The Sahara Desert is the last place you’d expect to find snow. It is, after all, one of the driest and hottest regions of the world with an average temperature of 30C. But in a surreal turn of events to mark the end of an already surreal year, the small desert town of Ain Sefra in Algeria woke up yesterday to find that the red sand dunes had unexpectedly turned white.
The bizarre phenomenon was caught on camera by amateur photographer Karim Bouchetata. “Everyone was stunned to see snow falling in the dessert,” he said. “It is such a rare occurrence. It looked amazing as the snow settled on the sand and made a great set of photos. The snow stayed for about a day and has now melted away.” This is only the second time in living memory that snow has fallen on the Sahara. The first time was in February 1979, also in Algeria.