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Worldwide Small Group and Tailor Made Adventure Travel

What’s included

  • An English-speaking Moroccan leader
  • Excellent riad accommodation in Marrakesh and Ouled Berhil on twin share, bed and breakfast basis
  • All camping facilities and all meals on trek
  • Twin occupancy in triple tents with sleeping mattresses
  • Camelteers and camp...

Sahara Camel Trek, Morocco Adventure Special

Walking & Trekking

Morocco | Walking & Trekking

Sahara Camel Trek, Morocco
  • Grade:


  • Duration: 9 days from the UK
  • On trek: 6 days
  • Private Departures Available

Flight inclusive from £1225, Land only from £875

Immerse yourself in the dunes and oases of the Southern Morocco desert, enjoy desert sunsets and nights under the stars, and wander the souks of Marrakesh.


  • Trek across immense dunes, through oases and across a deep wadi in the capable company of your expert guide and camel team
  • Enjoy incredible desert sunsets and nights under the stars with no light pollution - a stargazing paradise
  • Have fresh bread cooked in sand ovens and enjoy traditional Berber cooking on trek
  • Return to Marrakesh via the Iriki National Park, the saffron fields of Talouine and the dramatic Tizi n’Test Pass
  • Stay in delightful riads and explore flamboyant Marrakesh with guided tours of the souks and the sights


We are delighted to introduce this unique trek that will take you to the western fringes of the Sahara and immerse you in the tranquillity of the wild, uninhabited landscapes of the world’s largest desert. Given the searing summer temperatures of the desert, this makes for an ideal trek in the winter months when the days are dry, warm and sunny and the nights cool and clear.

After a tour of the sights of Marrakesh, your desert adventure begins with a scenic, winding drive across the High Atlas Mountains and through the picturesque Valley of Draa to reach the small village of Mhamid, situated right on the edge of the Sahara. Not far from here you meet your experienced trek crew and camel team who will act as your ships of the desert, carrying all the gear and provisions you need to enjoy a full service camping experience during your trek. You may even have the opportunity to take a ride on one of the camels during your desert trek.

Over the course of the next six days you will trek through the Sahara’s varied desert scenery: you cross palm groves, tamarisk oases and wide plateau; walk through Wadi Draa, the longest river bed in North Africa; and trek across the seemingly endless sea of sand dunes, climbing to their sandy peaks to enjoy spectacular sunsets over the desert wilderness. Evenings bring a hearty Moroccan meal round the campfire, hand-prepared by your excellent cook, followed by the spectacular nightly star show as you gaze upwards at the vast desert skies free from any light pollution.

At the end of the trek you will take a couple of days to wend your way back to Marrakesh via the Iriki National Park, which is an important stopping off point for many migratory birds, and you would hope to have the chance to spot some interesting wildlife. You then visit the saffron fields at Talouine; a Berber town set in lovely countryside, before driving on to Ouled Berhil where you spend the night in the wonderful Palais Riad Hida. On the final day, you take the high road over the dramatic Tizi n’Test Pass, visiting the Mosque at Tinmel (one of only two in Morocco open to non-Muslims), before finally reaching Marrakesh.

On the night you spend driving back to Marrakesh, and for your two nights in the city, you will stay in attractive riads of a very high standard. This will give you a more authentic experience and an indulgent taste of Moroccan life.

Private Departures

Kirsty and Adam on Kala Pattar close up 800x750

Sahara Camel Trek, Morocco - Private Departures

If you would prefer to travel just with your partner, friends or family, we can arrange a private departure of this holiday. You follow the same itinerary, but travel on dates that suit you. Alternatively we can include elements of this holiday in a bespoke Tailor Made itinerary. Contact our friendly team for details and prices, and to make a booking.

At a glance



Duration: 9 days from the UK

On trek: 6 days

Private Departures Available

Guaranteed to run for a minimum of 4 clients

Maximum group size: 12

Accommodation types: Riad, Hotel, Camping

Meal arrangements: 8 x breakfasts, 6 x lunches, 6 x dinners (including a welcome dinner in Marrakesh)

Itinerary overview
Day Activity
1 Fly to Marrakesh. Transfer to riad hotel in the Medina. Sightseeing and welcome dinner.
2 Drive via the High Atlas and Valley of Draa to Mhamid at the edge of the desert. Begin trek.
3 Trek to the tamarisk oases near Daiat Aoutid. Cross Sidi Naji plateau. Option to return trek to visit Marabout Sidi Naji.
4 Trek west to the big dunes of Erg Zaher.
5 Head east to the Wadi Draa and the dunes at Erg Smar.
6 Trek to near Mhamid. Camp.
7 End trek. Drive through the Iriki National Park, visit the saffron town of Talouine. Continue to Ouled Berhil.
8 Drive over the Tizi n’Test Pass, visit the mosque at Tinmel. Return to Marrakesh.
9 Fly back to London.
Leader: Local leader, Morocco

The trip will be led by a qualified Berber guide who is ideally placed to give you an insight into and information about their country, especially as much of this tour runs through the Berber, or Tachelhit speaking parts of Morocco. The Moroccan government closely controls the appointment of both mountain and town guides. Your guide will have completed a year of training at the Centre for Mountain Guides in Tabant in the Central High Atlas. During their training, guides complete courses in First aid, Geography, History and the Natural science of Morocco as well as testing their fitness.

Our Moroccan leaders are selected on the basis of their experience, levels of spoken English and helpfulness. Like the Berber culture from which they come they are all very welcoming and have a love of showing you their country.

Local leader, Morocco

Holiday Itinerary

Download a detailed itinerary
Day 1 - Fly London to Marrakesh

Arriving in Marrakesh you will be met at the airport and transferred to your riad accommodation in the heart of the Medina. The journey takes about 15 minutes to get to the old city walls and your driver will get you as near as possible to your overnight accommodation. Riads are converted town houses in the old parts of Moroccan cities, usually down small lanes where no cars or traffic can get to, so often a porter will help you out with luggage and his small cart will be able to take luggage to the riad from the minibus. Riads are built with rooms facing out onto a central courtyard and a garden/pool which is open to the sky, this is for coolness in the heat of the summer. The windows open to the courtyard and there are no windows to the street, as that would be noisy and hot. Often the riad is a haven from the heat and bustle outside, with a terrace where you can relax and have views over the city and the High Atlas Mountains in the distance.

After time to rest and freshen up, you will head out on a guided tour of the famed Djemmaa el-Fnaa square and the surrounding souks and palaces of the old medina. Marrakesh is famous for its souks and it's not possible to visit everything in a short tour, however you should have a chance to see the main sights and perhaps do some haggling in the silver, magic or clothing souks.

In the evening there will be a welcome meal in Palais Dar Es Salam, a traditional restaurant in an old converted palace.

Overnight icon Overnight: Riad Palais De Princesses Or Riad Challa Or Similar, Marrakesh

Day 2 - Drive to Mhamid via Ouarzazate and the Draa Valley – 450km, 7-8 hours. Start trek.

You begin your journey to the Sahara with a scenic drive over the High Atlas mountains, including a crossing of the pass of Tizi n Tichka at over 3,000m. The scenery is spectacular with high mountain peaks (often covered with snow until May or June) deep valleys and the twisting road below descending to the town of Ouarzazate. On the way down from the pass, you will go through small villages selling pottery and various fossils recovered from the desert. The town of Ouarzazate is mainly known for being the film capital of Morocco, with many films and TV shows made here or in nearby in Kasbah Ait Benhaddou, including Gladiator, Game of Thrones and Babel.

The journey continues down the Valley of the Draa, which is an oasis of green palms, interspersed with the earthen ruins of Kasbah and fields of Alfafa and other crops. You will stop at the small town of Tagounite to buy the all-important drinking water for your 50 mile trek through the Sahara. It is then not far to the town of Mhamid which itself is starting to be threatened by the advancing sands. Not far from Mhamid you will meet your camel team in the late afternoon and start the trek. You stop to camp near some large dunes and you could easily climb the largest dune nearby for views of the immensity of the desert and to scope out the route for tomorrow.

Overnight icon Overnight: Camp

Day 3 - Trek through a tamarisk oasis and cross the Sidi Naji Plateau to camp - 5-6 hours, 11¼ miles trek. Option to trek to Marabout Sidi Naji – 2 hours, 3½ miles.

After a breakfast served up for you by the cooks, you set out with the camels through the palm groves and tamarisk bushes. Under your feet you will see traces of old field boundaries - the fields long gone, swamped by the Sahara sands creeping northwards. You stop for lunch in a shady palm grove, and the guide will take you to an area where many fossils and shells have been found in the past; perhaps you will discover your own trilobite or shell as the sands shift in the wind revealing prehistoric treasures.

You now really experience being deep in the desert. The scenery is constantly changing, and leaving the old farmland behind, you find yourself alone in vast open plains - a sea of sand dunes - and can barely see the Algerian mountains to your left. Occasional lone acacia trees give brief rests in the shade. Eventually a range of larger dunes appears ahead. You climb the highest dune to find the camp is below on the other side. For those who have the energy, it is a 40 minute walk to visit the shrine of Marabout Sdid Naji. Pathways through the dunes lead to the square building of the marabout of Sidi Naji, and the ruined city surrounding it can just be seen. Much pottery lies in the ruins. Sidi Naji was a holy man and the ancient marabout was built as a shrine to his memory. This round trip is about 3½ miles and takes 2 hours.

Tonight you will enjoy a delicious dinner under the stars, maybe with some freshly baked bread from sand ovens.

Overnight icon Overnight: Camp

Day 4 - Trek to the dunes of Erg Zaher - 6 hours, 10½ miles trek.

This morning you will intially be walking through dunes and then on to flatter terrain where you can see the tamarisk oases on one side and the big dunes of Erg Zaher in the distance (Erg means dune). After lunch you continue your trek towards Erg Zaher, you may come across a large walled-off area that used to be the market area for a weekly souk; long gone and forgotten now, but a mark of the villages and people that used to live here. Eventually you reach the foot of the Erg Zaher range, and see your camp set up ready for your arrival. Tonight you could climb to the top of the nearest dune to see the beautiful sight of the sun setting over the ripple of the dunes, the colour of the sky and the sand changing constantly as the sun slowly sinks.

Overnight icon Overnight: Camp

Day 5 - Trek east through Wadi Draa to dunes at Erg Smar – 5 hours, 7½ miles trek.

This is a bit of a shorter day, so you can recover from yesterday's challenging dune walk. However you will still experience various terrains, including sandy areas, dunes and flat, baked earth. After crossing some dunes from Erg Zaher, you will see the wadi of the Draa river - the longest Wadi (dry river bed) in North Africa. After descending into the wadi, you cross between tamarisk groves that are able to survive on the water left behind by the very infrequent rains that flood the wadi every few years. Climbing up the other side you continue to walk on the flat desert floor.

At the end of the day you reach a green spot in the desert, indicating the presence of a well that is used by a farmer to irrigate a few crops and grow some grass. Here the camels can stock up on fresh food and water and the water for the trek can be replenished. The nomad people tending the well are only here for a short time when grass can grow and the heat of the sun is not too intense. You may notice that the surrounding dunes of Erg Smar are much lighter and more golden than the darker orange hues of the Erg Zaher range.

Overnight icon Overnight: Camp

Day 6 - Trek to near Mhamid. Camp in tamarisk groves near Daiat Aoutid – 5 hours, 7 miles trek.

Today you start by following the side of the dunes of Erg Smar. You will mainly be trekking on the flat, baked earth which is just as much part of the desert as the dunes, but a lot easier to walk on! There are some small dunes to trek across, and the landscape becomes more and more dotted with tamarisk groves and acacia. This area is prone to sand storms whipping up from the surrounding erg and blowing across the plains, this is where wearing a seche, or long nomad scarf, comes in handy. The guide can show you how to put it on correctly to protect your face from the harsh, abrasive sand. The Nomads here (Ait Atta Tafoukht tribe and Touaregs) are sometimes called the 'blue men', from the blue dye on their faces from these scarves. If there is a clear day, mirages across the desert plain are common.

Tonight is your last night to enjoy the incredible night sky, free from light pollution and sprinkled with the brilliant pinpricks of a million stars.

Overnight icon Overnight: Camp

Day 7 - End trek - 2½ miles, 4½ miles. Drive through the Iriki National Park, visit the saffron town of Talouine – 4 hours driving.

It will take about an hour to finish your trek and you will then be met by your 4x4 transport for an interesting drive across the flat desert plain to the Iriki National Park. The park was formed in 1994 to primarily ensure the rehabilitation of the temporary wetlands, which are an important port of call for many migratory birds, including geese and flamingos. The park has the typical desert landscape of south-east Morocco with some of the dunes covered with tamarisk. There is a diverse mixture of wildlife and, if you are very lucky, you may spot bustards, ostriches, Barbary sheep, dorcas gazelles, oryxes and striped hyenas. The park has very few permanent inhabitants, as most of the population are nomadic moving to and fro between summer and winter pastures; these routes unchanged over the centuries. You will then travel on to Talouine, a pretty little Berber town which lies in some lovely scenery around 1,500m above sea level. Talouine is home to Morocco's largest saffron fields and the violet crocuses are harvested for their beautiful red-gold stigma. The harvest takes place from mid-October to mid-November starting at dawn, and it takes around 200 flowers to produce 1 gram of saffron; making it more expensive than gold.

From there we will end the day's travel in the small town of Ouled Berhil, which is one hour's drive further on.

Overnight icon Overnight: Riad Hida, Ouled Berhil

Day 8 - Drive over the Tizi n’Test pass, visit the Mosque at Tinmel. Return to Marrakesh - 4-5 hours driving.

After breakfast, you begin our final journey towards Marrakesh over the Tizi n'Test Pass. This awe-inspiring pass at 2,092m crosses the Atlas with a steep ascent up a myriad of hairpin bends rising 1,600m in about 30km, affording incredible panoramic vistas of the Tizi n'Test Mountains and the Nfiss River Valley. The road was blasted straight through the Atlas Mountains in the early part of the 20th dentury by the French to create the first route between Marrakesh and the Souss plain. About 47km further on is the impressive Mosque at Tinmel. It is only one of two mosques open to non-Muslims in Morocco (the other being in Casablanca). It was built in 1156 to commemorate the founder of the Almohad dynasty, Mohamed Ibn Tumart. Tinmel was home to the Almohade Dynasty and the remains of the medieval fortress and the royal necropolis shelters can be seen, along with the remains of the founder Abdel Moumen and the spiritual master Ibn Toumert. You then carry on to the pretty town of Ouirgane where you will either stop for a coffee at the Ksar (Berber castle) or visit a Berber family for tea, before descending past Asni to the plains and finishing our journey to Marrakesh.

Overnight icon Overnight: Riad Palais De Princesses Or Riad Challa Or Similar, Marrakesh

Day 9 - Group transfer to airport. Fly to London.

After breakfast you will be transferred to the airport for your flight home.


Map Key

  • Airport Airport
  • Point of interest Point of interest
  • Mountain Peak Mountain Peak
  • Day walk in this area Day walk in this area
  • Flights Flights
  • Internal Transfers Internal Transfers
  • Trek Trek


Hold your place

Not quite ready to book? Why not call us on +44 (0) 1453 844400 to hold a no obligation place while you make up your mind?

Optional supplements
  • Single Room & Tent Supplement
    From £165
  • Single Room Supplement
    From £130
  • Single tent
    From £30
No Surcharge Guarantee

No surcharges will be applied to your holiday after you book. Prices on this website are updated regularly. The Flight Inclusive holiday price, or Land Only holiday price, will be confirmed to you at the time you make your booking. There will be no surcharges after your booking has been confirmed.

Flight inclusive holidays

The 'flight inclusive' holiday prices shown on this website are based upon our preferred airlines and the best priced economy class fares we are able to secure at the time of publication.

We will be able to advise on fares with alternative airlines, upgrades to Business Class, and the options for flights from regional UK airports, please contact us for more details.

Booking your holiday
  • Deposit
    From £400.00

For the majority of our holidays, a deposit payment of £400.00 per person is required to secure your place(s), however a small number of holidays require a higher deposit - please refer to the holiday itinerary for more details. If the holiday departs within 60 days, a deposit of £1,000.00 per person is required.

Book now!
  1. Book your small group holiday securely online – click the ‘Book’ button next to your chosen departure or visit our How to Book page
  2. Complete and return a Booking Form available to download here.
  3. Call us on +44 (0)1453 844400 and one of our travel specialists will talk you through the booking process.

What’s included

  • An English-speaking Moroccan leader
  • Excellent riad accommodation in Marrakesh and Ouled Berhil on twin share, bed and breakfast basis
  • All camping facilities and all meals on trek
  • Twin occupancy in triple tents with sleeping mattresses
  • Camelteers and camp staff to carry out all camp work
  • Costs of all porterage
  • Guided tour in Marrakesh with sightseeing as specified
  • International flights from London (flight inclusive only)
  • Single, timed, group airport transfers for international flights on arrival and departure
  • All road transport by private minibus
  • A free high-quality Mountain Kingdoms kit bag
  • Carbon offsetting with the Ecoan Tree Planting Project (for clients taking our flight inclusive option)

What’s not included

  • Tips
  • Travel insurance
  • Visa fees
  • Lunch and evening meals in Marrakesh
  • Drinking water for the desert crossing

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