The Bahariya Oasis (الواحات البحرية) is about 500 Kms from Cairo, set in a depression covering over 2000 sq. Km. Bahariya Oasis is the lowest point in Egypt, it is surrounded by black hills made up of ferruginous quartzite and dolerite. Most of the villages and cultivated land in Bahariya Oasis can be viewed from the top of a few of the hills around. Wildlife is plentiful, especially birds such as Whiatears; crops (which only cover a small percentage of the total area) include dates, olives, apricots, rice and corn.
Bawiti is the largest village in the Bahariya oasis; its picturesque hillside quarter overlooks lush palm groves that are useful for Bahariya Oasis photos and are irrigated by the Ain al-Beshmo, a natural spring hewn from the rock in Roman times which gushes water at 30 C. Bahariya Oasis has a very rich history and is said to have been the first settlement in Egypt.