“No man can live this life and emerge unchanged. He will carry, however faint, the imprint of the desert, the brand which marks the nomad; and he will have within him the yearning to return, weak or insistent according to his nature. For this cruel land can cast a spell which no temperate clime can match.” Wilfred Thesiger (Arabian Sands)
While the desert can seem harsh and hostile is in fact fascinating and mysterious. The Palais Masandoïa offers different ways to discover and enjoy the desert, from sports to spiritual, cultural or even romantic activities, all planned according to your personal preferences. Each activity is specifically thought out to help you discover the great vastness of the Erg Chebbi and its surroundings.
For those with a limited amount time, a one-day road trip is the ideal way to quickly explore the desert. The never-ending horizon has a soothing effect and is a guaranteed break from your usual routine. Allow yourself to be hypnotized by the desert, with its mirages, ochre-coloured dunes, small villages, and camel caravans.
For breakfast, you’ll get to choose between a picnic in a remote desert location and a traditional meal served in a beautiful stone inn built in a secret location!
Spend two days travelling through the majestic dunes of Merzouga and experience the awe-inspiring beauty of a desert sunset. Enjoy diner around a fire camp under twinkling stars, fall asleep in a Berber tent and wake up to a magnificent golden sunrise.
Those who are a little more pressed for time can still enjoy a romantic desert sunset and a royal dinner under the stars before heading back to Masandoïa for the night.
Early birds can opt for a 5h30 A.M. wake-up call and witness the sun rise while sitting on top of a sand dune. Extend your morning ritual with a yoga session and a Saharan breakfast. Satisfy both body and mind while contemplating some of the world’s most exquisite landscapes.
Sand baths, also called psammotherapy or arenotherapy, are another great way to take care of your body during your desert vacation. This type of therapy, more commonly practised in Morocco, Tunisia, Algeria and Egypt, uses the healing benefits of hot sand to relieve joint pains and rheumatism, which are most commonly suffered by city-dwellers from the north of Morocco where the climate is humid. Because of the need for hot sand (70° to 80°), sand baths are only available during summer months.
The Erfoud region is the ideal location for hiking. From rocky paths, to sand dunes and soft ergs, explore the diversified terrains that South Morocco has to offer. You can choose from different routes depending on your experience level. Whether you are a beginner or an experienced hiker, you are sure to find a path that is right for you.
Souks are a great place to meet local artisans and storekeepers. Learn the old Moroccan art of bargaining and buy the perfect souvenir for a loved one (or yourself!). Carpets, woodwork, brass and leatherwork, fragrant exotic spices, there is so much to see and to choose from!
The desert can be explored by day or by night, from the back of a camel or the seat of a helicopter. Masandoïa offers a multitude of activities to make your stay unforgettable: golf courses, daily orientation rallies, dune driving lesson given by a professional pilot, cooking classes given by a Moroccan chef, raids in dunes on quads or buggies, camel rides and helicopter flights over the Erg Chebbi. Do not hesitate to contact us prior to your stay and let our team help you plan your personalized vacation.