Video: Trekking in Morocco with Akabar - Sahara Treks

 

Trekking in Marokko

 

Our treks go on ancient nomadic caravan and migration routes through the stone wilderness of Jebel Bani, dunes, over hamadas and through oases. We have chosen those ways to avoid the usual touristic trekking routes and jeep trails. The valleys and plains in the Jebel Bani mountains are the pastures of our nomadic companions from the Berber tribe of Ait Sful from Tafraout area.Our desert walks are offered without any fixed daily tour descriptions, as this is against the nomadic life. We want to let go of the routine and the time pressure, be free and just go, trust our companions. Without expectations, adapting to the nature and enjoying the silence.

 

Hafid Benyachou chooses his team among the nomads of the Jebel Bani and the Boujab area (dune foothills), so they accompany a trekking tour alternately with their own camels or donkeys. 

At Akabar - Sahara Treks it is common for guests and team to eat most of the meals together and to travel as a large family.

 

In extreme landscapes such as in desert, the weather can induce changes in the described itinerary; therefore we expect the participants to be flexible. On our walks in Sahara we experience the hard daily living conditions of the desert people, who have to live with sandstorms, heat, sudden rains or years of drought.

We start our daily hike at about 9 clock in the morning and walk about three to four hours hours. After a long lunch break we walk another one to two hours, all in a calm pace, together with the caravan. We have no sporting requirements, however, our guests should be able to walk several hours - even in mountain landscapes - and be sure-footed.  There is plenty of time to take pictures, to enjoy and relax. We are also concerned about the individual weather conditions, that is, in extreme heat and sand storm we walk less and take a a long lunch break, until the highest temperatures go down.
The team is always concerned about the well-being of the guests and read “wishes” from the eyes. Our companions always carefully choose resting places for lunch and dinner. Upon reaching our midday rest area and our night camp, the guide offers freshly prepared tea and pastries. If enough firewood is available, during the evening the chef will prepare the traditional flat bread in the glow. Otherwise nomad women are asked to bake bread against some money. The hiker can have mineral water at any time, thus it is not necessary to carry 3-4 l water on the daily trek.

The total price includes also one riding camel. More riding camels can be booked.

 
 

For travelers who only intend to stay in the desert, we recommend a flight to Ouarzazate. The Moroccan airline Royal Air Maroc also offers flights to and from Zagora.

To get to Zagora, Akabar - Sahara Treks can send a taxi to Marrakech airport, Ouarzazate or the hotel, or if you wish book you a ticket with one of the Moroccan bus companies - Supratour and CTM (for prices see under "information).  

We recommend the conclusion of travel insurance.            

 


 

 

Short treks: for travellers who want to plan a short desert stay, we offer the following short breaks:

 

From Jebel Bani via Tafraout to the dunes - 3 hiking days:

Arrival and overnight at a Riad (smaller familiar hotel)  in the palm gardens of Amezrou/Zagora.
Day 1: Early morning after breakfast transfer by jeep to the foot of the Jebel Bani mountain range, where the chameliers are already waiting; ascent to the mountains and pass eastern Tafraout area, visit of the new nomad school (installed by Assoziazione Mondo Incantato and Ingenieure ohne Grenzen), tea at semi-nomads and nomads possible
Day 2: walk through valley of bani mountains to dunes
Day 3: Hiking through dune landscapes, in late afternoon return to Zagora by jeep.
 

Trekking-price for 2 persons*: 640 EUR, riding camel extra 15 EUR/day

 
Cameltrekking in dunes of Sahara - 3 hiking days:


Arrival and overnight at a Riad in the palm gardens of Amezrou/Zagora.
On first day, transfer by jeep to the dunes, where the nomad team is waiting with their camels. Hike through different dune areas, alternating with plains, first night in the dunes.
From the second to third day, the caravan
walks leisurely through different dune landscapes - small dunes alternate with plains and high dunes. At fountains we will meet nomads with their herds or wandering donkeys. With some luck we also see gazelles. In late afternoon of day 3 r
eturn to Zagora by jeep.

Trekking-price for 2 persons*: 710 EUR, riding camel extra 15 EUR/day

 
Oasis and dunes of the South - 3 days - hike:
 

Arrival and overnight at a Riad in the palm gardens of Amezrou/Zagora.

Day 1: Transfer by taxi or jeep from the hotel to area of Tagounite, where we meet our chamelier with his camels. On our hike we first go through oases and along the river of Draa, overnight in the dunes of Negag mountains.
Day 2: We walk along the Draa river and through dunes landscapes of Erg Sahel.
Day 3: The tour continues towards M'Hamid near the Algerian border. Lunch and transfer back to Zagora.

Trekking-price for 2 persons*: 620 EUR, riding camel extra 15 EUR/day

 

From Oued L'Amhasser to the dunes - 4 hiking days:


Arrival and overnight at a Riad (smaller familiar hotel)  in the palm gardens of Amezrou/Zagora.
Day 1:
Early morning after breakfast transfer by jeep to the foot of the Jebel Bani mountain range at Al Feyja, where the chameliers are already waiting; ascent to the mountains, over wide plains
to the entrance of the rocky gorges of Oued L'Amhasser, overnight in the mountains near a small oasis.
2nd day: hike through the valleys of the impressive Jebel Bani mountains to the dune foreland; Overnight either in the mountains or in the dunes.

Day 3 and 4: hiking through dunes, in the late afternoon of the 4th day return to Zagora.

Trekking-price for 2 persons*: 770 EUR, riding camel extra 15 EUR/day

We have minimized our prices for 1 and 2 persons to make desert hikes for solo travelers and couples attractive. From 3 persons, the standard prices in the following table apply.

 

*The trekking price includes:
Jeep transfer from Zagora to the starting point of the trekking and return, camel trekking with English- or French-speaking guide, cook, chameliers, baggage camels,  mineral water during trekking, full board with afternoon tea, camping equipment, mattresses, blankets and tent ( if you wish you can have your own tent without surcharge) insurance.
Further riding camels extra from 15 € per day/camel.

Not included: Hotel in Amezrou or Zagora, lunch and dinner at the hotel as well as drinks, gratuities to our nomadic crew:

Tipping is voluntary; the nomadic team will be delighted.
Recommendation for tipping:
One week trekking 20-30 EUR per participant
2 weeks trekking 30-40 EUR per participant
3 weeks trekking 40-50 EUR per participant
At the end of the hike the tour guide collects  the tip and spread it evenly among the attendants.

 

Additional treks are just being planned, pls request.

 


  

5 days camel trekking on nomadic paths through dunes and mountains

 

 
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 Cave Painting Tour
 
 
 
 

After 1,5 to 2 hours transfer by jeep to the Jebel Bani mountain range we will walk up into this varied mountain landscape. Over wide plains we come to our first overnight stay near the tents of a nomadic family. Opportunity to visit the cave paintings which were discovered only in 2008. Crossing the mountains towards Taskhunt, we will pass the dunes outskirts of Bouhjab and spend the first night in the dunes at Erg Lmasfi. On our route through the gorges of Oued L'Amhasser we come to Amda lake and end the walk in the nomadic area of Tafraout. Stay in the nomadic community with a visit of gardens, the nomadic school and individual homes. Overnight stay with a family or in the vicinity of the school. Continuing our trek, we stay overnight in an oasis of Jebel Bani and in calm dunes.

Caravan from the dunes to Jebel Bani Mountains
The tour starts at the sand dunes of Oued Latash, continues through the smaller Chegaga dunes and continues across steppe landscape to the fascinating Oued L'Amhasser area in Jebel Bani Mountains. In the gorges of Oued L'Amhasser we stay next to Amda lake, we continue our hike via the oasis Diabi and wide plains and finally descend to the farmland of Alfeija. We stay overnight in calm dunes and in an oasis of Jebel Bani mountains.
 
 
 

 
 

8 days camel trekking along ancient caravan routes                         

From the bustling Tafraout into the tranquility of the dunes
From the fields and farmlands region Alfeija near Zagora climb up into Jebel Bani mountains and stay for the first night near the small oasis of Diabi. We walk along the stony river with its numerous water holes and reach the nomadic area of Tafraout, where we can visit gardens, homes and the nomadic school. Next day, after crossing a pass we reach near Zauit the canyons of Oued L'Amhasser and will visit the ruins of a town abandoned for centuries. Here we can for example find potsherds. With enough time, we can see more ruins on the nearby table mountain. We cross the canyon of Oued L'Amhasser and if there is enough water in Lake Amda we can also refresh ourselves by swimming. Overnight next to the nomad family Ydir. We leave the mountains of Jebel Bani and cross the dunes of Erg Lmasfi, Erg Elghol, Erg Sdra and Erg Bogarn.
 
From the petroglyphs to the wide dune landscapes
Rise into the silence of the beautiful mountain surroundings of Jebel Bani; walk across the plateau of Alghola to stay overnight next to the black tents of the nomadic family Okhye. Stay of one day in order to visit the different places of cave paintings. The hike is continued over the black rock slabs of Taskhunt. In the next days the caravan will wander through the dunes of Erg Elghol, Erg Chentouf, Erg Sdra, Erg Bogarn until to the end of our route in Erg Oued Laghtach.
 
Hike on old nomadic paths through unspoilt countryside
Ascent to Jebel Bani mountain and hike up Tjinia, overnight at the nomadic family Muhu. We continue this tour on old paces, yet untouched by tourism, to the oasis Diabi and then pass through the canyons and stone rivers of Oued L'Amhasser. After a stay at the nomad family Ydir we walk through the area of steppe to the smaller Chegaga dunes and Boughan dunes , where we are free from noisy jeep and quad-tourism.
 
 

 

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12 days camel trek -  pure relaxation
 
From the mountains to the vastness of the desert
Rise into the Jebel Bani mountain range nearby the farmland of Alfeja, crossing the plateau and overnight stay at area of Eleouj. After crossing the fascinating landscape of the black rock slabs we reach the dunes at Erg Elghol. In the coming days we will walk through dune areas such as Erg Sdra and Erg Zahar, arid plains, meet old sanctuaries such as Sidi Naji and Sidi Ishak until we reach the white dunes of Erg Sahl and Tidri oasis .The last night we will spend at the edge of dunes at Bougayurn.
 
On ancient caravan routes to Iriki Lake area
Nearby the farmland of Alfeija we walk up to the plateau until we reach the black tents of a a nomadic family who discovered the nearby rock paintings only in 2008. We will visit the places of cave paintings, images of thousands of years of colonisation of Jebel Bani mountain range. The trek takes place on old caravan routes in diversified mountain landscape, far away from any tourism. We will spend our nights in the mountains and via the dunes of Erg Elmhazi we will reach Iriki National Park, where we walk and spend our night in calm dunes.
 
From Iriki Lake area to the mountain wilderness of Jebel Bani
This interesting hike starts at Foum Zguid - Al Jarmia mountains - and goes on the Imdour Amsan tamarisk plains. From the heart of the Iriki National Park the caravan leads through the dunes of Erg Imhasi, the great Chegaga Dunes, Erg Sdra, Oued Latasch up to the very impressive area of Oued L'Amhasser with its rock formations and stone rivers. We walk across the mountain plains of Zouid and Tirrarin / Tafraout and finish this tour by leaving Jebel Bani near the farmlands of Alfeija.

 

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15 day tour - we dive into the world of the Sahara

For the insatiable desert hikers, we offer a 15-day caravan hike starting from Merzouga to Zagora. We walk through the mountains, dunes, oases and meet some nomadic families. Details on request.  

 

Trekking-Prices 2018 (in EUR per person)

We designed special prices for 1 to 2 persons to give also single travellers and couples a chance for trekking

 

Number of persons 5-days tour 6-days tour 8-days tour
10-days tour
1 person 640 710 860 1110
2 persons 500 560 700 820
3 - 4 persons 435 505 635 760
5 - 6 persons 430 495 620 745
7 - 8 persons 435 500 625 750

 

Prices subject to change
25% discount for children under 12 years, prices for groups of 9 people please inquire.


The trekking price includes: Jeep transfer from Zagora to the starting point of the trekking and return, camel trekking with English- or French-speaking guide, cook, chameliers, baggage camels, one additional riding camel, mineral water during trekking, full board with afternoon tea, camping equipment, mattresses, blankets and tent ( if you wish you can have your own tent) insurance.

Further riding camels extra from 15 € per day/camel.

Not included: Hotel in Amezrou or Zagora, lunch and dinner at the hotel as well as drinks, gratuities to our nomadic crew:

 

Tipping is voluntary; the nomadic team will be delighted.
Recommendation for tipping:
One week trekking 20-30 EUR per participant
2 weeks trekking 30-40 EUR per participant
3 weeks trekking 40-50 EUR per participant
At the end of the hike the tour guide collects  the tip and spread it evenly among the attendants.

 

We highly recommand our guests the following riads near Zagora: (please contact us, we will make reservations for you at a special price):
Both in Amezrou, about 1.5 km from Zagora, located in the palm groves, winding lanes between the gardens invite you to go walking, very quiet area, authentic, no tourism, relaxation.



Upon request, you will be met by our taxi at the airport and reach on the same day, the hotel in Zagora. Taxi transport Marrakech-Zagora each € 130.00, Ouarzazate- Zagora € 50.00 each.

 

We reduced our prices for one and two persons in order to make trekking also for singles and couples attractive.