Sleeping in a Agafay luxury camp in the desert under the stars. Is there anything more romantic? Helena Beard went to the Agafay Desert to learn.

Most British tourists who arrive at Marrakech airport on Friday afternoon will return to the city on Monday. If you stay one more night, you can have a different experience in the Agafay Desert, which is only 40 minutes away.

Before we begin, it’s important to know that this is not the Sahara desert. If you want to see the dunes of North Africa’s more famous desert, you’ll need to add seven hours to your journey. Even though the Agafay is a desert, you can still have a true desert experience here.

The Agafay Desert product was developed about five years ago. It is a day trip or overnight option that is easy to get from Marrakech. Even though the pandemic hurt people a lot, the idea is still around and there are many places to stay and do things in the area. You can take a shuttle bus from Marrakech or drive yourself or with a private driver.

My only experience in the desert was going on a camel trek and camping in the Thar Desert in Rajasthan when I was 18. This desert looked very busy. Many activity centers were offering quad bike rides and camel treks. Some trips included a lunch in a Berber tent.

Our driver told us that there was a better option. We didn’t mind and, even though we thought that “better” was a subjective term based on a commercial agreement, we were happy to go with the flow. We went to a big place for activities and were shown a long, low tent with a nice view of the dunes. Lunch was a set menu of Moroccan salads, bread, chicken Taine, and fruit. We sat on floor cushions pretending to be comfortable. It was very hot inside, but we were glad it wasn’t August.

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