Cave of St Anthony

Cave in Eastern Desert

Perched about 300m above St Anthony's Monastery on a cliff just outside the monastery walls is the cave where St Anthony is believed to have spent the final 40 years of his life. Inside the cave, which is for the svelte and nonclaustrophobic only (you must squeeze through a narrow entry to get inside), there is a small chapel with an altar and a tiny recessed area where the saint lived – bring a torch (flashlight) along to illuminate the interior.

The climb up the 1158 wooden steps to the cave entrance is hot and steep and takes about half an hour if you’re reasonably fit. At the top, as you catch your breath on a small ledge (littered with the graffiti of countless pilgrims), you can admire the wide vistas over the hills and valley below.