Algeria’s Shifting Sands | GeoEx

Algeria’s Shifting Sands


Forgotten Empires of the Maghreb

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Algeria’s Shifting Sands


Group Travel | 16 Days
  • Five off-the-radar UNESCO Sites: Roman ruins of Djémela, Casbah of Algiers, Timgad, M’Zab Valley, and Tipasa
  • Travel the Mediterranean coast, through the high Tell Atlas Mountains, and into the heart of the vast Sahara Desert
  • Insider experiences, including a Tuareg cooking demonstration and a conversation with an Imam in Constantine
  • Stunning architecture styled by a colorful history of Roman, French, Moorish, Spanish, and Islamic influences
  • Optional extension to explore the cultures, landscapes, and traditional villages of Tunisia

Algerian novelist Assia Djebar called her country “a dream of sand.” The sweeping Sahara Desert dominates the broad North African nation, but conceptually it is just a small piece of all that can be discovered here. With a turbulent past of conflict and colonialism, a crossroads of cultures is experienced on this exploratory trip.

The whitewashed walls and winding streets of the Casbah of Algiers introduce Algeria’s capital city, while Phoenician, Roman, and Byzantine ruins in Tipasa unravel bits of the complicated past. Travel along the Mediterranean coast to Spanish-influenced Oran, and Islamic architectural gems at Tlemcen. Head into the mountains to visit Berber villages, delve into Roman archaeology, and roam the ancient cliffside town of Constantine. Desert oases like El Oued skirt the edge of the Sahara, and between dunes the isolated Mzabite people practice a way of life nearly unchanged since the 11th century. In the heart of the Sahara, meet a camel herder and dine in a desert grove of date palms at Timimoun. Return to Algiers with a more complete picture of the ways Algeria has changed throughout the centuries.

Trip Overview


Day
1 – 2

Arrive into Algiers and dive into Phoenician, Roman, and Byzantine history at UNESCO-listed Tipasa Stroll the cobbled streets of the Casbah of Algiers and savor an Algerian cooking lesson.

Day
3 – 4

Travel along the Mediterranean to explore Spanish-influenced architecture at Oran with a side trip to the marble and tile Moorish gems of Tlemcen.

Day
5

Fly back to Algiers and drive into the mountainous Kabylia region Sample Berber olive oils and enjoy breathtaking scenery.

Day
6 – 8

Head south to UNESCO-acclaimed Djémila, a beautifully laid out Roman city Explore the town of Constantine, on the edges of a dramatic gorge, and chat with the Imam of the Great Mosque More archaeological wonders are revealed at Timgad and Medracen.

Day
9 – 10

Arrive at the edge of the Sahara, marked by a spectacular canyon at Ghoufi and oasis springs in Biskra Admire the domed houses and desert sunset at Oued Souf.

Day
11 – 12

Enter the remote M’Zab Valley, where you’ll be welcomed into the fortified village of Ghardaïa and observe local traditions, largely unchanged since the 11th century.

Day
13 – 14

Journey further into the Sahara, following the paths of the old desert caravans, meeting a camel herder, exploring the souk, and watching the ochre walls of Timimoun blaze at sunset.

Day
15 – 16

Fly to Algiers for your final evening with a farewell dinner and depart.

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Optional Post-Trip Extension

Tunisia

Extend your trip to neighboring Tunisia with an eight-day journey from coast to desert. Uncover unique Sahara Desert geology, cultures and cave dwellings of the Berber people, oasis waterfalls, and early Islamic architecture. Visit five UNESCO World Heritage sites and two Star Wars set locations. View the extension here.

Meet Our Leaders

Bill Jones

A British-born, Paris-based explorer, raconteur, and widely respected guide, Bill Jones has led countless tours across the globe over the past four decades. He is deeply knowledgeable, experienced, caring, informative, and fun.

Meet Our Leaders

Bisher Alissa

Originally from Damascus, Bisher has more than 17 years’ experience leading treks and tours. He has consulted for rural tourism development projects, contributed to guidebooks, and advocates for heritage preservation in Syria and the greater Middle East.

Dates & Prices


Dates

02/13/21 – 02/28/21   (Extension 2/28–3/7) – Led by Bisher Alissa

03/13/21 – 03/28/21   (Extension 3/28–4/4) – Led by Bisher Alissa – Limited space; please call

09/27/21 – 10/12/21   (Extension 10/12–19) – Led by Bill Jones – Limited space; please call

10/23/21 – 11/07/21   (Extension 11/7–14) – Led by Bill Jones

10/30/21 – 11/14/21   (Extension 11/14–21) – Led by Bisher Alissa

02/12/22 – 02/27/22   (Extension 2/27–3/6)

03/12/22 – 03/27/22   (Extension 3/27–4/3)

09/24/22 – 10/09/22   (Extension 10/9–16)

10/22/22 – 11/06/22   (Extension 11/6–13)

Pricing

2021 Group Trips: From $9,370 per person

 

Tunisia Extension (2021 only): From $4,285 per person

 

Please check back for 2022 pricing.

Inclusions

  • Expertise of GeoEx’s travel specialists
  • Services of GeoEx’s in-house air reservations team
  • All accommodations
  • All ground transportation and airport transfers
  • Sightseeing, events, visits, and entrance fees
  • Most meals
  • Bottled or filtered water at included meals and while sightseeing
  • Services of GeoEx trip leader, local guides, drivers, and other staff
  • Some gratuities
  • Emergency evacuation services and secondary medical expense insurance

A Journey Built Just For You

Take customization to the next level on a journey fully tailored to you. GeoEx's destination specialists will gladly tailor this existing itinerary—or build one completely from scratch—to suit your style, interests, and time frame. Contact us to see what's possible.

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