It’s not just the sand that makes the desert. This is also his approach: in the verticality of the light, in the void created by the heat in the breath, then in the blinding streets of hamlets which are silted up. In Morocco, the further south you drive after Ouarzazate, the more you cross the lofty desolation of the Anti-Atlas and the miracle of palm groves, before finally plunging into the wild desert: the distant erg Chegaga.
Unlike Erg Chebbi, his brother frequented near Merzouga, this desert of vast dunes can be won: four days of dromedary or three hours of track from MHamid, a quiet gateway to the desert near the closed border (and monitored) with Algeria. Is it an adventure? At least that’s the idea, a sketch. Leave the Atlantic whiteness of Casablanca, the madness of Marrakech and the dizziness of the High Atlas to enter the sterility and silence that reminds us of nothing, if not to ourselves.
At the end of May, it is unfortunately too late for camel trekking: it is a bitter summer. In the middle of the afternoon, it can be 45 degrees; impossible, under these conditions, to keep in the sun, neither for the animals nor for us.
Top 4 Things to do in Erg chigaga:
- On an expedition in the Sahara, you will live an unforgettable experience… Go for a few days of bivouac, to the rhythm of the Sahrawi nomads; these blue men of the desert will serve as your guide in the middle of the dunes, and will make you discover the secrets of their culture and their traditions.
- From MHamid, go on an adventure in the dunes of Erg Chigaga! Absolutely splendid, you can only reach them in 4X4, after 3 / 4h of trekking. Far from civilization, the site is absolutely ideal for a bivouac! Nearby, you can also go to the heart of Erg Lehoudi. Much larger, it is accessible with any vehicle.
- On the other side of Erg Chigaga, east of MHamid, you will find ancient Lake Iriki, near Foum Zguid. This beautiful excursion through the desert will take you in the middle of a huge dry depression, witness to a time when the region was still green. Ideal destination for a trek in the middle of the desert, we recommend a delicious stopover in an inn or a camp located at the foot of the dunes.
- Take a walk north of Mhamid in the heart of the Draa valley. After 6km of road you will discover the oases of Ouled Driss. Take the time to stroll under the shade of date palms, among the grain fields. By taking the road back to Agdz, you will come across many palm groves in the middle of which stand the fabulous kasbahs of Draâ.