I can’t even explain what an experience the desert was!! Definitely on my top three list I highly recommend it. I wasn’t planning to visit to be honest, I was at Marrakech walking around one day and saw a sign up for a tour office specializing in Sahara Deserts. A sign!! I came up and signed up and hoped this wasn’t a scam.
The company came through, I was picked up right on time as promised and was taken to a meeting point with 32 other people and were driven off in brand new vans with AC. The company I signed up with offered a 2,3 0r 5 day stay at the desert. I had a plane to catch in a couple of days so I signed up for the 2 day tour but if you have the time do sign up for the 5 day tour because you get to go all the way to Tunisia. Anyways, here goes my itinerary for the two days in the desert, the cost for any tour company should not be more than $80 USD, if its low season and you are very good at negotiating, I heard of people on the tour that only paid $45 USD so work your magic!
Pickup from your hotel or meet at a designated area close to the Medina. You will be on the road off to Ourzazate for a couple of hours, through the beautiful Atlas mountains and stopping at beautiful Berber villages where you will be able to use the restroom, buy some food or drink some tea.
You will stop at Kasbah Taourirt and have some lunch close to that location. Lunch is not included though, but you can get some cheap tagines at the restaurant or you are more than welcome to bring your own lunch.
After lunch you will drive through the capital city of cinema in Africa and stop to check out the studios from outside, after this you will be driven towards Agdz and Zagora and a couple of hours after that to the palmeraie in Draa Valley.
You will then arrive at the desert and have the best camel ride during the sunset all the way to nighttime when you can see the brightest sky ever! When you get to camp the tents will be set up for your stay and the bonfires all good to go for you to enjoy some authentic berber tea and music. You will also have dinner cooked by the nomads themselves and this is included on your cost of course.
Wakeup just before the sun comes out, to check out the first lights of the day and the beautiful sunrise in the Sahara which is like nothing I have ever seen before! You’ll have breakfast here at camp, included as well, before heading out to another camel ride, now through the sunset and all the way back to the vans that will take you back to Marrakech.
On the way back you will stop at UNESCO heritage, Aït Ben Haddou Kasbah. You have probably heard of it from the movies filmed here like Gladiator, Laurence of Arabia, Kingdom of Heaven and several TV series. And finally you will stop at Merzouga on the way back and spend a couple of hours here walking up to the hill and through the shops.
You won’t regret this experience, you so spend a lot of time on the van but every single stop makes the ride totally worth it. Event he two-day intense desert trip was worth it but do try to head out for at least three days.
Total spending for the two days: $50USD