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If you're dreaming of a Sahara desert tour in Morocco, but don't know where to start planning, then this article is for you!

Everything you need to know before booking a Morocco Desert Tour

If you’re dreaming of a Sahara desert adventure in Morocco, but don’t know where to start planning, then this article is for you! With so many tour options out there claiming to be the best, it can be overwhelming. But fear not – we’ve got all the essential information covered here.

  • We’ll help guide you through choosing the perfect starting point for your Moroccan Sahara trip and which areas are worth visiting. We’ll also give advice on when’s the best time of year to go and how long to stay.
  • Of course, budget is always an important factor too – so we’ll discuss what kind of prices different tours offer and what exactly that includes. Plus some tips on packing appropriately (you won’t want any surprises once you get there!).
  • Finally, if traveling with kids sounds daunting as well – don’t worry! We have some helpful suggestions specifically tailored towards families looking for their own unique experiences in one of Morocco’s most iconic destinations.
  • After reading our comprehensive guide covering everything about Morocco Desert Tours available throughout the country; booking your dream excursion will feel like a breeze!

Table of Content

  1. where should you start your journey and what are the best places to visit? 
  2. how long should you plan on staying in the Sahara? 
  3. Should You DIY or Book a Guided Sahara Trip? 
  4. What Time Of The Year To Visit will be key when making plans. Don’t worry though
  5. What Should You Pack For Your Sahara Desert Trips?
  6. Sahara Desert with Kids

Are you planning a Sahara Desert adventure in Morocco, but not sure where to begin? 

The first decision you need to make is which desert area you want to explore and where to start your journey. Most tourists choose either the Merzouga or Zagora Desert and usually start their tour from Marrakech or Fez. Let’s delve into these options in more detail.

Merzouga Desert

Merzouga is a popular option if you’re looking to explore the Sahara Desert. Merzouga is located near the impressive Erg Chebbi sand dunes, which are taller and more colorful than the dunes near Zagora. One of the main advantages of a Merzouga desert tour is that the town is located right on the edge of the dunes, making them easy to reach with a short 30-minute camel ride. Merzouga also has modern hotels, making it convenient for travelers who are short on time or prefer not to stray too far from tourist amenities. However, because of its popularity, Merzouga can be more expensive and crowded with tourists. Keep in mind that it takes around 9 hours to drive from Marrakech or 7 hours from Fez to reach Merzouga, so plan accordingly if you’re joining a desert tour from either city. A minimum of two nights and three days is recommended for the trip, as overnight stays are required on the way to Merzouga.

Merzouga Desert camel ride

Zagora Desert

Zagora is a town in southern Morocco that’s situated near the Erg Chigaga sand dunes. The dunes are located about 60 km from the nearest road, so the journey to see them takes longer than to see the sand dunes in Merzouga. To reach Erg Chigaga, you’ll need to first get to the small town of M’hamid. Then, you’ll have to trek through rugged desert terrain for a while before reaching the Erg Chigaga sand dunes. It’s worth noting that the Zagora desert doesn’t look like the typical orange sand desert you might picture. Instead, it’s a stone desert that has a more moon-like appearance. Because it takes longer to get there and is less popular than Merzouga, it tends to be a more budget-friendly option or a choice for those who prefer to go off the beaten track. If you’re starting from Marrakech, it’ll take about 6 hours to drive to Zagora, and about 9.5 hours from Fez (without stops).

Where to begin your tour ?

Marrakech is the most popular starting point if you’re looking to embark on a Sahara Desert trip. This is largely due to the fact that it’s the capital of Morocco and where most people begin their journey. However, it’s also possible to visit the Sahara Desert from Fes. Keep in mind that there are more options for desert trips departing from Marrakech, as it’s the more popular choice. One popular itinerary is to take a Marrakech to Fes desert tour, which allows you to start your journey in Marrakech, go on a Sahara desert safari, and then continue on to Fez – or vice versa.

How many days for a Morocco desert tour ?

Located in the southern region of Morocco, Zagora is a hidden gem that boasts breathtaking Erg Chigaga sand dunes. Unlike its popular counterpart Merzouga, getting to these stunning sand formations requires an adventurous trek through rugged desert terrain from the small town of M’hamid – but trust us when we say it’s worth every step! While most people envision orange-hued deserts, what sets Zagora apart is its unique stone-like appearance which resembles something out of this world.

For those seeking budget-friendly options or wanting to venture off-the-beaten-track for a truly authentic experience, look no further than Zagora. With Marrakech just six hours away and Fez nine-and-a-half without stops by car; embarking on a 2-3 night tour will allow you ample time to explore at your own pace while indulging in activities such as camel-trekking and visiting local tribes.

However, be sure to confirm with your tour provider that two nights are spent under the stars amidst nature’s beauty rather than one evening followed by hotel accommodations. Spending additional days allows more opportunities for relaxation among spectacular views along with thrilling experiences like sandboarding making memories never-to-forget!

In summary: If you’re looking for adventure combined with natural wonderment then consider venturing into Southern Morocco where there lies beautiful yet underrated destination called “Zagora.”

Agafay Desert

If you’re pressed for time but still want to experience the beauty of a desert landscape, Marrakech day excursions to Agafay Desert are an excellent choice. Located just 40km southwest of Marrakesh, this rugged and dry terrain resembles that of a lunar surface. While it may not have the towering sand dunes found in Merzouga or Zagora, visitors can still enjoy camel rides across its vast expanse – though I must stress that Agafay is distinct from Sahara.

In addition to being accessible year-round, even during Morocco’s hottest summer months when many other camps shut down due to safety concerns related to extreme temperatures; visiting an Agafay camp outside Marrakech will provide equally hot weather without sacrificing any amenities offered by larger tours through more remote areas like those mentioned above. So if you’re considering exploring Morocco on your next trip abroad but don’t have much free time available or prefer staying closer within reach while enjoying all aspects associated with such adventures then l ook no further than these exciting options!

Agafay Desert near Marrakech

Should i plan the tour myself or take a guided Sahara Tour ?

Are you considering a DIY Sahara adventure? While it’s possible to hire a car or take the bus, and arrange your own activities upon arrival, camping in the desert is another story. Joining one of our Morocco tours will provide numerous advantages that far outweigh going solo.

Our best Morocco desert trips are all-inclusive with transportation from Marrakech or Fez, lodging, meals and exciting activities included. With an experienced guide leading the way there’s less chance of getting lost while discovering hidden gems for those perfect photo opportunities.

Language barriers can be frustrating but not on our guided tour! Our knowledgeable guides speak multiple languages ensuring clear communication throughout your journey. Safety is always top priority so rest assured we have taken every precautionary measure necessary to ensure your well-being during this unforgettable experience!

Don’t leave anything up to chance when booking your next trip – choose us for more chances at success!

What type of Sahara desert camp to consider ? Budget, Medium or Luxury ?

Now that you’ve decided on the destination for your desert safari in Morocco and have determined how many days are available, it’s time to consider which tour package is right for you. Would a budget-friendly option suffice or would mid-range or luxury be more suitable? However, before making any reservations with a Morocco desert tour company, there are some important questions worth asking.

Firstly, what exactly does the quoted price include and exclude from their Sahara desert tours? Secondly, do they offer services during your planned visit dates and if so – given summer months can reach temperatures of 100-110F during daytime hours without air conditioning – will this affect comfort levels?

Additionally: where specifically will stops take place including hotel/riad names; how large is each group traveling together (if not private); should additional fees be expected at certain locations; which meals require out-of-pocket expenses along with average costs per meal; alternative dining options when necessary;

Furthermore: details regarding sleeping arrangements within the campsite itself as well as an itinerary outlining all scheduled stops throughout duration of trip such arrival/departure times etc.; finally ensuring those who may suffer from health issues like back pain inquire about camel support systems while riding through deserts.

Erg Chebbi Luxury Sahara Desert Camp

Budget desert camp

If you’re planning a budget tour of the Sahara Desert, be warned: many travelers have been left disappointed by their experiences. A quick Google search for “budget Sahara Desert tours” will reveal countless negative reviews from unhappy customers who were promised luxury and tranquility but instead found themselves in overcrowded tents with poor facilities. While there may be some good budget options out there, they seem to be few and far between.

What can you expect on a typical budget tour? Transportation, lodging (in basic tents), camel treks, and mediocre meals at best – all other food is up to you. You’ll also likely find yourself surrounded by lots of people on your trip without access to toilets or showers; communication barriers are common as well.

Of course, if roughing it appeals to you then this might not matter so much! But if you’re hoping for something more comfortable during your desert adventure – beware that once you arrive after a long drive into the middle of nowhere- turning back isn’t an option. Don’t let disappointment ruin what should otherwise be an unforgettable experience – choose wisely when selecting your travel provider!

Mid-range desert camp

Opting for a mid-range camp offers you the best of both worlds – some luxurious amenities without breaking your bank. Although it may not have all the fancy frills that come with high-end camps, it certainly beats budget options in terms of comfort and convenience. Additionally, a private transportation service might be included as opposed to sharing rides with strangers. To ascertain if an option falls under this category, simply compare its offerings against those provided by luxury or budget alternatives.

Luxury camp

The luxury desert camps are extremely lavish, to the point that it doesn’t feel like you’re camping at all! I had the pleasure of staying at one, and it was so incredible that the bed was even more comfortable than my own at home.

As a guest on one of our luxurious desert safaris, here’s what awaits you:

  • Campsites and tents equipped with running water
  • Personal bathrooms to ensure privacy
  • Tents fitted with heating facilities
  • Spacious beds designed for maximum relaxation
  • Private seating areas where you can unwind in peace And last but not least, -Sumptuous Moroccan cuisine served up fresh every day.

Insider tips for booking a desert tour : 

Booking your tour in advance is the most crucial advice I can give you before embarking on a journey to Morocco. Although it’s possible to book upon arrival, reserving ahead of time will provide ample opportunity for research and guarantee that you secure a booking with an esteemed tour group while knowing precisely what awaits during your excursion.

Far too often have we encountered reviews from disappointed tourists who failed to conduct their due diligence beforehand. These unfortunate circumstances could’ve been easily avoided had they taken the necessary precautions.

Upon reaching Marrakech or Fez, expect numerous hustlers peddling Sahara trips through medina streets. If not already reserved earlier, there’s no telling which unfamiliar tours may be booked impulsively based solely on price point alone – leading towards dissatisfaction later down the line.

Morocco offers unforgettable experiences within its desert terrain; therefore ensuring satisfaction becomes paramount when touring such areas as these are rare opportunities indeed! Remember that quality comes at a cost- especially regarding Sahara trips where “you get what you paid for.”

Dades Gorges snaky road

What time of the year to visit Morocco Sahara desert ?

When planning a trip to the Sahara desert, it’s important to consider the best time of year for your excursion. While any season can be enjoyable, some months offer more favorable conditions than others.

For those seeking mild temperatures and comfortable weather during their holiday in the Sahara desert, we recommend scheduling your visit between April and October. During this period, both daytime and nighttime temps are agreeable – making outdoor activities much more pleasant.

However, if you opt for a winter adventure (December through March), prepare yourself for frigid nights with below-freezing temperatures that may leave you shivering under layers of blankets. Alternatively, summer travelers (June-September) should anticipate scorching hot days which could make exploration unbearable without proper precautions like sunscreen or hydration supplies on hand at all times!

Lastly but importantly: keep in mind that many popular tours close down entirely throughout August due mostly because extreme heat makes them too dangerous even when taking necessary safety measures into account!

What to pack for a Morocco Sahara desert tour ?

There are some important things to consider before packing your bags. Firstly, leave behind any large and bulky suitcases or backpacks as they won’t be suitable for this type of trip. Instead, opt for a small backpack that can easily fit all your essentials.

To pack appropriately for your journey into the heart of the Sahara desert, it’s vital to know what kind of camp you’ll be staying at beforehand. This will help determine what items are necessary and which ones aren’t worth bringing along.

Find out about sleeping arrangements – do you need bedding or is it provided? Will you have access to heat during colder nights?

Bathroom facilities also play an essential role in determining what clothes and toiletries should make their way into your luggage.

Food options must also be considered; find out if meals will be provided en route or if snacks/drinks need purchasing ahead of time.

Regardless of where one stays while on this exciting excursion through North Africa’s most famous wilderness area – everyone needs certain basic supplies! So don’t forget these crucial items when preparing:

  • When preparing for a camel ride, it’s important to prioritize your comfort and safety. Loose fitting pants or jeans are essential to protect your legs from the rough terrain. Opt for briefs instead of thongs – trust us, you don’t want any discomfort down there while riding! A long sleeve top will also help shield you from the sun.
  • Don’t forget about accessories that provide additional protection: a scarf can be wrapped around your face to keep out sand and harmful UV rays; sunglasses guard against glare; and hats offer much-needed shade.
  • Footwear is another crucial consideration – skip sandals in favor of tennis shoes or hiking boots with socks. And if this is your first time on a camel, pack some ibuprofen or paracetamol as soreness may occur afterwards!
  • Other items worth bringing include camera (with sand-proof bag), power bank (in case camp lacks electricity), flashlight, travel first aid kit, toiletries…the list goes on! 

Invest in these essentials so that nothing gets between you and an unforgettable experience atop one of nature’s most majestic creatures.

Visiting Morocco Sahara desert in the winter

If you’re planning on exploring the Sahara during winter, be prepared for chilly nights. Don’t let the cold ruin your adventure – pack smartly! You’ll need to bring along a few essentials such as wool socks or extra insulated ones to keep your feet warm while sleeping at night and a heavier jacket for those evening strolls. Layering is key so don’t forget an additional sweater or two, long underwear, and even a shawl that can double up as both cover-up attire and lap blanket if needed. And trust us when we say this: hand warmers are lifesavers in these situations! So go ahead and enjoy all that the majestic desert has to offer without any worries of freezing temperatures holding you back by packing wisely before embarking on your journey through it’s vast expanse this season!

Kasbah Ait Ben Haddou Berber Village

Visiting Morocco Sahara desert in spring and Fall

Don’t let the common occurrence of sandstorms during spring in the Sahara deter you from visiting. In fact, witnessing a live sandstorm can be an unforgettable and one-of-a-kind experience. However, it’s crucial to prepare for this likelihood beforehand. Along with our primary checklist, we suggest bringing along some additional items such as an extra waterproof or sand-resistant bag if you’re carrying camera equipment…

Visiting the Sahara Desert in summer

In the scorching summer, it’s tempting to wear short sleeve shirts for comfort. However, you must be aware that your skin is at risk of getting damaged by the harsh sun and blowing sand can also cause harm. In order to safeguard yourself from these hazards, we recommend choosing loose weight long sleeves instead (such as this one for women or this one for men). Trust us when we say that wearing shorts while camel trekking will only make things worse!

If you’re planning a visit during summertime, here are some additional items worth considering: extra water – because hydration is key; sunscreen – protect your delicate skin from harmful UV rays; battery or solar powered hand fan- stay cool on-the-go and finally fever reducing strips which provide instant relief in case of overheating.

Don’t compromise with your health just to look stylish! Choose wisely and enjoy every moment under the blazing sun without any worries about potential damage caused by heat stroke or dehydration.

Additional requirements for budget desert camps :

When embarking on a low cost Sahara tour in Morocco, it’s important to be adequately prepared for the basic desert camps you’ll encounter. Simply packing an extra set of clothes won’t cut it – there are additional items that will make your experience more comfortable and enjoyable.

Before setting out, gather as much information as possible about what amenities will be available both en route to the Sahara and at camp. In addition, consider bringing:

  • A sleeping bag or blankets: If sharing unwashed bedding with strangers makes you uneasy (and who could blame you?), bring your own sleeping gear.
  • Toilet paper and hand sanitizer: These essentials may not always be provided.
  • Flip flops/sandals: Protect your feet from hot sand while still being able to easily slip them off when necessary.
  • Plenty of bottled water/snacks: While these can often be purchased along the way, don’t risk running out before reaching camp!
  • Any special dietary needs/allergies should also be taken into account so that you’re fully equipped with everything required for a successful trip.

By taking these simple steps towards preparation beforehand ,you’ll ensure maximum comfort during this once-in-a-lifetime adventure!

The Sahara desert with children :

Are you considering taking your kids on a Sahara tour but unsure if it’s the right decision? Ultimately, only you can decide whether or not your children are up for the adventure. However, before booking anything, there are some important factors to consider.

Children hunting for fossils in Morocco Sahara desert

Firstly, keep in mind that long periods of driving will be involved. If this is something your kids aren’t used to and may struggle with boredom during these times – opt for a private tour where quick stops can be made whenever needed.

Additionally, think about whether or not riding camels alone would make them feel uncomfortable- as an alternative check if parent-child options exist within tours offered?

Furthermore,it’s possible that sitting at camp sites might bore certain children; therefore pack quiet activities such as books,games,iPads along with portable solar charger so they don’t miss out on entertainment opportunities even when away from home!

Lastly,don’t forget food preferences! Moroccan cuisine isn’t everyone’s cup of tea.If traditional dishes won’t appeal then bring other snack items which cater more towards their taste buds. In conclusion, keep all these aspects into consideration while planning any trip involving young ones especially one like desert safari.

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