1 Day: Fes – Ifrane – Cedar Forest – Ziz Valley – Merzouga Desert – Night at Haimas
The trip’s plan is scheduled to pick you up from Fez in your hotel at about 8am. The direction of the itinerary is to the south reaching the “Switzerland of Morocco” or in other words, Ifrane. However, we can arrive in Ifrane by crossing the Middle Atlas Mountains. The reason after Ifrane’s name lies in the city’s resemblance to Switzerland.
In the middle of the city’s main square, a stone sculpture of a lion is erected as a symbol of one of the animals that once lived in the region long time ago. It was the lion of the Atlas; that was famous for its strength and capabilities. Beside this giant statue, you will definitely take some photos that are wonderful. Afterwards, we are going to the famous cedar forests where the Great Cedar Gouraud is found.
The Great Cedar Gouraud is the region’s largest ancient cedar tree. It is the main food to the hundreds of monkeys. However, the original monkeys of Gibraltar that are rare nowadays inhabit the area where they are mostly fed to the Great Cedar Gouraud. The cedar forest is a natural reserve where several extinct animals and uncommon butterflies are found. This forest is a living treasure that is carefully kept. I am sure you will be glad spending much more time there.
The afternoon lunch is in Midelt before we pass the Ziz Valley. And then a massive area with more than 20km are all found planted in palm trees. The land here is very rich and it is considered one of the world’s largest areas that produces palm.
After the mythical cedar forest, we arrive in Merzouga Desert, “the sun of the Moroccan deserts”. Once you are in Merzouga, you will absolutely try the camels caravan and leave in a magical trip to the heart of the Saharan dunes. In Merzouga, you will be astonished; the sand is brilliant which might take you to the depths of the Desert. A lot of whom who visited Merzoug said that,” It is a desert of danger. In Merzouga, you can go where there is no way back”. Despite these threats, Merzouga still the desert where the sunset scene is the most attaching scene ever. With riding the camels, we will arrive to our camp where we will stay in haim. They are stores made with camel’s hair and situated in the middle of nowhere. They are traditionally used by the desert Nomads. In the “Haima”, the group rests to get the dinner. At night in Haima, you will feel magically different in the heart of the desert contemplating a spectacular picture of the stars glowing in the pure sky. Enjoy your time in Merzouga, the shinning desert.
Day 2: Desert Merzouga – Rissani Market – Todra Gorges – Dades Gorges
As you are in the Merzouga desert, it is recommended to wake up early in the morning and walk around the camp to the highest dune to observe “the date with the dawn” scene when the sleepy sun meets the sands. The scenery is relaxing soothes your soul.
After the breakfast, we have to leave the village of Merzouga saying goodbye to the desert driving to Rissani. There in Rissani, we are going to visit the market and if we are on one of the market days (Sunday, Tuesday and Thursday), we are lucky then. Directly after Rissani, we will follow the road to Erfoud where visiting the factory of the fossilized marble is necessary. Ahead after the factory, the group will be introduced to the various valuable kinds of the palms of Touroug and Tinjdad.
After an hour, reaching The Todra Gorges, one of the strongest points of the High Atlas is an unforgettable experience. However, the wonderful Todra Gorge is created on the bed of the river. It is a mere unique paradise that climbers prefer. Hiking for half an hour will make you ready for Lunch at the site of Todra Gorges. Next, the valley of figs or the famous Dades Valley is where we will stop at the “legs mono” in Boumalne Dades. However, dinner and night are set in the Gorges du Dades.
Day 3: Dades Gorges – Kasbah of Ait Ben Haddou – Ouarzazate – High Atlas – Marrakech
Early in the morning and after we have our delicious breakfast, we will enjoy reaching the most attractive strategic location of the Dades Valley where a very beautiful view of the mountains’ peaks is clearly seen. From this site, the kasbahs that are plenty are obvious and we can picturesque each, then the road seems covered with numerous scattered Ksbahs; it is also called ” the route of the Thousand Kasbahs”. After that, we arrive in Valley of the Roses and Skoura which means we are in Ouarzazate where a lot of activities are going to be done. First, visiting the Kasbah of Taourirt is interesting; it is the Glaoui’s former residence or named as ” Pasha of Marrakech”.
To everyone who is interested in the cinema making industry, visiting Ouarzazate is the best choice where you can see the most influential Film Studios and Museum Cines. We will also go to the fortified village of ” Ksar” or Ait Ben Haddou to visit its famous well known Kasbahs. Ait Ben Haddou was declared as the World Heritage Site by UNESCO in 1986. Visiting this spectacular setting where a lot of famous films are directed and shot is a life- time experience. Some of the films are: Gladiator, Obelix, Sahara with Penelope Cruz … etc.
Before going back to Marrakesh, lunch is made in the village and then in the afternoon we cross the mountain route of Tizi Ntichka. The arrival to Marrakech is at night.