Or explore with a multi-centre tour

South & Sahara Holidays

For many travellers the real Moroccan experience starts in the deep south: an ancient land of fortified villages (ksour), crumbling castles (kasbahs) and sun-baked oases.

...continued from South & Sahara page.


The road south from Marrakech winds up through the oleander and pine forests of the Atlas mountains to the 7,400-foot Col de Tichka. From here you can make side-trips to Telouet, to visit the kasbah of the Glaoui (immortalized in Gavin Maxwell’s Lords of the Atlas) and to the even more picturesque Kasbah Aït Benhaddou, famous from the film Gladiator. Finally the road descends onto the plain of Ouarzazate - the gateway to the south.

The difference in landscape, vegetation and architecture is immediately apparent. To the north, the Dades river follows a ribbon of walnut, silver birch, fig and almond trees, past mud-brick fortresses and eerie rock formations, to the Dades Gorge. Near Tineghir, the even higher Todra Gorge has opportunities for birdwatching, trekking, rock-climbing and wildlife-spotting. The road peters out at Merzouga and the spectacular sand dunes of Erg Chebbi.

South-east of Ouarzazate is the Draa Valley, dotted with watchtowers, forbidding gorges and lush oases. For centuries, the valley was a stopping place for caravans returning with gold, slaves and salt from the great trading capitals of the Sahara. After several miles of scrubby landscape the road takes you to M'hamid and the isolated dunes of Erg Chigaga.

A desert expedition can be the trip of a lifetime. Many people opt for a camel trek: romantic, but guaranteed to result in a sore bottom. An alternative is a 4x4 safari. You don’t have to rough it, either. Sleeping under the desert stars is now available as a 5-star experience, complete with bed-linen and showers.

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erfoud merzouga southern morocco holiday riad hotel
oualidia lagoon beach morocco coast hippocampe sultana
ouarzazate zagora southern morocco holiday riad hotel
tineghir southern morocco sahara desert

Tineghir

Within easy reach of the Todra gorge, the beautiful Dades valley filled with silver birch trees and the Jebel Saghro hills.

ouarzazate zagora m'hamid southern morocco holiday riad hotel

Testimonials

Client review Toubkal foothills Atlas mountains

Trek in Atlas foothills.

Dear Max,

Thank you for organising our trek/trip.  It was fabulous and all went seamlessly.  The hotel was kind enough to give us a room upgrade and a late check out, so all good there too.

We would love to do one again next year.  If we were to be really critical, we were disappointed not ...

C. Hay

While staying at Les Deux Tours, in the Palmeraie on the outskirts of Marrakech that we fully appreciated the richness of reptilian life in the country.

Deputy Editor of Harper’s Bazaar, Sasha Slater, travelled with her family to Marrakech and Ouirgane with Lawrence of Morocco in April 2014.

We know Morocco intimately

We really know Morocco and have had the pleasure of making many people's dream trips become reality over the years. It has been our privilege to be asked to manage holidays, weddings and productions for so many fantastic and discerning clients. We remain small and dedicated to providing excellent honest advice to enable you to sit back, relax and enjoy the fun bits without having to manage the unpredictability of this fascinating country.

If you want it done right, look no further!

Lawrence of Morocco