Siwa Oasis

Siwa Oasis is located in western desert of Egypt, in the interior of the country, near the border to Libya, at an depression of 18 meters below sea level.

The oasis is 82 km long and has a width varying between 2 and 20 km.
Siwa is the most mysterious of all Egypt's oases, It is also the most fascinating. Its history has not only been shaped by all major civilizations, but also by the contrast of the surrounding desert with the lush soil of the oasis setting.

The Siwian people have their own culture and customs and, as well as speaking Arabic, they speak own Berber (Amazigh) language.

Women still wear traditional costumes and silver jewellery and Siwa remains one of the best places to buy traditional local handicrafts.

The modern town of Siwa is set among thick palm groves, walled gardens and olive orchards, with numerous freshwater springs and salt lakes.
Siwa also clusters beneath the impressive remains of the ancient fortress town of Shali, it is situated at the centre of the oasis.

The economical base of the oasis is agriculture of which dates and olives are the principal produce. The agriculture is fed by natural springs as well as a couple of artificial ones.
In the recent decades, Siwa has suffered more and more from increasing salification of the soil.

In Siwa, there are 3 larger salt lakes, Birket Maraqi, Birket Siwa, and Birket Zaytun.

7th century BCE:
Temple of Amon is constructed.

331 BCE: Siwa is visited by Alexander the Great, who comes to visit the famous Oracle of Temple of Amon, seeking confirmation that he is the son of the god Zeus, as well as upholding the image of him also being the son of the god Amon.

1203: The town of Shali is founded.
After 2,000 years of relative isolation, the first European visitor comes to Siwa.

19th century: Siwa becomes part of modern Egypt.
1986. A road between Marsa Matruh at the coast and Siwa is opened.

We can Know a lot about Siwa in Three Articles written by Dr. Zahi Hawas "in Arabic"

Siwa the Lost Paradise
Alexander the Great ....The secret of visiting Siwa
Siwa and its ten sisters

نبذة سريعة عن واحة سيوة "من مقالة الدكتور زاهى حواس الجزء الثالث"

تقع واحة سيوة في الطرف الجنوبي الغربي من محافظة مرسي مطروح، وعلي مسافة‏300‏ كيلومتر من مدينة مرسي مطروح، وهي اقرب واحة بمصر لحدود الجماهيرية العربية الليبية، وايضا شاطيء البحر الأبيض المتوسط‏.‏

أما عن أصل كلمة سيوة فيصعب تحديدها، فنجد بعض الكتاب والمؤرخين اليونان والرومان قد أشاروا إليها في كتاباتهم علي أنها واحة جوبتر ـ آمون، نسبة الي وحي الإله آمون، الذي كان موجودا بها، كما ورد ذكرها في كتابات العرب تحت اسم سنتريه نسبة الي المدينة سنتربيه التي يتكلم أهلها اللغة السيوية‏.‏

We can see some views of Siwa in our site:

Siwa Buildings Siwa Environment 2 Siwa Environment 1
Ne3mah Resort