This small settlement on the edge of the Ziz valley was built in the 1930s by the French Foreign Legion. It’s a wonderful starting point for excursions to the Tafilalt region of vast palmeraies, remote Berber Ksar and the sand dunes of Merzouga. October there is the Date Festival with a souk, camel races, folk dancing and the election of the Date Queen! Nearby Rissani was the birth place of Moulay Ali Cherif founder of the Alaouite dynasty whose tomb remains an important pilgrimage site (closed to non-muslims).
The road from Erfoud to Merzouga must be done in 4 x 4 and should not be attempted during a sand storm. Its attraction is the surrounding desert and the Erg Chebbi dunes are truly spectacular and stretch for miles. The highest stands at 150 metres high.