Mountains
Al Maharis
Bani Suwayf
Forest of pillars  
Gebel Machroom  
Gilf el Kebir  
Great Bitter Lake
Gulf of Suez
Karkur Tahl
Lake Nasser  
Mediterranean Sea
Mt. Hanata
Nadi Hamra  
National Park Ras Abou Ghaloum  
Nile River
Port Said
Qasr Al-Farafira
Qattara Depression
Red Sea
Sidi Barrani
SW Egypt Plateau  
Wadi Hamr  
Wadi Sheich Hashash  
( Vases: in place)