From Fez, we took 8-hours bus to Merzougha where is just 0.5km to Sahara desert. We were so excited to go to Sahara and leave the harsh Fez. From the beginning, the service from our hotel was so great although the hotel rate was just 10eur per night per person. This city brought me to ‘Jazirah Arab’ program that always showed in TV every Ramadhan month. A very few trees, rare house with the cube shaped and made of yellow sand, and almost nothing you can see in the city. It was nice, exciting, and hollow city. We took camel ride in the Sahara desert for 2 hours. You can’t imagine how beautiful and interesting it is to ride a tall camel in a 4 camels-caravan on the orange desert where the sand is so soft and sinking when you step your feet on. I said all the good words in Arabic along the ride when I was so scared on the camel, yet so excited and amazed of the beauty of the desert. I can’t describe its beauty, neither my camera can catch it. It’s just take-a-deep-breath-while-saying-Subhanallah. Those beautiful-huge-buildings in Europe can’t compare with this desert.
Our camel men brought us to the camp behind a sand dune. The tent was basic and clean with the beds and tables. They served us with Moroccan food, tagine, couscous and mint tea. After dinner, they set up a fire and we sat around while listen to Hamidd playing his guitar with his nice voice singing Berber songs. Other brothers joined him playing tamtam energeticly. Before we went to bed, we climbed up the dune and laid there for several minutes to chat and waiting for the stars to appear, but they didn’t show up. There, I here someone asked to one of the brothers about the meaning of adzan. I thought that it was a perfect night ever.
In the morning we went back to our hotel from the desert by our camel-taxis. But we were calmer, not as excited as before. In hotel, they served us a very nice breakfast with the best yogurt ever. Everything just nice and amazing.
In the afternoon of the same day, we took jeep tour to travel around Sahara. We visited a green-beautiful-lac (lake) with the orange desert as the background. We visited a house of black-Algerian-musician-moslems in Khamla village. Their group called Gnouia (their tribe’s name). This 6 men-group performed 5-6 Gnouia songs for us. To be honest, their music is not enjoyable, but they put a lot of effort to show us the music with those costumes and traditional instruments. But it is nice to experience culture when traveling. The next stops are the location of traditional coal mining in the border of Morocco and Algeria with the beautiful surroundings; having a cup of mint tea in the nomad’s village where I don’t have any idea how they can live several kms far away from the other village with no cars, only camel and sheep; to the location of fossil-stone; to another bigger and more beautiful lac; and watching sun sets in the dune. Yes, everything was so amazing again which continued by the amazing-ness of the dinner. It was the best ground-beef-and-omelette-tagine. What makes it more amazing is Hamidd played the guitar and sing ONLY for us. He sang Berber songs, of course. He taught us how to play tamtam, so we played tamtam while he is singing and playing guitar. His brothers came afterward and they played tamtam so professionally and expressively while his other brother dancing along. We were amazed and laughing and felt so happy. Nothing more we need to feel this warm, happy, and satisfied to see this nice family and felt that we are apart of the family.
The next morning was the day that we have to leave this amazing hotel. We all looked so sad and kept talking about those nice brothers. We wished we could stay longer. The next journey is Marrakech, a big city where the capital city was located before moved to Rabat. We didn’t enjoy Marrakech that much and missing Merzougha with all its amazing experiences.