Photo Tour Programme – Spirit of the Sahara – Nomad Festival


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Photo Tour: Spirit of the Sahara – Nomad Festival
Next group tour dates: Please check my calendar HERE for upcoming tours.
Length: 8 days / 9 nights

Price: € 3,440 per person (single room supplement € 400).

 

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Programme – Spirit of the Sahara – Nomad Festival

Day 1 – Marrakech to Ouarzazate
 

We will meet at your hotel in Marrakech, and after an introduction, begin our photographic adventure into the Sahara desert. We will leave Marrakech and drive south across the magnificent High Atlas Mountains and the col of Tizi-n-Tichka. We will stop for pictures along the way to enjoy the panoramic view and to capture some wonderful images of these spectacular mountain picks. In the afternoon, we will continue to one of the most impressive and well-preserved kasbahs and UNESCO world heritage site, the ksar of Ait Ben Haddou. We will visit this picturesque fortified village, which has been used as a film location in numerous famous films such as Gladiator, Alexander, The Mummy, Kundun, The Jewel of the Nile, and more. It is an exciting place to explore with our cameras.

Accommodation in a hotel in Ouarzazate.

Photographic highlights: The High Atlas Mountains, small Berber villages, and the ksar Ait Ben Haddou.


Day 2 – Ouarzazate to Erg Lihoudi

After breakfast we will leave Ouarzazate, driving through mountainous wild landscapes until we reach the first town in the Draa valley called Agdez. We continue through the Draa valley along the life-spending Draa river with its huge date palm oases. The Draa valley once served as a link between the Sahara and the North of Morocco for the trading caravan routes that passed by the river for centuries. We will take some off-roads to be in the heart of these little Arab Berber villages, all build in clay architecture, which is a traditional way of building a house using local materials. This part of Morocco is still much preserved in term of traditional customs and way of life. After Zagora the landscapes become more and more deserted and arid. After the small village of Tagounite we will drive off-road to reach the windswept dunes of Erg Lihoudi. There will be enough time to explore the dunes with its very special sand patterns that offer unique photo opportunities.

Accommodation in a bivouac in Erg Lihoudi.

Photographic highlights: Small Berber villages, Draa valley and Draa river, oases, stunted acacia trees, and the sand dunes of Erg Lihoudi.


Day 3 & 4 – M’hamid Nomad Festival

Early risers can enjoy a sunrise and the soft light early morning in the dunes. After a walk into the dunes, we will leave for M’hamid, where we will enjoy the festival activities with music and a short camel race. During the festival you will have unique opportunities to capture impressive images of people dressed in their beautiful traditional cloths and nomads on their camels. Usually it is difficult to photograph the camera shy people in rural Morocco, it is only during festivals that these people are more open and feel more comfortable being photographed.
Accommodation in a hotel in M’hamid.

Photographic highlights: People, music, nomads, camels, and desert life.


Day 5 – M’hamid to Chagaga Dunes

In the afternoon, we say good-by to the festival and start a new adventure of 60km off-road to the Chagaga sand dunes. The route passes different features of the desert: erg (sand dunes), reg (rocky desert), hammada (stony desert) and oases. The Chagaga sand dunes are far away from any civilization. It’s a mesmerizing place, where you can really feel the overwhelming tranquillity and expanse of the desert. The Chagaga sand dunes area is the largest dunes area in Morocco.
Accommodation in a bivouac in the Chagaga dunes.

Photographic highlights: Desert landscapes and the Chagaga sand dunes.


Day 6 – Chagaga Dunes

We will spend the whole day in the Chagaga dunes. Enough time to really experience the mystic of the Sahara first-hand, listening to the desert wind, climbing up the dunes for sunrise and sunset to watch the light and color of the sand change. It is a truly memorable experience to open ones visual awareness to the pure and rare beauty of these magnificent dunes.
Accommodation in a bivouac in the Chagaga dunes.

Photographic highlights: Stony desert landscapes, oases and the Chagaga sand dunes.


Day 7 – Chagaga Dunes to Ouarzazate

After breakfast, the track covers another 90km of desert with varying scenery; sand dunes, stony desert, and the dry lake Iriqui, until we reach the first village Foum Zguid. From here we drive back to Ouarzazate along tarmac roads. We will arrive in Ouarzazate in the course of the afternoon.
Accommodation in a hotel in Ouarzazate.

Photographic highlights: Chagaga sand dunes, different desert landscapes, the dry lake Iriqui.


Day 8 – Ouarzazate to Marrakech

From Ouarzazate we set off back to Marrakech via the High Atlas Mountains. On the way we will make a detour through the Ounila Valley, with its small Berber villages along the river, and the colourful, abstract mountains. In the course of the afternoon, we will arrive in Marrakech.

Photographic highlights: High Atlas Mountains and Ounila Valley.


Note

It is possible for participants to join this photo tour in Ouarzazate, and end the tour in Ouarzazate or Marrakech. Please contact us for a special price.