What to Know Before Visiting the Sahara Desertairport_transferbarbathtubbusiness_facilitieschild_activitieschildcareconnecting_roomcribsfree_wifigymhot_tubinternetkitchennon_smokingpetpoolresturantski_in_outski_shuttleski_storagesmoking_areaspastar

What to Know Before Visiting the Sahara Desert

Dimitrios Papageorgiou  / © Culture Trip
Dimitrios Papageorgiou / © Culture Trip
The Sahara is one of the most spectacular locations in the whole world. Here, you can experience orange dunes, blue skies, camel trekking, camping under the stars and many more adventures. However, it is better to know certain facts and be fully prepared before embarking on your trip to this magnificent desert.

How far is the Sahara?

Many people think that this desert is located close to Marrakech, but that is not the case. Marrakech is actually around 600 km from the Erg Chebbi dunes and 360 km from Zagora. Fez is much further away – around 670 km from Zagora and 470 km from Merzouga. The drive can take up to two days if you stop at the villages along the route, but exploring these places makes it a more pleasant experience. Some of these spectacular stops include Dades Gorges, Valley of Roses, Ait Ben Haddou, and Todra Gorge Draa – they certainly make the trip worthwhile!

Dimitrios Papageorgiou / © Culture Trip
Dimitrios Papageorgiou / © Culture Trip

Take extra water

This is not a myth – you need to take a lot of water if you are visiting the desert! Even if you are not someone who drinks too much water normally, you absolutely must make the effort to keep yourself hydrated here. If you are walking through the Sahara, or even just riding a camel, it is very likely that the sun will cause your body to sweat and lose a lot of its water, which is why keeping water on you or in the car is compulsory.

Dimitrios Papageorgiou / © Culture Trip

Beware of certain plants

Most cacti are poisonous, so you must be careful and not get too close to them as they are likely to have poisonous spikes that can give you a skin infection. That would be the last thing you’d want during your trip to the desert, especially since you’ll be dealing with the heat already. Although these plants look very attractive and have delicious fruit, it’s better to observe them from a distance!

Dimitrios Papageorgiou / © Culture Trip

Dress appropriately

Remember that you are not going to visit a city, like Marrakech or Fez… you are going into the Sahara, a desert full of sand and wind. It’s hot during the day and unexpectedly cold at night. To avoid dehydration and excessive sweating, dress in lightweight garments, preferably light-coloured so they don’t absorb too much heat. Don’t forget your hat and scarf and try to cover your head and face as much as possible to avoid heatstroke.

Dimitrios Papageorgiou / © Culture Trip

Best time to visit

The best times to visit the Sahara Desert are the months of May and October, when temperatures are milder. During the winter (December and January), freezing temperatures that are hard to sleep through are often recorded, while sandstorms are alarmingly frequent between January and May. The worst time to visit the Sahara is, of course, the summer (June to September), when temperatures reach dangerous heights and the heat is almost physically unbearable.

Dimitrios Papageorgiou / © Culture Trip
Dimitrios Papageorgiou / © Culture Trip
Dimitrios Papageorgiou / © Culture Trip