Morocco: Camel trekking and hiking in the desert with Akabar - Sahara Treks - individual - personal - flexible

Article Index

 

Philosophy

  • With our offers of trekking and trekking with homestay we would like to offer an income to the people in the desert, so that they can live further in their environment and in their culture and are not forced to emigrate to cities.  For our trekking tours, friendly nomads from the Jebel Bani Mountains are hired with their own camels. In this way the Chameliers can contribute with their own animals to the support of their families. In order to offer single or destitute nomadic women an income opportunity, they accompany women's groups as cook.
  •  Our tours and hikes take place in close cooperation with nomads from the Ait Atta tribe, who do not just work for us. We attach great importance to community and a friendly family relationship, in which we learn a lot about their culture and everyday life and get to know their living environment. At Akabar - Sahara Treks it is common for guests and team to eat meals together and travel like a large family. The Akabar team always takes care of the well-being of the guests and is careful and responsible in performing its tasks before and during the tour.
  • Akabar - Sahara Treks employs only locals, that are nomads and semi-nomads as chameliers, cook and helpers as well as the jeep drivers from Zagora. Food comes from the market in Zagora and selected local traders. They work together with some small cosy riads, which are located 2 km outside Zagora in the oasis gardens of Amezrou.
  • The camels of our companions are treated well and respectfully. The nomads regard their animals as family members. Their camels are not kept in stables but roam through the valleys of Jebel Bani and the dunes. On the tours they carry their luggage for a maximum of five to six hours, while the rest of the time they are searching for food and resting. In the mornings and evenings they also receive date grist and oats, especially in dry weather.  The number of camels depends on the size of the group, so that the animals do not have to carry too much.
  • Our trekking tours lead off the beaten track of mass tourism on former caravan paths and shepherd's hiking trails through the varied and fascinating stone wilderness of the Jebel Bani, through dune landscapes, over hamadas and to oases. We have chosen our paths so that we walk away from the usual caravan routes and Jeeppists. Our team is at home in the mountains and desert.  The valleys and plains of the vast Jebel Bani mountain range belong to the pastures of the herds of our nomadic companions. On our caravans with spontaneous overnight stay with local families you experience life and culture of the nomadic population of the Sahara.
  • Our desert hikes are offered without fixed daily tour descriptions, as this does not correspond to the nomadic life. A desert hike and the stay with nomads is very easy, without any comfort. The traveller is rewarded by the cordiality, openness and spontaneity of the desert inhabitants. For this reason we also assume that our guests are tolerant and flexible, as well as willing to fit into the community and also to collect things like wood, fetch water and clean up. We want to leave the desert clean and without big traces on our hikes, therefore we burn combustible waste and take other garbage back to Zagora for disposal. It is very important to us to carry out careful and sustainable tourism in order not to negatively influence the existing structures and the culture of the nomads.
  •  In extreme landscapes such as the desert, weather conditions can also cause the described itinerary to be deviated from; therefore, we expect a certain degree of flexibility and adaptability from the participants. On our tours to the Sahara we get to know the daily hard living conditions of the desert inhabitants, who have to live with sandstorms, heat, sudden rainfalls or years of drought.
Our offers are closely calculated, food, wages and transfer costs are current prices in Morocco. For this reason it is not possible for us to give discounts, because otherwise the anyway low income would be reduced thereby.

 

Hafid Benyachou and Monika Boch-Jacuk