Top 9 activities to do while in the Moroccan desert

Morocco is a land of numerous wonders and breathtaking sights to behold. For centuries it has been attracting scientists, scholars, journalists, artists and all other sorts of people, for its inspiring natural landscapes and scenery. Traversed by the majestic Atlas Mountains and limited from north and west by the Atlantic Ocean and the Mediterranean Sea, Morocco marries both golden beaches and thick green forests.

One other aspect of Morocco’s beauty that attracts millions of visitors from all over the world is the one of a kind Moroccan desert. The Moroccan desert is home to dunes of all sizes, from the smallest to some of the tallest in the world. Being in the Sahara desert is an unforgettable memory that we believe every adventurer and nature lover should experience at least once in their lifetime. Through this article, we will introduce you to some activities you can try out to make the best out of your Moroccan desert experience. We will be waiting for you!

Camel trekking

Now these activities are not listed in any particular order. However, we do believe that camel trekking is one of the best ways to fully enjoy the Moroccan desert experience. There’s just something about a camel ride in the middle of the endless desert dunes that just feels so magical and special, no matter if it’s your first or 100th time doing it. If you are only going to be in Morocco for a short period of time and won’t have enough time to try out the rest of these activities, then at least make sure can fit a camel trek somewhere in your schedule. You will absolutely not regret it.

Visiting nearby villages

There are many small villages you can visit while in the Moroccan desert, all with different and unique things to offer. For instance, a trip to Khamlia village will allow you to discover the origins of the famous Gnaoua music genre and meet its masters. If you’re a fan of geology, fossils and minerals, then make sure to stop by the village of Erfoud and visit the fossil museum. Another desert village you can visit is Rissani, where you can experience what a traditional weekly open market looks like in Morocco.

Morocco-desert

Visiting nearby villages

There are many small villages you can visit while in the Moroccan desert, all with different and unique things to offer. For instance, a trip to Khamlia village will allow you to discover the origins of the famous Gnaoua music genre and meet its masters. If you’re a fan of geology, fossils and minerals, then make sure to stop by the village of Erfoud and visit the fossil museum. Another desert village you can visit is Rissani, where you can experience what a traditional weekly open market looks like in Morocco.

Quad bike rides

Besides camel trekking, quad bikes fall as a close second to the most interesting and fun means of transportation through the Moroccan desert. Quad bikes are going to be abundantly available for rent anywhere in the Sahara desert, and we recommend going for a ride at least once! They can be a ton of fun to ride with friends and family, while the desert winds run through your hair and face. Hold a quad bike race with other riders, or enjoy taking cool pictures and videos with your quad, the possibilities are endless!

marrakech quad and buggy ride

Sandboarding

Sand surfing, or sandboarding, is exactly what it sounds like. If you’re a fan of skateboarding or snowboarding and you want to test your skills in a new environment, then sand surfing is the sport for you. This activity is especially interesting when you’re at the Moroccan desert because this is where you’ll find the largest sand dunes in the world, which makes it so much more unique!

Sand bathing

For centuries, desert locals have been using this ancestral practice to help relieve joints pain and rheumatism. Granted, this is an alternative medicine practice so you can’t go in expecting to get cured from your illness, but it definitely helps relieve pain and symptoms. How the “sand baths” work is that you will be buried from the neck-down in the hot Moroccan desert sand and remain there for a few minutes. Although the desert will be hot, it’s still very bearable and not uncomfortable at all. 

Enjoying a bonfire

One of the best parts about spending a night in a desert camp is gathering around the bonfire and sharing unforgettable memories. Every night that you will spend out in the Moroccan desert, you will enjoy local music, Berber drums and interesting stories around a bonfire lighting up the dark. Whether it be desert tunes or classical guitar, there will always be a nightly music session animated by talented locals. Entertainment, good food, a bonfire and fun times, what more are you looking for? 

Trying local cuisine

All this talk of wandering through the Moroccan desert is sure to make one hungry, right? You don’t need to worry about going hungry while enjoying your desert excursion, because there’s a ton of local cuisine for you to try out! One of the main specialties of the area is Medfouna, which is a meat filled bread that’s cooked in the sand, as organic as it gets. You might have heard about Medfouna before under the name “Berber pizza”, which is pretty accurate considering the round shape of it.

Observing wildlife

The Moroccan Sahara is home to a diverse wild life, which you might spot during your trip if you’re lucky enough! Barbary sheep, onyx, jackal and the sand fox are some of the most prominent examples of wildlife present in this desert. While spending the night in a desert camp, you can test your luck to see if you might a catch a photo of one of these species. What you can do is leave out a little bit of food after the lights and the fire are off, then wait to see what shows up to get a snack! Worst case scenario is no animals come, best case scenario you can get a really cute pictures of a little sand fox.

These were only some of the activities we suggest you try out during your next visit to the Moroccan desert. There are of course so many more things to do and experience in this breathtaking part of the world, so don’t hesitate to come and find out for yourself.

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