The Sahara desert is one of the best places in the world for star-gazing, due to the lack of light pollution – and the great news for wannabe astronomers in the UK is that it’s a mere four hour flight away.
Head to Morocco and you can sleep in a traditional Berber tent under the stars, in the Sahara, making for an unforgettable holiday experience.
Camel treks into the Sahara can be taken from Merzouga, Morocco – although those who are less able can choose to travel by 4×4 instead. Taking the camel is a great experience and does lend a certain authenticity that a car doesn’t. However, a word of warning – even an hour on a camel is a long time and tough going on the bottom! Comfortable clothes are a must and, unlike me, you’d be advised to leave the denim shorts at home.
Once into the Sahara you’ll come across tiny clusters of Berber tents – which are part tent, part mud hut. These are usually clustered around a central fire, and the little tent ‘villages’ normally also have a tent for eating and one for toileting.
Make no bones about it, this is not a luxurious experience. Although, to say that you’re staying in the Sahara desert, perhaps it is. We were certainly perfectly comfortable, the tents were clean, the food was good and the guides were pleasant enough.
Obviously, there’s no electricity, so candlelight and matches are the order of the day. But that’s kind of the whole point of the trip. When night falls, and blackness descends over the Sahara, you’re treated to the sight of a blanket of stars above your head, clearer and more beautiful than you have ever seen before.
Now that’s got to be worth a sore bottom after hours on a camel, right?