- What an experience! Two nights at a luxury Sahara Desert camp
- Getting to our Sahara Desert camp
- Arrival at our Sahara Desert camp
- Riding camels among the dunes
- Here’s how my camel ride began.
- Special excursions in the desert
- Visit with a nomad family
- Traditional sub-Saharan Gnawa music
- Relaxation and entertainment
- Related posts:
What an experience! Two nights at a luxury Sahara Desert camp
Of the many highlights during our Collette Colors of Morocco tour, our two nights at a Sahara Desert camp stands out as one of the best. Ever since I was very young, I dreamed of seeing the Sahara Desert which held a great deal of mystique for me. But somehow it always seemed out of reach until our Morocco guided tour gave us the perfect opportunity to make that dream a reality.
It was a special and different experience for us to stay in a luxury desert tent, enjoy Berber music around a bonfire, gaze at the brilliant stars at night, and ride a camel along the Erg Chebbi sand dunes.
Getting to our Sahara Desert camp
To get to our camp, we were driven in 4x4s from our hotel in Erfoud. It was a fun and exciting ride on the sandy dunes, especially when our driver would accelerate the vehicle going up, down, and around the dunes. We were assigned the same driver each day who was skilled at what he does and very friendly. We also enjoyed the Berber music on the radio adding to this authentic Sahara experience.
Arrival at our Sahara Desert camp
As it customary in Morocco as a sign of hospitality and welcome, upon arrival at the camp, we were served mint tea and cookies in the dining tent. This is a tradition that I quickly came to love.
After tea, we settled into our large and comfortable private tents which were complete with king size bed, electricity, free Wi-Fi, and modern bathrooms with hot and cold running water.
Our dinners, served family style in the large dining tent, included traditional dishes of meat and vegetable tajines, Moroccan salads, soups, fruit, and pastries. For breakfast, there were plenty of options like crepes, breads, pastries, eggs, juice, coffee and tea.
Riding camels among the dunes
Here’s how my camel ride began.
What a thrill to ride a camel in the Sahara! Our ride along the ridges of the dunes lasted about an hour. I would love to do it again sometime.
Special excursions in the desert
It was during our free time during our Sahara camp stay that Collette arranged two special cultural excursions. We hopped in our 4x4s and headed out from camp for these remarkable experiences.
Visit with a nomad family
“It was a fascinating experience to meet a nomad family while we were staying in the Sahara. Driven in 4 x 4s from our camp, we came upon their living quarters consisting of basic shelters and a donkey resting nearby. With Nabil interpreting our questions and the elder family member’s answers, we learned about their daily lives and background. Although he had been always on the move as a younger man (aligning with our understanding of nomad), he and his children and grandchildren have been settled on this spot for about 10 years.” — TWS post Broadening Our Horizons in Morocco on a Collette Guided Tour – Meeting the People
Traditional sub-Saharan Gnawa music
“In Khamlia, we were introduced to the Gnawa people and their music. It was interactive and we could participate with drums and we also got a little lesson on using several other instruments. The Gnawa people are an ethnic group with West African ancestry who were originally brought to Morocco as slaves. Their music and dance is an important part of their heritage.” — TWS post Broadening Our Horizons in Morocco on a Collette Guided Tour — Gnawa Music and People
Relaxation and entertainment
After a day of exhilarating rides over desert landscapes via camels and 4x4s and special experiences, it was nice to get back to our luxury tents, shower, relax a bit, walk to the dunes for the beautiful sunset, and then gather with our fellow guests for another lovely dinner in the desert.
Following dinner there was entertainment by local Berber staff and we got to join in by playing instruments, singing, and dancing.
Before calling it a night, we walked away from the lights of our camp to the dunes where we were mesmerized by the spectacular sky full of bright stars above us.
Thanks to Collette for sponsoring our Colors of Morocco tour and this extraordinary experience in the Sahara Desert.