Between the Grime & Sublime in Morocco’s Sahara

“I don’t think this guy is coming.” My watch marks a quarter to eleven, as we stand atop a rocky plateau and a series of crumbling stairs that lead down to a crude wooden pier. Below us, the lagoon of Naila, and beyond it, a sea of pink sand dunes. And beyond that, the tumultuous […]

A Walk in the Woods

In the dry season, parts of Northern Botswana can start to look like the world has ended. Everything is dry, elephants in their hunger push down trees to get at the remaining leaves, and wide swathes seem like they could be heavily bombed and look no different. A key feature of this apparent desolation is […]

The Problem With The Comfort Zone

The world is forever moving towards complexity, leaving us to face down bigger and bigger questions with every trip around the sun. The world of travel is no exception, and the inter-connected complexities of over-tourism, climate change and now COVID make planning decisions more complicated than ever. Questions abound, and for the more philosophical among […]

In Southern Morocco, Searching for the Orchards where Old Testament Fruit Still Grows

The mercury reads 32º C and the narrow tarmac road is already shimmering at 10.00 in the morning as we drive south from Taroudant. We have only the vaguest idea where we’re going, and without a map or any helpful info from the official Moroccan tourism websites this is a pure shot in the dark. […]

Conde Nast Travel Specialists: Trufflepig’s Magnificent 7

Last week Conde Nast Traveler released its annual Travel Specialists list, kind of like the Oscars of the travel world. And with another record-breaking 7 Trufflepig planners with their names in lights (again), we feel more than usually justified in describing ourselves as the Tiny Company with the Great Big Nose. We are of course […]

1 Elephant, 2 Elephant, 3 Elephant

My idea of a fabulous time on safari is exploring by mobile tented camp, going from place to place, deep in the bush. To make that experience even better, add the possibility of tracking and counting herds of wild elephants in Botswana. No, I am not daydreaming of my own perfect little world – the […]

Swinos in Lockdown: Cocktail Recipes from the Pigs

Holidays are lurking and with it, more Coronavirus cases and renewed lockdowns. It’s all been enough for anyone to reach for the bottle. As we hunker down for the winter, we asked around our planning team to see who’s got the bartending chops in the Trufflepig farm.  Below are some road-tested recipes that came back […]

What I Learned Travelling Morocco During the Pandemic

For most of us travel this year has meant moving about locally, if at all.  I’m lucky then to live in such a wonderfully diverse country as Morocco with plenty of opportunity to explore. Morocco did surprisingly well in the initial months of home confinement, achievements that sadly, as with many other places around the […]

Safari In The Time Of Covid

I think I speak for all of us at the Pig when I say that we’re chomping at the bit to be back on the road. But trying to figure out should one travel let alone can one travel, right now is a pretty complicated dance. There’s a lot to take into consideration, to put it […]

HASHTAG CHEFCHAOUEN, #NOFILTER

You may know Chefchaouen already, but under a different name: Xauen or Chaouen among others. Or perhaps you’ve seen any one of the millions of photos of it on Instagram, “The Blue City” or “The Blue Pearl” being some of the confoundingly inaccurate nicknames for Chefchaouen that I suppose sounded good to some PR folks […]

My Morocco Moment of Ambedo

Most of my chatter these past few months has been to talk about the travel world pre-Covid19. From reminiscing about the “old days“, to sharing discoveries just before lockdowns swept in that now take on different meanings with our new reality, or simple yearning to get back out there and explore. This period of staying […]

Where’s Oualidia?

About 45 minutes into the drive south from Casablanca, the landscape starts to change. Fertile agricultural land gives way to firm red earth and barren rocky soils. Waist-high stone walls of marine limestone punctuate the empty rolling hills. You turn off the new tollway for the old coastal road, beginning at the unattractive port town of Jorf […]

Social Distancing in Mahale Mountains

Times have changed, but then again in some places they haven’t. As social distancing and seeing people in masks becomes the new normal, I’m reminded of a place where this has always been the status quo –  visiting the chimps of Mahale. Such precautions have been in place ever since Nomad Tanzania opened Greystoke Mahale, […]

A Tangier Episode

Thursday November 18, 1999. Some dates stay with us. In these times of pandemic when we can’t make new travel memories, I’ve set my sights backwards, revisiting the travel moments that have marked me, or even made me. Today I remember a younger, more reckless version of myself aboard a ferry that pitched and rolled its way […]

I, Claudio

Speaking as both an individual of Chilean descent and a lover of all things Morocco, it took surprisingly long for Claudio Bravo to come into my orbit.  Surely due in part to the fact that in neither Morocco nor Chile was Claudio Bravo ever particularly well known.  Even to this day, no museum or art […]

Safari Njema

The word safari conveys a much deeper concept than modern travel marketing might have you believe, and the commonly understood idea of bouncing around in a 4×4 looking at animals barely scratches the surface. The word is Swahili, derived from an Arabic word that roughly translated means journey. The title of this post translates from the Swahili as […]