Posted by: travelrat | August 25, 2008

We Didn’t Ride the Camel

Desert Safari Day 1 … continued

Douz, 12th June 2008


The next stop was at Douz, where they’d arranged a camel ride into the desert for us. We’ve been on camel rides before; a rather uncomfortable experience in Egypt, and a never-to-be-forgotten morning-long ride in Jordan’s Wadi Rum. That was a hard act to follow, and, fearing disappointment, we asked if we could pass on the camels.

They offered us, instead, a ride in a horse-drawn calèche But, we still had to dress in traditional robes and head-dress, to protect us from the sun and wind, they said. But, it didn’t prevent me from feeling like a complete wally, nevertheless.

The calèche wasn’t the traditional type we’ve come to associate with North Africa, but a metal-framed rubber-tyred vehicle. And, we noticed that most of the would-be cameleers looked most uncomfortable, sitting behind the hump and holding on for dear life. In Egypt and Jordan, we sat in front of the hump, Lawrence of Arabia-style.

The driver was a pleasant, well-informed young man, who drove us out through the dunes, and to a ruined village with a few palm trees around it. He let me take the reins for a while, too, while he jumped down to take pictures or chat with his friends. And, I wondered if driving a calèche was easier that I thought … or, more probably, the horse had done the run so often, he’d head for our destination, and avoid collision with other horses and camels no matter what I did.


Links to 2 more of my articles: at and




  1. I love camel rides although I will admit it is tricky to stay on them. I went on one in Central Australia once. Very funny. Great photos!

  2. It’s fairly easy to stay on if you use the right kind of saddle … it seems the Jordanian, Tunisian, Egyptian and Moroccan rigs are all different … I found the Jordanian one the most comfortable.

    The Central Australian one sounds like it might be quite interesting … more so than a 20-minute lurch around the outskirts of an Egyptian suburb, anyway!

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s


%d bloggers like this: