Our Members Say
- Reviews: 1308
El Kelany Hotel: Right at the town square, good budget option.
I’ve been wanting to go to Siwa since my first trip, this was the 3rd so I really aimed for it. I went to Turgoman – Cairo’s main bus terminal and bought a ticket for the next day. I endured the cold tiring 12 hour or so bus trip to Siwa. No hotel reservation, arriving in Siwa I jumped into the first available tricycle at EGP5. I asked the driver for a place to stay right the main square, he gave me 2 options – Yousef for more budget and Kelany if I want to dole out more for a better place. I opt for Kelany Hotel.
Located right at the town square overlooking the activities below if you’re at the rooftop or higher room and the Shali fort. Yousef Hotel is just a building away from Kelany.
I was given a room facing the main square on the first floor with 2 beds and a toilet/shower at EGP50 per night, no breakfast. The room was basic, no wifi, and I have that immediate feeling of old dusty trail motel of sort, sorry, I don’t know how to describe it. The toilet/shower is old, stained, a bit dirty but it can serve its purpose, warm water is not working. On the ground floor is a mini market and there’s a restaurant infront that serves good pizza and other stuff albeit costly in Egyptian standard. Well, it’s after all a hangout place for foreign tourists.
Location is good as you’ll get to see the daily activities down the square if you’re on the rooftop of Kelany – the still popular public transport – a donkey-drawn cart, the tricycles, occasional tourist buses, merchants, the barbershop facing my window, the people getting in the mosque beside the hotel during prayer calls. It’s a different scene out there. Siwa is a small town where you feel that time had stood still. People are more conservative so avoid photographing women and female children.
If you want to be at the center of the town and walking distance to Shali fort, Kelany is a good choice for budget travelers. The bus terminal actually is a walking distance but give the people a job, take the tricycle at EGP5.
Unique Quality: Centrally located.
- Reviews: 329
Hotel Kelani: I'm not staying here again.
The hotel Kelani got a decent write-up in the guidebook and is handily situated at the corner of the square. And the room was nice enough, looking clean & with a little balcony, a good view: my Siwa header photo is taken from it.
Reader, I got bitten. By bedbugs. It was only the fact that I had come down with a case of the Rangoon Crut (Nurse! The screens!) -which I can't blame on them- that stopped me moving out pretty much the moment I woke up. And, on the unsavory subject of the rangoon crut, there was a decent en-suite WC and fully-functioning shower, hot water and everything.
The place advertises a roof-restaurant for breakfast but I saw no sign of any ongoing catering activity. Access via a flight of steps that are so irregularly pitched that they are a serious trip hazard. The fact that the water run-off in my bathroom was into the drain rather than out into the room must have been a lucky accident. The last straw was when they told me that they had to move me from my room to another which would be more expensive becuse it had a TV in it. I packed my bags and left.
- Reviews: 28
The Siwa Villa: Siwa's Best Kept Secret
Having perused the pictures over and over again prior to my visit, I had very high expectations for this property. I am happy to say the villa exceeded them all. From the moment the housekeeper, Muhammad, met us at the bus station to the moment we left, it was pure heaven. The price of accommodation includes groceries - milk, juice, yogurt, cheese, jams, butter, fresh fruit and vegetables and fresh bread every morning. I was a little overwhelmed!
The Siwa Villa is owned by Duncan and Penny, an English couple that live in Siwa with their four kids six months out of the year. The house is in a very convenient location for walking into town. It's close enough to make things easily accessible but far enough from the hustle and bustle of 'main street' - well, as much as you can 'bustle' in Siwa. It is spotless and well appointed with local furniture and crafts. There is a lot of attention to detail. Little things like the latches on the windows and doors and the 'reading lights' in the bedrooms (built behind almost transparent hardened salt) authenticate the experience and truly makes you feel like you're 'somewhere different'. The beds are extremely comfortable, which was a surprise to me considering the salt and stone rooms basically have kershef (a hardened salt and sand mixture) as the base for the mattresses. I hardly wanted to get out of bed in the morning! The shower was powerful with lots of hot water and had a spa-feel to it. Loved the faucet built right into the rock.
Penny and Duncan were in London when we visited but their house manager is always just a call away to arrange trips for you, and Duncan checks emaill regularly. Muhammad came every morning to check up on us (and bring bread lol) and came right away when our cooking gas ran out.
We had originally booked two days and stayed four; we couldn't get enough of the place. Having an entire house to yourself makes you feel like you're part of Siwan society. The neighbors are visible but not intrusive. You get a glimpse of a woman hanging out her washing as you're on the roof hanging yours and there's a friendly nod and brief connection. It is priceless.
Would I recommend it? Without reservation! Don't be intimidated by the price. Drop Duncan an email and see what happens. I can't wait to go again and this time, take my entire family.
Unique Quality: The house built in the Siwan traditional style but with all the amenities of a Western home. The house is made of kershef, which is a mixture of mud and rock salt. The are four bedrooms, which all have themes. There is the Salt Room, the Stone Room, the Olive Room and the Palm Room, where the bunk beds are made of whole palm tree trunks! The rooms sleep ten people in total. There is a reading room, an outdoor steam room and a living space complete with dining table and fireplace. The kitchen is stocked with most everything you would ever need including condiments. There is no microwave. My favorite room is the bathroom. It's like stepping into a spa. I love all the little Siwan touches to the rooms in the house and the all the locally made Siwan handicrafts.
The rooftop is a work of wonder. I spent many a night here looking at the Shali ruins all lit up, or just taking in the atmosphere. There is a HUGE barbecue pit, which could be centerpiece of an amazing party with old and new friends. Other people have used the pit to cook an entire goat!
- Reviews: 1
bangalows: taghaghien island
its amazing when u rich the middel of desert and finding the island in the middel of the great lake of siwa its relly amazing like u rich 2 places in one
Unique Quality: The Island area is 38000 m2 in the great lake of Siwa , It have own road lake it's 2 km long & 9m wide.There is a SPING in the middle its 504m & 4m depth also there are 400 fruitful palms. Around the island a lot of mountains & green field & 5 other islands (RODES - SHOSHA - MIDDLE STONIE - BIUOT - ALEXANDER STONE) all island at the SAFETY LAND CO. A good hotel at reasonable prices – stunning views and peaceful surroundings, If you are thinking of visiting Siwa, you are a special kind of person and definitely not the kind who favors package tours, sun, fun and discos
- Reviews: 6
Yusef: Normal one
Unique Quality: This hotel lies at the main square in the small town of Siwa. It has three floors and a roof terrace, where you can sit or dry your washed clothes.
The rooms have one, two or three beds. It is relatively clean and the staff is friendly. Bathrooms are all outside and the showers are hot and working. It could be a little bit noisy, because of the central location, but in Siwa in general there is not so much traffic.
Prices are per person, around 16 Pound
- Reviews: 65
Cleopatra Hotel: Good for a couple of nights
The Cleopatra Hotel provided a simple hotel room, non airconditioned but with fans. The room was clean, simply furnished with a good supply of hot water for the shower. The top floor was an open deck with commanding views of the city and its people.
- Reviews: 4605
Palm Tree Hotel
I had been recommended Palm Tree Hotel in Siwa so I went there. There is a nice garden with palm trees where you can sit and read and enjoy the calmness. And I liked the room, which had a bathroom, two beds, a fan and a small balcony (from where I could see Shali). But I did not like the meal I had when I arrived. Tired after a long bus journey from Alexandria I decided to eat at Palm Tree even though I thought it was expensive. I ordered half a grilled chicken with rice. When the plate came there was only a small dry piece of chicken, but they went to get me more. Unfortunately the chicken was not good at all, but very dry and had obviously been reheated. The meal was 25 pounds and cats were all the time trying to get up on the table.
I can’t remember what I paid for the room (maybe 35 pounds) but there are rooms both with and without bathroom. There’s no single room with bathroom, so you have to pay for a double.
There are several things to choose from for breakfast. Nescafe, yoghurt and a big banana pancake are 10 pounds.
You can rent bicycles at Palm Tree. I paid 10 pounds for some hours.
Palm Tree organises tours in the surroundings, but if you want to go on a desert tour and sleep in the desert I recommend you to take another one. For the one Palm Tree organises no permit is needed and it is not going too far from Siwa and not to so many places.
- Reviews: 1263
Go for the first choice of accommodation mentioned in the guidebooks. My experience with Cleopetra was mixed. I liked the new built part of this accommodation and this is moderately cheap and clean but saw muddy water flow in the toilet when I was there in February 2005.
- Reviews: 378
Hotel ''Under The Stars'': Sleeping in the sand
Sleeping outside, in the desert was one the best experiences in Egypt. Away from civilization, away from people, dinner around fire...
It was ment for us to sleep in the tent, but we all decided to sleep outside.
Only be aware: it can get very cold.
Unique Quality: Stars are best seen after the moon-set when it gets really dark. You can hope to spot couple of comets too.
- Reviews: 387
Bir Wahid - Well One!: Sleep under the starry sky
These two wonderful brothers served us. They prepared the simple dinner, taught us about the stars, talked about their daily life, about China...everything that you can't imagine how two little boys living the middle of the desert know so much! And bathing in a hotspring in the middle of the desert is an unique and most wonderful experience!
Unique Quality: You can camp, stay inside a stone house or just let the starry sky be your blanket.
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