Step into a desert world and travel beyond Marrakech with this short but adventure-packed 2-day desert tour from Marrakech to Zagora – a perfect option for travellers who have a short time but wish to seize the opportunity to get introduced to the Sahara Desert and the southern regions of Morocco.
It is an incredible experience that covers the spectacular Atlas Mountains, the Kasbah Ait Ben Haddou, a UNESCO World Heritage Site, and the verdant Dra’a Valley with its vast palm groves. You will also experience a sense of Morocco’s historic past along the ancient Caravans Route with its innumerable Berber villages and fortified Kasbahs.
The highlight of this adventure will be the thrill of a sunset camel ride, followed by a traditional Moroccan meal under a sky full of stars and an evening of Berber music around a campfire in a luxury camp and the night in your own private tent.
Your desert journey starts here!
|Number of persons
|Price per person
Departure in the morning at 08:30 from your riad or hotel in Marrakech, and you venture south on your 2-day Zagora desert tour from Marrakech. All along the road, you will stop at panoramic viewpoints to take breaks and photograph the beautiful views of the valleys and the often snow-covered mountain peaks. The Berber villages perched on the side of the mountainside, sometimes barely distinguishable from the mountains themselves, are fascinating.
After crossing the pass, you continue descending the mountains to arrive in Ouarzazate, often nicknamed the gate to the Sahara.
Just out of town, you could visit the Film Studios, a movie wonderland just outside Ouarzazate, known for keeping its sets and reorganising them to offer a wide range of choices to production studios, but also for letting tourists experience the unique thrill of discovering the sets where many successful films and series have been shot, including “Gladiator”, “Prince of Persia” and “Game of Thrones.”
After lunch, the itinerary takes you south over the Anti-Atlas Mountains as far as Agdz, a oasis town well-known for the variety of its palm dates. As you descend the Tizi-n-Tinfifite pass (1660m), you will be amazed by the splendid views of the extensive green oases and the innumerable palm trees, all indicating the beginning of the Dra’a Valley.
We drive off-road, which offers better views of the green oases and unlimited palm trees, with ancient Kasbahs idyllically standing among the palm trees and by both sides of the river. Then, there is time to visit Kasbah Tamnougalt, the oldest and the largest kasbah in the Dra’a Valley.
Once in Zagora Desert, you enjoy a much-anticipated sunset camel ride through the windswept sand. At the campsite, you check in to your private tent and enjoy a relaxing glass of tea and biscuits.
At night, dinner is served, followed by an evening of nomad music and drumming around a campfire. You spend the night in your own tent, equipped with a private toilet & shower, king-sized beds, mattresses, sheets, pillows, blankets & carpets, lamps and beautiful Moroccan furnishings, all tastefully arranged to enhance your stay.
If you get up early enough, you will be rewarded by an incredible sunrise, when the colour of the dunes and the play of shadows are astonishing.
After breakfast, you will visit the local pottery co-operatives in Tamgroute village, which produce all the green glaze pottery products you may have seen all over the south and in Marrakech. It is interesting to visit these workshops to learn how local clay is worked into products in a manner unique to this region. Then, you can also see an ancient Quranic Library with a fascinating display of exquisite hand-written Arabic texts.
From here, you travel up north as far as Ouarzazate, where you leave the main road and take a side road to the Kasbah Ait Ben Haddou. It is the most famous Kasbah in Morocco and one of the Kingdom’s nine UNESCO World Heritage Sites. Yet, it is better known as the backdrop for many Hollywood blockbusters, including “Gladiator,” “Alexander,” and some scenes of the famous TV series “Game of Thrones.”
Next, you travel further northwest along the beautiful Ounila Valley, full of bends in the roads, incredible rock formations, Berber villages, and smaller Kasbahs. Finally, you reach Kasbah Telouet, which used to be the palatial residence of the Lords of the Atlas, the Glaoui Family. Although the Kasbah now stands in ruins after the last Pasha fled Morocco following the departure of the French, wait to be pleasantly surprised by the architectural marvel of this historic home. Lunch will be either here or later up in the mountains.
From here, you drive along a different road over the High Atlas Mountains, the largest mountain chain in North Africa. Along the way, soak in uninterrupted views of the High Atlas Mountains and its beautiful Berber villages. Near the top, stretch your legs for panoramic views of the mountains.
We arrive back in Marrakech by the end of the afternoon. Your driver will transfer you to your hotel, which marks the end of your 2-day Zagora Desert tour from Marrakech.