- Duration: 11 - 21 Days
- Intensity: Intermediate
- Season: October - February
- Minimum Age: 15
- Begins In: Algiers, Algeria
- Airport: Algiers, Algeria
Peter Grubb, founder of ROW Adventures, will be leading one of these tours of Algeria. He's carefully crafted an adventure expedition that immerses his guests into the natural and cultural history of Algeria and guests can choose to join him for 11 or all 21 days. The trip is conducted in coordination with Algerian adventure travel companies who will guide on foot, camel, 4x4 and airplane. Whether guest spend 11 or 21 days in Algeria they will experience a deep immersion into the history and culture of this astounding country.
Our first stop is the M'Zab Valley Unesco World Heritage site in north central Algeria. There are five towns, each on a knoll that rises steeply from the oasis-filled valley. It is a site like no other. The streets are narrow and no cars travel within the town gates. This is the home of the Mozabites, part of the Ibadi sect who broke away from mainstream Islam in the 11th century. We spend a couple of days in Ghardaia, the main town, as wells as a couple of the other smaller towns including Beni Isguen. We'll visit with the locals and learn more about thier unique and proud culture.
Next, we travel to the great sand sea of the Grand Erg Occidental, south of the Saharan Atlas Mountains in the west of Algeria. The beautiful red sandstone town of Timimoun welcomes us for a night. Set on the edge of an ancient salt lake, there are incredible views to sand dunes in the west. From here we set out on a 5-day camel trek, camping in the desert and visiting small and remote oasis villages with intricate irrigation systems. There is a real sense of being lost in time. As we travel between camps, you can ride your camel or walk alongside it. As you climb and descend over golden mountains of sand, the magic of the Sahara takes hold.
Moving on, we take a flight to Tamanrasset, deep in south central Algeria and heart of Tuareg country. These people number some 75,000 and the men wear an indigo-colored fabric which stains their skin and has earned them the name of “Blue People of the Desert.” They will be our guides during our 4x4 and trekking tour of this mountainous region where peaks reach up to 9000 feet. We visit parts of Ahaggar National Park as we explore this warped landscape of rocky plateaus and peaks. A highlight is Assekrem, Tuareg for “End of the World” with the most amazing views of the Sahara you could ever hope to see. We also visit the hermitage of Charles de Foucald, playboy turned monk who lived here from 1911-16. As we travel through these soul-stirring lands, we camp and enjoy the smiles and songs of our local Tuareg guides.
Finally, we travel to the small town of Djanet in the southeast, dwarfed by the surrounding mountains and set next to palm oasis. This is our starting point for a four-day hike with mules to carry our gear to the Tassili N’Ajjer National Park. This “Plateau of Chasms” is a Unesco World Heritage site and home to one of the most important collections of prehistoric cave art in the world. More than 15,000 drawings, many of which are life-sized, are scattered in the rock canyons of this volcanic landscape. The images of people, animals and spiritual beings are spell-binding. We camp each night under the Saharan sky and eat simple food with our local guides and hosts.