Travel to the Sahara – Merzouga
Merzouga and its captivating Erg Chebbi dunes should not be missed on a trip through the Sahara. Trek into the desert on camel back or ride quad bike for an unforgettable experience in these vast sand dunes!
Merzouga dunes should be visited between October and March when temperatures are most comfortable; afternoon visits should also be avoided when the sun’s rays can be intensely powerful.
Travelers typically reach Merzouga from Marrakech via the paved road, which can take about 9 to 10 hours without stopping. Along the way you’ll pass majestic Atlas Mountains, pass dreamlike Road of 1000 Kasbahs, and finally into Sahara Desert. However, flying directly to Merzouga’s Moulay Ali Cherif airport could be another option; it is only two-hours from Merzouga city center.
Once in Merzouga, you will discover one commercial street lined by restaurants and stores selling traditional Bedouin jellaba scarves and hotel worker galabias for hotel workers. Tour buses stop here regularly making your journey much faster and easier.
Marrakech and Fes are home to numerous travel agencies offering tours or customizing private trips with local guides, with prices varying depending on comfort preferences, length of stay in the sand dunes, etc. At minimum you should expect at least a three-day adventure complete with driver/guide services, lodging accommodations and any necessary activities.
Merzouga offers many lodging options, from basic tent camps to luxurious tented hotels in the dunes. Most accommodations will include camel trekking excursions into the dunes as well as meals in the desert; expect to pay between 40-100 euros per night for these services.
While staying in Merzouga, you will also experience its vibrant culture which is rich with traditions and resilience. Desert inhabitants have adapted well to the harsh conditions of this region and developed an attitude of social humanitarianism which shows through in their lifestyle.
Rissani Market offers handmade souvenirs and local gifts at great prices. Here you’ll also be able to shop for Berber jewelry made by women artisans – a fantastic way to support both local economy and artisans in this village. Additionally, there is a small museum which gives insight into local history and culture.