Erg Chebbi Dunes
Morocco offers a diverse landscape, including historic medinas, beautiful coastlines, towering mountains, and vast Sahara desert dunes. One of the must-visit dunes in Morocco is Erg Chebbi. It is easily accessible and attracts travelers from around the world. Located in the Moroccan Sahara desert in the southeast of the country, Erg Chebbi is about 30km from the towns of Erfoud and Rissani, and 558km from Marrakech.
Erg Chebbi is part of the Sahara desert and is formed by wind-blown sand in the dry southeastern region. Covering an area of 28km, the dunes here are about 250m high and have a striking reddish color that becomes even more magical during sunrise and sunset. Experiencing the breathtaking view of Erg Chebbi is a highlight of any trip to Morocco.
Erg Chebbi Dunes From Marrakech
Many excursions from Marrakech offer trips to the Sahara desert, with popular destinations being Zagora, Erg Chigaga, and Erg Chebbi.
A 3-day tour from Marrakech to Fes or 3-days from Marrakech to Marrakech is the shortest option to explore Erg Chebbi and other fascinating places in the southeast, like Ait Ben Haddou and Todgha Gorges. After experiencing Erg Chebbi, you can continue your vacation to Marrakech or To Fes and even visit the charming blue city of Chefchaouen or other attractions in Morocco. This tours provide an excellent opportunity to discover the Sahara.
At Erg Chebbi Dunes, you can enjoy activities such as camel riding, quad biking, horse riding, and sand surfing. However, the highly recommended experiences are camel riding and spending a night in a desert camp.
If you choose to travel directly to the Merzouga dunes from Marrakech, be prepared for a full day of driving, approximately 9 hours, to reach the dunes.
Erg Chebbi or Erg Chigaga
If you’re a first-time traveler in Morocco, both Erg Chigaga and Erg Chebbi would be great choices to have the best experience. You’ll need at least 3 days Zagora tour from Marrakech for either option. However, Erg Chigaga is more remote and expansive, requiring a 3-4 hour drive from Mhamid. The road from Mhamid to Erg Chigaga can be rough, with rocky and sandy terrain. It’s advisable to use a 4WD car to reach the large dunes.
On the other hand, Erg Chebbi is more easily accessible. The paved road will take you directly to Merzouga and other small villages. The reddish dunes of Erg Chebbi are just a short distance away, making them distinct from other Sahara dunes in Morocco. In Merzouga, you’ll find amenities like internet access, cafes, and hotels. If you’re not planning to spend the night in a luxury desert camp, there are plenty of accommodation options available as well.
Why Morocco Sahara Desert?
Unique Desert Landscape
The Sahara Desert in Morocco is the largest hot desert in the world, covering a significant portion of the country. It offers a vast and diverse landscape that includes sweeping sand dunes, rocky plateaus, ancient valleys, and picturesque oases. This diversity provides a unique and breathtaking backdrop for desert exploration.
Erg Chebbi Dunes
The Erg Chebbi dunes near Merzouga are iconic and visually striking. These golden sand dunes can reach heights of up to 150 meters, creating a mesmerizing sight and offering incredible photo opportunities. The experience of walking or camel trekking through the towering dunes is both awe-inspiring and unforgettable.
Authentic Berber Culture
The Sahara Desert is home to numerous Berber communities, who have inhabited the region for centuries. Desert tours in Morocco often include interactions with local Berber people, allowing visitors to immerse themselves in their rich cultural traditions, music, food, and hospitality. Spending a night in a traditional Berber desert camp provides a genuine and memorable cultural experience.
Riding camels is a quintessential part of desert exploration in Morocco. Trekking on camelback across the desert dunes is a unique and enjoyable way to traverse the vast expanse of the Sahara. It offers a sense of adventure and allows you to experience the desert at a leisurely pace, appreciating its beauty and tranquility.
The Sahara Desert boasts some of the clearest skies in the world, free from light pollution. This makes it an ideal location for stargazing and observing the night sky. The breathtaking display of stars in the desert creates a magical atmosphere and is a highlight of many Sahara Desert tours.
In addition to camel trekking, the Sahara Desert offers a range of activities to enhance your tour experience. These may include sandboarding down the dunes, 4×4 off-road adventures, exploring ancient desert fortresses and kasbahs, visiting remote oases, or even camping under the stars. The variety of activities ensures there is something for everyone, catering to different interests and adventure levels.
Peaceful and Serene Environment
The vastness of the Sahara Desert allows visitors to escape the noise and distractions of city life. The peaceful and serene environment of the desert provides a unique opportunity for relaxation, introspection, and reconnection with nature. It’s an ideal setting to unwind, reflect, and find solace in the tranquil desert surroundings.
Hospitality and Exquisite Cuisine
Moroccan hospitality is renowned worldwide, and this extends to desert tours as well. Local guides and camp hosts go above and beyond to ensure guests have a comfortable and enjoyable experience. Additionally, Moroccan cuisine, including traditional Berber dishes, is a highlight of desert tours, offering a unique culinary adventure.
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