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Why it is Not Safe to Swim in the Nile

Nile is the longest river in the world and covers 11 counties, it is estimated to be around 6,650 km long. This river plays a pivotal role in maintaining African flora and fauna and also has a significant impact on the cultures surrounding the river. Almost all of the major Egypt cities are located on the banks of the Nile.

If you are travelling to Egypt and decide to go for a swim on a hot day we suggest you think twice before doing this. It is quite a daunting possibility that if you go for a swim you get an infection or be chewed by a crocodile.

Here is a list of why you shouldn’t swim in the gloomy waters of the Nile:

1. Bilharzia Disease

Bilharzia also known as a Schistosomiasis is an infection caused by parasitic worms that live in freshwater. The disease symptoms are abdominal pain, liver damage and kidney pains, an estimated of 4,400 – 200,000 people die each year from this disease. Bilharzia is most commonly found in Africa, Asia and South America.

2. Hygiene

Historically locals get rid of their waste into the river, however, these days a lot of garbage is not organic material but plastic or something else. Unfortunately it is really hard to change old habits that is why a lot of the waste ends up in the river. There are also some factories down the river bank, hence the water is not clean.

3. Dangerous animals

Nile is home to a lot of living creatures and one of them is a freshwater predator, the Nile crocodile. These reptiles can grow up to 16 feet and weight 500 lbs. If you are going for a dip double check if the location is free of any crocs. There is a high chance to encounter a Nile crocodile in the city Aswan, but sometimes they appear in Cairo.

Our conclusion is that you should avoid swimming in the river, probably better to stick to a nice cool shower or a hotel pool.

See our list where else it is dangerous to swim on the planet.