Camping in the White Desert & How Axe Body Spray Saved my Life

My first glimpse of a black desert

After spending the night in Bahariya, we packed up our two Land Cruisers and headed back into the desert for a camping excursion. I don’t think I’ve ever considered a desert that wasn’t that dusty orange in color, but we visited both a black desert and a white desert in the very same day. Not only is Egypt dotted with ancient temples and rich history, but it also has these rare and changing landscapes that provide a taste of something new.

Black desert view from atop a sand dune

And before long, we were venturing into a completely different landscape in the white desert with unique formations.

White desert

Why everyone should take Axe body spray into the desert with them: 

I should stop and mention here that the morning we left Bahariya the police required us to take one of their officers with us. This is not uncommon in Egypt. The police can ask you at anytime to take along a police officer and you are required to make room in your vehicle and provide food and necessities. Our drivers were not thrilled but there was nothing that could be done. The girls initially took a double-take at the good looking officer that walked towards our vehicle… until he hopped in the front seat. In multiple trips to Africa, I have smelled my fair share of bad body odor, but this guy wreaked!! We felt so sorry for our driver who had to sit closest to him. The following morning when we left the campsite and headed back to the oasis, we were murmuring in the car about the smell (he didn’t speak a lick of English) and out of nowhere our driver jerks the car over. We stopped, not knowing what was the problem. He gets out of the car, opens the trunk to fetch something, gets back in the driver’s seat and sprays his Axe body spray in the car. He then starts up the car as if nothing happened. We all lose control and laugh uncontrollably. The driver’s smirk eventually turns into laughter, and even the police officer is laughing… completely oblivious that he is the cause of this olfactory event. As much as I loved the desert, the body spray incident was one of the highlights. Our driver was amazing and saved us all from having to breathe into our blankets the entire way back to Bahariya!

Now back to the White Desert…

White desert exploration continues
Setting up camp

Because of desert foxes, we parked our cars at a 90 degree angle to each other. Then we lined up our tour participants’ sleeping bags, and our guide, drivers, and the police officer slept on the outer rim, forming a square with the cars. Throughout the trip, we all participated in prepping and cleaning up after meals, setting up the pit toilet (which included digging a hole and erecting a little box of fabric for privacy), and helping with any other chores that needed to be done. While camping we did the same thing… except for our lazy police officer who simply got paid to hang out and enjoy our delicious cooking.

Not another sunset photo! Yep, sorry it is.
White Desert formations

When we called it a night and hit the sack, we heard some rustling. It didn’t take long for us to realize that some foxes were coming to check out our campsite.


They have big ears and bushy tails!

Even for those of you that don’t like to camp, I can hardly think of a reason why you shouldn’t camp in the Western Desert in Egypt. It’s quite a world away from camping in your backyard!


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