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After breakfast in the hotel, we’ll drive through the Dades Valley towards Kalaat Mgouna and Ouarzazate. The route through Dades Valley is the way of the thousand Kasbahs – providing numerous opportunities to take some of your best photography shots of the trip. We’ll stop at Kalaat Mgouna, "the rose city", to purchase rosewater, which will make your linen smell good for a long time after your trip is over. Continue to Marrakech via the Ait Ben Haddou Kasbah. Built by Et Hami El Glaoui, one of the last Berber chieftains during the 18th century, now the Kasbah is a house of many Glaoui people. Your journey will continue through the majestic Tizi n'Tichka Pass (2260m) over the High Atlas Mountains, before arriving at your accommodation in Marrakech.
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117 Kms from Aït Benhaddou
After I booked our trip to Turkey, I started researching the lamps I was looking for. I realized that they weren't Turkish lamps at all. They were Moroccan lamps. Oh boy, I should've done my research first. So, now I had some explaining to do to my hubby. "So, the lamps aren't Turkish, they're Moroccan. We need to go to Morocco," I said. He laughed, "And you already booked our trip to Turkey? Ok, well, what are we going to do?" This is where I'm grateful to be married to a man who embraces my crazy. "We're going to Morocco, too. I'm going to add it to our trip," I replied.
290 Kms from Aït Benhaddou
The experience at the airport was tiresome but our jovial driver Haji, made up for it with his good humor during the long drive. Being the biggest city in Morocco, Casablanca is gritty. I’d say a confluence of Cairo’s Arabic essence and Mexico City’s energy. It is also well known as the city encircling the famous Hassan II Mosque.
298 Kms from Aït Benhaddou
Mystical and magical Essaouira, history breathes hauntingly through the streets of this town. Dark, small alleys and the many arches whisper tales of times long gone by and it only needs a little imagination to visualise the caravan trade from sub-Saharan Africa that once arrived in this eighteenth century port. Essaouira has inherited a wonderful blend of cultural influences from the diverse ethnical groups that have inhabited the town.
348 Kms from Aït Benhaddou
After breakfast in your riad, you will leave for the southeast following the Caravan roads to Merzouga. During this journey you’ll experience glimpses of the Middle Atlas and Higher Atlas mountains. Stopping in the Cedar forest, the largest in Morocco, over the Middle Atlas Mountains– where you may well see Barbarian apes. After lunch in Midelt, you will continue through the large, high desert, and notice how the scenery changes to reveal hints of the desert as you approach the city Errachidia. Your journey continues along the luxuriant Ziz Valley and the Tafilalet date palm grove, famous for date cultivation. This area is the foundation of the Alaouite dynasty - the current ruling royal family in Morocco. You’ll arrive at Merzouga at the end of the afternoon – to be welcomed with a glass of mint tea before you check in to your riad.
83 Kms from Aït Benhaddou
Did you know that you can ski in Morocco? It takes about an hour and a half to drive from the heart of Marrakech to the ski resort of Oukaimeden. From Dar Zohra it is just forty minutes but you may want to make a few stops to marvel at the fantastic scenery along the way! For those not so much into skiing it is still a very worthwhile day trip to this beautiful winter wonderland. On a clear day the horizons of the High Atlas Mountains are spectacular.