Gebel Dist

Bahariya Oasis

Gebel Dist is an impressive pyramid-shaped mountain visible from most of the oasis. A local landmark, it is famous for its fossils; dinosaur bones were found here in the early 20th century, disproving the previously held theory that dinosaurs only lived in North America. In 2001 researchers from the University of Pennsylvania found the remains of a giant specimen, Paralititan stromeri.

The discovery of this huge herbivore, which the team deduced was standing on the edge of a tidal channel when it died 94 million years ago, makes it likely that Bahariya was once a swamp similar to the Florida Everglades in the US.

About 100m away is Gebel Maghrafa (Mountain of the Ladle).

Lonely Planet's must-see attractions

Nearby Bahariya Oasis attractions

1. Gebel Al Ingleez

4.62 MILES

Clearly visible from the road to Cairo, flat-topped Gebel Al Ingleez, also known as Black Mountain, takes its name from a WWI lookout post. From here…

2. Bir Al Mattar

5.09 MILES

At Bir Al Mattar, 7km northeast of Bawiti, cold springs pour into a viaduct and then down into a concrete pool, which you can splash in during the hot…

3. Oasis Heritage Museum

6.17 MILES

The giant sandcastle-looking-thing, 3km east of town on the road to Cairo, is Mahmoud Eed’s Oasis Heritage Museum. Inspired by Badr’s Museum in Farafra,…

4. Bir Al Ramla

6.34 MILES

The sulphurous spring of Bir Al Ramla, 3km north of town, is very hot (45°C) and suitable for a soak, though you may feel a bit exposed to the donkey…

5. Tomb of Bannentiu

6.39 MILES

Consisting of a four-columned burial chamber with an inner sanctuary, this tomb is covered in fine reliefs depicting Bannentiu in various positions with…

6. Tomb of Zed Amun Ef Ankh

6.39 MILES

The rock-cut Tomb of Zed Amun Ef Ankh is a fascinating glimpse of Bahariya in its heyday. It appears that Zed Amun Ef Ankh was not a government official…

7. Qarat Qasr Salim

6.39 MILES

This small mound amid the houses of Bawiti is likely built upon centuries of debris. There are two well-preserved 26th-dynasty tombs here, which were…

8. Golden Mummies Museum

6.56 MILES

Only 10 of Bahariya's richly decorated cache of 10,000 mummies are exhibited here. While the motifs are formulaic and the work is second-rate, the painted…