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It's time for my eighth post about our trip to Morocco, and it's definitely my favorite one yet. This day was EPIC. I've mentioned more than once on this blog that a hot air balloon ride has been on my bucket list for a long time, and we finally made it happen! But this was no ordinary hot air balloon ride... this was an Atlas Mountains hot air balloon ride... followed by a traditional Berber breakfast in the Sahara desert... followed by a camel ride!! SO MUCH Moroccan cultural goodness packed into one day!
This day started EARLY when our guide picked us up from our hotel to start the trek out into the desert. We drove a pretty long way (along with a few other tourists from around the world) out into the wilderness, which felt pretty magical after several days in the busy and crowded city of Marrakech. Our destination was a simple traditional Berber structure where we would be having breakfast later. The balloon was not there yet, but the breathtaking sunrise over the Atlas mountains was more than sufficient to entertain us during our wait. It was really unlike anything I've ever seen.
The anticipation increased dramatically when the team arrived with the balloon!
It was quite a thrill to watch this massive balloon inflate! Off in the distance, a couple of other balloons took flight before we did, which just added to the excitement!
All aboard! I was surprised how stable the balloon felt... getting off the ground was not even a little bit scary! Our captain (guide? pilot?) was a true expert and incredibly entertaining to boot. And, oh, the views! Stunning.
We soared through the air for nearly an hour before landing with the help of the amazing team!
Such a rush! And we got an official flight certificate as a souvenir! ;)
It was fun to explore the tent and surrounding areas in the daylight!
We were HUNGRY by this point, and this traditional Berber breakfast really hit the spot. Pancakes, olives, corn bread, and fruit, oh my! And of course Moroccan mint tea--yum!
Back to town! We stopped just outside the main part of Marrakech for a camel ride in the Palmeraie desert. Hello, camels!
To get the full effect, we got all dressed up in traditional Moroccan garb.
Time for our ride! I have to admit that this part of the adventure seemed a bit more "touristy" and was perhaps a bit underwhelming, but in retrospect, I think that was just because the balloon ride was SO amazing. Camel riding was still fun, and I'm glad we did it!
This Moroccan adventure was most definitely a once-in-a-lifetime experience, and I am so thankful that I got to enjoy it! If you are traveling to Morocco, this is an absolute MUST DO!! If you're planning your trip, you can use this link to book this exact tour, but there are other versions as well, such as a private hot air balloon ride with breakfast in the air (perfect for a honeymoon, am I right?!).
If you've been on this kind of adventure... what did you think? Tell me in the comments! Or let me know if you have any questions about our trip... I could talk about it all day!
P.S. Stay tuned to the Etsy Shop... I have a feeling that there's going to be some epic sunrise photos in there soon. ;)