Gharbia is in the northern part of Egypt and is located just between Kafr el-Sheikh and Monufia governorates.
Tanta is Gharbia's capital city, although its largest city is El-Mahalla El-Kubra. It consists of 8 cities, covering more than 25 thousand square kilometers, making it the tenth-largest governorate in Egypt.
Gharbia is also quite densely populated, with more than 4 million people. Despite being located near the Nile, Gharbia generally has a very hot desert climate.
The prominent cities of the Gharbia governorate
The eight main cities of the Gharbia governorate are Tanta, El-Mahalla El-Kubra, Kafr El-Zayat, Samannoud, Zifta, Kotoor, El-Santa, and Bassyoun.
Tanta is the fifth most populated city in Egypt, with more than 4 million residents. It is located 90km north of Cairo and 120km from Alexandria. In addition to being the capital of Gharbia governorate, Tanta is a major center of many cotton ginning factories and has a thriving textile industry. Tanta University and an educational institute affiliated with Al-Azhar University of Cairo also attract students from across the country and internationally. Tanta is also famous for the eight-day-long Moulid festival held here every October, after the cotton harvest, around the Tomb of Sayid Ahmed el-Badawi, who was the founder of the Sufi order called Badawiya in Egypt. Many tourists also enjoy visiting the Museum of Tanta and the Metropolitan Coptic Church here.
This is the largest city of the Gharbia governorate and the second largest city in the Nile Delta region. El-Mahalla El-Kubra is mainly known for its agricultural and industrial activities. The headquarters of the Misr Spinning and Weaving Company is located here. It is the largest public sector textile company in Egypt and has more than 27 thousand employees in this city.
Zefta is well-known for the historical uprising of 1919, known better as the Egyptian Revolution of 1919. This is when the British rulers drove out Saad Zaghoul Pasha and other Egyptian revolutionary leaders of the Wafd Party. These revolutionaries were pushed out of Egypt and exiled to Malta. The people of Zefta were united under the leadership of Youssef El Guindi and revolted against British rule. They declared themselves independent and formed the Zefta Republic. Ultimately, this revolution led to the independence of Egypt as a whole and the formation of the Republic of Egypt in 1922, although full sovereignty was only obtained after another revolution in 1952.
Zefta is also well-known being the birthplace of the renowned cartoonist Kimon Evan Marengo and the famous scientist Mostafa Kamal Tolba who was the former Director of United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP) for 17 years. The renowned Egyptian-American physicist Mostafa A. El-Sayed was also born in Zefta. El-Sayed is famous for discovering the El-Sayed rule in spectroscopy and his other important research in the field of nanophysics.