In February we featured the launch of El Mandara Ecolodge by Lake Qarun in Fayoum, Egypt, a project owned by a group of friends that decided to take their chances in starting a new hope towards sustainability in dire straits times for Egypt. The getaway had a great launch and have seen plenty of progress in reputation building.
With the weather in Egypt warming up for a hot summer, we packed our bags and headed southwest of Cairo for a personal visit over at the little lodge by the lake. After about 40 minutes of driving on the highway and another 30mins on a road belting the coast of the lake, we arrived at “El Mandara”. The late-hour night scenery and atmosphere of the place were both peaceful and breathtaking. Life is kept simple, away from all things digital. It’s a place where the sound of silence can be truly appreciated.
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Lake Qarun, 45 meters below sea level, is gradually developing into a resort, both with beaches, beach resorts and now also holiday houses. Swimming is enjoyable with somewhat warm waters, temperature can rise up well into the 40s °C by mid summer, where an afternoon hangout in the shades of the covered patio of the chalet can be enjoyed, and if the heat creeps up on you, a nap in the air conditioned bedroom is a savior.
The feeling you get out of the place is a mix between a waterfront resort with satisfactory amenities and a touch of Egypt’s countryside. Their kitchen serves traditional country dishes and is working round the clock. Barbecue grills are available if you’d like to cook your own meal, with the help of their friendly staff that supplies you with all the catering items needed.
At the end of the day, enjoying the view of the sunset looking at the motionless lake picking up some waves at a breezy hour is a treat.