About1,500 km south-southeast from Algier to Djanet. Then a half hour by 4WD to arrive at the foot of the plateau. From here, it is necessary to walk steep donkey route to climb up about 700m to arrive on the plateau.

Tassili n’Ajjer means “Plateau with rivers” in the local Tamachek language. Before BC1000, the plateau was abundant with water and it was a crossroad of various peoples. Today, only giant cypress trees, which could have root before the arid period started, are survived. The sand stones are eroded by water and wind and they formed ideal shelters for the various peoples and they left many rock paintings.


  • 1-TSL-Tafilalet01b
  • 2-TSL-Tafilalet07
  • 3-TSL-Tamrit15
  • 2-TSL-SefarBlanc04
  • 4-TSL-SefarNoir02
  • 5-TSL-SefarNoir07
  • 5-TSL-TinTazarift09
  • 6-TSL-TinTazarift05
  • 6-TSL-TinKeni03b
  • 7-TSL-AlaghanDaman03
  • 7-TSL-Djabarren05a
  • 8-TSL-Djabarren23

In Sahara, humid period and dry period were repeated. Around 8,000BC, the climate was changed from dry to humid. Firstly, black hunting people came from the south and they left many paintings. As the heads are often round with their painting, this period is called as “Period of Round head”. Then, around 5,500BC, a slim black people provably from the area of Nile came with cows. This period is called as “Period of cow”. They left many naturalistic paintings. Around BC3,500, a white people came from the Mediterranean sea side with cow, sheep and goat. They were also painters of naturalist of fine art. There are some trace showing the possibility that they lived in the same area in the same period with the first comers.

Desertification of Sahara started around 2,000BC and it became a complete desert at the present era. Along with desertification, pastoral peoples moved to the south. The rock arts changed to poorly drawn paintings. Domestic animal also changed to horse, then to camel.



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