The highlight of this trip is the time spent in the desert with our nomad guides. They know the desert intimately and are proud to show you their traditions, whether it is how they camp, trekking with camels or even baking bread in a sand pit. This trip starts and finishes in Marrakech (but can link to Essaouira or Agadir) and also includes a visit to the Kasbahs of the world heritage site at Ait Ben Haddou and a drive through the Oases of the Draa valley. It is done in a private 4×4 (with driver/guide) with one or two nights in semi-permanent camps in the desert. Whilst not recommended for young children due to the travelling time, the trip is probably the ultimate desert experience we offer in Morocco
This trips starts in Marrakech and continues via the Tizin Tishka pass and Ait Ben Haddou. It then follows the road towards Ouarzazate and Agdz where you stay overnight. The following day you drive via the land of thousand kasbahs and Draa Valley until you reach M’Hamid which is the last village before you enter the desert. Then it is around 2.5 hours off road to get to the big dunes of Chigaga. The following day you leave the desert passing the dry lake Iriqi on the way, to allow the maximum time in the desert you will stay for the night in Foum Zguid another village on the edge of the desert. The last day you return back to Marrakech.
Leaving Marrakech in the morning (pick-up at your riad or even direct from the airport), you head south. First cross the High Atlas via the mountain Tizin Tichka pass and have lunch on the way. Following the old road of the desert caravans to Tamadakht, you arrive at Ait Ben Haddou in the afternoon. The old city, classed as a world heritage site, is a good stop for a couple of hours. For the night you can stay at Ait Ben Haddou but we generally prefer to push on to Agdz and a night in the stunning Kasbah Azul
After breakfast you head south to the desert. Pass along the Draa valley and enjoy the views of beautiful palm tree oases and old Moroccan villages. You can visit the village of Tamagroute to see how green ceramic is made. Late afternoon you arrive in M’Hamid, the end of the road and head off-road to the massive dunes of Chigaga. Overnight in the comfortable tents in the semi permanent camp after a fireside dinner and maybe a bit of local music. If this sounds a bit basic you can upgrade to our sumptous luxury desert camp.
Wake up to watch the sunrise and take a camel trek for an hour or so. Then it is back in the 4×4 for the trip north west across Lake Iriqi (it is dry most of the year) to the frontier town of Foumsguid. Here you will stay at the simple Bab Rimal and if not too late maybe even do a quad bike tour of the dunes nearby.
From here you leave the desert for the drive back to Marrakech (around 7 hours) or head west to the Taroudant or Agadir (4-5 hours) and on to Essaouira. Either way you pass through the Berber carpet capital of Morocco, Tazenakht, and if heading to the coast the Saffron fields on the southern slopes of the Atlas.
Cost for the 4 days and 3 nights is £490 per person in mid season (excluding flights). It is based on 2 sharing and Half Board basis. Private transport is by 4×4 (and camel…) included with driver/guide. The overall cost per person will be less if there are more people in the party to share the transport. Extra nights usually are around £100 per person including transport during the extra day and the upgrade to the luxury camp is £165 per person. We usually recommend topping and/or tailing your trip with a night in Marrakech
You can get flights from as little as £100 per person return and do ask us for advice. Alternatively we can book the flights for you but a booking fee may apply.
All prices correct at the time of writing. Give us a call or email us at email@example.com to discuss your requirements and get a confirmed price.
Please remember this is a sample itinerary and we are happy to modify it to suit your plans. We can add or remove days and look at different places to stay.