Just a few hours from the busy city of Cairo is a desert that makes you feel like you’ve landed on the surface of the moon.
The White desert, located around 20km northeast of Farafra, has been formed by centuries of erosion and sandstorms. Here, unique calcium rock formations have appeared across the landscape like huge statues. Some have been given names like “mushroom” and “ice-cream cone,” whilst others have inspired more grand titles, such as “the Monolith” and “Inselberg.” The most characteristic of these natural formations is the famed “chicken and tree”, also called “chicken and mushroom.”
Many people decide to spend a night camping in the desert with Bedouin guides, where they can observe the changing faces as the bright sun of the afternoon sinks into a shadowy dusk. As the sun goes down, the calcium sea appears to reflect all of the different beautiful colours of the changing sky. And while any night under the stars is an experience full of memories, those who are lucky enough to see the full moon will witness the desert giving off a ghostly, iridescent glow, reminiscent of a snow scene from the Arctic.