Ouarzazate Tour Hollywood of Morocco
Discover Ouarzazate, The Hollywood of Morocco Tour
Duration: 8 Day Ouarzazate Morocco Region
Luxury Toyota 4x4
English, French Speaking Driver, Guide
Starting & Finishing Point: Your Hotel In Ouarzazate
Travel to Morocco and discover the mystical region of Ouarzazatewhich
boasts ancient Kasbahs, a rich heritage of Berber culture, the Valley of Roses and the Sahara Desert Book a Tour
or call (800) 787-8806
. Let us be your guide to Morocco Travel.
DAY 1: OUARZAZATE
►Reception at the airport and transfer to the hotel. Visit Kasbah Taorit
was built by the Glaoui
. Its location was strategic for trading routes and in the 1930’s when the Glaoui ruled the South it was then one of Morocco
’s largest Kasbahs. Explore its nooks and crannies and discover some local female painters who sell their art inside as well as the many quality silver shops just steps outside the Kasbah.
►After visiting Kasbah Tourirt
, return to your hotel in Ouarzazate
for a relaxing afternoon by the pool or ask your guide about an extending your tour to the souk. At the souk you will have the opportunity to take in the smells of local spices such as Cumin, Saffron
as well as Berber amber
while visiting small caftan
and Moroccan Baboosh
►Enjoy couscous or a tajine for lunch at a local restaurant in Ouarzazate.
DAY 2: OUARZAZATE – ATLAS FILM STUDIO – AIT BENHADDOU – OASIS OF FINT
►Fill up on a savory breakfast of baguette, fresh fruit, jams and a café cassis (Moroccan cappuccino) at a local pâtisserie and then begin your one-day excursion to Atlas Film Studios
, Aït Benhaddou and theOasis of Fint
►Star your morning by visiting the Atlas Film Studios.
David Lean filmed Lawrence at The Atlas Film Studios in the early 1960’s. Since then many famous directors have followed in his footsteps to exploit the magnificent scenery. International blockbusters shot here in recent years include: the French version ofCleopatra, Bertolucci’s Sheltering Sky, Scorsese’sKundun, Gillies MacKannon’sHideous Kinky, Ridley Scott’s Gladiator, Black Hawke Down, Oliver Stone’s Alexander The Great, Ridley Scott’sKingdom of Heaven, and Penelope Cruz’sSahara.
►After visiting the Atlas Film Studio
, we will take the road by pise to the picturesque village of Aït Benhaddou
located 32 km from Ouarzazate. Aït Benhaddou
is situated in Souss Massa Dra on a hill along the Ouarzazate
River. Lawrence of Arabia
was filmed here and Orson Welles
used it as a location for Sodome and Gomorrah
; and for Jesus of Nazareth
the whole lower part of the village was rebuilt. In recent years more controlled restoration has been carried out under UNESCO
auspices. Aït Benhaddou
is one of many locations in this region used for shooting Hollywood films
►Your guide will lead you on a private tour
through this Berber village
of towered and crenulated kasbahs that once guarded the lucrative caravan route through the Atlas Mountains
. Explore the kasbahs by foot with the option to ride a donkey across a river.
►Make sure to bring along your camera to photograph this spectacular site
and the stunning views
that surround this kasbah's crenellated towers
and dark red pise walls. By the river, you will find observe a collection of kasbahs whose walls are decorated with blind arches and geometric designs. Make sure to take a walk behind the kasbah and visit the series of ksars, individual plain earth houses still inhabited by Berber families
. Your guide will share the fascinating history of Aït Benhaddou
which once served as the former
route between the Sahara
in present-day Morocco
. Most of the town's inhabitants now live in a more modern village at the other side of the river; ten families however still live within the ksar.
was once a significant stop for traders carrying gold, salt and slaves along the famous Southern Caravan route moving through the Sahara
. Only six miles away, is the village of Tamdaght
, dominated by the canyon walls of a Glaoui Kasbah
. The Kasbah is famous and you will find its towers inhabited by storks. Walk outside the Kasbah’s lush terraced gardens and witness the same desert scenery that used in Gladiator
and Alexander the Great.
►For lunch, relax on a terrace with clear views of Aït Benhaddouand enjoy a traditional Moroccan meal of mfouar (steamed wheat), Takila (a Berber tajine), couscous and fruit.
►After lunch, we will depart Aït Benhaddou
and take the pise (windy road) towards the Oasis of Fint passing the "Plateau de pierres
". On this road you will find a shining Oasis of palms
.Visit this Oasis of Fint
that hovers under the Atlas Mountains
. Journey on a one-hour walk inside the Oasis where you will have a cup of tea
with the headmaster’s
family Azziz Ouaziz
and tour the surrounding area where date palm oases
►After visiting the Oasis of Fint we will take the road to Kasbah Tifoultoute which stands majestically on the banks of Oued Tifoultoute. From a distance this old Kasbah is impressive with its castle-like architecture. In the 1960’s the Kasbah was converted into a hotel for the cast ofLawrence of Arabia. Tour the Kasbah and have lunch at its restaurant which is known for delicious mint and herb teas. See panoramic views from the rooftop.
►Dinner at your hotel or a local restaurant in Ouarzazate.
DAY 3: OUARZAZATE– SKOURA – BOULMANE DADES
►After After breakfast at your hotel, we will depart Ouarzazate
, taking the “Road of One Thousand Kasbahs”
and passing by the large lake of Ouarzazate
to drive to Skoura.
►Skoura is a fertile oasis
lined with immense palm groves
that provide great views of the Atlas Mountains
alongside deserted landscapes. It is renowned for the cultivation of roses. The palm groves
were laid out in the 12th century
by the Almohad sultan Yacoub el-Mansour
and named after its original inhabitants, the Berbers of the Haskourene tribe
. The most beautiful Kasbahs in southern Morocco
can be found here. Many of them are still partially inhabited.
►The small, sleepy town of Skoura
has a big market Souk every Monday and a small group of administrative buildings. Most impressive in Skoura are the many Kasbahs that ripple through its dry rocky oasis. Skoura is referred to as the “Valley of One
Thousand Kasbahs.” You will visit the 17th Century old Ben Morro Kasbah, which has been converted into a guesthouse and see the most imposing of the Kasbahs in this area, Amerhidil Kasbah. This fortified residence once belonged to the most powerful family responsible for protecting the village and its lands called the Glaoui. Today it is owned by the Sheikh of Amerhidil.
►We will also visit the Kasbahs of Aït Abou, built in the 1800’s and the oldest Kasbah in the palm grove, is six stories and walls 25 m high. Its outside buildings have been turned into a garden filled with pomegranate, apple, pear, fig, quince and olivetrees that provide the necessary shading for growing crops.
►Pass by Skoura,
drive north heading towards the AmagounMountains
and Berber villages
standing among splendid landscapes and the Valley of Roses
►Your driver will stop for you to view the Capp et Florale distillation factories laid out in ElKelaaDesMgouna, a small Kasbah town that manufactures the entire nation’s products of eau de rose. The rose water and other products such as hand and body soaps, oil, crème perfume and dried flowers are for sale and also popular among Moroccans. The factories produce 3000-4000 petals a year. With ten tons of petals required to produce a few liters of precious oil, the harvest is understandably a labor of love and the culminating Festivities of the annual Rose Festival are all the livelier for it.
►Once in the Valley of Roses
, you will immediately notice that the fresh mountain air in this part of southern Morocco
has a hint of fresh roses which makes it a particular nice place to go for walks, short hikes and a long drive through the HdidaValley
to the plateau of Imi-n-Louh
. Your driver will stop along the way so you can meet the friendly locals, many who are nomads and spend their winters in the nearby caves. There are many photo opportunities in this DadèsValley
town of ancient
► For lunch, we will relax on a petite terrace at Kasbah Itran, a local auberge that overlooks two large abandoned crenulated Jewish Kasbahs and a river.
►After lunch drive to the Boulmane Dades
and spend the night in a local hotel amidst the gorge.
DAY 4: BOULMANE DADES – ERFOUD
►Have breakfast at your hotel in the Boumalne Dades and visit the area.
►When traveling the Boulmane Dades you notice limestone cliffs with uniquely shaped erosions and superb scenery throughout the valley’s pise (windy roads). Driving along you will pass flower filled fields, fertile fields, riverbanks and several fortified ksours. At the bottom of Gorge of Boumalne Dadès there are hilltop Kasbahs and valley floor gardens. Aït Youl is among the largest Glaoui Kasbah that is worth a pitstop. Ask your driver to take you to explore it and go for a sort hike to Tamnalt where an impressive natural formation of rocks known by locals as the “Hill of Human bodies exists”. A series of fascinating Kasbahs can found there.
►Lunch will be served at a nearby guesthouse that offers local Moroccan fare and a panoramic view. Relax and sip mint tea while gazing at the impressive valley view. After lunch your driver will take you past the Boumalne hills so you can see how the gorge narrows into a canyon passing directly through Aït Oufi to Msemrir. On Saturdays, there is a large village souk in Msemrir.
►Next, your driver will continue the road towards the breathtaking Todra Gorge
. The Todra Gorge
is a stunning natural spectacle of pink- grey gigantic rock walls
that change colors with the different times of the day. Explore the gorge by foot and make sure to photograph the beautiful ribbon of palms between the cliffs, Berber villages
and ancient kasbahs
the Todra Gorge
. The drive is scenic as with the new roads built, you will drive past the hotels at the mouth of the Gorge and up to the villages of Ait Hani, Tamatouchte, and Imilchil
. The Gorge
extends from the village of Tamtatoucheto Tinerhir.
with cliffs rising dramatically up to 300m on each side of a narrow corridor, make up some of the most impressive
cliffs and are by far, the highest
. The Todra Gorge
is a spectacle
with its gigantic
to create magical
effects with the sunlight. In the morning, when the sun permeates through the bottom of the gorge, the rock changes from pink rose to deep ochre gradually throughout the rest of the day.
►After visiting the Todra Gorge drive to Erfoud where you will have dinner and spend the night at a hotel.
DAY 5: ERFOUND – MERZOUGA
►Rise early, and drive to Merzouga passing the unusual flora and fauna of the Sahara.
►Arrive at the the Erg Chebbi Dunes
and settle in at your Berber biouvac tent or auberge.
► Your camels await you for a trip across the Erg ChebbiDunes.
You will be taken on a 2 hour cruise
on the back of a dromedary into
dunes to camp at an oasis. Your Tuareg
guide will share some of the Sahara Deserts’ secrets
. As you glide across humpback on these silent, mystical dunes there will be countless opportunities to photograph
the endless rolling sand dunes that appear before you in heaps for thousands of miles. You will witness the sunrise
across the east
over the dunes. Upon return from your trek, enjoy a quiet breakfast and then continue your adventure within the Saharadesert.
►Considered by many to be the largest
dunes in the Sahara
, the dunes
shift due to the considerable desert winds. The locals believe that these dunes
were sent as a punishment for turning away a weary
traveler from the desert.
They say that after they sent away this traveler, the gods made the dunes
up right outside their town; to teach them a lesson and to never send away weary men and women ever again.
►After exploring the dunes, enjoy breakfast and then pack for our continued journey to Rissani.
►Just before lunch, you will depart Merzouga and ride across the palm groves to visit the ksours along the kasah studded road to Rissani. The 19th century Abbar Ksar, once a residence to Alounite princes and the Oulad Abdelhamin Ksar, built for the brother of Sultan Moulay Hassan, is popular to visit. Also interesting to see is the Mausoleum of Moulay Ali Cherif where the father of the founder of the Alouite Dynasty is buried.
►After the famous structures, you will see Rissani, an ancient capital for the Alaouite Sultans and the most important market town for Sub-Sahara camel caravans was built on the ruins of Sijilmassa.
►Stop in Rissani for a lunch and visit its souks where stalls are piled high with pyramids of dates, vegetables, spices, rugs, carpets, pottery, jewelry and metalwork. The Rissani souk is one of the most famous in the area and surrounded by donkeys, mules, sheep and goats enclosed in corrals. After a tour of Rissani, we are off to Alnif. Alnif is known for its rocks, fossils and minerals found in shops along the roadside Trilobites are the areas main export.
►Pass by Alnif and head towards to N’kob for an overnight stay at Ksar Jenna, a beautiful Maison de Charme in a riad style, built with the materials of the Moroccan tradition such as taddelakt and zellig. Ksar Jenna has wide open spaces, 7 rooms with every comfort, with large bathrooms and large common spaces, plunged in an oasis of quiet, in the heart of a luxuriant garden, with lots of palm trees, bougainvilleas, rose bushes, jasmines.
DAY 6: N’KOB – ZAGORA
►After a large Moroccan breakfast at Ksar Jenna
, discover the village
of Aït Ouzzine
in the city of N’kob
. Past the kasbahs, you will see rugged territories of sheer rockfaces, plateaux and blackish rocky assortments in N’kob.
►Just 5 kilometers after N’kob
is Aït Ouzzine
(the nice village). Aït Ouzzine
is a Berber
village inhabited by over 300 families
who live in beautifully painted crenulated kasbahs
, with their own henna fields, water wells, livestock
This peaceful village is tucked away along an impressive desert route connecting the Draa Valley
(Tansikht) and Rissani.
►Lunch will be served to you in Aït Ouzzine by a traditional Berber family. The menu will include a traditional meal of fresh baked bread with spices and a chicken and vegetable tajine and fresh local fruits for desert. After lunch, you can go for a walk in green fields of Aït Ouzzine and visit the village elders to sip mint tea. Explore the village and then depart in late afternoon to Zagora. Once you arrive in Zagora, settle in at your hotel and have dinner at a local traditional restaurant.
DAY 7: ZAGORA – OUARZAZATE
►Rise early, enjoy breakfast and then begin your one-day excursion in Zagora.
is a Saharan deserttown
in the southern DrâaValley
. Zagora is favored by travelers for its desert dunes
, palms, 45 varieties of dates
and its Hollywood sunset mountain
backdrops. Take the road by pise (windy road) to discover the land where caravans once transported sugar, tea, dates and other dry goods to Ouarzazate.
►Walk the palmery and hamlet set amid lemon, almond and olive trees, and gardens of the village of Amazrou
. Visit the former Mellah (Jewish quarter), where a mosque now stands. Amazrou is inhabited by Arabs, Haratines and Berbers who continue the Jewish tradition of silver making.
►Visit the Dunes of Tinfo
and the old Kasbah Ait Lkaid
in the village of Tamegroute.
At the end of the main road you will find the famous road sign to Timbuktu
that reads “52 jours” – 52 hours by camel.
►Have lunch at a local kasbah hotel restaurant in the town of Zagora
. The Dunes of Tinfo (as well as many other sand dunes in Morocco
) are famous for their healing qualities for rheumatoid arthritis. Ask your guide to bury you in the sand from head to toe for this a 20 minute spa-like experience.
►Upon return to Ouarzazate
we will take the road to visit Zagora’s
unique, beautifully glazed
pottery at the local cooperative in the desert town of Tamagroute
and pass by the Koranic
► Arrive in Ouarzazate
and spend the night in a local riad.
DAY 8: OUARZAZATE
► Departure from Ouarzazate
airport. This ends your Morocco Travel experience.