Item description for The Western Desert of Egypt: An Explorer's Handbook by Cassandra Vivian...
In 1990, Cassandra Vivian wrote and published Islands of the Blest: A Guide to the Oases and Western Desert of Egypt, which became an overnight bestseller and an instant modern classic. No traveler in the Western Desert was without it.
Now retitled, reorganized, and substantially expanded, The Western Desert Handbook is set to become the most comprehensive guide ever for desert and oasis travel in Egypt west of the Nile. Fully illustrated with some 50 maps and plans and over 270 drawings, the guide covers both the natural history and the human history of the desert and the oases. It then explores chapter by chapter the oases of Kharga, Dakhla, Farafra, Bahariya, Fayoum, and Siwa, and the desert areas of al-Diffa (the northern, semi-arid edge of the desert), the Darb al-Arbain caravan route in the south, and Uwaynat (including Gilf Kebir) in the southwest. Descriptions of routes, sites, people, and places are complemented by practical information on places to stay, eat, and fill your gas tank. Global positioning system (GPS) waypoints are provided as an aid to navigation on many routes - though for the sake of conservation and the protection of unguarded antiquities they are not given for remote sites. Almost encyclopedic in its scope, this is the one guide that belongs on the bookshelf, dashboard, or rucksack of every Western Desert traveler.
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Studio: American University in Cairo Press
Est. Packaging Dimensions: Length: 8.98" Width: 5.67" Height: 1.1" Weight: 1.63 lbs.
Release Date Dec 1, 2000
Publisher American University in Cairo Press
ISBN 977424527X ISBN13 9789774245275
Availability 0 units.
More About Cassandra Vivian
Cassandra Vivian is the author of Monessen: A Typical Steel Country Town (Arcadia Publishing, Making of America series), the founder and chairperson of the Greater Monessen Historical Society, a professional photographer, and a historian.
Reviews - What do customers think about The Western Desert of Egypt: An Explorer's Handbook?
The Western Desert of Egypt Dec 28, 2007
A very useful and complete guide of the region. I would however advise waiting for the updated version which I believe will be available next Spring and which will certainly take into account the most recent changes.
The Western Desert of Egypt Mar 18, 2006
I purchased this book in anticiptation of a trip to Egypt and have just returned. I can say that this is the Bible of the desert. It is filled with incredible detail about each area. The writing is descriptive and easliy readable.At the end of the book there are helful suggestions about tranportation and places to stay. The desert is a most fantastic place and there are few tourists there. One has to be a flexible traveler to negotiate it, but it is well worth the effort. The scenery is otherworldly. Go!
Be the English Patient and venture into the Western Desert! Apr 20, 2001
The Western Desert is least known for being anything but probably a large stretch of endless sand dunes between Egypt and Libya. However, if Medusa, Hercules, Julius Caesar, Cleopatra, World War II, and the movie the English Patient means anything to you, then this book is finger on the pulse. Why? Because at one point in time they were all inhabitants of the Western Desert. Next to the Empty Quarter in the Saudi Arabia desert, it is one of the most arid places in the world and one of man's last frontiers. Bedouin caravans, travelers and ancient armies crossed these desert plains, at times completely disappearing into the sand. Poems and stories, handed from one generation to the next, speak of the adventures and hardship suffered in this desolate place. The ignorance that has made this place least known is changing now; recently a great discovery was made here. Thousands of ancient mummies were uncovered, most adorned with precious gold jewelry. Dubbed the Valley of the Golden Mummies, the area is now under intensive excavation and a tomb was opened and shown on the Discovery channel. As a result of increasd media attention more serious travelers are coming to this area of the world. There is minimal information to satisfy the information needs of these travelers and this book provides just the right recipe. The book covers a lot of history, geography, geology, route description, people, customs, and crafts. I have traveled the Western Desert from Cairo to the Libyan border ending at the Siwa Oasis some time ago, before this book came to light, and I can say that it would have been a wonderful travel companion. It has many many maps, illustrations, and GPS waypoints. Highly recommended for those interested in the desert, travelers, and Egyptologists. Only weakness is that the interior book design is somehow dull, photos are in black and white, small size and low resolution. There is nothing in color except the book cover. Nevertheless, you should not judge a book by its looks only, for a real traveler planning to emulate the English Patient and venture into the Western Desert, this is really all you need, useful information, concise text and updated maps. There are no nice pictorials here if this is what you are looking for. If you are looking for illustrative text about the work of modern Egyptologists in this part of the world this book will not help you, you are better off with "Valley of the Golden Mummies" by Zahi Hawass. Both books will be nice together if you're planning a trip to the Western Desert with a visit to the valley to see the mummies.