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Aïr Mountains & Ténéré Desert/Niger

Introducing Aïr Mountains & Ténéré Desert

Among West Africa’s most spectacular sights, the Aïr Mountains’ dark volcanic masses dramatically rise from their Saharan surrounds and culminate in grand 2000m peaks. In some areas marvellous deep-blue marble pokes from rich red sands – amazing. Discover fascinating examples of Neolithic rock art, visit thermal hot springs at Tafadek or delve into the stunning oasis towns of Timia and Iferouâne. The Festival de l’Aïr, held in Iferouâne each December, was started in 2000 to celebrate and preserve traditional Tuareg culture. The sublime sand dunes at Temet, northeast of Iferouâne, are also unforgettable.

If dunes delight, the Ténéré, which sits east of the Aïr, must be embraced. It is one of the world’s most legendary deserts, laden with the Sahara’s most extraordinarily beautiful sand dunes. The Ténéré holds its fair share of sublime secrets too – massive dinosaur graveyards and evocative, deserted medieval settlements like that of Djado.