The horse and camel stables at the Pyramids are an age-old tourist trap. Serious riders, as well as novices who want to experience the desert landscape from a calmer and more authentic perspective, hire mounts and guides from Al Sorat Farm, i. With advance notice, owner Maryanne Gabbani arranges home-cooked lunches for visitors and specializes in riding routes through farmland, rural villages, and the atmospheric, monument-strewn desert. Horses, including retired Arabian endurance racers and rescues from the Pyramids tourist trade, are matched to clients according to temperament and ability (rank beginners are welcome), and rides range from an hour to a half-day picnic jaunt. Along the way you may encounter wild foxes or migrating storks, as well as sands still littered with bones, abandoned sarcophagi, ceramic fragments, and pit tombs.
The Al Sorat Farm is in the desert, south of Cairo.
AL SORAT FARM: Behind villa of Dr. Magdy Agamawi, Esbat el Hawagat, Al Badrashin, Giza Governorate, Egypt; 20 122 211 8386; Open from 8.00 am to 7 pm.