School Trek - Edge of Sahara

Full days of trekking on desert terrain





From $980 Land only

Book this holiday

Holiday Overview


  • Learn about the culture of the Berber people
  • Sleep out in the desert beneath the stars
  • Explore the 1000 year old city of Marrakech
  • A trek with a Berber crew and camel support

This superb School Adventure begins with a drive south from Marrakech, across the Atlas and through the Draa Valley, to a fixed camp amongst the palm groves at Ouled Driss. Here, we meet our Berber cook team and Saharan camel drivers and set off on an unforgettable journey into the desert. We walk for around 6 hours a day, stopping for a leisurely lunch in a shaded spot and camping each night on the open sand of the dunes - beneath the star-filled Saharan skies. Taking tea with the local crew around the camp fire, hiking on little-used trails and watching the sun set between the highest dune-crests are all part of this magical desert holiday. Starting out on the dry bed of the Draa River and reaching a high point at the great dunes of Zahar, this is a winter walking holiday with a difference! This tried and tested KE Schools itinerary can be adjusted to better fit the needs of your group - please call and speak to a KE School Groups Coordinator or email

Is this holiday for you?

This holiday involves walking for 6 to 7 hours each day over a variety of terrain from hard rock to soft desert sand. All our camping and personal equipment is carried by camels so it is only necessary to carry a small daypack with daily essentials such as water bottle and camera. Winter daytime temperatures in the desert are not too hot and walking at this time of year should be quite comfortable. We camp in the desert for 3 nights and at a fixed camp with shower facilities for 2 nights.

Brief Itinerary

View in full
  • Day 1
  • Day 2
  • Day 3
  • Day 4
  • Day 5
  • Day 6
  • Day 7
  • Day 8

Land Only

The price of our trips does not include international air travel to the start location in the destination city and country. The start location for joining the trip is identified for each trip. It's usually a centrally located hotel. KE can easily arrange all airport transfers for you.

International Air Travel

Please contact us at KE for air travel advice. We will be happy to discuss the flight arrangement which best suits your group.

2 teachers FREE

The Guide Price assumes that 2 teachers will accompany the group. Their Land Only costs are covered by the group's payment.

Guide Price $980*
Park Fees/permits N/A
Other Charges N/A

* We give a price estimate for all of our school trips. This is based on 12-16 pupils and includes two free teacher places. If you are interested in a specific trip, we will send you a quote letter. You may wish to take extra teachers or add on additional days and this can all be included into your quote, on request.

Map & Itinerary

The Route

  • airport
  • point
  • trip direction
  • peaks
  • pass
  • transfer
  • trek

Holiday Itinerary

  • Day 1

  • Day 2

  • Day 3

  • Day 4

  • Day 5

  • Day 6

  • Day 7

  • Day 8

Holiday Information

On trek, the food is a mixture of local and Western, all purchased locally and cooked for us by our trek cooks. Breakfasts are continental style, with tea and coffee, orange juice, cereals including muesli, bread, jam, honey and cheese. A morning snack is also provided and this usually consists of a piece of fruit (apple, orange), together with Moroccan “trail mix” of dried figs and dates, peanuts, sugar coated peanuts and other nuts. Lunch usually starts with the Berber speciality of mint tea, followed by a freshly prepared salad. Hard and soft cheeses, tinned fish, olives, biscuits and bread are also on the lunchtime menu. Dinner starts off with soup and bread. The main course is usually rice, pasta, cous-cous, spaghetti or chips, with a vegetable stew (or tagine) consisting of some of the following - onion, potato, carrot, green pepper, courgette, turnip, parsnip. green beans, peas. There will be some meat (usually chicken, lamb or beef). Meat is not prominent in the menu. All dishes come with traditional sauces which are rarely (spicy) hot. Desserts usually consist of fruit, including oranges, pineapple, apricot, pears or peaches. To round off dinner, there is the usual range of hot drinks.
A typical day starts with an early morning wake-up call. After breakfast, during which camp will be struck and the camels given their loads, we start walking in the pleasant cool of the morning. Lunch is usually taken at about 11.30 am, and on some days this stop will be extended into a break from walking of up to 2-2½ hours to avoid walking in the hottest part of the day. We will usually reach our overnight camp for the night by 4 pm, i.e. well before dusk. On most days we will only be walking for 4 to 5 hours. Dinner is ready at around 6 p.m. and is a 3-course meal served in the mess tent. This is a great time of day for reliving the events of the trek so far and for general socialising. After dark, the temperature quickly falls and everyone will soon be tucked up in their sleeping bags.
Approximately £150 (or equivalent in US dollars or Euros) should be allowed for miscellaneous expenses including tips for your trek crew. This should also be sufficient to cover soft drinks, snacks, and lunches in Marrakech if you should happen to arrive early in the day or depart late in the day. Marrakech is a great place for souvenir buying and all major credit cards are accepted. If you are intending to buy expensive items, you should budget accordingly. It is not necessary to purchase Moroccan currency (Dirham) outside the country. You can withdraw money in local currency from ATM’s in Marrakech or your travel money can be carried in the form of cash or travellers cheques. (Sterling and US dollars are easily exchanged but note that travellers cheques are more difficult to exchange and attract a higher rate of commission). Credit cards can be used to purchase goods and it is a good idea to carry one in case of emergency.
Tipping is the accepted way of saying thank you for good service. Tips do not form part of the wages of your local guides and trek crew but they are very much appreciated. Most groups will want to show their appreciation to the local staff who work so hard to make the trip a success. Normally, tips are given at the end of the trek and this is best done as a group. Most groups will give the tips with a bit of ceremony (or sometimes a party) on the last evening, to mark the end of the trip. As a guide, we recommend that each pupil contributes £30 (in local currency) to these tips. Your KE School Adventure leader will help you make arrangements for a fair distribution of tips among the trek crew.
Your baggage on trek will be carried by camels. The packed weight of your main bag whilst trekking should be no more than 15 kg. It is possible to leave clothes or other items not required on trek at the group hotel.

All KE clients will receive a FREE KE trek bag.  These have been specially made to stand up to the rigours of adventure travel.  Your KE bag will be posted to you when your trip is guaranteed to run or on receipt of your booking if the trip is already guaranteed.  If you have travelled with us before and already have a KE trek bag you can select an alternative free gift in the booking process.

The altitudes attained on this holiday are not extreme and the maximum altitude attained is no more than the equivalent of a pressurised cabin on an international flight. The highest that we go is just over 2000m when we cross a pass in a vehicle.

The following checklist should help you with your packing. As a general rule, you should always try to keep the weight of your equipment to a minimum.

You must bring the following items:

  • Hiking boots - light weight for the heat, and ankle height to prevent sand entering
  • Socks
  • Underwear
  • Trekking trousers / pants
  • Waterproof over trousers / rain pants (it can rain in the desert!)
  • Lightweight windproof jacket
  • Long sleeved loose fitting shirts or T-shirts (wicking)
  • Fleece jacket or warm jumper/sweater
  • Wide brimmed sunhat
  • Warm hat
  • Headscarf or buff (to protect against the sun and wind, can be purchased locally)
  • Eyewear - Sunglasses
  • Lightweight thermal gloves
  • Sun protection (including total bloc for lips, nose etc.)
  • Water bottles 1 Litre x2 – hydration system e.g. camelbak or platypus useful.
  • 3 season sleeping bag (4 season sleeping bag for departures
  • From Mid-Oct through to End of February)*
  • Antibacterial hand wash
  • Wet wipes
  • Toilet roll
  • Water purification tablets
  • Wash bag and toiletries
  • Small trek towel
  • Small padlock (to lock your KE kit bag)
  • Light daypack 25/30 litres
  • Head-torch / headlamp with spare batteries
  • Basic First Aid Kit, including pain killers, plasters (band-aids), blister protection (e.g. compeed), insect repellant, and rehydration salts.

The following items are optional:

  • Trainers /sneakers or sandals
  • Trekking poles (recommended)
  • Thermarest* (note that foam mattresses are provided)
  • Shorts (should only be worn outside towns and villages)
  • Sleeping bag liner
  • Pocket-knife (note: always pack sharp objects in hold baggage)
  • Repair kit – (eg. needle, thread, duct tape)
  • Travel clothes
  • Camera, media, spare batteries


  • *Available for hire/rental through KE Adventure Travel.

    Please note that showers are not available in the desert and there is a limited amount of washing water, wet wipes are useful to wash in the interim.

For each holiday there is a minimum number of participants required to enable it to go ahead. Once the minimum number is reached, the trip status will change from 'Available' to 'Guaranteed to run'. You can check the trip status for each departure in ‘Dates and Prices’ table. Other than in exceptional circumstances, we will not cancel a trip once it has achieved this guaranteed to run status and so you are free to proceed with your international flight booking and other travel arrangements.

A passport with 6 months remaining validity at the end of your stay is generally required. The information that we provide is for UK passport holders. Please check the relevant embassy or consulate for other nationalities. It is your responsibility to ensure that you have the correct travel documents and visas for your holiday. Visa requirements and charges are subject to change without notice. If you are travelling outside the EU you should have at least 2 blank pages in your passport.

We recommend you check if you require an adaptor for your electrical items at:

As a reputable tour operator, KE supports the British Foreign & Commonwealth Offices ‘Know before you go’ campaign to enable British citizens to prepare for their journeys overseas, and we recommend that all KE travellers take a look at the FCO Travel Advice for their chosen destination on the official FCO website: North Americans can also check out the U.S. Department of State website: for essential travel advice and tips.

KE treat the safety and security of all clients as the most important aspect of any trip we organise. We would not run any trip that we did not consider reasonably safe.  Should the FCO advise against travel for any reason, we will contact everyone booked to travel to discuss the situation.  We receive regular updates direct from the FCO and are in constant touch with our contacts on the ground.  If you have any questions about government travel advice, please call our office.

In Marrakech it is warm during the day in the winter months (Dec – Feb) and we can expect daytime temperatures to be around 20ºC. Evenings are cooler and night time temperatures can drop as low as 6ºC. While trekking in the desert we can expect only slightly higher daytime temperatures though it may feel much hotter than this in the strong sun. At night in the desert it can get very cold with temperatures falling to or even below freezing levels. For April departures temperatures will be in the order of 3 to 5ºC warmer than the above temperatures. Most of Morocco’s little rain occurs in the winter months and it is possible you will get some rain or even short lived heavy downpours while in Marrakech. Rain is much less likely in the desert though it cannot be completely ruled out.
Lonely Planet Guide – Morocco. The Rough Guide to Morocco.
Morocco Adventure Map. National Geographic Society.1:1,000,000

Morocco at 1:1,000,000 in a series of Adventure maps from the National Geographic Society with cartography provided by Reise Know-How. The map is double-sided and printed on light waterproof and tear-resistant synthetic paper.

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