Experience an extraordinary Marrakech to Fes desert excursion, featuring a camel trek and an overnight glamping adventure in the heart of the desert. Explore Todra and Dades Gorges, the Rose Valley, and UNESCO World Heritage Sites like Ait Benhaddou and Azrou along the way.
3-Day Marrakech to Fes Desert Tour: Discover Southeast Morocco’s Beauty
Embark on an unforgettable 3-day desert tour from Marrakech to Fes via Merzouga. Traverse the mesmerizing High Atlas mountains, explore the UNESCO World Heritage Ait Ben Haddou Kasbah, and visit Ouarzazate, known as Africa’s Hollywood. Spend a night in the picturesque Boumalne Dades valley and marvel at the stunning Todra Canyon and oasis in Tinghir.
The pinnacle of your Marrakech to Fez desert journey awaits a camel ride across the golden Erg Chebbi dunes, followed by an enchanting night in a desert tent beneath a blanket of a million stars. Experience the Sahara desert like never before.
Discover Our 3-Day Marrakech to Fes Desert Tour Highlights
- Be captivated by the stunning Atlas Mountains scenery.
- Explore the UNESCO World Heritage Ait Ben Haddou Kasbah.
- Visit the renowned Ouarzazate Film Studio and the Taourirt Kasbah.
- Embark on breathtaking walks through the Dades and Todra Gorges.
- Soar above the Erg Chebbi sand dunes for unparalleled aerial views.
- Experience the magic of a Merzouga Sahara camel ride.
- Witness the mesmerizing desert sunset over the sand dunes.
- Enjoy thrilling sandboarding at Merzouga Desert Camp and spend the night.
- Savor a hearty dinner and partake in a lively campfire party with Berber drums.
- Meet the Barbary Apes at the Azrou Cedar Forest during your unforgettable journey.
Explore Our Detailed Marrakech to Fes Desert Tour Itinerary
Day 1: Marrakech – Ait Ben Haddou – Boumalne Dades
Embark on your Marrakech to Fes journey from your hotel, where we’ll collect you. You’ll be treated to a picturesque drive across the High Atlas Mountains, showcasing Morocco’s top tourist spots. Your personalized itinerary will include insightful visits to these attractions:
- Explore the Argan oil cooperative and discover its cosmetic applications.
- Marvel at the panoramic vistas of the sprawling Atlas mountains and traverse the Tizi-N-Tichka pass.
- Next, explore the UNESCO-listed Kasbah of Ait Ben Haddou, Morocco’s largest Kasbah with distinctive adobe architecture.
- Dive into the world of cinema in Ouarzazate, home to a renowned cinema studio used in major productions like Game of Thrones and Gladiator.
- Conclude the day in Skoura, featuring the fascinating Amerhidil Kasbah.
- Discover the fragrant Rose Valley and journey onwards to Boumalne Dades, where we’ll spend the night in a charming Riad nearby.
Get ready for more adventure on day two of your unforgettable excursion!
Day 2: Dades- Todra Gorges-Merzouga Excursion
The second day of our thrilling Marrakech to Fes Desert Tour kicks off with a delicious breakfast, as we set our sights on the desert’s main attractions. Our journey offers:
- A rock climbing adventure amidst the breathtaking Toudra Gorges.
- Scenic views adorned with palm groves that will accompany us.
- A visit to a Berber clothing cooperative located in the charming Touroug village.
- Exploring Fezna’s historical irrigation system.
- Discovering Erfoud, renowned for its fossils, before reaching the Merzouga desert.
- A warm mint tea welcome followed by a camel trekking adventure.
- A pivotal sunset stop amid the dunes guided by your camel leader.
- Drum music, campfire, and stargazing under the desert night sky after a delicious campfire supper.
Get ready for the highlights of the final day of your memorable Marrakech to Fes Desert Tour.
Day 3: Merzouga – Ziz Valley – Ifrane- Fes Itinerary
As the sun rises early, your final day of the 3-day desert journey from Marrakech to Fes begins. After your return by camel, the adventure takes off. Here’s what’s in store:
- A visit to Rissani’s historical and traditional souk (market).
- Exploring the picturesque Ziz Valley, with a refreshing stop to admire the palm tree oasis.
- A lunch break in Midelt, known as Germany’s apple capital.
- Enjoying the lush hills and encountering nomads on your way to the Cedar Forest, home to photogenic Barbary apes.
- Discovering Ifrane, often referred to as Morocco’s Switzerland, where you’ll have some free time to appreciate the stunning scenery.
- A scenic drive through lush pastures and a Berber settlement as we head towards Fes.
- Safely returning you to your hotel, marking the conclusion of our 3-day desert tour from Marrakech to Fes.
Tour Inclusions and Exclusions
Explore what’s included in our exciting excursion and what is not:
- Hassle-free pick-up and drop-off service at your accommodation.
- Comfortable transportation in a private, air-conditioned car.
- A knowledgeable and English-speaking Driver/Guide.
- Fuel costs for the vehicles are covered.
- One night’s accommodation in a hotel/riad, offering private rooms of your chosen type.
- Memorable camel trekking experience, with one camel provided per person.
- Enchanting camel riding at sunset.
- Enjoy two hearty meals, with both breakfast and dinner provided during your stay in the Desert Camp, in a tent of your choice.
- Convenient transfer to and from the camp in a 4×4 vehicle, offering an alternative to camels.
- Monument entrance fees.
- Lunch expenses.
- Soft drinks.
Tour Highlights Overview
Discover the enchanting attractions awaiting you on this three-day excursion from Marrakech to Fes via Merzouga. To give you an idea of the remarkable experiences in store, here’s an overview of the key highlights you’ll encounter during your journey with us.
Marrakech: Your Gateway to a Unique Journey
Marrakech is anything but ordinary, and it’s essential to prepare for an adventure that will transport you back in time, where this ancient city seems to move to its rhythm, leaving the world behind. Don’t mistake its uniqueness for difficulty; Marrakech is a thriving tourism destination with a rich tapestry of experiences awaiting you.
Explore its elegant museums, immerse yourself in vibrant market bazaars, savor the sounds of street musicians, and dine under the enchanting glow of rooftop restaurants. While a printed guide can only scratch the surface, it’s an excellent starting point to uncover the magic of Marrakech.
This city, with its rich history and distinct culture, dances to its rhythm like no other. Marrakech boasts its charm, like no other place on earth. Let this curated list of top things to do in Marrakech be your guide to unlock its hidden treasures.
“Preparing for Your Marrakech Adventure” The moment you step into Marrakech, you’ll be greeted by a kaleidoscope of colors that paint each neighborhood, showcasing the city’s unique North African allure. Its open-air markets and winding alleyways are brimming with handmade items in vibrant hues.
Prepare your senses for an olfactory journey as you encounter an array of scents you’ve likely never experienced before. The city’s myriad of herbs, spices, and diverse street cuisine will tantalize your taste buds.
Keep an ear out for the familiar call of “Balek!” while strolling through the bustling streets. It’s a courteous warning often accompanied by a donkey-drawn cart, signaling, “Move, coming through!” Be ready for the unexpected as you embark on a Marrakech journey like no other.
Exploring the Rich Tapestry of Fes, Morocco
When in Fes, Morocco, you’ll find yourself spoiled for choice when it comes to things to see and do. As the nation’s former capital until 1925, Fes has long held the mantle of its spiritual center. Its UNESCO-designated Fez Medina stands as one of the world’s largest car-free urban areas.
While Marrakech’s tourist-focused allure has taken the limelight in recent years, exploring Morocco through Fes offers a fresh perspective on Moroccan society. In the tapestry of Morocco’s enticing destinations, Fes is but one brilliant thread, offering an array of experiences.
Discovering the Marvels of Fes
If you’re in search of captivating activities in Fes, Morocco, you’ve come to the right place. This historic city is a treasure trove of culture, history, and breathtaking architecture. Here are some of the must-see sights and activities to include in your Fes itinerary.
Fes’ Historical Gems
Intrigue awaits as you consider the historical marvels to explore within Fes. While there are several historical sites, not all grant access to their inner sanctums.
Unveiling the Mystery of Marinid Tombs
Among them, the Marinid Tombs hold an air of enigma and splendor. These ancient remains, perched on the hills overlooking the Fes medina, are adorned with inscriptions. Yet, the identity of those laid to rest within and the significance of these ruins remain shrouded in history’s mysteries. The panoramic views from this vantage point, offering a captivating vista of the medina and the surrounding slopes, make it a family-friendly destination.
Exploring Al-Attarine School
Steeped in history, the Al-Attarine School, founded in 1323, lies in proximity to the renowned Karouine mosque and university. Here, the intoxicating scents of the spice and fragrance market on its fringes fill the air. Immerse yourself in the splendidly designed courtyard, adorned with intricately laid tiles adorning the walls and floors. Fes welcomes you to explore its historical treasures with open arms.
Merzouga Camel Trek Adventures in Morocco
Embarking on a Merzouga Camel Trek in Morocco is a truly authentic adventure for travelers. Our Merzouga camel excursions transport guests into the vast, rolling dunes where they spend a night under the star-studded desert sky. Guided by our experienced leader and accompanied by seasoned camel guides, the Merzouga camel trek offers a deep immersion into Moroccan desert culture and an opportunity to journey on the robust “ships of the desert.” After a serene night in the dunes, you’ll return to the settlement the next morning.
Experience the Magic of Merzouga Camel Trekking
Camel trekking in Merzouga, Morocco, is undeniably one of the most exhilarating activities on offer. We present a variety of Merzouga camel trek experiences that will transport you to the enchanting Sahara desert, delivering a vacation of a lifetime.
- Merzouga Camel Trek Overnight: Combine a camel trip with two nights in the Merzouga desert.
- Merzouga Sunset & Sunrise Camel Safari: Witness the mesmerizing sunrise and sunset in Merzouga.
- Discover the Highlights of Camel Trekking in Merzouga, Morocco: including camel riding across the Erg-Chebbi sands and immersing in the nomadic way of life.
Merzouga Desert Exploration on Camel Back
Roaming the desert atop a camel is often the pinnacle of a Moroccan journey, and the Erg Chebbi sand dunes in Merzouga are among the tallest and most accessible of Morocco’s deserts.
- Merzouga Camel Ride to Watch the Sunset: Join us for an evening camel ride into the towering sand dunes, where you can witness the sun setting over a breathtaking panorama. Later, return to your tent at our Merzouga desert camp for relaxation. Our camp is nestled in the Erg Chebbi sand sea, offering authentic Moroccan Berber-style tents and convenient amenities.
- Camel Journey to Merzouga to Observe the Sunrise: If you arrive late in Merzouga, opt for a brief camel ride from our camp to savor a mesmerizing dawn over the Erg Chebbi dunes.
Exploring Ouarzazate: A Fascinating Desert Oasis
Your journey from Marrakech to Ait Ben Haddou, expertly guided, takes you to a place brimming with history and allure. Ascend the stairs to reach the summit, where you’ll be captivated by the artists’ tea, sugar, and fire depiction of the Kasbah. Enjoy the breathtaking panoramic views from this vantage point.
But that’s not all. Ait Ben Haddou has transformed into a renowned movie studio, serving as the backdrop for blockbuster films like “The Gladiator,” “Alexander,” “The Bible,” and numerous beloved television series.
Across from the Atlas Studios stands the magnificent Cla Hotel, boasting a timeless charm that beckons travelers to explore its many facets.
Explore the labyrinthine wonder of the Kasbah of Taourirt, also known as the Ouarzazate Maze, comprising around 300 chambers. To fully appreciate this hidden gem, consider enlisting the services of a local guide. Once owned by Thami El Glaoui, this historic site is now impeccably preserved and holds immense significance.
Ifrane: Morocco’s Little Switzerland with European Flair
For a unique blend of Moroccan charm and European elegance, Ifrane offers a captivating experience. Renowned as the cleanest city in Morocco and ranked as the tenth cleanest city globally, it boasts pristine streets and remarkable European-inspired architecture, earning it the affectionate nickname of “Little Switzerland” in Morocco.
Ifrane also holds the distinction of being Morocco’s coldest city, with average winter temperatures plunging to -23°C (-9.4°F). With abundant snowfall, it has become a sought-after destination for snowboarding enthusiasts from across Morocco.
While exploring Ifrane, don’t miss the Atlas Lion monument, a historical treasure carved by a German prisoner during the French occupation in 1912. Furthermore, Ifrane is home to one of Morocco’s largest and most prestigious institutions, along with one of the king’s palaces. This charming city seamlessly blends European influences with Moroccan authenticity.
Azrou: Where Ancient Cedars and Barbary Apes Thrive
Azrou, a captivating destination near Ifrane, beckons travelers with its enchanting cedar forest, where colossal cedar trees reach towering heights of over 25 meters. These majestic trees are a common sight in the Himalayan and Mediterranean mountains. What makes Azrou truly exceptional is its role as a habitat for Barbary apes, one of the world’s most distinctive primate species. These apes, scientifically classified as Old World monkeys, are primarily found in the Atlas Mountains of Algeria and Morocco, with a small population in Gibraltar.
In Azrou, you’ll have the opportunity to interact with these fascinating Barbary apes. These monkeys typically travel in family units rather than large groups and tend to avoid socializing with other families. Feeding and observing these remarkable creatures is an extraordinary experience, providing a deeper connection to the unique wildlife of Morocco’s Atlas Mountains.
Exploring Errachidia: Gateway to the Sahara Desert” Errachidia, the first village you encounter after traversing the majestic Atlas Mountains, serves as the welcoming threshold to the vast Sahara desert. Nestled in the Daraa Tafilalet region, this charming hamlet originally bore the name Imtghern and was previously recognized as Ksar Souk. Subsequently, it was bestowed with the name Errachidia by Prince Moulay Rachid, the brother of King Mohamed V. Due to its proximity to Algeria, a region fraught with political complexities, Errachidia hosts the majority of military outposts.
A Natural Marvel: Hassan Addakhil Dam Errachidia is renowned for the Hassan Addakhil Dam, a remarkable feat of engineering that provides a vital water source to the neighboring towns of Errachidia, Erfoud, and Merzouga. The foresight to construct this dam in the Atlas Highlands in 1968 was a prudent decision by the Alaouite family. When rain blesses the highlands, the dam becomes a reservoir for the precious runoff, ensuring a consistent water supply for the entire region.
Discovering the Ziz Valley The Ziz Valley, also known as the Ziz River, is a significant watercourse that meanders an impressive 282 kilometers through the heart of the Sahara desert, originating in Errachidia and terminating in Algeria. Along this river’s course, a 30-kilometer stretch is adorned with a multitude of date palm groves, a testament to the agricultural ingenuity of the local residents. The arid climate and fertile soil create an ideal environment for palm cultivation, sustaining the livelihoods of many in the area.
Upon reaching Ait Chaker, visitors are greeted with a breathtaking vista of the river, framed by its stately and expansive date palm groves. This mesmerizing panorama is a true testament to the beauty and resilience of the Sahara desert’s ecosystem.
Exploring Erfoud: Gateway to the Desert Oasis
Erfoud, also known as Arfoud, is a vibrant city located in the southeastern region of Morocco, in close proximity to the captivating Erg Chebbi sand dunes. The city’s name carries with it a rich history and intriguing etymological origins. Some believe it is derived from the Berber word “ounfoud,” a reference to a shrub that thrives along the banks of the nearby Ziz River, which meanders to the east of Erfoud. Others posit that it originates from the Berber phrase “Ar Afoud,” signifying “to the knee,” symbolizing a historical measurement taken by two Berber travelers while crossing the river.
Erfoud is most renowned for hosting a vibrant and culturally significant event – the three-day international festival dedicated to the bountiful date palm. This lively festival unfolds in October and attracts visitors from around the world. It is a time for revelry, date exportation, and a myriad of captivating activities that grace the city’s central square, including concerts, musical performances, and theatrical shows.
Geologically, Erfoud holds the esteemed title of the “City of Mineral Fossils.” Nestled in the nearby mountains, a treasure trove of geological wonders awaits discovery, including goniatites, orthoceras, trilobites, crinoids (Scyphocrinites Elegans), and corals, among others. To further enhance your understanding of these ancient fossils, a visit to one of the city’s museums is a must. And should you wish to acquire a fossil as a cherished keepsake, we will be delighted to guide you to the finest purveyors.
Embrace the Desert Adventure Embark on a remarkable 3-day journey through the enchanting Merzouga Desert with the assistance of a trusted local travel agency. Discover the timeless allure of Erfoud and the remarkable geological heritage of the region, immersing yourself in a captivating itinerary that promises unforgettable experiences.