Aswan is situated at the south end of the section of the Nile plied by the cruise fleets, and just upriver is the First Cataract, the old Aswan Dam, and further, the High Dam. Aswan used to be the border trading city for Egypt and adjoining Nubia, and the rest of southern Africa, and a high percentage of Aswan’s population are of Nubian descent. It still represents a major commerce centre, and some very pungent spices from the south can be obtained in the bazaars here.
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