We depart in the morning by 4×4 car from Marrakech and travel to Ouarzazate. We will pass through the stunning High-Atlas mountains via the famous Tizi-n-Tichka pass (2260m). At panoramic viewpoints, there will opportunities to stop and take photos. Our first scheduled stop of the day is to visit the once glorious kasbah of Telouet. We then drive from Telouet through the lunar landscapes of the valley of Ounila to the kasbah of Ait Ben Haddou, where we have lunch. Ait Ben Haddou is a Unesco World Heritage site, where films such as Gladiator and Lawrence of Arabia were filmed. In the afternoon, we explore the famous 11th century kasbah before leaving for Ouarzazate for the night in a hotel.
We depart Ouarzazate in the morning where we will enter the Dades valley, which is known as the valley of a thousand kasbahs. Then we pass through the oasis of Skoura where architectural marvels are to be discovered at every turn. From here, our route takes us through Kela’a M’gouna, the valley of the roses, where over 4000 tons of roses are harvested every spring from this desert oasis! Next we drive off-road to the Dades gorges for lunch. The Dades gorge is breathtaking with its sheer red rocks and lush oasis, we will spend part of the afternoon strolling along the Boumalne Dades river. We are off to the Todra gorges for the second night. The Todra gorge, with its crystal clear waters, is a fantastic experience for any nature lover!
After breakfast we can stroll along the Tinghir palm grove, where you can see dates and figs. Then we drive through the Ziz valley, the oasis of Tafilalt and arrive in Erfoud in time for lunch. The geography along the Ziz valley is spectacular with Jurassic-sized rock formations contrasting against the cool green oasis. Erfoud is a boisterous little town on the edge of the Sahara, which is known for its amazing fossils. In the afternoon, we continue our trip to the rolling dunes of Merzouga in time for a two-hour camel ride in the Sahara. The sunset from the top of Erg Chebbi is sensational and riding on camel back to camp under the big Saharan night sky is a memory you will cherish forever. Unforgettable singing and dancing of ancient folklore traditions follow a traditional Moroccan dinner. You will be happy but exhausted, and will spend the night in a nomad tent at the foot of the dunes.
If you wake up early enough, you can watch the spectacle of the sunrise. The return to the hostel for having a shower is on camel back and, after having breakfast, departure for Rissani and Erfoud. From there the road leads north to Errachidia and the Ziz valley, remarkable for the extent of its palm trees. Lunch is in Midelt, which is called “the apple capital”, in the Middle Atlas and at the foot of the Ayachi Mountain. We cross the Tizi-n-Talremt pass, ravelling along a beautiful road bordered by green oaks and cedar trees to reach Azrou, where you can see Barbary apes looking out for tidbits. We reach Fes at the end of the afternoon.