While tourism in Egypt continues to suffer setback after setback and money is ploughed into marketing campaigns rather than fixing the very many simple wrongs that underwhelm and disappoint those who do believe in the uniqueness of Egypt as a desirable destination, it's been left up to independent groups and institutions to champion the country we so love to call 'Om El Donya'.
One such group that has been creeping closer to the forefront of that fight is Omar Samra's Wild Guanabana. Not content with conquering the highest mountains on earth, Samra's pride in spiking the Egyptian flag on these mountain-tops has translated into a new line from a company that has opened the world of exploration to adrenaline-seeking Egyptians.
While Wild Guanabana has taken many out of the hustle and bustle of Cairo and into some of the most unique locations in the world for some once-in-a-lifetime experiences, Samra and co are just as enthusiastic – if not more so – about a new approach to local eco-tourism, offering some truly unique packages that will open up the places in Egypt that will, sadly, always come second to the misguided notion that the country's antiquities are the only thing worth shouting about.
Local eco-tourism has enjoyed resurgence, somewhat, in recent years, but Wild Guanabana is daring to dig deeper – metaphorically, of course – in some of Egypt's most naturally stunning spots.
Samra's considerable expertise in such matters makes Wild Guanabana the perfect vehicle, but in taking things to the next level, so to speak, they've called on the help of a man that can lay claim to knowing the secrets of Egypt's forgotten lands as much as anyone; a man who has undertaken a 7000km trip of Egypt with not much more than his bike and a lot of anti-chafing tape; twenty-one year-old, Galal Zekri Chatila.
The first excursion will see partakers take on a mountain biking trip to Zafrana, where the area's gorgeous valleys and vegetation will be the scene for biking, camping and other, more abstract activities, including gazing into the night's sky and pondering the poetic insignificance of our existence in the context of a universe we will never fully understand.
Taking place from October 15th Wild Guanabana will be providing the necessary tools to those who dare leave behind their inhibitions in the glove compartment of their car and step forward to experience an Egypt that is full of surprises.
For more information on the trip, and on Wild Guanabana, click here.
Photos: Wild Guanabana