The Rub' al Khali or otherwise also known as the empty quarter, is the largest sand desert in the world. Is covers almost the whole of the south Eastern sector of Saudi Arabia and can truly carry the name empty quarter.
To visit this remote sand desert is no simple operation. We were lucky in that we had the South African Military attache coordinating the whole trip. Another essential element was that we had a retired Saudi air-force General accompanying us.
Our trip was for 7 days and 6 nights departing and returning to Riyadh.
The planning included ensuring that all the participants and their vehicles went on a trail weekend to a nearby sand desert to ensure that all the drives knew how to drive in the sand and that all the fridges and water containers worked as they should.
The convoy consisted on 6 vehicles (5 each with a family and one load-back where the extra fuel and water could be conveyed on). Each person was allocated 5 liter of water per day (drinking, washing cooking etc. included).
Our trip was during the latter part of November, not ideal in terms of daytime temperatures, but it was fantastic during the night, and allowed us to sleep under the stars every night. The stars felt so close that you just want to reach out and touch them. The sand dunes in some places are more than 100 meters high from the ancient lake beds, with colors ranging from bright red to pure white and all the shades in-between.
If you ever get the opportunity to join a trip to the Rub' al Khali, do not hesitate, it is an experience of a lifetime.
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