Farafra is the smallest oasis in the Western Desert of Egypt with an estimated population of around 5,000, all living within its single village. It is located approximately midway between Dakhla and Bahariya.
Traditional Bedouin people who live in mud brick houses mainly inhabit Farafra. You may notice that many of the houses in Farafra are painted blue, this is done to ward off the “Evil Eye”.
Old traditions live on in Farafra, and visitors to the oasis should respect these. The local people still dress in beautifully embroided dresses and shirts, although there is very little for visitors to purchase apart from olives and olive oil. Most visitors to Farafra should take at least one swim in the local hot springs.
There is almost nothing known of the history of Farafra prior to the Roman occupation, and even of this period there is very little known. As far as antiquities go, there is very little to see. The majority of tourists come to Farafra to visit the “White Desert”, which is located around 45km north of Farafra. The white desert is a complete contrast to the yellow deserts found elsewhere in Egypt. Here you will see strange chalk monoliths that thrust high above the desert. Many of the rock formations have been given names such as – mushrooms, crickets, tents, ice cream cones to name but a few. They are formed by the constant wind erosion of caused by the many intense sand storms that sweep across the open desert.