Disclaimer: Thank you Morocco Culture Tours for hosting us as your guests. The thoughts and opinions expressed here are entirely our own.
First Off, Why Should You Visit Morocco?
Morocco is a country that prides itself on heritage. It embraces its historically rich past and holds firmly to centuries old customs and traditions. Morocco is a country of color. Burnt orange kasbahs sprinkle the desert with vibrant blue skies above. Medinas offer guests a colorful array of fresh fruits, vegetables, and spices with vibrant hues at every corner. Olive stands filled with green jewels line city streets while barrels of magenta dates border nearby walkways. Riads boast lavish green gardens, white and blue marble fountains, and a rainbow tapestry of colors. Morocco is a country that is alive and well, with its cities a testament to its spirit, but the real beauty comes when you step outside its tan sand, straw covered walls. Here you get to see Morocco in its purest form, and experience the true allure of what this country has to offer.
What Should You Do & Who Should You Book With?
We highly recommend getting outside and investing time in the natural wonders that make this country special; Our personal top two favorites were the emerald green Ouzoud Waterfalls and the amber sands of the Sahara Desert. We will talk more in depth about each below, but we highly suggest trying one of the many Morocco Desert Tours offered. What you will get to experience will take your breath away; A Saharan Desert Tour typically consists of an overnight stay in a Merzouga Desert Luxury Camp where you and your group will test your hand at camel trekking through the Sahara to a berber camp nestled deep within the desert. With so many companies offering various options it can be overwhelming which to choose, but we found Morocco Culture Tours to satiate all aspects of our adventurous desires. We tend to gravitate towards companies that have a Certificate of Excellence on TripAdvisor to ensure an enjoyable experience, and these guys exceeded our every expectation.
Where Should You Depart From?
Marrakech is the perfect city to start your Moroccan journey but be sure to give yourself several days to explore the world famous Medina and experience its sights, sounds, and spices. We suggest staying in a local Riad while there. Moroccan Riads are traditional housing accommodations, famous for their exquisite tiling, central courtyards and lavish marble pools - we recommend a few of our favorites here. Not only are these Riads a chance to experience authentic Moroccan culture in a bustling metropolis but the majority of tours can conveniently pick you up from there, making it an easily accessible destination.
We’ve seen A LOT of waterfalls in our time, but nothing compares to the Ouzoud Waterfalls. These falls are one of the most photographed natural sites in all of Morocco, and once you’ve been it’s easy to see why. We had friends visiting from California, so we opted for one of the Morocco Private Tours to Ouzoud Waterfalls from Marrakech which gives you the best in both comfort and flexibility. Guides are fluent in English, Spanish, Arabic and Berber with a vast understanding of the surrounding landscapes. As you make your way towards the falls, you’ll drive through the high plains of the Atlas Mountains passing green pastures dotted with olive and almond trees, making for great photo opportunities.
Upon arrival, expect to be greeted by native Barbary macaques. These monkeys are absolutely adorable. Vendors line the streets with peanuts, where you can pay 20 dirhams ($2 US) for a bag to feed these friendly creatures. The monkeys are extremely playful, and will gladly take any opportunity to snag some tasty treats.
Follow the main foot path that leads to a set of stairs bordering the falls. This will take you to a series of viewpoints where you can bask in the spectacle of these stunning falls as their raging waters plunge down the jagged cliffs below. If you’re lucky, you may even get a glimpse of a rainbow as it glimmers above the falls.
The real magic however, lies at the bottom. Standing as one of the highest natural waterfalls in all of North Africa, here you can witness the sheer mass of these 360 foot (110 m) waterfalls in all their majestic glory. So powerful, for a moment in time the world stops as you take in the thunderous rage, watching the white water cascade and tumble it's way down from varying heights into a natural pool surrounded by red rocks and vibrant green foliage. This place will leave you utterly speechless.
End the day with a delicious late lunch overlooking the falls and gawk one last time at the beauty before you! There’s a plethora of restaurants to choose from (which all offer the same menu) so make your selection based on the best view as you enjoy marinated olives, moroccan salads, and kebabs with a mint tea in hand. It’s a perfect way to end the day.
Morocco Desert Tours:
To properly experience the Sahara Desert, the 4 Day Marrakech to Fes Desert Tour has the perfect itinerary to fulfill your adventurous desires. Morocco Culture Tours offers a fantastic desert experience for guests to enjoy that will fulfill your Saharan hopes and dreams in every possible way.
Here is what you can expect from this desert excursion:
Depart Marrakech for a scenic drive through the High Atlas Mountains towards Ait Ben Haddou. This ancient town has been recognized as a UNESCO World Heritage Site and is notorious for being in the backdrop of iconic films like “Game of Thrones” and “Gladiator.” You’ll continue your journey through Ouarzazate and the Valley of Roses, passing nomadic Berber camps and families, as locals herd their sheep on sandy plains in the distance. As you make your way towards Dades Gorges, you’ll be engulfed by stunning desert landscapes, villages and palm groves.
From Dades Gorges, you’ll wind and weave your way to Todra Gorge where the cliffs go as high as 600m and only 10m apart. Carved through the walls of the High Atlas Mountains by the swift flowing Dades River, the Todra Gorge is best seen on foot, so hop out of the car and take a brief stroll through this beautiful red sand stoned canyon. From there, you’ll head to Merzouga. Merzouga is a small Moroccan town in the Sahara Desert, close to the Algerian border. It’s known as the gateway to Erg Chebbi, one of the largest wind blown dunes in the world. This is where it gets fun... your tour includes a morocco camel trekking experience through the Sahara for a one night stay in a Merzouga desert luxury camp. Let us tell you from first hand experience, Morocco camel trekking is truly unique. There is nothing like it in the entire world, and these quirky camels can’t help but make you laugh. The camels will take you to a Berber Camp in the middle of an oasis amidst the sand dunes of Erg Chebbi. The Berber Camp is comprised of 3 Berber tents with an additional restaurant and kitchen. Tents are fully equipped with a full size bed and bathroom. After dinner you’ll gather around the fire and enjoy music as you dance under the stars.
Rise bright and early to see a once in a lifetime spectacle as the sun slowly rises over the sleeping dunes of the Sahara before heading to a nearby hotel for a brief breakfast and shower. Once ready, you’ll head out for a full day circuit of the surrounding desert, starting with a visit to the ‘black village’ of Khamlia to see the Gnawa musicians perform. From there, you’ll get a chance to enjoy a traditional Berber pizza for lunch in the ancient capital of Rissani. Followed by a visit to local traditional markets with a brief pit stop for coffee at one of the many cafes. The last nights dinner and lodging will be provided by a local hotel.
After a delicious breakfast, you’ll leave Merzouga and make your final ascent towards Fes. Today’s road trip will take you through Erfoud, Ziz Valley, Midelt, and the Cedar Forests of Azrou where you can get out of the car to feed the wild and playful monkeys that eagerly await your arrival. You’ll also pass through a cute town called Ifrane, known by the locals as the “Switzerland of Morocco”. Ifrane is a small town in the Middle Atlas Mountains, known for its alpine-style architecture and nearby ski slopes and forests. It's a cute city full of charm, that can't be missed. After that, you’ll arrive in Fes as your last and final destination, feeling enriched by the four days spent exploring the depths of the Sahara and its neighboring Moroccan cities along the way.
Morocco is full of colorful splendor for those willing to explore beyond the city walls. This country has humbled us with its indomitable beauty, hospitable people, and rich history. Morocco has quickly become one our favorite places in the world and we know it can do the same for you.