Erg Chigaga | Sahara Desert, Morocco, 2008

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  • Situated approximately 50km from the village of M’Hamid. No public transport available. Numerous private options available in M’Hamid. A friend recommended me Sahara Services and I found them to be reasonably professional. By no means the cheapest option.
  • If you are looking for a bargain, it may be worth your while checking with other operators in the village. Ask fellow travellers for recommendations.

Season :

  • Possible all year round. Summer may be a tad on the warmish side. Think the surface of the sun. Yep, that’s about it.

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Maps / Info :

  • Erg translates to ‘ocean of sand’.
  • Visitors to Erg Chigaga generally come as part of an organised trip. Camels or 4×4’s are the standard modes of transport. If you would prefer not to be on a set itinerary, it is possible to arrange for a lift out to the dunes with a travel company from M’Hamid. Once at Erg Chigaga, you can use one of the Bivouac Camps as a base from which to explore the dunes at your own leisure.

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  • Whenever heading out into the dunes be sure to leave details of your departure/approximate return time with the people with whom you are staying.
  • If you are overnighting in the dunes be sure to take a compass. When conditions turn nasty (ie. sandstorms), it is easy to become disorientated.

Route / Conditions :

  • No shade, no water – come prepared. Hat and sunscreen are essential.

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Sleeping :

  • Nights can be cold. If you are camping out, bring along a sleeping bag and a mat for insulation.
  • There are numerous bivouac camps situated at the base of Erg Chigaga. I have to say that the Sahara Services camp was pretty cush. Great food. Hard to beat location.

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Overview :

  • Incredible place. Well worth at least three days.
  • If I had to choose just one of Morocco’s Erg’s, I would pick Chigaga over Chebbi. Less people, less hassle, more remote and the dunes themselves are probably a little more spectacular.

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