5. Atlas Mountains & Sahara Desert Private 4-Day Tour
This 4-day tour of the High Atlas Mountains and the Moroccan Desert is like a trip back in time. Escape the hurly-burly of the city streets and the pressure of modern life as you head into the mountains and continue to what is often called the “real” Sahara desert with its iconic sand dunes, teased by the play of the desert light and sun.
Day 1: Marrakech – Ouarzazate – Rose Valley – Dades Gorges.
The tour begins with a 8:00 AM pickup from your hotel or Riad in Marrakech. Drive over the High Atlas Mountains through the Tizi N’Tichka Pass. On the way you will visit the Kasbah Ait Ben Haddou, before continuing to Ouarzazate.
Carry on via the road of a 1000 Kasbahs to Skoura, where you will stop to see a beautiful Kasbah named Amredhyle. Continue to Kalaat M'Gouna, known as the “Capital of Roses” for the abundance of rose growers. In the evening you will arrive at Dades Gorges where you will spend the night at either the Babylon Hotel, Dar Ahlam, or a similar accommodation.
Day 2: Dades Gorges – Todra Gorges – Merzouga.
After breakfast, continue through the Dades Valley, heading towards Todra Gorges. Stop for lunch at a nice spot before continuing to Merzouga across the Jorf palm grove, and the town of Erfoud. Known as the “Gateway to the Sahara” Erfoud is known for the precious fossils found in the desert. You will visit one of the fossil filled marble workshops.
Arrive at the impressive dunes of Merzouga late in the afternoon and take a camel ride, crossing the sea of sand in order to spend the night in the heart of the dunes in a standard desert camp (with a shared bathroom). Enjoy a magical dinner and overnight stay under a canopy of stars.
Day 3: Merzouga – Rissani-Alnif-Tazarine – Draa Valley – Agdez – Ouarzazate.
Wake early for a camel ride to watch the impressive sunrise. Then head back to the hotel to freshen up and have breakfast.
Depart towards the Palmerie of Tafilalet and the town of Rissani, where the Alaouite Dynasty originated. Explore the ancient capital of the Alaouite Sultans before continuing to the village of Alnif, where you will take the road that crosses the Jbel Saghro Anti-Atlas chain.
Notice the greyish-black mountains of different and remarkable shapes as you continue to the main Berber village of Tazarine and N’kob and then drive in to the Draa Valley with its rows of stately palms.
In the late afternoon, drive to Ouarzazate via the Anti-Atlas Mountain, through Tizi N’Tniffift. You will spend the night at either Riad Bouchedor, Les Jardins de Ouarzazate, or a similar accommodation in Ouarzazate.
Day 4: Ouarzazate – Marrakech.
After breakfast, visit the Taourirt Kasbah and Film Studios, then depart for Marrakech crossing the High Atlas Mountains to arrive in the city at approximately 5:00 PM.