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    • Morocco Camel Trekking in Merzouga Desert , You need advice .?

      Morocco Mar 27, 2015 at 7:15 AM

      We started our Moroccan trip from Fes, after visiting the most important places, we left the Fes Medina mid-day to roam and explore the nouville, French for the new city part of Fes. Our bus was not departing till 9 at night so we had time to chill out in the city center. While the others went to re-up on some supplies, I stayed to watch the bags. A few kids came on bikes and I filmed them with my gopro. We quickly made friends despite the language barrier. They were eager to share their tricks for the camera. I gave them some graffiti stickers and share facebook information. Facebook, Everyone in Morocco has it.

      A few mint teas, coffees and getting lost, we found ourselves at the CTM bus station.. There was a German trio playing a guitar, where Thanecha immediately took to join. New friends were instantly made by the love for music, but we never knew how good of friends they would soon become. We had a nine hour, overnight bus ride to Rissani, a stop over to Merzouga, where the Sahara meets Morocco.

      After a long, sleepless and sometimes painful 9 hours, we arrived in Rissani, at 6am, before the sun broke the horizon. A man named Mohammed approached us and asked if we wanted some food and drink at his cafe, which he claimed was open, warm and just down the street. It sounded good to us as the Germans joined us. Immediately, this man gave some negative vibes, one of those gut feelings you get when you know something is not right.

      His cafe, Panorama Cafe, was not open or even his and took 10 minutes for someone to unlock it. I called him out on it, and he was quick to be on defense. "Why would I lie to you, my friend?" I dismissed him as we entered with the Germans.

      One of the German girl's boyfriend was coming from Merzouga to come get them, so they hung out with us until then. Mohammed's odd demeanor continued, as he pushed his services on me. I repeatedly said I had an excursion booked and I did not need his assistance in getting to Merzouga. All I or anyone of my group was interested was some tea and coffee. He persisted and was desperate, showing me pictures and videos of his resort and 4x4. He exclaimed that the boyfriend coming to pick them up was total BS because it took jobs away. He mumbled on in Arabic as we figured him out. He knew we figured him out and called his friends to come to his rescue.

      He offered all sorts of BS answers to our questions, and would shout Africa! or USA USA! AMERICA!!! when he didnt know what to say. He eventually brought out tea for all of us, when Ryan said, I am not drinking anything this man gives us. Apparently Mohammed touched a member of our group inappropriately up on the roof terrace moments before. When the tea came out, he switched Thanechas cup with another. It was deliberate and we saw it. Something is going on and not in a good way. His desperation continues as we fight off his advances.

      Finally having enough, we all left to wait with the Germans outside, as their ride was near by. We walked down the road back towards the bus stop, where he gets in his 4x4 chases us, threatening to call the police if we catch a ride with the Germans. We had no intentions to catch a ride with them, it was just an alibi. Just then, a big blue caravan appears around the corner, to the jumping Germans delight and Mohammed's despair. By now he was yelling at us to take his offer, yet we continue to thank him and refuse while walking away. He calls his friend to come help him not let this caravan get away by boxing it in, one car in the front and Mohammed in the back. We attempted to block his efforts to block the caravan by standing in front of his car, almost running over Ryan and Thanecha in the process. He was literally pressing the gas with two people in front of him. He threatened to call the police on us and the Germans if we got in. Tempers were high as shouting matches began, in the middle of town. What is going on?

      The Germans get in drove off leaving us trying to find a taxi, which apparently can only be found in front of his cafe. There is no way that was going to happen. We continue to walk in the opposite direction, repeatedly getting out of his car, claiming he is sorry and asks for forgiveness. By now, everyone in our group is just as hostile, all shouting at him to just leave us alone. I remained calm, thanked him and explained that there was no way we would be accepting any services from him. We walked down another street as far away as possible, cooling our tempers in the process. Did we just screw ourselves? He is probably in cahoots with every cab here, how are we getting to Merzouga?

      About a kilometer down the road, around the bend and out of sight of his cafe, the blue caravan appears. The Germans! They circled back around town unbeknownst to everyone in town, including ourselves. They quickly turned the caravan around and tell us to get in, and make it quick!

      We frantically pile in, lay on the floor in a small space, and drove away. These people were searching for us and came to our rescue. I can't thank them enough.

      We escaped to Merzouga and was greeted with massive sand dunes as soon as we stepped out from the big blue steed.

      After saying bye to our German saviors, we walked over to the hotel next door. At the gate, I saw a young man who looked like he just woke up, but he looked familiar, "Hassan Mouhou?" I asked. "Yeah," he replied. He looked just like the avatar he had on the emails we had exchanged earlier in the year. Short curly black hair, a young round friendly face and dark olive skin colored by the desert sun. I booked a camel excursion through his company ( Morocco Excursions Company => www.Morocco-Excursion.com) ------ (and they come highly recommended as you will read why). We exchanged hellos and he brought us the traditional Berber whiskey (tea - sans the alcohol) out on the sky terrace of the hotel. Hassan was very welcoming and just wanted to hang out, which caught me by surprise. He didn't try to push anything on us or sell us more junk, he just want to talk story and show us a good time. He even knew of Mr. Mohammed from Rissani. He showed us around Center of Merzouga just for fun until he had to prepare for our desert excursion.

      After a light meal, we returned to the hotel packed our bags and went out back to the hotel. There sat eight, single-humped dromedaries, snorting and farting away, ready to trek to camp. I know this is about as touristy as it gets, but hopping on one of those living desert cars and headed towards nothing but orange sand, lit by the low desert sun was surreal. Our former nomad guides, Youssef and Said, lead us and the camels by foot, towards the dunes. Our mini caravan of 6 camels trekked over 7km, across dunes as far as the eye could see. Some dunes were taller than 300 meters, simply incredible. None of us could get over the fact that we were riding dromedaries, into the Saharan desert, in Africa, on Christmas eve.

      Our guides dropped us off at a tall dune just short of camp, leaving us to hike to the top to catch our first Saharan sunset. It felt like we were children again, running up and down the dunes, laughter drifting in the quiet desert air. Was this really happening? We were in the Sahara Desert! After an obligatory mini photo shoot, we dug in and sat on the edge of a sand dune, boots off and toes in the sand, and watched the sun disappear in the distance. Perfect, simply perfect.

      Christmas night was even better. Camp was full, nearly 25 total fellow tourist, some of them wasted, singing and dancing around the fire. It was amazing to say the least. People from all over the world all having a good time around the camp fire in the Sahara. The Berber nomads encouraged every one to join in, all while having an even better time themselves. We danced and sang the night away, with drums and even a guitar for Thanecha. When our turn to sing a song came up, we rapped the fresh prince of Bellair, naturally. All the English speakers joined in about a story all about how my life got twisted upside down.... We told jokes and riddles again, under the stars that seemed to be so bright that they could cast shadows. We partied the night away, having the time our of lives. Not your typical Christmas, but definitely one to remember.

      You can read more about our Moroccan experience by visiting our blog : http://www.marcuscoania.com/blog/

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    • Good budget hotel

      Marrakesh Mar 27, 2015 at 1:38 AM

      Can you tell me of a well placed clean budget hotel just for breakfast. I have found Ryad Mogador at bab doukkala very good as it's twixt gueliz and la place - jemma el fyna. Please not a hotel/riad in Medina as it's scary at 4am in the dark.

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    • budget hotel

      Marrakesh Mar 27, 2015 at 8:24 AM

      Does anyone know a clean budget hotel like Ryad mogador at bab doukkala. Just for nice breakfast. It must be placed safely for late night returning and not in the spooky Medina.i say bab doukala because its twixt guelis and la place jemma el fynaa.

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    • Marrakesh to Chefchaouen (Blue City)

      Marrakesh Mar 11, 2015 at 5:48 AM

      Hi, Does anyone know the easiest and cheapest way to get from Marrakesh to Chefchaouen? preferably if there is a night bus and if so how much?

      Thanks!

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    • Grazia54's Profile Photo

      Two old girls traveling to Morocco

      Morocco Mar 17, 2015 at 10:59 AM

      Hi, My friend and I would like to find a tour to Morocco, that's reliable, affordable, but on the nicer side... about 10-14 days.. the basic cities Fes, Marrakesh, Essaouira. A camel ride out to spend the night in the desert... tents with bathrooms would be nice... and a group that is on the smallish side, around16, max. We're mature women, so access to a good bed, good meals, and hot water would also be quite appreciated. I've heard of a few companies, but don't know anything about them. Anyone have suggestions for us? I'd like to hear from those of you who had a great tour and you'd recommend it to a friend.... Thanks in advance for all your tips & suggestions... Grazia54

       

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    • csuresh's Profile Photo

      Marrakesh - query

      Marrakesh Mar 9, 2015 at 4:28 AM

      We have finalized our trip for next month having full 3 days in Marrakech. First day we want to visit part of the top 10 attractions that Google throws for Marrakech - Menara Gardens, Majorelle Garden, El Badi palace, Koutoubia Mosque, Marrakech museum and around Jemma El fna. We will be using paper maps - any other tips. What is the best way to navigate from one place to another? Day 2 - we plan to use guided Atlas mountains and trip. Day 3 - we have a late night flight so have full day with us - is there any tours that one can recommend where we can spend around 5-6 hours including travel and visit? I will be travelling with my wife and 2 daughters aged 9 and 6. I have asked a general query earlier and with plans getting firm - wanted to goto next level to check-up

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    • abs87's Profile Photo

      General Advice Required!

      Morocco Mar 14, 2015 at 6:17 PM

      Hi all,

      Just looking on some advice and guidance on a trip I am planning for myself (28) and my mum (51) at the end of this year.
      As first time visit to Morocco I was wondering whether Casablanca is worth the visit? We were thinking of just visiting Marrakech and Fez, then heading up and taking the ferry to Spain... I am conflicted as to whether we should fly into London and take a cheaper flight to Morocco or just fly direct into Casablanca (which would be the more expensive option). We plan on visiting Spain and Italy also so any suggestions as to an itinerary around those destinations would be helpful, so many places to see its becoming slightly overwhelming picking just a few!

      Any tips on the best way to travel around Morocco would be great also, we are mainly looking at Air BnB accommodation and are happy to take trains/buses to get around and see more of the countryside

      Thanks for your help!
      abbie

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    • nice people

      Marrakesh Mar 15, 2015 at 12:05 PM

      Hello,I would like to meet some interesting mature local people,interested in culture,art and nature , next week in M.Any body know somebody there.??I can imagine a nice intercultural chat over a cup of mint tea.
      Thank you

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    Popular Province d' Er Rachidia Travel Answer Locations

    • Difference between booking with booking.com and Hotel?

      Merzouga Nov 23, 2014 at 3:59 AM

      Im about to book Riad Saturday Night and I saw that the same riad, in the same period booked via booking.com is much cheaper than doing the same thing directly with the hotel...Why is that?Is there something i dont know that may be a bad surprise for me later or should I really do it with booking?

      Thank you!!

      12 Answers Dec 23, 2014 at 1:36 AM
    • DavidV28's Profile Photo

      Hotel between Errachidia and Bou Arfa?

      Province d' Er Rachidia Oct 25, 2014 at 1:28 PM

      Hello friends,
      I will soon be coming by public transit all the way from my home in Taroudant to visit Figuig.
      I see that there is a long stretch of road between Errachidia and Bou Arfa.
      Do you know of any place I can spend a night about half way?

      Feel free to contact me at my email address: davidvickery.2013@ymail.com

      Thanks,
      David/Daoud

      9 Answers Oct 27, 2014 at 6:07 AM
    • A_liba's Profile Photo

      Merzouga-Marrakech? by 2 guys from Italy

      Merzouga Jul 13, 2014 at 1:01 AM

      Hi! we are two italian guys and this summer we'll be in morocco on a trip. We'd like to go for a trip in the desert, and we'll do it in Merzouga. The we have to go from Merzouga to Marrakech, can you tell me what's the best way to do this (grand taxi, bus..)? Do you think we should stop in any place on the way? How long does it take for this route? is it possible to leave Merzouga in the morning and get to Marrakech in the evening?
      Thanks a lot

      10 Answers Jul 18, 2014 at 2:49 AM
    • Back Pain Treatment

      Merzouga Jul 24, 2013 at 11:59 AM

      I was told that in the town of El Rachidia, they will treat people with bad back pain, by burying them in the sand. Has anyone else heard of this?

      9 Answers Nov 15, 2014 at 1:24 AM
    • SUN_69's Profile Photo

      Imilchil Marriage Festival

      Imilchil Jun 19, 2013 at 10:07 AM

      I'm planning to visit the Imilchil Marriage Festival in late September 2013 then travel into the desert to stay with the Berber tribe. It will be great photo shoot opportunity. I plan to hire a 4x4 car/drive/guide to take be there and hope to form a group of 4-6 travellers/photography enthusiast to share cost.

      If you are interested please contact me at this forum page.

      98 Answers Feb 21, 2014 at 9:00 PM
    • donh@tamh.net

      Rissani Mar 6, 2013 at 1:11 PM

      What is the easiest and fastest way to go from Casablanca to Rissani. I know you can go by ctm to Errachidia and then grand taxi, but does Supratours go on to Rissani?

      1 Answer Apr 26, 2013 at 11:44 AM
    • Rissani to Erofund

      Erfoud May 23, 2012 at 6:54 AM

      Is there a bus or train that goes from Rissani to Erofund?
      Thanks.
      Losham

      3 Answers Jul 23, 2013 at 11:10 AM
    • Souks

      Imilchil Jan 14, 2012 at 4:36 AM

      Hi

      Will be travelling in this area in February and would like to know when there are souk days. Is one held in Imilchil apart from the Moussem? If anybody has a list of souk days for surrounding towns and also the Tafraoute area Id be very grateful

      Thanks

      Bill

      1 Answer Feb 19, 2013 at 1:50 AM
    • Romans in Morrocco

      Sijilmassa Dec 4, 2011 at 10:34 AM

      I was told by a local that Sijilamassa was once a southern outpost of Rome and some of the ruins there are Roman . I also spent some time with a group of Tuareg who had camped near the ruins and one of the group who had been educated in the states and lived for a while in London also believed this. Is there any evidence to back the Roman presence?

      9 Answers Aug 2, 2012 at 12:20 AM
    • Merzouga in January? Booking required in advance?

      Merzouga Oct 10, 2010 at 7:44 AM

      Hi

      I am interested in going to Merzouga in January. Is this time of year too cold to do the overnight camel trekking?

      Also, is it recommended to have a camel trekking booked ahead of time? What about a hotel? Can we just arrive and find a hotel/camel trekking?

      The reason I ask is that it is uncertain when exactly we will be arriving. I don't want to book a hotel when I don't arrive until the next day.

      Thanks!
      Ryan

      11 Answers Nov 24, 2013 at 11:00 AM
    • Beatnink's Profile Photo

      Is September too hot for the desert?

      Merzouga Jul 29, 2010 at 3:37 AM

      We are planning to be in Merzouga around the 15th of September. Is that not too hot a time to venture into the desert on a camel trip? Thanks, Ron. Wellington, New Zealand

      2 Answers Aug 11, 2010 at 8:24 AM
    • In a campervan to Merzouga

      Merzouga Aug 28, 2009 at 4:20 PM

      I am planning to go to Erfoud, Morocco and want to go to Merzouga in my campervan. Does anyone know what the roads are like and is it possible to camp free there? Is there a good roadmap somewhere? I camped many times in the stone desert about 5 km. south of Erfoud and that is wonderfull. If you drive a km. from the tarmic road in the desert you can camp there without being bothered.
      Thanks, Marjolijn
      (I don't go alone, I bring my husband and dog!)

      6 Answers Sep 14, 2009 at 11:31 AM
    • from Merzouga to Casablanca?

      Merzouga Aug 11, 2009 at 6:10 PM

      I need to know what is the best way to go from Merzouga(desert) to Casablanca? any airport close by? car?

      3 Answers Aug 8, 2014 at 12:53 AM
    • Merzouga trip -goulmima - erfoud road

      Merzouga Jan 20, 2009 at 7:54 AM

      Please can anyone tell me whether the road that cuts across from near Goulmima to Erfoud is ok for use by a small hire car? or does one have to travel via El Rachidia? Thanks.

      5 Answers Mar 7, 2015 at 5:26 PM
    • Camping/hotel parking for camper with swimming pool

      Merzouga Dec 11, 2008 at 11:26 PM

      Good morning,
      I am looking for a Hotel-parking or camping with swimming pool for a group of 3-4 camper and relative price.

      Thank you,
      Aluffi Franco

      1 Answer Jun 5, 2014 at 5:49 AM
    • Car rental in Rissani?

      Rissani Dec 8, 2008 at 4:54 AM

      Hi, does anyone know if it is possible to rent a reliable car in Rissani? I want to get from there to Marrakech and it seems like the process of bus hopping is pretty confusing.

      Thanks!

      3 Answers Dec 8, 2008 at 3:54 PM
    • planning for the desert

      Rissani Dec 5, 2008 at 2:57 PM

      i want to plan a camel trek, 2days, 1 or 2 nights, from Rissani, but I'm not sure if i should wait to arrange a guide until i get to Rissani, or if i should try to find one online. i don't want to throw away a lot of extra money on one of the fancy ones some of the websites offer, but i also don't want to get screwed into a fauxguide, or be stuck guideless in Rissani, since i'll be a little tight on time-any suggestions about what to do or good guides?

      thanks!

      6 Answers Sep 29, 2012 at 10:21 AM
    • moscit's Profile Photo

      Dangers of the Desert

      Merzouga Aug 28, 2008 at 12:10 PM

      Hi,

      We are current ly planning our first trip to Morocco and of course we will be going to Merzouga and the sand dunes. We are thinking of doing an organized overnight excursion in the desert in a berber tent and wanted to know if there are any dangers we should be aware of while in the desert, for example how likely will it be to encounter scorpions and where should we be most carefull of them? What about other insects, animals etc.

      Any information you can provide would be great. Thanks.

    • Need advice on cameltrekking with Omar or another company

      Merzouga Nov 15, 2007 at 11:16 AM

      I've read several entries about using Omar with Camel Trekking for a desert tour. Can anyone tell me if they paid a deposit via Western Union? It seems odd to me to handle it this way so I want to make sure that's legit. Also, any other suggestions on visitng the dunes from Marrakech (just a 3 day, 2 night trip) is much appreciated!

      Am i going to freeze my buns off in December?

      4 Answers Dec 15, 2007 at 7:39 AM
    • hazzhana's Profile Photo

      Marrakech to Erg Chebbi tour

      Merzouga Mar 15, 2007 at 9:32 AM

      i'm looking for 3days 2nights tour fm Marrakech (by 4WD)to Erg Chebbi , with stops at Ait Benhaddou, valley of Roses,Todra Gorg and camel trek in Erg Chebbi..any recommendations?

      2 Answers Jan 6, 2014 at 6:49 PM
    • soultravelers3's Profile Photo

      HELP! Looking for BTDT exp. with "Les Nomads" Allesandra & Hmad ( Brazil & nomad)

      Merzouga Feb 18, 2007 at 1:59 PM

      I am new here and have looked every where for BTDT info on these people.
      nomadsaharabivouacmerzouga.c...
      She is from Brazil and he is from Morocco and they seem great...altho the prices are high compared to others.

      I love thier website and they are terrific via email response.What I have read about them has been good, but I can not find anyone with experience with them which is very important to me.

      We are a family with a 6yo traveling around the world and want a very special & safe experience in the desert, NOT an assembly line hardcore rough trip like I have read about in so many trip reports. ( We are planning on doing two nights with them, one with a special Berber family overnight).

      ( Plenty of people like the standard cheaper type, but we are only going to do this once and I want to do it well and feel confident with a young child and I would like more than going to the bathroom behind a bush with a bunch of people. I am in my 50's so past those days ).


      Has ANY one had experience with these people ( standard, luxury,private? ) and can give me accurate and nuetral feedback about their expience?

      I would really ,really appreciate it!! We are going in April and I do not want to book without more info. ( I know I can book things at the desert,but I want something special and want it in place before going as I am planning 7 months of travel right now).

      If you don't know ,do you have ANY idea where I can get this info??

      Thanks in advance!

      5 Answers May 10, 2007 at 1:09 PM
    • questions re: camping in erg chebbi

      Merzouga Feb 16, 2007 at 5:01 AM

      Thank you for your posting. The details help me plan my trip to Merzouga.
      I'll be going in September and wondered how much to expect for a camel ride to and from Merzouga to the erg chebbi desert and a night spent in there.
      What are my accomodation options? How much do each cost roughly? And does staying in a tent require I bring my own sleeping bag?
      Any advice you could give would be great.

      Thanks again.

    • Trip to the desert.. Please help

      Merzouga Dec 30, 2006 at 12:33 AM

      Someone stated on this website: I took a 2 day trek into the Sahara, the guy who went with me hooked us up with some local food that some Berber tribe we met out there cooked. It was Tagine which is a slightly sweet stew served with bread. There were my two other backpacker friends, the guide, and five of the Berbers eating in a big circle. We each got a round of bread and used our fingers to eat from the communal dish of tagine. It was great.

      This is a great tip. Could someone help me with how i would go about doing this? I wanted to stay two days in the desert but in established tents or with teh Berbers. Please provide some contacts or details. I plan to stay with Kasbah Mohayut. Can i ask them to arrange it?

      Also, would you bother staying in Merzouga at all or shoudl you venture out right away into the desert.
      Also, how far is Tineghir from Merzouga? Thanks!

      Thanks mate. Looking forward to hearing from you!

      2 Answers Dec 30, 2006 at 5:04 PM
    • Camel trekking company

      Merzouga Dec 16, 2006 at 7:36 AM

      Also...does anyone have personal experience with Cameltrekking.com
      It looks and sounds great but would love a reference from someone with a personal experience!!

      Thanks

      1 Answer Jan 9, 2007 at 4:49 PM
    • Camel Trekking

      Merzouga Dec 16, 2006 at 7:34 AM

      I have emailed a cameltrekking company and have been given information about a trek along with looked on their website about itineraries and prices. As everything seems to say to Bargain should I do so with this as well? The cost does not seem unreasonable but I am basing that on Western standards.


      Thanks in advance for your input....

      1 Answer Dec 19, 2006 at 5:53 PM
    • from marrakech to merzouga to fes

      Merzouga Oct 21, 2006 at 1:24 PM

      Hi,
      Has anyone made this trip? I am trying to figure out how long it will take and how many days i should plan. Also curious if i should rent a car or get a taxi and then if i get a taxi, how does that work? Where does he stay?

      Anyway right now thinking. First-day leaving marrakech to ait ben haddou. Second day-ait ben haddou to merzouga go into desert. third day- hang out in desert. fourth day- drive from merzouga to fes. Any suggestions- Thanks in advance!

      8 Answers Oct 28, 2006 at 1:34 AM
    • Aschafer's Profile Photo

      Marrakesh to Merzouga

      Merzouga Aug 20, 2006 at 3:21 PM

      Hi,
      I plan to take the trip from Merzouga into the desert to spend 1 night. Omar from cameltreking.com told me to contact him 1 day before I arrive in Merzouga. I am actually staying in Marrakesh. Is there easy transportation from Marrakesh to Merzouga? Buses or trains? I am not renting a 4x4, so if you could let me know how to arrive in Merzouga from Marrakesh I would appreciate it.
      Thanks!

      1 Answer Sep 2, 2006 at 8:32 AM
    • visite here to discaver the magic of desert

      Merzouga Mar 17, 2006 at 3:47 AM

      for anyone who is interesting to discaver desert of Morocco espicialy Merzouga, simply write me.

      4 Answers Aug 16, 2009 at 5:54 AM
    • HOTEL & BIVOUAC IN MERZOUGA

      Merzouga Mar 13, 2005 at 8:11 AM

      HI ALL
      Hopping to travel to merzouga south est of morocco, for some camel trekking,and i want to stay for a relax a couple of days in a hotel called ksar bicha, i have been in it , it's a very nice hotel.
      does anyone have website for ksar bicha , fax or phone ?
      THNKS A LOT.

      2 Answers Jul 29, 2006 at 11:45 AM
    • HOTEL & BIVOUAC IN MERZOUGA

      Merzouga Mar 13, 2005 at 7:58 AM

      HI ALL
      Hopping to travel to merzouga south est of morocco, for some camel trekking,and i want to stay for a relax a couple of days in a hotel called ksar bicha, i have been in it , it's a very nice hotel.
      does anyone have website for ksar bicha , fax or phone ?
      THNKS A LOT.

      2 Answers Dec 14, 2005 at 1:43 PM