While planning my summer adventures in Europe, I knew I wanted to push myself outside of the box and visit somewhere entirely different that would introduce me to a whole new culture. I tossed around a few destinations, but Morocco ultimately won out. So I started to look into tours that I could go on while visiting. It worked so well for me in the Balkans, I thought I would try again. This time around I choose to travel with Travel Talk on their Exotic Morocco 10 Day Tour.
The tour itself was unreal, and certainly pushed me outside of my comfort zone box. I experienced very intense culture shock, and it took a couple months from the end of the trip, to process it all. And the heat! I do not recommend visiting Morocco in middle of the August heat that is for sure. My first impressions upon landing was that it was like visiting another planet, with all the landscapes and buildings. I had become so custom to Europe’s architecture and England’s green rolling field that the dessert landscape took me by surprise.
The first day was simply an arrival day in Marrakesh, relaxing in the hotel by the amazing pool area and then the introductory tour meeting. The tour was quite small, only 12 of us in total! I guess we were the only ones insane enough to visit Morocco in that kind of heat. Once the tour meeting was over, we organized ourselves and we went to the Medina for a traditional tasty dinner. I had never seen such crowds in one place before, this was certainly where I got that first taste of culture shock.
The first full day of the tour was one of the longer driving days. We drove all the way from Marrakesh to the edge of the Sahara dessert, with a couple of stops during the day. We then arrived to our desert camp, just outside of Zagora, which was the coolest accommodation I have ever seen. It was so neat to be relaxing under the sky, right in the middle of the dessert. An experience I had never had before! It was a comfortable space with the tents and rugs and pillows and delicious mint tea upon arrival. We had an evening under the stars with tagines dinners, drums and then we escaped the heat of our huts to sleep under the stars which was really neat! Sleeping under the stars was easily my favourite moment of the whole tour.
The second day was an early start as we woke up with the sun and prepared for our camel ride. After making friends with our camels (I named mine Chester), we hopped on and headed onward for a ride across the dessert. The ride was actually pretty nice, only just uncomfortable at a few parts. Once we were done the camel ride we had a picnic lunch, followed by a nap in the oasis. Then off to our second dessert camp which was in the dune part of the Sarah.. We 4×4 across the dunes and then hiked up to watch the sunset. Spending time watching the sunset on the dune was also a very special moment for myself. I felt very in tune with my surroundings and my adventure thus far. The third evening was followed similarly to the second, with a tagines, music and the stars!
That was the first three days of the tour and my special time in the Sahara!
– xoxo Veronica