The Djara Cave is rather famous, as it is one of the very few well decorated caves in Egypt. It is located the middle of the Western Desert, on a limestone plateau, next to an old camel track connecting Farafra and Assiut. The cave is easy to visit, many parts have a level floor, covered by the sand of the desert.
Light is required and a helmet is a good idea too. The cave is also famous for its cave art, engravings depicting game and people. They were made during the Holocene wet phase, when this area was occupied by early hunters/gatherers. Remains on the surface were dated by C-14 to be 8600-6000 BP. The Djaara region, an area with a size of almost 5 by 10km, was inhabited during this time. It was wetter, so life was possible, but there was not enough rain for the growth of flowstone. In earlier wet phases the amount of rain was much higher, and the spelethems were formed during this periods. They are dated by the 18O method to be mostly of marine isotope stage 5 age.
This cave was rediscovered twice. After the climate changed, and the people had left the area, the cave was forgotten for millennia. It was rediscovered by the German explorer Gerhard Rohlfs during his famous expedition.
© Henk Bos. Any use of this image without permission is a violation of the copyright.