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Ait Benhaddou

Meet the Locals

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From Marrakech: 3-Day Desert Trip to Merzouga

1. From Marrakech: 3-Day Desert Trip to Merzouga

• Day 1: Marrakech - Tizi n'Tichka - Ait Benhaddou - Ouarzazate - Dades Valley Get picked up from your accommodation in Marrakech in the morning. Begin your journey to the Dades Gorges via the Tizi n'Tichka Atlas pass. Take in panoramic views across the mountains and traditional High Atlas Berber villages before arrival at Kasbah Ait Benhaddou. After exploring this UNESCO World Heritage Site, enjoy lunch in Ait Benhaddou or Ouarzazate, where you'll visit Kasbah Taourirt and the Atlas Cinema Studios. Continue to Dades Gorges though Roses and Dades Valley. Settle in for the night at a riad/hotel in Dades Gorges.  • Day 2: Dades Gorges - Tenghir - Todra Gorges - Tinjdad - Erfoud - Merzouga  After breakfast, depart for the Erg Chebbi Sahara Desert in Merzouga. Berber villages are scattered along the way, and you’ll pass through Todra Gorges, Tenhir, Tinjdad, Jorf, and Erfoud. Continue to a hotel in Merzouga. After relaxing for a while, take enough luggage for one night with you on a camel trek across the Erg Chebbi sand dunes. Upon arrival at the camp, leave the camels and walk to the highest dunes for sand boarding and 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 back to Merzouga - Atlas Mountains - Marrakech  Wake up in the early morning to watch the sunrise over the dunes. Ride your camel back to Merzouga to have breakfast. Pick up the rest of your luggage and begin your journey back to Marrakech, this time traveling through different areas and Berber villages. Once in Ouarzazate, take the same road back to Marrakech, arriving in the evening.

Marrakech: 3-Day Desert Tour to Fes

2. 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.

From Marrakech: Ait Benhaddou and Atlas Mountains Day Trip

3. From Marrakech: Ait Benhaddou and Atlas Mountains Day Trip

Discover the great views of the Atlas Mountains on a guided day tour from Marrakech. Drive through the Tizi n'Tichka pass and explore the charming town of Ait Benhaddou, known for its famous Kasbah. Benefit from pickup at your accommodation in Marrakech, and then journey to the ancient settlement of Ait Benhaddou via the winding roads of the Atlas Mountains. Upon arrival, discover the center of Morocco's movie industry and see where films such as "Gladiator" and "Lawrence of Arabia" were shot. Get a wonderful view of the entire valley from the top of a hill, and admire the typical clay architecture of the historic settlement. Take two hours to explore the village and enjoy a meal on a terrace with clear views of the Kasbah. Continue to Telouet and pass from the Ounila Valley. Return to Marrakech and get dropped off at your accommodation on arrival.

Marrakech: All-inclusive 4-Day Private Atlas and Desert Tour

4. Marrakech: All-inclusive 4-Day Private Atlas and Desert Tour

An example of the itinerary you will follow: Day 1: Marrakech, Ouarzazate, Dades Valley Your driver will pick you up from your accommodation and you will set off on your 4 day adventure. Pass through the Tizi n'Tichka pass in the High Atlas mountains and from Marrakech to Ouarzazate you can enjoy the scenic route, the landscapes with changing colors and terrain and the Berber villages along the way. You will have free time to visit the Taourirt Kasbah in Ouarzazate and have lunch on site. Then, on to the green valley of Dadès and the valley of roses by the palm grove of Skoura. You will have dinner and stay overnight at a charming guest house in the valley. Day 2: Dades Valley, Todra Gorges, Dunes of Merzouga After breakfast, you will set off on the road to the 1000 Kasbahs, then check check out Tinghr with its magnificent palm groves. At Todra Gorge, the bravest explorers can trek along the canyon, 300 metres above the ground. Then continue towards Merzouga and the erg Chebbi dune in the Sahara desert. In the largest desert in the world, you can experience the sunset on the back of a camel as you ride towards the oasis where the camp is located. You may spend the night in the nomadic tents or under the stars and play music or sing along with the locals and become immersed in true nomadic culture. Day 3: Merzouga, Tazarine, Agdz, Ouarzazate Watch the sunrise over the dunes of erg Chebbi, followed by breakfast in the camp. Return to a hostel via camel trek for a quick shower then drive to Rissani, a small town in southern Saharan Morocco where you can stop to visit a fossil workshop, before continuing to the junction of the Drâa and Agdz valley. Enjoy a relaxing dinner and hotel stay in Ouarzazate. Day 4: Ouarzazate, Aït ben Haddou, Telouet, Marrakech Go on a tour of the movie sets and studios located in Ouarzazate: the "Hollywood of Africa". Visit the Ksar of Aït ben Haddou, a world heritage site. Aït ben Haddou has been used to date as a backdrop for more than twenty films, including "Gladiator", "Indiana Jones "and" Lawrence of Arabia ". Take advantage of this walk through the area to admire the traditional architecture of the kasbahs. Continue on home to Marrakech through the mountains.

From Marrakesh: 2-Day Trek to Ait-Benhaddou and Ouarzazate

5. From Marrakesh: 2-Day Trek to Ait-Benhaddou and Ouarzazate

Day 1: Marrakech – Telouet Kasbah – Ait Ben Haddou Kasbah Depart from your Marrakech hotel at 8:30am by air-conditioned vehicle and head toward Ouarzazate. Admire the majestic Moroccan scenery and small, tiered villages as you soar toward the High Atlas by way of the winding Tizi-n-Tichka pass. Continue on the meandering roads to the Telouet kasbah, an ancestral residence of the Pasha Glaoui of Marrakech. Enjoy a leisurely lunch at the historic kasbah, and then cross the Telouet trail, which used to be a trade route connecting sub-Saharan Africa to Marrakech. Once you reach the stunning red landscapes and green olive trees of the Ounila Valley, discover the Aït Benhaddou kasbah, a UNESCO World Heritage site. Take in a beautiful sunset from the top tower of the kasbah before sitting down to dinner and checking in for your overnight stay in the 3-star Ait Benhaddou hotel. Day 2: Aït Benhaddou – Ouarzazate – Fint Oasis – Marrakech Enjoy breakfast and then get back in your air-conditioned vehicle for the drive to Ouarzazate, the site where movies such as Lawrence of Arabia, Star Wars and Gladiator have been filmed. Take in the panoramic views and visit the ancient Taourirt kasbah, another UNESCO World Heritage site and home to two film studios and the Museum of Cinema. Explore the studios and continue on to the Fint Oasis, a beautiful palm grove made up of four traditional Berber villages. Visit a Berber house and enjoy Moroccan mint tea. Sit down for lunch then return to Marrakech in the late afternoon.

Marrakech: Ait Benhadou Kasbah and Atlas Mountains Trip

6. Marrakech: Ait Benhadou Kasbah and Atlas Mountains Trip

The day begins with pickup from Marrakech and leaves the city behind as you head towards the Atlas Mountains. Stop at the famous Tichka Pass, the highest road pass in Morocco, and admire breathtaking views of the scenery. Once you’ve worked up a bit of an appetite, enjoy lunch at a local eatery before arriving at the UNESCO listed Ait Benhaddou Kasbah (lunch and drink costs are not included). At Ait Benhaddou Kasbah, enjoy a guided tour (for a surcharge) and learn about its fascinating history and architecture. The kasbah dates back to the 17th century. At the end of an unforgettable day, sit back, relax, and soak up stunning views of the landscape on the way back to Marrakech.

Marrakech: Day-Trip to UNESCO Kasbahs and Ouarzazate Tour

7. Marrakech: Day-Trip to UNESCO Kasbahs and Ouarzazate Tour

Departing early in the morning from your accommodation in Marrakech, you will drive towards Ouarzazate through the High Atlas before reaching the Tizi N'Tichka pass. Sitting 2,260 meters high, this is the highest road crossing in Morocco. It connects the Marrakech Saharan regions, of which Ouarzazate is the crossroad. You will then stop for a visit to the famous fortified city of Ait Ben Haddou. This city is a UNESCO World Heritage Site, and its Kasbah has been the backdrop for many films including the Diamond of the Nile, Lawrence of Arabia, Sodom and Gomorre, the Jewel of the Nile, Jesus of Nazareth, the Mummy, Gladiator and Babel. After this visit of the fortified village of Ait Ben Haddou, you will continue to the city of Ouarzazate to explore another Kasbah built in the 17th century. Here you will visit the cinema studios, before stopping for lunch in a local restaurant. Following lunch, you can enjoy free time to enjoy a mint tea and enjoy the green valley and beautiful views of the High Atlas peaks. In this area, between the Atlas Mountains and the Sahara Desert, one can find several Kasbahs, all the color of the sand and forming small Berber villages that take advantage of the abundance of water from the Atlas to its small crops and animals. At the end of the day, you will be returned to your accommodation in Marrakech.

Marrakech: Full-Day Tour to Aït-Ben-Haddou & Telouet

8. Marrakech: Full-Day Tour to Aït-Ben-Haddou & Telouet

Immerse yourself in the incredible Moroccan landscape on a private full-day tour to Aït-Ben-Haddou and Telouet. Ride from Marrakech over the Tizi-N-Tichka-Pass and get a glimpse of the way people have traditionally lived in the area with a bit of roadside chat. Visit a cooperative run by women in the Atlas Mountains, where the famous argan oil is produced by hand and organic delicacies and beauty products are sold.  Just before Ouarzazate, the gateway to the desert, enjoy the unique chance to visit the Aït-Ben-Haddou Kasbah. This little old town is a UNESCO World Heritage Site and is perpetually used as a location for Hollywood films. Follow your guide on a 1-hour walking tour and hear about traditional life there. Stop for lunch in a local restaurant with a panoramic terrace in a newer part of Aït-Ben-Haddou and continue through the breathtaking landscape to Telouet. This fortress was occupied by Thami el Glaoui before he was expelled by independence efforts. One section has unfortunately disintegrated into red sand, but you can still visit the beautiful rooms with mosaic tiles and wood carvings. Cross the High Atlas mountains for a tea and coffee break and return to your accommodation in Marrakech around 19:00.

Ait Benhaddou and Telouet Kasbahs: Day Trip from Marrakech

9. Ait Benhaddou and Telouet Kasbahs: Day Trip from Marrakech

Experience Ait Benhaddou and Telouet Kasbahs day trip from Marrakech. Criss-cross the Atlas Mountains and take the road to the Sahara Desert on the old caravan routes. See colorful villages with houses erected from mud. See trading outposts, local art, and UNESCO World Heritage Sites featured in Hollywood blockbusters. Ride over the famous Tizi-n-Tichka, see Berber villages, and watch as the landscape changes drastically, becoming semi-arid and desert-like as the chain of the Atlas mountains acts as barrier against the Mediterranean climate of the north. Take a side road to the Telouet Kasbah, which belonged to the Pacha of the Atlas, the Glaoui, and was left to ruin after the departure of the French armies. Marvel at the tiled walls, fluted pillars, painted wooden ceilings, and colored glass windows of the reception rooms. Enjoy lunch at Ait Ben Haddou along the newly asphalted road. Once in the village, get a closer look at the Kasbah's turrets, grilled windows, and soft peach coloured adobe walls. Explore the UNESCO World Heritage Site of Ait Benhaddou, the most famous of all Moroccan kasbahs, due to its appearance in many Hollywood blockbusters. This was one of the most important fortress strongholds on the old Salt Road caravan routes, where traders brought slaves, gold, ivory, and salt from sub-Saharan Africa to Marrakech and beyond. Before leaving Ait Benhaddou, take one last glimpse of the village from a distant point offering a panoramic view.

From Marrakech: Sahara Desert 2-Day Trip with Camel Ride

10. From Marrakech: Sahara Desert 2-Day Trip with Camel Ride

Explore Erg Lihoudi Mhamid Desert's beautiful sand dunes, experience the sunset on camelback, visit Ouarzazate, Draa Valley, and Zagora, and visit ancient fortified villages. Spend the evening under the stars in a comfortable tent and enjoy a traditional meal by the campfire. Day 1:Meet your guide outside your Marrakech accommodation. Cross over the High Atlas Mountains via the famous Tizi-N-Tichka, stopping to take in the breathtaking views. Enjoy a delicious lunch in Ouarzazate, and continue south to the Low Atlas Mountains. Marvel at the stunning canyons and snap photos of the looming mountains. Drive through the Draa Valley and see a Palm grove, an iconic oasis, and ancient Kasbahs. Arrive at Erg Lihoudi Dunes in time for a sunset camel ride, followed by a traditional dinner served by a campfire. Enjoy a blissful night's sleep under the stars in a tent. Day 2:Reach the top of the dunes just in time to see the beautiful desert sunrise. Enjoy a quick breakfast at the camp, and drive to the fortified village Kasbah of Ait Benhaddou. After a wonderful lunch, head to Kasbah Telouet through the fascinating Ouinila Valley, with its contrasting rocky canyons and lush fields. Return to your Marrakech accommodation through the stunning High Atlas Mountains.

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What people are saying about Ait Benhaddou

Overall rating

4.9 / 5

based on 28 reviews

Super recommended experience !! Our guide Khalid is kind, helpful and caring. There are many hours of road to go but with the air conditioning and the various stops along the way, the day flies. We do not know a priori where we will have lunch or stay but we have always enjoyed it, almost everywhere in the evening you will be involved in a Berber show (both in the Riad / hotel and in the desert). We particularly enjoyed the Berber lunch, hosted by a Berber family in their home! Thanks Khalid for making our experience special!

This was a personalized tour: just us and a driver/ tour guide who took us to distinct places. It's a long tour, but you get to see a lot of the rural countryside and of course the historic and iconic village where many Hollywood films were set. Our guide Aziz Taloul was an extremely competent driver who whisked us through the winding roads of the Atlas Mountains and the family home where we stopped to eat was charming and accommodating. The food was plentiful and delicious.

Unforgettable experience that I can't wait to repeat! We did the tour together with Hachim, very good and very nice, with deep knowledge of the territory and the different cultures in which he manages to immerse you completely. In the journey, in addition to discovering magical places, you meet wonderful people who enrich you and will always remain in your heart. Absolutely recommended

The experience was super cool! Our guide Rachid Mazik was prepared, funny and a really lovely person. Also our driver was very good and pleasant. Ait Benhaddou is a wonderful place, it is completely worth visiting it. We had lunch in a local restaurant where we could apprecciate the true essence of the region. Summarizing, I really suggest to try this experience!

Khalid was our guide who did an excellent job. he made sure the trip was unforgettable. lodging and activities are great