Day 1: Marrakech – Welcome to Morocco!
Arrival transfer from Marrakech airport to our hotel. Welcome meeting. The rest of the day is free, if time permits explore the rambling souk, local sights and Djemaa el Fna (the main square). Overnight in Marrakech. (BB)
Day 2: Marrakech – Atlas Mountain – Skoura – Roses valley – Dades Gorge.
Leaving Marrakech we drive through the Dades Gorge, an awe-inspiring valley which extends from the High Atlas to the Jebel Sarhro range in the south. The Atlas Mountains span some 2,090km covering vast regions of Morocco, Algeria, and Tunisia. The mountain chain comprise of a series of parallel ranges running west to east including the Anti-Atlas, High Atlas and Middle Atlas. With an average elevation of 3350 metres, the Atlas claims the highest peak of North Africa. The Berbers (original inhabitants of North Africa) built many impressive kasbahs on the mountain steep and in the valley gorges for defence purposes. En route to Dades Gorge we pass many of these medieval kasbahs and stop at one of the highest vantage points to enjoy a cup of sweet minted tea and take in panoramic views of the impressive snow capped mountain vista. Overnight in Dades Gorge. (HB)
Day 3: Hiking activity: Dades valley – Tinghir – Todra Gorge.
The morning is spent at Dades valley where you can choose to partake in a leisurely walk/hike through the simple local villagesand foothills of the gorge or spend the morning at leisure. After a hearty lunch we drive onward to Todra Gorge. The gorge is one of the most dramatic sights to be seen anywhere in Morocco. Created millions of years ago, the striking gorge snakes its way through the rugged mountain range. The final 600 m of the Todra gorge are spectacular as the canyon narrows to a flat stony track as little as 10m wide in places with sheer and smooth rock walls up to 160m high on each side. It’s an easy walk through the rosy red gorge and often we have the opportunity to partake in an afternoon session of rock climbing or (in summer) horse riding (book/pay locally). With such spectacular scenery, ever changing colours of the rock face and the hubbub of locals passing through herding camels or selling their wares, it’s the perfect place to stop a while. Late this afternoon we visit the village co-operative where hundreds of hand made Berber rugs, kilims and carpets are displayed and offered for sale. Overnight in Todra Gorge. (HB)
Day 4: Todra Gorge – Erg Chebbi sand dunes – Camel trek into the Sahara.
Crossing Jebel Sarhro, travelling down to Erg Chebbi sand dunes, the start point of the mighty Sahara Desert. The Erg Chebbi dunes, located near the remote frontier town of Merzouga are renowned for their incredible height and size. In parts the vast sand pile reaches skyward to heights of 150 metres!. The desert winds ensure this astonishing landscape isforever changing and no two days offer the same panorama. Mounting our subservient camels, they relaxedly glide across the desert sands as we happily photograph and take in the breathtaking scenery. Arriving at our traditional Berber camp, we enjoy dinner and a night under the Saharan stars. Overnight in Merzouga, Erg Chebbi Berber Camp. (HB)
Day 5: Erg Chebbi – N`kob – Tazarine – Agadez – Draa Valley – Ouarzazate.
After a stunning sunrise and a tranquil and ambient ride back to our frontier post (camel HQ) there is time to freshen up before driving to the verdant Draa valley. Besides the natural, historical and architectural wonders that the Draa Valley offers, there are also small villages along the valley where time seems to stand still, so little is the effect of modernity on them. Here, women are fully and always veiled while washing their clothes on the riverbanks and the watchful men seem distant, unaccustomed to foreign visitors. These people, besides speaking Arabic vernacular dialect also speak their mother language of the Berber (Imazighen), the indigenous inhabitant of north Africa since thousands of years, called Tamazight. Along the route of 1000 Kasbahs, we continue on to Ouarzazate, (pronounced as warzza-zat). Sitting at an altitude of 1160 metres in the middle of a barren plateau, Ouarzazate lies at the cross roads of all routes going north, south, east, and west. Its geographical position has made it a key trading post in both ancient and modern times. Capital of a large province, the towns’ northern limits run along the southern aspect of the High Atlas and its southern boundary disappears back into the ever present and mysterious Saharan Desert. Today, the area is still essentially populated by Berber people, who were constructors of the numerous fortified kasbahs and dwellings for which the region is famous. After hotel check in, consider a late afternoon swim. Overnight in Ouarzazate. (HB)
Day 6: Ouarzazate – Ait Benhaddou – Tizi n’Tichka – Marrakech.
This morning you can opt to go quad bike riding or visit the film studio that produced Lawrence of Arabia, Alexander the Great, The Last Temptation of Christ and The Living Daylights. Arriving at nearby fortified city of Ait Benhaddou – built for defence purposes high on a hill with a bubbling steam within it shadows, the stunningly well preserved medieval city is a true highlight of our tour. Famously used as a backdrop in the film ‘Gladiator’, its beauty is unequal to any other fortified village in south Morocco. Overnight in Marrakech. (BB)
Day 7: Djemaa el Fna (Marrakech at leisure).
This morning we enjoy a guided tour of old Marrakech. Set within the rose-coloured walls of the medina and a tangle of winding streets lead to bustling souks, the focal point is the central square, the Djemaa el Fna, an extraordinary gathering and market place. Full of colour, spicy aromas and traders it is best seen in the evening when overflowing with food stalls, dancers, acrobats, fortune tellers, musicians and henna artists. Towering over all this is the Koutoubia mosque, the tallest building in the city and a reminder of the importance of Islam to the lives of the city’s residents. Spend the afternoon at leisure, pamper yourself at the local hammam or further explore the city your own way. Overnight in Marrakech. (BB)
Day 8: Marrakech – Airport.
Breakfast. Spend the morning relaxing or picking up a few last minute souvenirs. Our tour concludes upon hotel check out. transfer to airport.
• Transportation / Fuel / Driver : 8 days Air-conditioned 4WD vehicle(s), mini bus or motorcoach.
• Guidance: Services of a qualified fluent multi-language guide.
• Comprehensive sightseeing including guidance.
• 6 nights Accommodation in well recommended hotels / Kasbahs / Riads.
• One night in a Traditional Berber Tents.
• Camel Ride (Camel per each individual)
• Breakfast and dinner daily
• Sand boarding (Free & Optional)
• Traditional Music live show
• Drinks and personal items
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Please note: Is this itinerary not exactly what you had in mind? Please contact us; all of our trips have a degree of flexibility and we are happy to customize the itinerary according to your group’s needs…
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