3 days desert tour from Marrakech to Fes
Day 1: Marrakech – Ait Ben haddou – High Atlas Mountains – Ouarzazate – Dades Valley:
With a start in Marrakech we’ll drive to Ouarzazate through the dramatic Tizi ‘n’ Tichka pass (2260m), over the High Atlas Mountains, appreciating the beauty of the landscape on the twisted roads through the Berber villages. Arriving at the famous Ait Ben Haddou Kasbah, the largest Kasbah in Morocco, now a UNESCO matrimonial historical site and house of many Glaoui family members, we’ll take lunch by the Kasbah before continuing to Dades Gorge via Ouarzazate, “the Hollywood of Africa”, along the “Road of the thousand Kasbahs”- the fascinating “sand castles”. Stopping at Kalaat Mgouna, “the rose’s city” known for roses and its annual festival during the roses harvest in May we’ll then continue to our hotel in the heart of the Dades Gorge. xalucadades.com.
Day 2: Dades Valley – Todra Gorge – Merzouga – Erg Chebbi Dunes
After breakfast in the hotel, we’ll drive back through the valley to see the amazing rock formation known as “the monkey toes” and the still-standing 19th century Kasbah of Ait Yul. Leaving the Dades valley towards Tinrghir and the Todra valley you’ll see panoramic views of the old mud Berber villages overlooking the valley. Arriving at the Gorge is an opportunity to walk under the 300m high red cliff, where many rock-climbers come to enjoy their preferred sport. Continuing on to Erfoud and Rissani where we’ll have lunch before heading onto the village of Merzouga – the home of your guide Youssef – where your camel will be awaiting you. You will be welcomed with a glass of mint tea and a turban (desert scarf) before you mount your camel, guided by an experienced Camel Guide, to explore within the mysterious sand-sea of the Erg-Chebbi. Here you’ll spend your first night under the stars, or if you prefer, in a traditional Berber nomad tent.
Day 3: Merzouga – Ziz Valley – Ifrane – Fes:
Your camel guide will wake you up early in the morning to watch what well may be the best sunrise of your life. Afterwards, you’ll peacefully camel-trek back to your Riad appreciating the unique beauty of the spectacular Erg Chebbi dunes – changing with the light as the day progresses. After breakfast in the local guest house we’ll travel to Fes via Errachidia along the magnificent Ziz Gorges carved through volcanic rock, and through the Tizi Ntalghamt pass to Midelt, stopping in Zaida to enjoy a barbecue and refresh with a glass of mint tea before continuing to Azrou, a Berber village in the Middle Atlas Mountains, where we’ll stop to see the Barbarian apes in the cedar forest. Then it’s on to Ifrane “the French village”, stopping for a picture or a drink before arriving at your accommodation in Fes where the tour ends.