A trip to the Sahara is undoubtedly one of the highlights of a visit to Morocco and a stay at idyllic Azalai Desert Lodge in Zagora is the beginning of your desert adventure!
After an exhilarating drive over the magnificent Atlas Mountains, your journey takes you past the impressive kasbahs of the Draa Valley, until you eventually reach your charming desert retreat just outside Zagora, once an ancient caravan halt and gateway to the Sahara. Azalai Lodge, a charming and friendly guesthouse, nestles in luxuriant gardens in the Zagora palm grove and has its own pool, a perfect base for exploring the nearby desert landscapes. Bedrooms are individually designed, drawing their inspiration from 20th century travellers, such as Lawrence of Arabia and Antoine de Saint-Exupéry and blend a stylish mix of French colonial and Moroccan furnishings.
After a day out walking in the palm grove, or exploring the local villages, you can retire to your own oasis of peace and relax by the pool, soak up the sunshine, pamper yourself with a relaxing hammam before dining out under the stars in the gardens.
Luxury Azalai Desert Camp in the Erg Chigaga dunes
If you want to escape to the Sahara for a full desert experience; driving through spectacular scenery, trekking by camel across the sand dunes to your base camp or sleeping out in a private tent under clear star studded skies… then a trip to Azalai’s secluded camp is well worth a visit. This is no ordinary desert camp experience; here you will be relaxing in the comfort and luxury of your own private tent, with all creature comforts to hand and dining outside by candlelight watching the sunset. The journey from Zagora to Erg Chigaga takes 3 hours by 4 x 4, so we recommend that you pre-book to avoid disappointment.
Features (Desert Lodge)
- 6 rooms and 2 suites, all with air-conditioning or fans and en suite bathrooms, with shower or vintage cast-iron baths, hairdryer and complimentary toiletries. Laundry facilities*
- Lovely gardens with swimming pool and sun loungers. Croquet court and free bikes
- Lounge, library and games available
- Small spa offering hammam and massages*
- Restaurant overlooks the gardens and serves traditional cuisine, based on local produce. Half-board is included
- Cookery classes, guided walks, camel rides, picnics and excursions can be arranged*
- Please note that alcohol is not available at the lodge, but guests are welcome to bring their own
Features (Desert Camp Tent)
- 4 ‘prestige’ marquee-style tents (20m2), each with fixed canopied double bed with quality bedding and mosquito net, bedside tables and small living area. Private shower, sink & wc. Half-board and transfers included.
- Restaurant tent and lounge. Please note that alcohol is not available in the camp
* At extra cost
- Having a perfect base for exploring the kasbahs and palm grove oases of the Draa Valley and for venturing into the desert
- Relaxing by the pool in the shade of the palm trees, after a body massage in the spa
- Visiting the fascinating small town of Zagora, formerly a French colonial outpost and a stop for the caravanserai to trade their wares on their way to Timbuktu, a 52 day’s journey away by camel!
- The endless space and overwhelming silence of the desert
- The convenience of pre-arranging a unique 2-centre desert adventure, combining stays at both these desert retreats
- After staying at Azalai Desert Lodge, or at their desert camp, you might be tempted to spend a few nights at Azalai Beach Cottage, their seaside retreat in Oualidia on the Atlantic coast
- All of the retreats can be booked for exclusive use by a group of friends or families