Dades Gorges, Dra'a Valley, Zagora, Erg Chagaga - 5 days
1st day: Marrakesh – Dades gorges
Morning departure at 8 o’clock from your hotel or riad in Marrakesh to cross the High Atlas Mountains. After the Tichka pass, the highest pass in Africa, you reach Ouarzazate, the largest town in the area, and continue through the Skoura Oasis, where numerous ancient kasbahs, some sadly in ruins, stand amongst the palm trees. From here, the route takes us through Kela’a M’gouna, the Valley of Roses, with a stop to see cosmetic articles locally-made from the valley’s abundant roses. You stop in the Dades gorge in a guest house for the night.
2nd day: Dades gorges – Zagora
After breakfast, we go south, through the Saghro mountain range to the village of N’Qob for lunch. From here our route takes us to the Dra’a Valley, which we join at Tansikht and where we turn south to Zagora. The road follows the ancient caravan route between the Dra’a River and the mountains and gives a view of the gardens and kasbahs in the valley. We stop just south of the town in the Zagora dunes, where you will have a camel ride and dinner in a bivouac of nomad tents.
3rd day: Zagora – Chagaga dunes
The next morning we continue to M’hamid and Erg Lihoudi, where there is an opportunity for a camel ride of about one and a half hours. Lunch is in M’hamid itself after which we make our way across another 60km through the varying features of the desert; ‘erg’, ‘reg’, ‘hammada’, oases, to the Erg Chagaga dunes. These are the greatest dunes in Morocco and are approximately 300m high and 35km long. You could ride the camels to the bottom of the dunes if you wish for a wonderful view of the setting sun, before returning to the bivouac at the foot of the dunes.
4th day: Chagaga dunes – Ouarzazate
After breakfast, the road crosses another 90km of desert, passing Lake Iriqui and the mountains as well as fossils, for enthusiasts. The first village beyond the desert, Foum Zguid, is the place for lunch and a refreshing shower. We travel north past hills and oases of palm trees until we reach the town of Taznakht, a small Berber town famous for its rugs and gelims. You will have lunch here before continuing to Ouarzazate for the night in a riad.
5th day: Ouarzazate – Marrakesh
After breakfast, we leave for to continue to visit the famous Kasbah of Ait Ben Haddou. This site has frequently been used as the background for some memorable scenes in many film masterpieces, such as "Lawrence of Arabia" and "The Gladiator". We visit the Kasbah and have lunch before driving on to Kasbah Telouet, the palatial residence of the one-time Pasha of Marrakesh, Thami Glaoui. It now stands in ruins after he fled the country following the departure of the French. After visiting the Kasbah, we drive across the Tizi-n-Tichka pass and back to Marrakesh, which we reach by the afternoon.
Prices per person
- There is a 25% reduction for children under 12 years old whilst we do not charge for children under 5 .The price for trips includes the transport in a private air-conditioned 4x4;Toyota Prado or Mitsubishi Pajero,and fuel. Experienced English-, French-, Spanish- and Italian-speaking driver / guide, all accommodation and meals as well as the camel ride on the relevant tours. Drinks and tips are not included.These prices are liable to fluctuation according to the current exchange rate.