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Sahara Desert & Oasis Camping Trail, Morocco
A marvellous, cultural ride to the south of Ouarzazate

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Horse Riding Holidays Sahara Desert & Oasis Camping Trail- Morocco

DATES & PRICES top

Sahara Desert Camping Trail

PRICES 2017

Suitable for fit intermediate riders who are comfortable on forward going horses and secure in the saddle.

Operates October through to March.

Prices are quoted for 7 nights.

2 riders – £1,170/€1,370/$1,430 per person sharing reducing based on numbers

8 rider would be £780/€912/$950 per person. Please ask us how many are booked on the dates you would like.

Single Supplement – £80/€100/$115

Includes – All riding, guiding, full board accommodation, camping equipment, drinks with meals, transfers from Ouarzazate airport.

Excludes – Flights, tips & alcohol.

DATES 2017

22-29 Jan, 12-19 Feb, 26 Mar-2 Apr, 2-9 Apr, 16-23 Apr, 22-29 Oct, 5-12 Oct, 24-31 Dec

How To Get There

International flight to Marrakech and domestic flight to Ouarzazate.

Transfer

You will be picked up at Ouarzazate airport on day of arrival and transferred to your hotel.

You can also arrive in to Marrakech but you must be scheduled to arrive before 2pm to allow for the four hour transfer (extra cost) to Ouarzazate.

Arrival at other times is available but at an additional charge of €65 each way per car payable directly in Euros or Turkisk Lira.

Note: Rates are subject to daily exchange rate fluctuations, please refer to our Terms & Conditions for full details.

SUMMARY OF THE TRIP top

THE HIGHLIGHTS OF THIS TRAIL

  • Getting close to the first big dunes of the Sahara
  • Discovering the hidden life of the oasis
  • Vast open spaces for fast riding
  • Well schooled & well balanced horses

A marvellous, cultural ride to the south of Ouarzazate near to the big sand dunes of the Sahara, riding mainly, spirited Barb Arabian stallions.

Heading south east from Ouarzazate, you pass through the Draa Valley which makes its way towards the desert along a beautiful string of oasis. In all the twists & turns, lies a “ksar” (a village made of rammed earth) surrounded with vegetation.

Men’s complexion gets brownish, the water gets very scarce, the heat burns stronger, nights are cooler, the sky gets purer and the moonlight gets whiter & brighter.

The desert is not far any more – an immense space and an infinite light fill up your eyes & your heart. This is an out and out horsey adventure! You need to be an intermediate rider with a good level of fitness for this challenging and fast paced ride.

THE RIDING top

Horses –Barb Arabian horses, made up mostly of stallions who are very well behaved.

Level of Riding & Pace – Intermediate to Advanced. There are long days in the saddle and the riding can be technical.

Tack – English style, with good quality tack, English Saddles and mostly snaffle bridles.

Weight Restriction – 90kgs / 198 lbs / 14 stone. Please do still contact us if you are over this weight as there may be some bigger horses available on the dates you request, depending on the group.

Group Size – Maximum 10.

ACCOMMODATION top

The first and last night is at a comfortable hotel near to the historic Kasbah, it has good sized rooms and a swimming pool. The rest of the nights are spent in simple tent accommodation, which is moved each day by the support team and transported in the support vehicle.

The tents are 2 man dome tents, with porch. You are provided with a foam mattress and need to bring your own sleeping bag. The camping site also includes a mess tent, a shower tent and a chemical loo. Everyone pitches in when setting up the camp site for the evening.

The food is good quality and freshly prepared each day. You can expect the following;

Breakfasts with cereals, bread, cheese and jams, tea & coffee.
Lunches are salads with couscous, rice, potatoes & fruit.
Snacks include dried fruits, tea, coffee and juice.
Dinners are always hot, typical Moroccan dishes like Kefta, Lamb Tagine and Tagine Makhoul.

Drinks include water, sodas, tea & coffee. Alcohol is not provided but you can bring with you.

Included – All riding, guiding, full board accommodation,camping equipment, drinks with meals, transfers from Ouarzazate airport.

Excluded – Flights, tips &alcohol.

How To Get There

International flight to Marrakech and domestic flight to Ouarzazate.

Transfer

You will be picked up at Ouarzazate airport on day of arrival and transferred to your hotel.

You can also arrive in to Marrakech but you must be scheduled to arrive before 2pm to allow for the four hour transfer (extra cost) to Ouarzazate.

Please Ask About

There are some other things to do in the area. You can choose to arrive earlier or stay a few days afterwards to enjoy and we can help with arrangements.

Visit of the souk and the kasbah of Taourirt and the Cinema Studios at Ouarzazate.

Visit of the Kasbah of Ait Benhadou and the Fint Oasis.

Ride for half a day or all day on the beautiful palm of Skoura.

Continue your stay and rest in a charming ecolodge, Kasbah Dar Daifa restored Kasbah located 5 km from Ouarzazate on the edge of the gardens, the park and the lake.

SAMPLE ITINERARY top

The following is the proposed itinerary but please note that changes are possible due to weather and local conditions. On occasions the itinerary may run in reverse.

DAY One

Arrive at Ouarzazate. If you fly to Marrakech you must be scheduled to arrive before 2pm to allow for the four hour transfer (extra cost) to Ouarzazate. If you can only get an evening flight to Marrakech then you should arrive the previous day. Meet at Ouarzazate and be transferred to the hotel. Overnight in hotel in Ouarzazate.

Day Two

Zagora - DjebelBani

Early morning (6:30 am) departure from Ouarzazate and drive south east in the direction of Zagora (approx. 3 hour drive). Meet the horses and after ride briefing, ride south-west until you cross Feïja which already gives you an idea of the immensity of the desert.

Slowly you get close to the last mountain chain - the last obstacle to the Sahara - theDjebel (mount) Bani. You climb up the mountain along a small winding path and once at the pass you will have a breathtaking view of the Feïja plateau & beyond to the DjebelSagho. You then climb down a narrow gorge leading to a small oasis which is a usual stopping place for the nomads. Here you find your overnight camping spot. (5 hours riding)

Day Three

DjebelBani to OuedNaam

You start the day across an arid plateau where only a few acacias are capable of surviving in the dry climate of the area. Then you reach the sand hills which will become higher & higher as you keep on riding South. The landscape in front of you is now boundless. This area is actually a nature reserve and gazelles and ostriches are being reintroduced. Camp by the Naam River (Naam means “ostrich” in Arabic). (5 hours riding)

Day Four

OuedNaam to OuledDriss

Sand dunes are all around you. One can see nomad camps from time to time, these low tents made of camel or goat hairs are called “Kheïma”. Then, you head towards the end of the Drâa Valley. A few houses appear out of the trees in the Bounou palm grove. The “ksar” (castle) is one of the most beautiful of the valley. You then reach OuledDriss village where you will get a chance to visit the ksar and the little museum. Overnight camp (5 hours riding)

Day Five

OuledDriss to Nesrate

From here the pace can speed up a bit as you ride up the Draa Valley across a ribbon of sand hills and onto an arid plateau (“reg”). When you get through theSelmane pass, you will have a panoramic view over Tagounite palm grove. After passing through another sand dune you make your way towards Tagounite palm grove, through fields and villages proud of their decorated walls. Close to Nesrate village you reach what used to be a palm grove but is now under the sand. Camp in the dunes. (5 hours riding)

Day Six

Nesrate to OuedDrâa

Today, you head back to the “hustle & bustle” of the villages with their fortified homes (ksour), gardens, sun and refreshing shade. The palm grove ends where the Draa River stretches between DjbelBani&DjbelTadrart. Continue onto a palm grove and camp in an oasis. (4 ½ hours riding)

Day Seven

OuedDrâa to Tinfou Dunes

Continue heading north along trails that pass through the ksour and the cultivated fields of the palm grove. You reach Tinfou village where impressive sand dunes threaten to encroach upon the houses & fields. A programme against this desertification process was set up years ago but it seems to be inefficient. After lunch transfer to Ouarzazate and overnight in hotel. (2 hours riding)

Day Eight

Ouarzazate

After breakfast transfer to Ouarzazate airport for your return flight. If departing from Marrakech your flight should depart after 4pm (to allow for the four hour transfer).

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