A Bucket List Adventure: Camping in the Sahara Desert of Morocco

The Sahara Desert: A Magical Morocco Trip

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Three-and-a-half years ago, my friend Megan and I took the liberty of jetting off on a very extended break from our rigorous classes in Utrecht, Netherlands to go to … Morocco!

A Bucket List Adventure: Camping in the Sahara Desert of Morocco

After more than a week in Marrakesh and Essaouira, we booked ourselves on a four-day tour to the Sahara. I cannot imagine anywhere more majestic. From afar, it looked the desert equivalent of the Emerald City.

A Bucket List Adventure: Camping in the Sahara Desert of Morocco

It was there that I first fell in love with the four-legged beast who lent this site its name.

A Bucket List Adventure: Camping in the Sahara Desert of Morocco

The greatest part about the trip was that we actually camped far into the desert, just a few miles from the Algerian border, with a Berber tribe.

A Bucket List Adventure: Camping in the Sahara Desert of Morocco
A Bucket List Adventure: Camping in the Sahara Desert of Morocco

We rode camels, morning and night, played drums and sang and ate tajine and cous cous with our bare hands when we weren’t aboard our dromedary pals.

A Bucket List Adventure: Camping in the Sahara Desert of Morocco

But man, did my butt hurt after all day atop that hump!

A Bucket List Adventure: Camping in the Sahara Desert of Morocco
A Bucket List Adventure: Camping in the Sahara Desert of Morocco

The craziest thing about the shifting sands is how drastically the colors change at different points in the day. I want to swim in that sand. I even have a bottle of it still on my mantle (and I was too lazy to put it in a proper vase, so it’s actually in the original Arabic water bottle I carried it home in!).

A Bucket List Adventure: Camping in the Sahara Desert of Morocco
A Bucket List Adventure: Camping in the Sahara Desert of Morocco

And then there was this picture—taken with a point and shoot, mind you!—that would go on to win a handful of photo contests and serve as the catalyst for the naming of this blog.

A Bucket List Adventure: Camping in the Sahara Desert of Morocco

Oh, Morocco, I miss you. I know it’s become such a cliche place for a traveler of late, and I don’t care. I don’t often get the urge to revisit countries I’ve already been to, as there’s a whole huge world out there waiting to be explored, but I would return here in a heartbeat (ahem, Morocco Board of Tourism, did you hear that?).


 

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A Bucket List Adventure: Camping in the Sahara Desert of Morocco
A Bucket List Adventure: Camping in the Sahara Desert of Morocco
A Bucket List Adventure: Camping in the Sahara Desert of Morocco
COMMENTS
  • April 10, 2009

    That is so cool that the sand changes in color like that. I want to go to Morocco. My game plan is to one day wrap it into a trip to Spain.

  • April 10, 2009

    I am SO booking a ticket. Right now. I’m not kidding. Okayyyyy, maybe I am kidding, but only because I don’t have the money right now!

  • April 10, 2009

    These photos are amazing! I envy you with all your adventures 🙂

  • April 10, 2009

    The sand looks practically alive! It’s almost like you were riding a camel over the ocean. The pictures are absolutely gorgeous. And who knew camels could be majestic?

  • April 10, 2009

    Another destination on my dream list. We tried to plan a trip to Morrocco last year but had limited time and our list of places to see in the country kept growing so we decided to postpone until we had more time. I’m totally regretting that now!

  • April 10, 2009
    lindy

    i looove all these pics! so pretty. and i’m glad you didn’t name this site dromedariesandchocolate.

  • April 10, 2009

    Gorgeous photos!!!! I’ve always had an obession with the desert….too much Aladdin when I was younger!! I was THIS close to going to Morocco this summer, but then work constraints and limited vacation time got in the way 🙁 definately on my list of to-go’s for next year!!

  • April 10, 2009

    Morocco is totally on my to-go list. One of my best girlfriends just returned and now you with your pictures…I need to go pronto!

  • April 10, 2009
    Amy

    This is flippin’ gorgeous! Wow!

    On another topic: did your sister decide to study abroad?

  • April 10, 2009
    Amy

    I miss Morocco too! I went there in May of 2008 and kind of fell in love with the country. It was certainly unlike any other place I have been. I was only Essouria for about two days but I really wish I could have stayed longer. It’s such a cool little town. And I didn’t do the Sahara, but my group did a three day camel trek down the coast. It was awesome. And I’m about a year late putting up those photos on my blog. You may have just inspired me to finally get on that.

  • April 10, 2009

    I love that last photo. Well, all of them, but that one is one of my faves 🙂

  • April 10, 2009
    Sarah A. Schlothan Christensen

    I miss Morocco too. This post makes me jealous; I got caught in a sandstorm that damaged my camera so none of my pictures survived. Sigh. It would be nice to go back sometime, though.

    Beautiful captures; I especially love the last picture!

  • April 10, 2009

    Your pictures are gorgeous!!! You can really tell how much you loved your surroundings in them. I loved my trip to Morocco and am sad that I never made it into the Sahara (only the outskirts). I will definitely return. I had the most extraordinary time wandering lost around the souks. Great post. 🙂

  • April 10, 2009

    Wow, the light and shadows, the shifting colors, all amazing! I’ll bet your butt was sore. You’ve inspired me to add yet another destination onto my ever growing list.

    Great post! Thanks for sharing.

  • April 10, 2009
    Sara

    beautiful photos, i love the colors. it does look like such a magical place to visit, and what a cool way to visit.

  • April 10, 2009

    I miss it and I’ve never been. But it looks like I AM missing something. Must get to Morocco!

  • April 10, 2009

    I’m going to Marrakech with my hubby and 2-year-old in May. We are unfortunately missing out on the Sahara because of our toddler. Oh well, maybe next time! I’m so aching to go, though…it’s hard to plan around with a toddler in tow. 🙁

  • April 10, 2009

    Wow! That is amazing. Really, seriously awesome! I am on your heels and will make it to many more places soon! ;o) And all these photos were taken with a point and shoot? Amazing!!!! Funny too, I watched Casablanca for the first time on the plane ride back from my backpacking in Netherlands, Belgium and Scotland. So how much preparing did you have to do for it? Visas, vaccines, or anything like that? I’m making my way to Greece in July for a 10 study for a class at my grad school, but think after this, I want to explore South America and Africa. Thanks for sharing.. awesome!

  • April 11, 2009

    oh how I love photo Friday! Keep it up!
    That sand looks so comfy and soft

  • April 11, 2009

    Great photos!

  • April 12, 2009

    sigh. so jealous.

  • April 12, 2009

    Stop adding to my list of places to go!!

  • April 13, 2009

    some really amazing shots. Are they on flickr? I feel like I have seen some of them

  • April 13, 2009

    I know I’ve said this about your photos before and I totally hate myself for doing it because it’s got to peeve you, but seriously? Some of those look Photoshopped. Not that I think you would or that you did, but MAN. Having read your blog for several months now I have concluded that much of the world just sorta looks that amazing (although, sadly, not much of MY part.)

  • April 15, 2009

    I love desert shadow photos and have taken some when we went to a desert safari in Dubai. Morocco is so exciting!

  • May 18, 2009
    Lia

    and my husband (a couple of 48 years old) spent 4 nights in Manssour Eddahbi hotel in Marrakech and it was very satisfactory, confortable, clean and there is a nice pool in the garden. I suggest you to make a trip to the Atlas mountains , Dades valley and Toudra gorges, arrive to Zagora and Merzouga near the dunes Erg Chebbi, for a camel ride, and come back by the Draa Valey to Marrakech. We made this trip in 4 days in the end of august with a 4×4 car , with local driver, rent from internet (www. marrakech-expedition-4×4.com). It was an interesting, pleasant and completely safety expedition. Good luck Irina

  • July 23, 2009

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  • March 29, 2014

    Great photo !!!!!!!

  • August 10, 2016

    Amazing pictures and great article & infos.

  • January 15, 2017

    Great article about Morocco, thanks for sharing it . You are always welcome to Morocco.

  • February 19, 2017
    Sarah

    Great pictures! I’d love to have some more information- what was the name of the tour company you used?

    • February 19, 2017

      It was 12 years ago, so I have no idea! We just wandered down to the tourist area in Marrakech and booked with one of the many operators there.

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