On the Nile Route between Nairobi and Cairo travel blog


Today we drove to Kerma, one of the oldest inhabited towns in Africa which has been occupied for 8,000 - 10,000 years. There is a sand storm blowing which is making everything look very hazy and we stopped for tea and coffee in a makeshift cafe, sitting with the locals in the gloom. We stopped for lunch in the town of Al Borgaig and shopped in the market for ingredients for tea for the next two days.

Kerma was an important trade centre and the capital of the Kingdom of Kush around 1800 - 1600 BC. They built two huge mudbrick temples (or deffufas) during this time, which are now in ruins but still an impressive sight. We had a look at the museum first to get the general picture - the deffufas seem to have been used as burial grounds for the kings. Around the kings' tombs they have discovered around 30,000 other graves of people who appeared to have been sacrificed, and around 5,000 cattle whose remains circle the graves. Then we wandered round the ruins and took photos before heading back into the truck to find a place in the desert to camp for the night.

The wind seems to have eased and we can see a bit of blue sky above so after tea of vegetable curry we dispensed with the tents and slept on the sand under the stars again.

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