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Camel Trekking Morocco

March 27, 2019

Amy Trumpeter

Camel Trekking Morocco through the sandy dunes of the Sahara Desert is not far off most people’s wish list, and it’s easy to see why. With the hot sun heating up every path you take or the evening sunset changing the colour of the sand in front of your very eyes Morocco has everything you could ask for.

There is no better way to experience the highest and widest dunes of the desert than by Camel Trekking Morocco. Opt for a day’s outing with these beautiful and resourceful creatures or up to two week treks that take you further than you can every imagine.  

Camel Trekking Morocco
Me with Camels in the Sahara near Ouarzazate

Camel Trekking Morocco – The Camel Ride!

Yes, these treks include the most scenic routes in the world, however Camel Trekking can be uncomfortable. The ride for some can feel unstable and unsettling, especially after many hours travelling. But you will learn to adopt the most efficient position for yourself, either at an angle or on top of the Camel’s hump itself.

The ride is bumpy, as you can imagine but compared to horses it’s a lot smoother due to lower speeds. Camel’s move their right two legs then their left in tandem, this helps Treks become more bearable and allows you to soak up the experience in its entirety.

Dressing to impress needs to end when you meet up with your trekking party. Sensible loose-fitting clothing that will protect from the sun as well as provide comfort is essential. Jeans and skirts are out, the stiff bristle of the camels’ skin can irritate so cover up. Getting comfortable with being uncomfortable will extend your experience and allow you to protect yourself as well as the camel.

Dismounting often and stretching before during and after the ride will help you adapt to the trek. Each time you get back on the saddle the ride will become easier as you learn how to ride like the nomads have been doing centuries.

Ethics of Camel Trekking Morocco

For many years Camels have been known as the ‘ships of the desert’ and have been an integral part of Moroccan history. For good reason thousands of tourists enjoy camel treks every year to experience the iconic animals in person as well as to delve into the Moroccan culture. 

At present time Morocco does not have animal welfare laws, this makes it difficult for trekking companies to structure consistency throughout their tours. However, this doesn’t automatically mean that due to no laws these companies mistreat their animals. The majority of animal trekking companies realise that a healthy, well kempt and well rested camel has the ability to perform longer, allowing their trekking business to thrive. 

But as tourists, we can help by not ignoring animal abuse and being vigilant for poor working conditions, poor animal health and abusive handlers during the ride. Voicing your concerns to tourist companies, as well as other tourists is an ‘invisible law’ that camel trekking companies rely on.

Their good reputation is their lifeline, if they are not being responsible for their camels and its reported this could shatter their future business. Keep an eye out for recommendations before purchasing a camel trek, but also keep an eye out for the camels themselves. They rely on you as much as you rely on them during your experience.

If you feel that you would like to help in some way, there are some excellent animal charities set up in Morocco to support the working camels, horses and donkeys. A good one to support is Spana.

Top Treks 

The dunes of Erg Chebbi and Erg Merzouga have all the Lawrence of Arabia fantasy backdrops you can think of with these unique dunes hosting the best experiences across Morocco. Here you can sleep under the stars with your camel crew and experience the vast wilderness of this beautiful landscape. This sea of sand on the border of Algeria has everything you could wish for when camel trekking Morocco, including a nomad guide.

The Sahara Desert needs to be ticked off your ‘things to do’ list whilst in Morocco. This expedition is the perfect opportunity to acquaint yourself with the traditional Moroccan environment. Occupying the nomad tents at night and travelling across the ancient Sahara by day this will be the chance of a lifetime.

The Atlas Mountains, the exotic souks and vibrant markets of Marrakech will fulfil your hunger for cultural heritage. However, trekking by camel following the Atlantic coastline is a lesser known but magnificent adventure.

, the exotic souks and vibrant markets of Marrakech will fulfil your hunger for cultural heritage. However, trekking by camel following the Atlantic coastline is a lesser known but magnificent adventure.

Discovering the hidden fishing villages and Argan tree orchards of this coastline is just the icing of the cake when travelling by camel through this stunning landscape. Experience the Moroccan scenery on a camel and you will also be rewarded with deserted beaches and secluded hot spots. This adventure will only stop giving when you want it to, until then there is a treat over every dune.