Sunday, July 17, 2011

Hoggar, Northern Africa

The Ahaggar massif is the home of the Imuhagh or Kel Ahaggar, a subdivision of the Tuareg people. The Tuareg, one of the most mythical peoples of Africa, are famous for their blue garments and for having veiled men in contrast to the women, who enjoy a great deal of freedom. The Tuareg count their family by matrilinear descent. The rest of the population are mainly descendants of slaves from other parts of Africa, as well as a good number of northern Algerians.

The Hoggar Mountains, one of the true highlights of the Sahara, are too enormous and too scarcely populated for easy exploration, but it is worth the effort. If you have three days to explore the area, you can enjoy the journey known as the Hoggar Circuit.

The first village of importance you will reach, after passing the Ermitage de Pere Foucauld, is Hirafok, before Tazrouk. Tahifet, beyond the pass of Azrou, is a beautiful village set by a wide oued river. At Tamekrest, there are waterfalls even more impressive than those at Cascades de Imeleoulaouene.

In the oasis of Abalassa, near the town of Tamanghasset, lies the tomb of Tin Hinan, the famous matriach believed to be the ancestor of the Taureg of Ahaggar. According to legend, Tin Hinan originated from the Tafilalt region in the Atlas Mountains. Today, the Ahaggar region is one of the prime tourist destination in Algeria.

No comments:

Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...