FayoumApprox. Time: 8 hours
Activity Level: Moderate

The Fayoum is a wonderful area of Egypt with a rich and interesting history. It is an area where Egyptians often vacation and which is constantly growing more popular among Europeans. This 692 sq. mile depression was a lush paradise during prehistoric times. At 215 square km, the current lake Qaroun remains Egypt's largest salt water lake. The prehistoric people who lived here were, at first, nomadic hunters and gatherers, but later began harvesting plants near the lake. This developed into what is said to be the earliest agricultural area in the world, where fences were erected and guarded warehouses built. It has remained an agriculture center, well known for it's fruits, vegetables and chickens.

The oasis was a favorite vacation spot for pharaohs of the 13th dynasty, and many fine palaces were built in the area. The Greeks later called the area Crocodilopolis, because they believed the crocodiles in Birket Qarun were sacred.