High Atlas Mountains and Desert Trek of 9 Days
At 4,167m, Jbel Toubkal is the highest Peak in North Africa. The hike to the summit is challenging, but it requires no mountaineering experience and the panoramic view from he summit makes the hard work worthwhile.
After the High Atlas Mountain range lays a mysterious, surreal and stunning landscape. This is the heart of old Morocco – the pre Sahara desert. It’s like stepping back in time into an all forgotten world; a world of fortified villages, Berber castles (Kasbahs) and abandoned Foreign Legion outposts. The Sahara region is where you’ll find one of the most diverse and dramatic landscapes in Morocco.
Detailed Itinerary :
Day 1: After a transfer to the little village of Imlil we begin our trek. Heading along the Mizane Valley, we first pass the village of Aremd and then onto the shrine of Sidi Chamarouch. We then continue east and by crossing the flood plains our route takes us along mule tracks and up into the high rocky cliffs above the valley. Crossing the river we eventually come to the pastoral shrine of Sidi Chamarouch, which attracts tourists and pilgrims. From here the trail continues to climb steadily, snaking and zigzagging its way up to the snowline and the Toukbal Refuge (3206m), our stop for the night.
From 4 to 5hrs walking.
Day 2: Early in the morning we make our attempt on the summit of Jebel Toukbal, the highest peak in Northern Africa. Our route takes us up the south cirque, crossing the stream above the refuge. The walking is relatively straightforward, but the scree and the altitude will make the going quite difficult in parts. The views along the way make the journey more than worthwhile. When you reach the the summit you will see that the vistas across the surrounding landscape are quite breathtaking. From here there are unrestricted views in every direction, from the Marrakesh Plain to the High Atlas in the north and as far south as the Anti-Atlas and the Sahara. We will retrace our steps when we return down the mountain and head back towards Imlil. We spend the night in a local guesthouse in Imlil
Day 3: Today drive towards the Moroccan desert. First we cross the spectacular Tizi n’Tichka Pass of the High Atlas mountains. You will pass through many Berber villages, and once in the desert, riverside oasis and barren hillsides are clustered with Kasbahs. After lunch we drive further to Valley of the Roses, with beautiful views of the Dades valley, valley of a thousand kasbahs. Overnight in Dades.
Day 4: After breakfast we drive to Todra Gorge and after a short stop there we drive on to “Auberge du Sud” at the dunes of Erg Chebbi.
Day 5: Today you have a free day to just enjoy the beautiful views and atmosphere of the dunes of Erg Chebbi. In the afternoon you will ride camels into the dunes, where you will spend the night in berber tents. After seeing a beautiful sunset you will enjoy a fantastic dinner.
Day 6: After viewing the most beautiful sunrise and having breakfast at the camp site you will ride the camels back to the auberge. From there it will be a long day driving to Ait Ben Haddou (via Draa Valley). Ait Benhaddou is a small town with one of the best-preserved and most sought-after Kasbah’s to visit in all of Morocco.
Day 7: Drive back to Marrakech, again via Tichka pass. You will arrive in Marrakech early in the afternoon.
Day 8: Free day in Marrakech
Day 9: Departure from Marrakech