desert morocco travel
There are very few places on earth comparable to the beautiful landscape you will see when you visit the Sahara. The Sahara Desert, which stretches almost from north to south along Morocco’s eastern border with neighbouring Algeria, is the largest hot desert in the world. The desert covers an area nearly the size of the entire United States.
Many travellers visit Morocco specifically intending to venture into the desert and spend a night under the stars. We cannot blame them! Adventure in the desert is a unique opportunity not to be missing.
Can I take a day trip to the Sahara from marrakechor ?
Yes, but maybe not the way you think. If you’re planning a day trip to the Marrakech or Fez desert, think again. If it is not clear to you now, we assume these two cities are far from the desert. You can’t go anywhere at any time! It takes at least a full day to reach the desert from both cities.
However, if you lose your time or are not intrigued by the idea of camping under stars, it is possible to explore the Sahara during the day without spending the night in the desert. To do this, you have to choose to stay as a base at an incredible distance from the dunes. To explore Erg Chebbi, choose a location in Erfoud or Merzouga. To explore Erg Chigaga, you need to be close to Zagora or the mouth of the Zaccido.
Do I spend a night or two in the desert?
Spending a night under the starry desert sky is a unique opportunity that you will not experience anywhere else in the world. If you have time, we recommend spending more than one night in the desert. With two nights, you can explore the desert at a more relaxed pace, and immerse yourself in the traditional paths of the local tribes. Spend your days playing sand and trekking on camels, and nights singing, dancing and watching the stars! The best thing you can do is spend one night in a tent in the dunes and another night in a city near the desert.
How about travel with kids in the desert?
Family travel shouldn’t stop you from embarking on a desert adventure! When travelling with children in the desert, there are a few other factors to consider to make the trip as easy as possible:
Before you leave, make sure your sunscreen is over 80. You must submit a valid application to the whole family every two hours.
Fill in colourful long sleeve shirts, wide-brimmed hats, sunglasses, lipstick and an aqueous solution.
Remember that you will be driving for a long time. If your kids are not used to spending hours in the car, we recommend booking a private tour or renting your vehicle so that you can stop when needed.
Make sure the car air conditioner is working. Children under the age of 12 are particularly prone to heatstroke.
Whenever possible, small children sit in the shady area of the car. You should also bring a long scarf or a large shirt to use as a window sunscreen.
Even a long trip can seem boring to your children, also if the scene changes dramatically. Remember to bring tech-free entertainment and healthy snacks to make you happy.
Small children may be afraid of camels. They are more significant than the horses! Make sure you have a backup plan to get to your camp if your child is too scared to ride a camel.
Once you arrive at the camp, you will likely get a traditional Moroccan dinner consisting of a chicken and vegetable tagine. If your child’s taste buds are not an adventure, you should equip them with one of your child’s most popular simple dishes. Packages with well-dried pasta and olive oil are available at your camp.
The desert is generally very dark at night. A night light can be useful;
Don’t forget your swimsuits! Swimming pools have many properties outside the dunes.
Should I book a group tour or a private trip to the desert?
The decision to travel independently or on an organized tour often depends on personal preferences and travel style. If you have separate travel experience in Morocco and know French or Arabic, you can travel independently. Travel books can teach you the basics, and public transport can take you almost anywhere in the country. It should be noted that you should not go to dunes or other remote desert areas without assistance.
During a private tour, you can immerse yourself in Moroccan culture, interact with locals daily, and discover some of the best-hidden gems in the country with expert guides. Here are some special tours that we offer in the desert.
Are we doing activities in the Moroccan Sahara?
In addition to riding camels and stars, You will be surprised by the number of activities available in and around the Moroccan desert areas!
Hunting fossils. This area is rich in fossils, and there are many public areas where you can be sure to find a mineral to visit.
Visit of a semi-nomadic family. With a reliable translation guide, you can better understand their way of life.
Listen to Gnaoua’s music. Despite its popularity throughout Morocco, especially in Essaouira, the Sahara is the real home of Gnaoua music. There are many places in the town of Khamlia where you can hear these desert canyons.
Explore the dunes. Sometimes there is nothing better than jumping into the unknown on your favourite camel (or 4×4).
Sigma visit. This ruin near Risani, near Erg Chebbi, was the most important commercial centre and linked Morocco across the desert with Egypt, Sudan and Ghana.
Shop at local markets. Al-Risani has the largest market in the region on Tuesday, Thursday and Saturday, while Zagora has an active market every Wednesday and Sunday.
There is often music and fire at night and in the desert fields.
The desert sky comes alive at night, and it is rewarding to learn more about astronomy.