Traveling with Our Real Morocco from Marrakech to Zagora offers an exhilarating experience for those looking to explore the diverse landscapes of Morocco and step into the vast expanse of the Sahara Desert. This journey takes you from the bustling city life of Marrakech through the High Atlas Mountains and into the arid pre-Saharan region, where Zagora serves as a gateway to the desert.

Marrakech to Zagora

Here’s a detailed overview of what to expect on this adventure, including key stops and experiences. The journey from Marrakech to Zagora typically covers about 350 kilometers and can take roughly 7 to 8 hours by road. Most travelers opt to turn this route into a 2-day adventure to fully appreciate the scenery and explore the various sites along the way.

Begin your journey early in the morning from Marrakech. The road takes you through the High Atlas Mountains via the Tizi n’Tichka pass, which at 2,260 meters is the highest major mountain pass in North Africa. The drive offers stunning views and numerous opportunities for photos.

Midway through your journey from Marrakech to Zagora, visit Ait Benhaddou, a historic fortified village that is a UNESCO World Heritage Site. This location is famous for its traditional pre-Saharan habitat made from mud bricks and has been the backdrop for many films, including Lawrence of Arabia and Gladiator.

Known as the gateway to the desert, Ouarzazate is famous for its film studios, where some of Hollywood’s biggest movies and series were filmed. Tour one of the studios to learn about the region’s film history. Have lunch in Ouarzazate and explore the town’s kasbahs, including the well-preserved Taourirt Kasbah.

On your second day from Marrakech to Zagora, continue your journey through the Draa Valley, renowned for its lush oases and palm groves. This part of the drive offers a picturesque contrast to the rugged mountains you’ve left behind. Arrive in Zagora, a town famous for its sign that reads Timbuktu 52 days, referencing the time it took for camel caravans to reach Timbuktu in Mali.

Zagora still serves as an excellent base for camel treks and overnight desert camps. In the late afternoon, embark on a camel trek into the desert. Experience the sunset over the sand dunes, which is a truly magical sight. Spend the night in a traditional Berber tent in the desert, enjoying a starlit sky and traditional Moroccan dishes prepared over an open fire.

The best time to travel from Marrakech to Zagora is during the spring (April to May) or autumn (September to October) when the weather is more moderate. Be prepared for temperature fluctuations. The desert can be very hot during the day and quite cold at night. When visiting rural and conservative areas, dress conservatively and respect local customs and traditions.

This journey is an exceptional adventure that encapsulates the stunning diversity and rich cultural heritage of Morocco. As you traverse from the vibrant, bustling streets of Marrakech to the serene and sweeping landscapes of the Sahara, each stop and sight along the way enriches your understanding and appreciation of this unique country.

The journey from Marrakech to Zagora is more than just a road trip, but a passage through the heart of Morocco’s varied landscapes and a glimpse into the life along the edges of the Sahara. It offers travelers an authentic experience of Morocco’s natural beauty and cultural richness, making it a must-do for adventure seekers and cultural enthusiasts alike.

Whether it’s marveling at the architectural wonder of Ait Benhaddou, exploring the cinematic history of Ouarzazate, or experiencing the tranquility of the Draa Valley, this trip offers an array of unforgettable experiences. Ending your journey with a camel trek into the vast dunes and an overnight stay in a Berber tent under the starry desert sky is the perfect culmination of this epic travel experience.

This experience not only connects you with the timeless traditions of the local nomadic tribes but also allows you to disconnect from the hustle and bustle of modern life and reflect on the profound beauty and calm of the desert. This route from Marrakech to Zagora is a vivid reminder of Morocco’s ability to enchant and inspire with its landscapes, its people, and their stories.

A Marrakech tour, with Our Real Morocco, with its enthralling blend of history, culture, and vibrancy, offers visitors a mesmerizing experience unique to this Moroccan city. Known as the red city for its famous red sandstone walls, Marrakech is a place where traditional Moroccan culture collides with the contemporary, creating an atmosphere that captivates all who wander its ancient streets.

Marrakech Tour

Here’s an engaging guide for a Marrakech tour, designed to capture the essence and energy of this iconic city. Start your tour at Jemaa El Fna, the bustling central square known for its blend of cultural performances, market stalls, and energetic atmosphere. Morning is an ideal time to explore. As the square wakes up, you can watch it transform from a tranquil area to a hub of activity.

Just a short walk from Jemaa El Fna is the Koutoubia Mosque, the largest one in Marrakech. Its towering minaret is a city landmark and serves as an excellent example of Islamic architecture. While the mosque itself is not open to non-Muslims, the surrounding gardens offer a picturesque setting for photos and peaceful strolls.

A Marrakech tour is the opportunity to visit the Saadian Tombs, which date back to the time of the sultan Ahmad Al-Mansur (1578-1603). These tombs were rediscovered in 1917 and have been restored to display their intricate tilework and beautiful Arabic scripts. Close to the Saadian Tombs is El Badi Palace.

Once a grand palace of immense beauty, now an atmospheric ruin that offers a glimpse into the grandeur of the past, the remnants of this 16th-century palace include sunken gardens and reflecting pools. Continue your tour to the Bahia Palace, an exemplary piece of 19th-century Moroccan architecture, known for its intricate marquetry and stucco work.

Roam its expansive gardens and ornate rooms, each telling a story of a bygone royal era. Take a break from your Marrakech tour and enjoy a traditional Moroccan lunch in one of the Medina’s charming traditional houses. Dishes such as tagine, couscous, and pastilla are not only delicious but also a deep dive into the local cuisine.

After lunch, visit the Majorelle Garden, once owned by Yves Saint Laurent. This garden is famous for its cobalt blue accents and exotic plants. It’s a perfect place for relaxation and inspiration. Adjacent to the gardens, the Yves Saint Laurent Museum is dedicated to the fashion legend’s work, showcasing a vast collection of his designs and drawings, which are linked intimately to Morocco.

Remember in your Marrakech tour to not ignore exploring Gueliz, the modern quarter of the city, known for its vibrant cafes, modern art galleries, and boutiques. This area offers a contrast to the historic Medina and is a testament to the city’s evolving character. Conclude your day with dinner at a rooftop restaurant, where you can enjoy panoramic views of Marrakech as the sun sets over the city skyline.

The food is likely to be a modern fusion of Moroccan and international cuisines, perfectly reflecting the blend of cultures. If you still have energy, return to Jemaa El Fna to experience its transformation into a vibrant night market. The energy, storytelling, music, and dance performances offer a lively end to your exploration of Marrakech.

A Marrakech tour is a journey through layers of history, enriched with vibrant culture and art. From the historic walls of its palaces and tombs to the modern streets of Gueliz, Marrakech is a city that invites curiosity and rewards exploration with its rich sensory experiences and architectural marvels. Every corner of this city offers a new story, making a truly unforgettable destination on the world travel map.

Embarking on a city tour Marrakech with Our Real Morocco is like stepping into a vibrant tapestry of culture, history, and sensory experiences. Known for its vivid colors, intricate architecture, and bustling souks, Marrakech offers an immersive journey into the heart of Moroccan heritage. Here’s a curated itinerary to help you discover the best of Marrakech in one unforgettable day.

City Tour Marrakech

Start your city tour Marrakech early at Jemaa El Fna, the beating heart. This famous square is a UNESCO World Heritage site, where you can observe a lively blend of musicians, storytellers, snake charmers, and vendors. It’s the perfect introduction to the city’s dynamic atmosphere.

Just a short walk from the square is the Koutoubia Mosque, Marrakech’s most famous mosque, known for its magnificent minaret that dominates the city skyline. The mosque itself is not open to non-Muslim visitors, but you can admire its impressive structure and the beautifully manicured gardens surrounding it.

Next on this city tour Marrakech, visit Bahia Palace, a masterpiece of Moroccan architecture that showcases the elaborate and ornate style of the late 19th century. The palace features stunning mosaics, carved wooden ceilings, and lush gardens, offering a glimpse into the opulent lifestyle of the Moroccan nobility.

Conclude the morning with a visit to the Saadian Tombs, which date back to the reign of Sultan Ahmad Al Mansur in the late 16th century. The tombs are celebrated for their intricate tilework and the serene atmosphere of their garden setting. Dive into the winding streets of the Medina, the old city of Marrakech.

Here, this city tour Marrakech gives you the chance to find the vibrant traditional markets, bustling with life and offering everything from spices and textiles to jewelry and traditional crafts. It’s a place to practice your bargaining skills and soak up the local culture. For lunch, retreat to one of the tranquil traditional houses in the Medina.

These traditional Moroccan houses often feature a central courtyard and are known for their intimate, relaxing atmospheres. Enjoy a traditional Moroccan meal, perhaps a tagine or couscous, in this serene setting. After lunch, make your way to the Majorelle Garden, created by French painter Jacques Majorelle and later restored by fashion designer Yves Saint Laurent.

This is a highlight of a city tour Marrakech. The garden is famous for its vibrant blue accents and exotic plants, offering a peaceful escape from the hustle and bustle of the city. Adjacent to the Majorelle Garden is the Yves Saint Laurent Museum, which features a permanent display of the French designer’s work, as well as temporary exhibitions.

The museum provides insight into Saint Laurent’s profound connection to Marrakech. Visit Gueliz, the modern district of Marrakech, known for its art galleries, boutiques, and cafes. This area showcases a different side of Marrakech, blending contemporary design with traditional Moroccan influences.

Conclude your city tour Marrakech with dinner at a rooftop restaurant overlooking the Medina. This is a chance to savor Moroccan cuisine while enjoying panoramic views of the city as it lights up at night. Return to Jemaa El Fna to experience its transformation into a vibrant night market.

The energy here at night is electric, with food stalls offering traditional Moroccan delicacies, and performers enlivening the atmosphere. A city tour of Marrakech is a journey through a rich mosaic of sights, sounds, and flavors, from the historical echoes in its palaces and mosques to the vibrant life of its streets and markets.

This city tour Marrakech offers an authentic slice of Moroccan life that is both enchanting and inspiring. Whether you’re exploring its ancient heritage or experiencing its modern culture, Marrakech is a city that will capture your heart and imagination.

A Marrakech city tour with Our Real Morocco offers an enchanting journey through one of Morocco’s most vibrant and historic cities. Known as the red city due to its distinct red sandstone buildings, Marrakech is a captivating blend of ancient traditions and modern vitality. Here’s a detailed guide for an immersive city tour.

Marrakech City Tour

Begin your Marrakech city tour at Jemaa El Fna, the bustling heart. Early in the morning, the square is relatively calm, allowing you to appreciate its architecture and layout. As the day progresses, it becomes a lively hub of activity with street performers, snake charmers, and food stalls.

A short walk from Jemaa El Fna, you’ll find the Koutoubia Mosque, the largest one in Marrakech. Its impressive minaret is a symbol of the city. While non-Muslims cannot enter the mosque, the gardens surrounding it are open to all and provide a peaceful retreat.  Then you can dive into the labyrinthine traditional markets of the Medina.

In this Marrakech city tour, each traditional market specializes in different goods, from spices and textiles to jewelry and lanterns. Bartering is part of the experience, so take your time to enjoy the vibrant atmosphere and engage with the local vendors. Head to the Bahia Palace, a 19th-century palace with stunning architecture, lush gardens, and intricately decorated rooms.

It was built to be the grandest palace of its time, and its beauty remains impressive today. Next, visit the Saadian Tombs, rediscovered in 1917 and dating back to the Saadian dynasty of the 16th century. The tombs are renowned for their exquisite decoration and peaceful gardens.

Take a break from your Marrakech city tour and enjoy lunch at a traditional Moroccan house with an interior garden. Many of these have been converted into boutique hotels and restaurants, offering authentic Moroccan cuisine in a serene setting. Spend your afternoon exploring the Majorelle Garden, a beautifully designed botanical garden created by the French painter Jacques Majorelle.

Later restored by the fashion designer Yves Saint Laurent, its vibrant blue buildings and diverse plant species make it a tranquil escape. Adjacent to the Majorelle Garden is the Yves Saint Laurent Museum, showcasing the designer’s iconic work and his connection to Marrakech. The museum offers a fascinating look at the fusion of fashion and Moroccan culture.

Conclude the afternoon of your Marrakech city tour at the Ben Youssef Madrasa, a former Islamic college known for its stunning Moorish architecture and intricate tile work. It’s one of the largest madrasas in the entire North Africa and offers a glimpse into the city’s educational history.

As evening approaches, head to the modern districts of Gueliz and Hivernage. These areas showcase a different side of Marrakech with their trendy cafes, boutiques, and contemporary art galleries. Enjoy dinner at one of the many upscale restaurants offering a fusion of Moroccan and international cuisine.

Popular choices include Al Fassia, known for its authentic Moroccan dishes, and Comptoir Darna, which combines dining with live entertainment. Marrakech city tour is also the opportunity to experience the vibrant nightlife by visiting a rooftop. The city offers a variety of options, from chic lounges to places where you can enjoy traditional music and dance performances.

A Marrakech city tour encapsulates the essence of Moroccan culture, blending the old with the new in a seamless harmony. From the historic charm of the Medina and its bustling souks to the serene beauty of its gardens and the modern vibrancy of its nightlife, Marrakech offers an unforgettable experience for every traveler.

Whether you are exploring ancient palaces, indulging in local cuisine, or simply soaking in the lively atmosphere, Marrakech is a city that promises to captivate and inspire.

A 3 days tour from Fes to Merzouga, with Our Real Morocco, offers an incredible journey through the heart of Morocco, showcasing its diverse landscapes, rich culture, and vibrant history. Here’s a detailed itinerary for this unforgettable adventure. Begin your journey early in the morning from Fes, a city known for its ancient medina and vibrant traditional markets.

3 Days Tour From Fes to Merzouga

Your first stop in this 3 days tour from Fes to Merzouga is the town of Ifrane, often referred to as the Switzerland of Morocco due to its Alpine-style architecture and clean, well-kept streets. Take a short break to enjoy the scenery and snap some photos. Continue to Azrou, a Berber town known for its cedar forests. If you’re lucky, you might spot some Barbary macaque monkeys.

Stop in Midelt for lunch. This town is nestled between the Middle Atlas and High Atlas mountains and offers a peaceful respite with its scenic surroundings. After lunch, drive through the breathtaking Ziz Valley, famous for its lush date palms and picturesque beautiful fortified homes.

Arrive in Erfoud, known, in this 3 days tour from Fes to Merzouga, as the gate to the Sahara desert. It’s a great place to learn about the local fossil industry and the town’s history. Continue to Merzouga, the gateway to the stunning Erg Chebbi sand dunes. These towering dunes can reach up to 150 meters in height.

Experience a camel trek into the desert as the sun begins to set, providing an unforgettable journey across the golden sands. Arrive at your desert camp, where you’ll enjoy a traditional Moroccan dinner under the stars, accompanied by Berber music and storytelling. Spend the night in a comfortable tent, surrounded by the tranquility of the desert.

On the second day of this 3 days tour from Fes to Merzouga, wake up early to witness the breathtaking sunrise over the sand dunes, a truly magical experience. Enjoy a traditional Berber breakfast at the camp. Spend the morning exploring the dunes. You can try sandboarding, take a 4×4 tour, or visit a nearby nomadic village to learn about the lifestyle and traditions of the desert dwellers.

Visit Khamlia, a village inhabited by the Gnawa people, descendants of former slaves brought from sub-Saharan Africa. Enjoy their unique music and dance, which is an integral part of their cultural heritage. Head to Rissani, the birthplace of the Alaouite dynasty, which currently rules Morocco. Explore the local traditional market, which is particularly lively.

This 3 days tour from Fes to Merzouga is also an opportunity to visit the ancient ruins of Sijilmassa, a once-thriving caravan trading post. Return to your desert camp for another night under the stars. Enjoy dinner and more traditional music, reflecting on the day’s adventures.

After breakfast on the final day of this 3 days tour from Fes to Merzouga, bid farewell to the desert and begin your journey back to Fes. Enjoy the scenic drive through the Middle Atlas Mountains, with stops along the way to stretch and take in the breathtaking views. Arrive back in Fes in the late afternoon or early evening. You’ll have time to rest and reflect on your incredible desert adventure.

This 3 days tour from Fes to Merzouga offers a perfect blend of adventure, culture, and natural beauty, leaving you with unforgettable memories of Morocco’s stunning landscapes and rich traditions. It is more than just a journey, but an immersive experience that connects you deeply with the heart and soul of Morocco.

From the cool, alpine-like atmosphere of Ifrane to the serene beauty of the cedar forests in Azrou, and the dramatic landscapes of the Ziz Valley, each moment offers a new facet of Morocco’s diverse environment. The highlight, undoubtedly, is the magical experience of the Sahara Desert.

The thrill of a camel trek at sunset, the serene silence of the vast dunes, and the warm hospitality at a traditional Berber camp create memories that last a lifetime since this 3 days tour from Fes to Merzouga. Exploring local villages like Khamlia and Rissani adds a rich cultural dimension, giving insight into the history and traditions of the desert people.

Returning to Fes, you carry with you not just photographs but stories and experiences of a journey that traverses time and space, from ancient trading routes to the modern-day charm of Moroccan hospitality. This tour is a perfect encapsulation of Morocco’s enchanting allure, blending natural wonders, cultural treasures, and unforgettable adventures into a compact yet comprehensive travel experience.

My True Morocco – Two View Points in my Essaouira Experience – First time and the next time My heart was captured by Essaouira at the end of my first two weeks traveling in Morocco.

I am certainly not the first person to have been so taken with the town. Its’ history goes back to the 16th century as do many buildings in the Medina. The medina and ramparts bear a French imprint while the contemporary scene seems pure Moroccan. So, to me as a first-time visitor, it gives the impression of exotic and old, and at the same time familiar.



The beach stretching along Mohammed V provides a welcome reception. In the early morning, as we walk toward the fishing pier, we see a yoga group, and I briefly consider running down to join them. Essourians and tourists alike are fishing, running, playing football. Children were playing in the sand and shallow surf.

The Medina proved easy to navigate, as we could always judge where we were by checking the ramparts. Hanging out at the fishing pier was easily entertaining. The blue fishing boats, hard-working fisherman, displays of great seafood, and the never-ending entertainment of sea birds made for a special morning. An afternoon walk was spent checking out contemporary art galleries, and restaurants, and the view from the ramparts. In the late afternoon, a walk on the beach provided a surprise – the water was warm enough to swim! On my next trip to Essaouira I intend to:

  • Take more beach walks
  • Get into one of those beach yoga classes (get web site for Essaouira Yoga)
  • Check out the outstanding wall art (get at least one web site)
  • Ride a camel or horse on the beach
  • Have tea on the beach and watch the sunset over water turn the Medina gold
  • Buy fish at the port and have it grilled there.
  • Try more restaurants both in and out of the Medina

Have you been to Essaouira?  Tell me what you would do next time.

Ouarzazate has stood at the edge of the Sahara desert for hundreds of years. A city of palm trees, sandy streets and blocky, fort-like buildings, this is the Morocco seen in a hundred movies. The name Ouarzazate comes from the Amazigh for ‘quiet place’, and compared to many of its fellow Moroccan towns and cities, there is a certain calm to be found here. Inside its walls you’ll find new hotels and complexes, plus film studios which have made the most of their photogenic location. Outside the city is the reason most people come to Ouarzazate: the stunning Sahara. Take a trek out to the nearby villages and kasbahs, see the breathtaking Todra Gorge, and marvel at one of the world’s great natural wonders.

if you’re looking for one of Ouarzazate’s cultural festivals then May is definitely the time to visit the Door of the Desert.
The first festival to look out for is The Rose Festival. Just a short drive from Ouarzazate is Kalaat M’Gouna, the rose capital of Morocco. Miles and miles of rosebushes grow around this desert oasis, a wildly colourful sight that fills the air with a heady perfume. Rosewater is highly prized throughout the kingdom (it takes 3,000 kilos of petals to make just one litre) and people celebrate the harvest with dancing and singing through the night in the souk. Through a rain of rose petals a Rose Queen is elected to reign over the crop.
And like many places in Morocco, August is the month for Moussem – Ouarzazate celebrates Sidi Daoud with a pilgrimage, a special souk for craftsmen, and plenty of song and dance.
for more information click here