Dakhla - Where the Desert Meets the Ocean


Dakhla - where the desert meets the ocean.

Everything you need to know about this spot:

Pros and cons at a glance:

+ High probability of wind all year round.

+ Large lagoon with flat water, ideal for progression at all levels.

+ Various types of spots.

+ Fantastic downwind opportunities.

- Limited nightlife, few activities besides kiteboarding.

- No direct flights, always a layover in Casablanca.

My travel experience in Dakhla:

Today, I want to tell you about my trip to Dakhla, a small gem in Morocco, overlooking the Atlantic coast of Western Sahara and enjoying a mild and dry climate all year round, constantly swept by winds from the Atlantic Ocean. An ideal destination for those who want to dedicate themselves to our beloved sport, kiteboarding. I'll give you some information, which I wish I had before leaving, to give you an idea of what it means to go on a kitetrip to this unconventional place immersed in the desert.

Flight/Transfer/Hotel and Equipment:

Let's start with the flight; it takes a couple of hours from major Italian cities with a stopover in Casablanca and then an internal flight to the Dakhla peninsula. The baggage allowance is generally 23 kg.

If you're part of a kite camp like I was, which I highly recommend for this type of trip, the extra baggage for the flight is usually included in the camp package, as well as the transfer from the airport to the hotel.

I'll talk about my personal experience:

I stayed at the Hotel Dakhla Attitude Beach Club (, which is located directly on the spot surrounded by sand dunes. I traveled with my equipment, checking wind conditions on various websites like Windyty and Windfinder, which also provide wind statistics for the whole year. July and August have a wind probability of over 90%, but the wind is a bit stronger during these months. Generally, there's over 50% chance of wind all year round, with the best months being from April to September. To be sure, check the forecasts 2-3 days before departure to adjust your kite size accordingly. But truth be told, I brought all my kites, and in the end, I had to rent a 5m kite because the wind on some days was really strong. So my advice is to bring kites from 10m and below. For wetsuits, I recommend a 4/3 or 5/5, despite the mild climate during the day, the water is cold, and you definitely need full sunscreen protection. In the evening, the temperature drops, and you need a fleece, long pants, and a windbreaker. I also recommend bringing mosquito spray and adapters for sockets.

Arriving in Dakhla at 23:50, the staff of Dakhla Attitude was already waiting to take us to the hotel.

After a 25-minute drive in the dark and in the middle of the desert, we finally arrived at the hotel, where we settled our luggage and went straight to bed, already excited about the session the next day.

Dakhla Attitude is a cute hotel, located directly on the base camp, and I stayed with a dear friend in a standard bungalow at the "Dragon Camp," consisting of 2 single beds, a private bathroom, and a magnificent view of the lagoon. The meeting places are the restaurant, the bar adjacent to the restaurant where sometimes they play some music in the evening, the beach bar near the spot with sofas, music, and aperitifs, and the surf shop directly on the beach where you can shop and rent equipment or book an instructor for lessons if needed.

Regarding the cuisine, in my opinion, it was the most disappointing aspect. It's an international restaurant, so you expect to find a bit of everything to eat, especially after a day of kitesurfing. Instead, you find many dishes, but highly spiced food. Of course, I have nothing against spices, but finding them everywhere in everything I ate throughout the week made me nauseous, so if you're not a fan of spices, don't expect to eat well.

Kiteboarding Spots:

Now let's talk about more interesting things, namely the kiteboarding spots:

There's the Main Spot, which is the main lagoon right in front of the hotel with flat water and fairly clean wind. It's a huge playground where you can have fun improving your skills. This spot is also the most suitable for beginners who want to learn kiteboarding, and indeed, instructors also give lessons here.

If you like super flat water and you're an experienced rider, the Speed Spot is for you. It's a paradise for freestyle with offshore wind and the flattest water during low tide; located 200m from the hotels, you can walk there along the beach for 10 minutes or take the tractor rented by the hotel.

If you prefer waves, in a 20-minute drive, you can find Pointe de L'Or, a bay where you can surf the waves of the Atlantic Ocean.

What I personally liked most about my overall experience was the downwind from the Dakhla lagoon to the White Dune, a fantastic route of about 13 km downwind, immersed in the pristine nature among the dunes and the pink flamingos flying beside you, always flat and crystalline water to reach the white dune, where the more experienced riders can even jump over it with the kite.

Once there, you can enjoy a fantastic day of kiteboarding; the conditions are perfect, flat and constant wind, you feel capable of trying everything. In fact, in this paradise, I have a beautiful memory: I tried my first unhooked maneuver, so it will remain in my heart.

Lunch is packed, and there's also a photographer who accompanies the group throughout the journey, taking some truly unique shots. To return, you take a long walk through a sandbank where at the end you reach some cars that take you back to the hotel, highly recommended experience.

Other Activities:

For windless days, there are very few and also expensive activities. From the hotel, you can only go out accompanied by a guide and visit the city of Dakhla or go to eat in a small restaurant by the sea, which is actually an oyster farm. Between the two, we chose the restaurant also because we were not satisfied with the cuisine; we wanted to eat something good, and the choice was indeed very good, and we ate roasted fish and fresh oysters, all really excellent.

Fortunately, out of seven days, only one day had no wind, so we didn't have to worry much about doing other activities.

I think I've told you everything; now it's up to you to decide if Dakhla is the right place for your next kitetrip. I hope I've been helpful, and I'll be happy to respond to the comments you leave under this post.

Floriana Rossi