Well woah, how do you even begin to summarise this experience? Visiting the Sahara Desert is something that had been on our Bucket List for ages – and it did not disappoint. We had been working in Morocco for around a month when we decided to finally head out to the dunes.
Most of these experiences commence from Marrakech, so we caught one of the trains down from Casablanca and spent a couple of nights at the wonderful Hostel Waka Waka. From there we were met by our minibus and commenced the three night trip. All up it cost around €80 for the three nights (accommodation included, but not food) and we felt this was pretty good value.
The first two days were spent driving through amazing scenery and visiting the Atlas Mountains, Ait Ben Haddou and local villages. At the end of the second day we arrived in Merzouga where we headed out into the desert.
You could only take the bare minimum out into the dunes, so we packed our water, headscarves and camera before shakily mounting our rather grumpy camels. We slowly plodded through the orange sand as the sun was setting above us. It is hard to capture the intense feeling when you are amongst the Sahara dunes. It is definitely one of those moments where you realise how small we truly are in the face of nature. Our camels faithfully took us up and down the dunes until we arrived at a lovely campsite.
Now dark, our hosts cooked us a huge Moroccan feast. To this day we wonder how they managed to cook so much food out of a single tent with no electricity, but nevertheless, they managed it! We sang music, shared stories and even sandboarded down the nearby dunes. It was all so surreal.
That night we slept on mattresses in the middle of the campsite with only sheets to keep us warm. Falling asleep under the clear, starry sky was certainly spectacular that night. Knowing that you were resting in such scenery, only 13kms from Algeria, was all a lot to take in.
Here are some of our photos from our Morocco desert adventure. They honestly do not do it justice — this is something you must experience for yourself.
If you’ve travelled to Morocco, let me know in the comments about your adventures!
Desert adventures to Merzouga often begin from the bustling city of Marrakech
The drive through the winding roads of the Atlas Mountains yields spectacular views
Along the road there are plenty of pit stops, with Ait Ben Haddou being one of the most spectacular
Along the side of the road there are plenty of beautiful landscapes to explore
Fruit picking in the desert oases is a definite must
A customary stop in a carpet shop uncovered many tales of Berber life and provided us with more Moroccan Mint Tea
Sitting in front of one of the desert oases (you can’t tell how hot we were from this photo, but 42ºC was taking a toll on us!)
After a couple of days driving, finally getting on the camels and heading out over the dunes was a relief
We got on the camels as the sun was setting and headed out to camp
Sunset looks pretty spectacular from the back of a camel
In front of my trusty (albeit grumpy) steed
One of the more smiley camels lays down to rest for the evening
A view of the camp in the moonlight
The towering dunes of the Sahara Desert
Our time in the desert is over but now onto the 13 hour bus ride back to Marrakech