Daraj (Derj)

Welcome to Daraj

The sign reads: " Welcome to Daraj City: the Pride of the Sahara "

Daraj or Derj is a desert oasis, located about 108 kilometres before Ghadames. It is fast becoming a strategic place owing to its location on the junction between Nalut, Ghadames, Adiri (Idri), and Qaryat (in the way to Sabha). The spelling Daraj is the variant most commonly used internationally, as in Google maps, but it is also found as Derj, Durej or Derg.

Daraj Oasis



Daraj Festival


Daraj Festival

Derj Tourist Festival for Arts and Heritage is normally held in the month of September, and is organised by the Ghadames Municipality. But in 2008 the festival was held in the month of December. The festival feature shows of traditional music, traditional crafts and exhibits of local culture and heritage. The following photos show some of these exhibits.




berber wooden and leather tools
Traditional wooden and leather tools, animal-skin containers for carrying water and for making butter,
straw food covers, ropes, and clay pots for cooking and serving food.



berber bowl covers and pots

Food covers (inda), made of woven palm leaves (opposite), and clay pots and jars.



Daraj dinner setting

Traditional Libyan dinning room, furnished with rugs, animal skins, and cushions, with the main dish in the middle covered with the straw cover. The animal skins must go back to prehistoric periods when they were the main source of both clothing and flooring; and even though foam and cotton mattresses are widely available today, many families still prefer this traditional setting. The skins are very soft, warm and comfortable.




Useful site in Arabic about the history and the culture of Daraj, with detailed information about the festival of Derj (Derg or Daraj).