Our Atlas Mountains & Desert Tour (Marrakech, Ouarzazate, Dades, Amellago, Erfoud, Fes) takes you from Marrakech, over the spectacular Tichka Pass, through spectacular gorges, valleys and kasbahs, to our home village of Amellago, and into the vast Moroccan Sahara for a night under the desert stars. Continue through the Middle Atlas Mountains to Fes. Combining spectacular and diverse landscapes with opportunities to experience real Moroccan life in the south, this is one of our most popular tours. Get a wonderful insight into the diversity of Morocco in a short space of time.
Our Atlas Mountains & Desert Tour can be modified from 5-12 days or more depending on your time and what you would like to see. A similar tour can also start in Fes and end in Marrakech.
DAY 1: Marrakech
Upon arrival in Marrakech, you will be met and transferred to your hotel/Riad. Relax and settle in. Overnight in Marrakech.
DAY 2: Marrakech
Explore the famous city of Marrakech, the ‘southern pearl’ of Morocco, and second oldest Imperial city which has for centuries been an important stop for traders and travellers. Your tour will include the Menera Gardens, the famous Jardin Majoralle, Bahia Palace, and Saadian tombs. Visit the Koutoubia Mosque, with its 77m high minaret dominating the centre of Marrakech. Continue to one of the centre attractions of Marrakech; Djemaa el-Fna, the famous UNESCO World Heritage Site which is one of the main cultural spaces in Marrakech. Relax at one of the many cafes surrounding the square to take in all the sights. Continue on and explore the varied and colourful souks. Overnight in Marrakech
DAY 3: Marrakech – Ait Ben Haddou – Ouarzazate (203kms)
Depart Marrakech for Ouarzazate via the stunning Tichka Pass (2260m) which offers dramatic panoramic views in the heart of the Atlas Mountain chain. On your way visit the Kasbah Ait Ben Haddou, a UNESCO World Heritage site, used for more films than any other location in Morocco; including, Lawrence of Arabia and The Gladiator. Overnight in Ouarzazate
DAY 4: Ouarzazate – Skoura – Kelaat M’Gouna – Boumalne Dades (111kms)
Depart Ouarzazate for Skoura, a small village on the north side of the road which probably has the most beautiful palm grove in southern Morocco with dozens of inhabited and uninhabited kasbah. This whole region is called The Valley of a Thousand Kasbahs. Drive through Kelaat M’Gouna, where a rose festival is held every May, to the stunning valleys and gorges of Boumalne Dades. Overnight in Boumalne Dades.
DAY 5: Boumalne Dades – Todra – Amellago (169kms)
From Boumalne Dades depart for our home village of Amellago to meet our family. This journey will take you through snaking road lines, amazing rock formations, small cultivated fields with silver birch along the river bed, and dozens of predominantly seventeenth century kasbah made from the local red mud. Stop on your way and explore the towering Todra Gorges. Time your visit right in Amellago to see (and help with!) traditional harvests of the wheat, olives or almonds. Overnight in Amellago.
DAY 6: Amellago – Goulmima – Merzouga (214kms)
From Amellago, depart for the desert town of Merzouga. Your journey takes you through the Gris Valley, the Heart and the Soul of Imazighen (Berbers). In Merzouga take a camel to explore the Erg Chebbi region of the Sahara desert, and begin your Moroccan desert adventure! Watch the sunset over the majestic Sahara dunes, and spend the night in an oasis in a Berber tent. Overnight in a desert oasis.
*If a camel trek is not really your thing, you can still experience the magic of the dunes by staying in a hotel right at their edge.
DAY 7: Merzouga – Rissani – Erfoud – Midelt (268kms)
Wake up in the early morning to watch the sunrise over the dunes. After returning by camel to Merzouga, depart for the Middle Atlas town of Midelt, well known for its fossils. On your way explore the small but fascinating towns of Rissani and Erfoud, continuing to Midelt via the spectacular Ziz Valley. Overnight in Midelt.
Day 8: Midelt – Azrou – Ifrane – Fes (198kms)
Depart Midelt for Fes, via the Middle Atlas. On your way take some time to explore Azrou, an important centre for Berber artisans; the majestic Middle Atlas cedar forests, and Ifrane, the ‘Switzerland of Morocco’. Your tour ends in Fes.
Suggestions for amending your Atlas Mountains & Desert Tour:
- Omit sightseeing days in Marrakech and leave directly for Ouarzazate
- Add extra days in Marrakech to explore Marrakech.
- Add a day or overnight trip from Marrakech to the relaxed coastal town of Essaouira.
- Add extra days in Fes to explore Fes, take a cooking class, or a day trip to Meknes and Volubilis.
- Complete your Atlas Mountains & Desert Tour by returning directly to Fes from Merzouga.
Contact Us for more information