Things to do in Ait Benhaddou

Our most recommended things to do in Ait Benhaddou

Marrakech: 3-Day Sahara Desert Tour to Merzouga

1. Marrakech: 3-Day Sahara Desert Tour to Merzouga

Spending a night in the Sahara Desert is an unforgettable experience for visitors to Morocco and this three-day tour lets you travel further and explore more along the way. Visit UNESCO-listed Ait Ben Haddou, the Valley of the Roses, and Tinghir; stop at traditional Berber villages around the Todra Gorge; then take a camel trek through the Erg Chebbi dunes the highest in Morocco and sleep beneath the desert stars at Berber campsite. Day 1: Marrakech - Tinghir Your shared 3-day desert tour from Marrakech to Merzouga will start early in the morning. Head to Ait Benhaddou through Tizi Ntichka pass and the high Atlas Mountains. Many stops will be made along the way. Visit the UNESCO World Heritage Kasbah Ait Benhaddou, which was also served as a set for various Hollywood blockbusters. Continue to Ouazazate and Kasbah Taourirte before lunch. In the afternoon, drive to Tinghir via the valley of the roses before you reach your hotel located in Tinghir. Dinner and overnight. Day 2: Tinghir – Merzouga After breakfast at your hotel in Tinghir, your journey will start today with a drive along the road of 1001 Kasbah to Ouasis of Tinghir, where you will deviate to a minor road driving along the river to Todra canyons. After some time at leisure to enjoy the immensity of the huge cliffs, and lunch at a local café (at your leisure), continue early in the afternoon to Arfoud, famous for its date market, and being a starting point of the ancient trading caravans crossing the Sahara desert to Tomboctou. Continue to Merzouga driving through some rocky desert landscape. Upon arrival at the edge of Erg Chebbi dunes, meet your camel caravan, and ride your camels through the amazing color-changing sand dunes with the sunset on the horizon as a backdrop. Reach your Sahara Desert camp, nestled in the middle of nowhere just before darkness. After some time to admire the sand dunes and the surrounding landscapes, get ready for a Moroccan dinner served under the stars next to a campfire. Late at night, enjoy Berber music with the local hosts playing drums. Day 3: Merzouga – Marrakech After an early breakfast and a camel ride back to the main road, meet your driver and drive back to Ouarzazate. After some time at leisure for lunch, carry on in the afternoon to Marrakech through the high atlas mountains. Your shared 3-day desert tour will end in Marrakech on the third day evening.

From Marrakech: Merzouga 3-Day Desert Safari with Food

2. From Marrakech: Merzouga 3-Day Desert Safari with Food

Discover the edge of the Sahara Desert on a three-day budget tour from Marrakech, and explore the dramatic landscapes of the Dades Valley and Kasbah of Ourzazate. Ride across the dunes of Erg Chebbi by camel and sleep at a desert camp under the stars.  Day 1: Marrakech - Ait Ben Haddou - Dades Begin your journey by crossing the High Atlas Mountains past one Berber village after another to the UNESCO world heritage site of Ait Ben Haddou. This village is famous for its kasbah and fortified village, and has been used as a set for some famous Hollywood epics and magazine photo shoots. After some leisure time, enjoy lunch in a local restaurant and continue your drive through Ouarzazate, known as the Gate of the Sahara. Continue to Boumalne Dades, admiring the scenic drive along the Dades Valley, where you can enjoy dinner and rest for the night.  Day 2: Dades - Todgha Gorges - Merzouga Following breakfast, depart your hotel and drive to Tinghir and its dramatic Todgha Gorges, pausing for some free time to explore the canyons. Enjoy lunch at a local cafe and continue to Merzouga to meet your camel caravan. Experience the Erg Chebbi dunes on camelback and watch the sunset set. Reach your desert camp before nightfall and enjoy an authentic Moroccan dinner under the stars. Local nomads will provide entertainment and show you how to play the traditional Tam Tam drums. Enjoy dinner and an overnight stop.  Day 3: Merzouga Ouarzazate - Marrakech Following an early wake up to watch the sunrise before breakfast (optional), a driver will be waiting to pick you up for the transfer back to Marrakech. Stop halfway for lunch at a local restaurant. Get dropped-off at your original departure point or Djemaa El Fna around 8 PM. You can also book upgrades for the night in the Bedouin camp such as the deluxe desert camp with a luxury private tent complete with ensuite shower, bathroom facilities, and 5-star amenities. These upgrades need to be booked per person.

From Marrakech: 2-Day Desert Excursion

3. From Marrakech: 2-Day Desert Excursion

Pass thorugh stunning valleys and the Atlas Mountains on this 2-day trip from Marrakech. Travel through the Draa valley to Ait Ben Haddou and Ouarzazate. Stay overnight in a desert camp in Zagora, ride a camel in the Sarhara, and enjoy a delicious dinner and breakfast. Day 1: Depart early in the morning from Marrakech. Be stunned by the valleys and hills as you travel 7400 feet up in your air-conditioned vehicle. Arrive at the ksar (fortified city) of Ait Ben Haddou, which is located along the former caravan route between the Sahara and Marrakech. Capture pictures of the city of Ait Ben Haddou which has served as the backdrop for films such as “Lawrence of Arabia”, “Time Bandits”, “Kundun”, “The Mummy”, and many more. See why it has been a UNESCO World Heritage Site since 1989. Stop to purchase lunch at a local restaurant. Drive to Ouarzazate which home to film studios and famous sandstone buildings and desert scenery. Cruise through the inspiring Anti Atlas Mountains (Tizi N Tnifift), as well as lush valleys of Agdz and the Draa valley. Arrive in Zagora and ride a well-trained camel through the desert as the sun sets over the sand. Stop at your campsite and tuck into a hearty dinner before sleeping like a local in an authentic Berber tent. Day 2: Wake up with the sunrise and enjoy a view of the dunes as you ride your camel back to Zagora. Travel back to Ouarzazate by car, stopping to purchase lunch in Taouirt Kabah. After lunch, return to Marrakech, where the tour concludes.

From Marrakech: 3-Day Desert Tour to Fes

4. From Marrakech: 3-Day Desert Tour to Fes

Discover Fes and Marrakech, Morocco's imperial cities, on a guided 3-day tour. Day 1: Marrakech — Ait Ben Haddou — Dades (1st night at Kasbah Amazigh) Your tour will start with an early pickup. Meet your driver at your hotel or riad in the morning and start your journey crossing the High Atlas Mountains towards Kasbah Ait Ben Haddou. After a guided walk in the village, continue to Ouarzazate for a leisurely lunch. In the early afternoon, travel northeast to Boumalne Dades. Take a drive along the Dades River with the marvelous sunset as your backdrop. Reach the way to Dades valley and make a pit stop to enjoy the amazing scenery. Then continue to a hotel where you will dine and rest for the night at Kasbah Amazigh. Day 2: Dades — Merzouga Start the day with breakfast at your hotel. Set out on a journey along the road of 1001 Kasbahs to Tinghir, an oasis where you will have the opportunity to enjoy an hour-long walk by the river bank all the way to Todgha Gorges. Here, get some free time to enjoy the scenery before lunch.  Early in the afternoon, walk to Merzouga, where your camel caravan awaits. From here, ride your camel through the sand dunes of Erg Chebbi while enjoying a mesmerizing sunset.  Before dark, reach your Sahara desert camp nestled between the dunes, where you will enjoy a Moroccan dinner under the stars while being entertained by local nomads playing their drums around the campfire. After the campfire, relax in your standard or luxury tent, depending on which one you choose. The standard tents are basic accommodation, while a private tent is subject to availability. The toilets are right outside, with facilities to freshen up in a shared room. If you choose the luxury tent, it is located in a more isolated and scenic area, providing extra comfort with proper bedding, and a guaranteed private tent with flushable western toilets, hot showers, and a rich dinner and breakfast. Day 3: Merzouga — Fes  Your desert camp hosts will wake you up if you wish to watch the sunrise. After breakfast, drive along the Ziz River with its amazing oasis lined with palm trees and fortified ksours (castles) all the way to Midelt, a small town in the middle of the Atlas Mountains, your lunch stop for the day. In the afternoon, continue crossing the Middle Atlas Mountains towards Fes. Notice a dramatic change in the landscape: snow-capped mountains, cedar forests, and rich vegetation, a complete 180 from the arid and rocky landscapes of the rest of the tour.  End your Marrakech to Fes desert tour in the early evening as your driver takes you to your riad or hotel in Fes.

From Marrakech: Day Trip to Ouarzazate and Ait Benhaddou

5. From Marrakech: Day Trip to Ouarzazate and Ait Benhaddou

Discover local village, natural landscapes, and Kasbah Ait Benhaddou fortress on this day trip from Marrakech. Travel in an airconditioned van or car and stay connected with wi-fi access as you drive. Uncover movie-magic with a stop at the Atlas Film Studios in Ouarzazate.  Start your day trip with pickup from your Marrakech accommodation from 7-8 AM. Hop inside a spacious and comfortable vehicle and soak up the scenery as you travel into the Atlas Mountains. Immerse yourself in local culture with a stop at the small village ofAit Ben Barka near the hilly countryside of Toufliht. Explore the area with your driver and learn about the schedule sights for your trip. Have some free time for a break before crossing the the Tizi n'Tichka pass. Stop to capture pictures of mountain peaks on the pass from 7,415 feet above sea level (2,260 meters). Continue on to the Atlas Film Studios at Ouarzazate, the largest film studio in the world which famously featured in the TV series Game of Thrones. Spend some free time to visit the studios or to explore on your own. Take some pictures of the unique rugged local landscapes in the area. After the studio, you purchase lunch at one of the best restaurants in the area, with excellent prices and stunning panoramic views.  Finally, head to the famous Kasbah Ait Benhaddou, which is recognized as a UNESCO site and one of the most extraordinary kasbahs (fortresses) in Morocco. End your day of scenic views and memories by relaxing in your comfortable air-conditioned vehicle on your drive back to your hotel in Marrakech.

From Marrakech 3-Days Desert Trip to Merzouga Dunes

6. From Marrakech 3-Days Desert Trip to Merzouga Dunes

Discover Morrocco's desert on a 3-day trip from Marrakech. See the historic Ait Benhaddou Kasbah, go on a camel trek through the dunes, and see the sunrise from the desert. Day 1: Marrakech - Tizi n'Tichka - Ait Ben haddou - Ouarzazate - Rose Valley - Tinghir Your 3 days desert tour from Marrakech to Merzouga dunes begins early in the morning with a pickup from your Marrakech hotel or the nearest meeting point. Drive east past quaint villages to reach the High Atlas Mountains. As you drive through the mountains, occasionally stop for scenic photos, stretch your legs, and have a quick cup of coffee. After driving through the famous Tizi Ntichka pass, stop at the Berber fortified village, Ait Benhaddou Kasbah. See the filming locations of the Gladiator, Lawrence of Arabia, and the Kingdom of Heaven as you spend about 2.5 hours exploring this famous UNESCO sight with a local guide (guide fees not included). Enjoy a delicious lunch before continuing to Tinghir, driving past Ouarzazate, Skoura Oasis, Klaa Mgouna, and Dades. Reach your hotel late in the afternoon. Relax with dinner in Tinghir before retiring for the night. Day 2: Tenghir - Todra Gorges - Tinjdad - Erfoud - Merzouga Dunes After breakfast, depart for the Erg Chebbi Sahara Desert in Merzouga. Pass through the many Berber villages scattered along the way, including Todra Gorges, Tenghir, Tinjdad, Jorf, and Erfoud. After relaxing in Merzouga, pack a small overnight bag to take on your camel trek across the Erg Chebbi sand dunes. Arrive at a traditional Berber camp, leave the camels and walk to the highest dunes to watch the sunset. Spend the night in Berber nomad tents under the stars, listening to drum music in the middle of the Sahara.  Day 3: Camel trek - Sunrise -Tinghir - Rose Valley - Atlas Mountains - Marrakech Get up bright and early to see the stunning sunrise over the desert. Enjoy breakfast before hopping back on your camel. Once your reach Merzouga, begin your drive back to Marrakech. Around midday, stop in Kalaat M'Gouna (Rose Valley) for lunch and a well-earned rest. Continue to Marrakesh via Ouarzazate and reach your hotel in the evening.

Marrakech: 2-Day Zagora Desert & Kasbah Ait Benhaddou Tour

7. Marrakech: 2-Day Zagora Desert & Kasbah Ait Benhaddou Tour

Day 1: Atlas Mountains, Kasbahs, and Zagora Following pickup from your hotel or riad in Marrakesh, begin by crossing the High Atlas Mountains via the Tizi N’ Tichka Pass en route to Ouarzazate. Stop at the UNESCO World Heritage Kasbah of Ait Ben Haddou for a guided tour, then head to Ouarzazate to visit the Taourirt Kasbah and the Atlas Cinema Studio.  Take a break for lunch before continuing to Zagora via Agdz and the Draa Valley. Upon arrival to Zagora, enjoy the sunset on a camel ride as you travel to the nomadic camp in the Nekhla Dunes. Dinner is later served at the camp before you spend the night in a private tent.   Day 2: Zagora, Draa Valley, and Ouarzazate On the second day, wake up early to enjoy a spectacular sunrise followed by breakfast. You can then opt to take part in a camel trek journey back to meet your driver. Drive back along the Draa Valley with a break for lunch, before finally returning to Marrakesh via Ouarzazate.

From Marrakech: 2-Day Zagora Sahara Desert Tour

8. From Marrakech: 2-Day Zagora Sahara Desert Tour

Discover Ouarzazate and Zagora on this 2-day trip from Marrakech. Visit the Kasbah Ait Ben Haddou fortress and admire stunning views of the Atlas mountains. Ride camel through the Sahara during the sunset. Savor a local dinner and breakfast and stay overnight in a tent at the Zagora dunes.  Day 1: Begin with early-morning pickup from Marrakech. Travel through the dessert sandstone city of Ouarzazate. Stop at the Kasbah Ait Ben Haddou, where you will have free time to visit the UNESCO World Heritage Site. Continue to the verdant Draa Valley, which is well-known for its amazing ksour and kasbah. Head to Zagora and make your way to the windswept dunes for a sunset camel ride. Make camp at a campsite in the Zagora dunes and enjoy a hearty dinner of local flavors. Day 2: Wake early morning for a typical Berber breakfast before watching the sunrise from the back of your camel in the dunes. Board the bus and take the road back to Marrakech through the High Atlas Mountains.

From Marrakech: Zagora 2-Day Desert Safari with Food & Camp

9. From Marrakech: Zagora 2-Day Desert Safari with Food & Camp

Live the life of a Berber on a 2-day desert safari to Zagora and the Draa Valley from Marrakech. Experience the shifting sand dunes on the back of a camel, sleep under a canopy of stars, and follow in the footsteps of Hollywood royalty on a visit to the world heritage village of Ait Ben Haddou. Day 1: Marrakech - Zagora Following an early morning pickup from your hotel or riad in Marrakech, drive across the High Atlas Mountains en route to Ouarzazate, where you will stop for lunch at your leisure. Continue to the oasis of Agdez, before driving through the date and palm trees of the Draa Valley. Marvel at the fortified Kasbahs along the way. Upon arrival at Zagora, meet your camel caravan and ride a camel over the sand dunes as you watch the sunset paint the desert sands. Then, transfer to your Sahara Desert camp just before dark. Settle into your private tent, and enjoy some free time to explore the surrounding desert scenery. Dinner will be served under the stars while your nomad hosts entertain you around a campfire with the beat of their tamtam drums. Day 2: Zagora - Marrakech Wake early to experience the magic of a desert sunrise (optional). Then, enjoy breakfast before climbing back into the saddle of your camel for the ride back to the main road. Here, your minibus will be waiting to take you on a scenic drive to the world heritage village of Ait Ben Haddou. Instantly recognizable as the setting of various Hollywood epics, it’s also a popular backdrop for photo shoots with international fashion magazines and agencies. Explore the Kasbah at leisure, with some free time for lunch, before the picturesque drive back to Marrakech.

From Marrakech: 3-Day Desert Tour to Fes

10. From Marrakech: 3-Day Desert Tour to Fes

Day 1: Marrakech, Ait Ben Haddou, Ouarzazate, and Dades You will meet your guide in Marrakech after breakfast and set off towards the High Atlas Mountains through the Tizi-n-Tichka Pass along a road that climbs the plains to 2,260 meters above sea level. You will pass by small villages and scenic waterfalls, and will also notice the continuously changing landscape and colors of these beautiful mountains. You will then stop in a pass for a cup of refreshing mint tea and to admire the scenery before taking the road to the Ait Benhaddou Kasbah, arriving just in time for lunch. You will then visit the famous Kasbah, a UNESCO World Heritage Site and the setting for films such as the Gladiator, Babel, Lawrence of Arabia, the Legionary, the Sheltering Sky, and many others. You will later head through the town of Ouarzazate to check out Atlas Studios, the largest and most famous film studio in all of Africa. Next, you will journey through the picturesque Valley of Roses to reach the Dades Gorges in time for sunset. Once there you can admire the splendid colors of the rock walls illuminated by the last rays of golden sunlight. Your final stop for the day will be to a romantic, traditional hotel for dinner and an overnight stay. Day 2: Dades, Erfoud, Merzouga, and Erg-Chebbi Following breakfast, you will take a scenic walk through the Todra Gorges before hopping into your car to drive along the famous Road of the 1000 Kasbahs. You will travel through Tineghier Village and the Jewish Kasbah before arriving in Rissani, the first capital of the Alaouite Dynasty, for lunch. You will next go on a walking tour through Rissani and check out its large traditional market, and will then head to Merzouga, arriving before sunset. At this stage you will leave the car behind and ride a camel into the Erg Chebbi Dunes for an unforgettable night under the million stars of the desert. Finally, you will have dinner at the campsite and stay in a traditional Berber tent. Day 3: Merzouga, Rissani, Ziz Oasis, Medilt, and Fes You will wake up in time to watch the sun rise over the 300-meter-tall dunes and travel into the dawn towards the border with Algeria. Next, you will return by camel to a hotel for breakfast and a shower. You will then depart for Fes, traveling through the Ziz valley and stopping for lunch in village with plentiful apple orchards. You will later enjoy the journey through mountain cedar forests before arriving to Fes in the afternoon, stopping to take pictures at a panoramic viewpoint.

Other Sightseeing Options in Ait Benhaddou

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What people are saying about Ait Benhaddou

Overall rating

4.4 / 5

based on 6,569 reviews

Our trip to the Zagora Desert Camp was a great experience. Yes, the trip takes a long time, but if you enjoy the company of the others, the views and the breaks it is definately worth it. Our driver Hassan was very kind and helpful during the entire trip. The camelride was great too, watching the sunset while riding through the sand. The camels looked like they were taken well care of. Don’t expect the big Merzouga desert though, but smaller dunes at the edge of the desert. The camp was more luxurious then we expected. Good bathroom-building, an opportunity to charge your devices and a tent with a nice bed. Don’t forget to bring a sweater. We really enjoyed the campfire and playing the drums at night, as well as the wonderful sunrise the next morning. A truely magical moment. The diner and breakfast are ok, nothing too special. Vegetarian option available! Would highly recommend to book this Zagora trip. Special thanks our driver Hassan.

This is an amazing tour and well worth it. Please do not let the long day/journey put you off. Our guide mahjoub fajar was amazing!!! We did not have cash to buy coffee etc and he lent us the money which was really lovely. The driver navigated bendy meandering road with clear precision. Everything about this tour was amazing and all the stops were well worth visiting.

Fantastic trip to Ben Haddou and Ouarzazate. Medi our driver was a superb "host" and an excellent driver. We saw some incredible scenery and also the awe inspiring Ait Ben Haddou. It's a long day out, with lots of time in the van, but we were comfortable and well looked after!

My driver was Rashid and I loved him. Great driver and having humour. Rashid did not take unreasable risks in traffic and was good in telling about region and culture. Highly recommended!

Verry good driver, all experience was wonderfull..