camel rides sahara desert walking hiking tour morocco

Morocco: Marrakech, Atlas Mountains & Sahara Desert

A unique exploration of history, culture & habitats of Northern Africa.

Connect to life in the deserts and mountains of Morocco. 

EXCLUSIVE! Gene & Jo Ann Taylor, co-founders of The Walking Connection are your hosts and walking companions for this small group adventure.

Sept. 22 - 28, 2021 

One departure only in 2021!

10-Days, 9 Nights

A unique adventure to the Atlas Mountains and the Sahara Desert.

$000USD        

Priced from:

Questions?
Call Us. +1 623.561.0846

per person, double occupancy

$1250 USD Due With Registration

WALKING

Explore with us the Kingdom of Morocco.  From the bustling souks of Marrakech to the quiet Berber villages nestled deep within the High Atlas Mountains to the shifting sands of the Sahara Desert…

 

Appealingly exotic, be transformed into a world filled with saturated color layered in varied texture. The sights, the sounds, the spicy aromas are blended into a mesmerizing intoxication. You may feel like you are dreaming but you will be wide awake not wanting to miss a moment.

CONNECTION

Discover the connection that walking can bring when you take off from the trekking lodge into the Atlas Mountains.  With your local guide and your small group of fellow travelers, follow your feet. Discover the local villages, the stunning landscape, and a new side of yourself.

This adventure includes a unique opportunity to connect with an organization with a mission close to our hearts. Education for All is building and staffing boarding houses for Moroccan girls from small villages to further their education beyond what has been available to them in the past. Connect with these young ladies and see how the chance at education can change their lives.

Morocco Highlights

CREATE CONNECTIONS

You, along with old and new-found friends will travel Northern Africa from the Atlas Mountains to the Sahara Desert. Take in the the landscape and the local culture-- share an incredible experience with each other. Your expert local guides will lead the way so you can see it all.

CULTURAL IMMERSION

Visit remote, rural villages to see how a simple, yet challenging, way of life inspired the McHugo brothers to start Education for All.

BETTER WALKS, BETTER LIFE

Exploring Marrakech, the Atlas Mountains, and the Sahara Desert on foot makes the adventure uniquely yours.

Your Experience

Level of Activity

 

This is a cultural walking holiday with moderately strenuous hikes over several days.

 

Each day usually consists of 3-5 hours of activities, most centered around walking over various terrains. City streets, village cobblestone walkways, well-worn countryside paths with uphill and downhill components. 

There are options for more and less strenuous hikes in the Atlas Mountains. It is our mission to provide you with the most fulfilling and appropriate adventure for your fitness level. We are available to discuss options ahead of booking!

 

Your day pack will include a liter of water, snacks, rain jacket, sunscreen, personal items, and a camera.

Level of Comfort

The

Morocco Kasbah Terrace Atlas Mountains walking hiking tour

Photo Credit: Maasai Wanderings

Morocco walking hiking tour culture

Level of Culture


The

 

Day-By-Day

Please note that the details of this itinerary are subject to change. Many of the planned activities are organized according to availability, events or seasonal dates, appropriate weather conditions or the discretion of our guides. We make every effort to provide the experience described in the itinerary with the understanding that some things may change.

DAY 1
Arrive Marrakech

Arrive in Marrakech and transfer to our lovely boutique hotel, Riad Les Yeux Bleus.

The perfect place to relax after your long journey to this country filled with wonder.

Enjoy a welcome dinner with Gene and Jo Ann Taylor, co-founders of the Walking Connection and your hosts on this premier small-group journey.

Meals Included: Dinner

Accommodation: Riad Les Yeux Bleus - 1st of 2 nights

​Located in the Bab Doukkala district, one of the most picturesque quarters of the medina and within walking distance from the square of Jemaa el Fna in the heart of Marrakech.  Recently renovated by a team of talented Marrakech artisans the new Riad Les Yeux Bleus opened its doors for those keen to experience Moroccan hospitality at its best. And we will do just that…

DAY 2

Discover Marrakech

Spend an adventurous day discovering Marrakech with an expert local guide. 

 

At the end of our full day with a local guide, it will be your time to do some exploring on your own and perhaps discover that perfect place to watch the sun go down as the city bustles below.

Meals Included: Breakfast

Accommodation: Riad Les Yeux Bleus - 2nd of 2 nights

After breakfast we will set out to discover the ancient ways, exotic pulse and uplifting energy of the legendary “Red City” of Marrakech that coexists in friendly symbiosis with modern and vibrant urban life. We will take a look at the extraordinary museums and monuments that reflect the past and be introduced to the mysteries of the medina with its wide array of wares on display in the colorful souks.

DAYS 3

The Atlas Mountains Await

Journey into a different world, nestled into the folds of the impressive Atlas Mountains. The greatest mountain range of North Africa, and perhaps the most beautiful and intriguing part of Morocco. Sprinkled with Berber Villages-- the way of life has changed little for centuries. It has retained a remoteness which until recent decades was virtually untouched.

Meals Included: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Accommodation: Kasbah du Toubkal - 1st of 3 nights

The tranquility of Berber village life provides the perfect contrast to the hubbub of the city. Our authentic destination is situated in the Toubkal National Park and is beyond the main road system. From the village of Imlil, footpaths and mule tracks mount through lush, irrigated terraces, apple orchards and walnut groves to other villages where for centuries traditional values and hospitality are unaffected by the outside world.

Lodging of Distinction: Kasbah du Toubkal (1820 m), just 60 km from Marrakech, is situated in Imlil at the foot of Jbel Toubkal, the highest peak in North Africa. Described by Condé Nast Traveler as “having the best rooftop views in North Africa…this is the country’s first and foremost mountain retreat”.

Special Opportunity: We will have the honor of stopping and having lunch with some of the girls from Education For All. On Jo Ann Taylor’s recent visit to Morocco she was introduced to the program by two of the founders and brothers, Mike McHugo and Chris McHugo, and had the opportunity to meet a few of the very impressive students. Very few girls from rural communities in Morocco get the opportunity of continuing their education after primary school. To help tackle this, Education For All, is building and running girls’ boarding houses near secondary schools, so girls from rural families can continue their education.

Day 4

Local Walks & Treks -- Your Choice!

Regardless of fitness level, this area is accessible to all. There is a wide range of walking and trekking possibilities, from a short ramble through the villages that surround the Kasbah, to a more demanding overnight trek.  You have the opportunity to choose what is best for you.

Meals Included: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Accommodation: Kasbah du Toubkal - 2nd of 3 nights​ 

(OR Azzaden Trekking Lodge)

Option 1: guided walks in the area including cultural visits in the surrounding village to take in the Berber way of life and meeting some of the friendly local people. Enjoy the village of Targa Imoula, visible from the roof of the Kasbah, with shady orchards and walnut groves on route. Walks will be discussed the night before and determined by the interest and ability of the group. Afternoon relax or explore on your own. Overnight at Kasbah du Toubkal.

 

Option 2: full day trek to Azzaden Trekking Lodge with picnic lunch along the way. Mule support will be arranged for overnight bags. This option is suitable for those that have the ability and desire to hike a full day, 2 days in a row. Two guides will be with us so you can go your own pace. The mule trails around the valleys are well contoured and kept in excellent condition. Overnight at Azzaden Trekking Lodge.

The lodge has limited availability, single rooms are not available. Contact us to discuss whether this option is for you.

Day 5

MORE Walks & Treks -- Your Choice!

Come together after 2 days of trekking for a celebration in the evening. Our authentic experience amid the Atlas Mountains brings you back here for another mogical evening.

Meals Included: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Accommodation: Kasbah du Toubkal - 3rd of 3 nights

Option 1: guided walk will again be determined by the group with the possibility of a short walk through the village of Mzig, hidden away to the West.  This will give us a photo opportunity with views of Imlil and the surrounding terraces. At the Kasbah enjoy a bread making demonstration by one of the local women. Relax or explore on your own in the afternoon.

 

Option 2: return trek via an alternate route to the Kasbah du Toubkal.

Day 6

Travel the Mountain Pass to Ouarzazate

After breakfast say our farewells to the Atlas Mountains and take a scenic trip toward the Sahara desert. 

Meals Included: Breakfast, Dinner

Accommodation: Le Berbere Palace​

Cross the High Atlas Mountains via one of the highest mountain passes in Morocco, the Col du Tichka (2260 m), traveling through some spectacular scenery and then descending to the famous UNESCO World Heritage Site of the Ksar of Aït Benhaddou. This impressive 17th century fortified collection of earthen buildings is world famous and has been used as a backdrop for many films.

Day 7

Night Under the Stars

We will head south to the edge of the true Sahara desert near M'Hamid el Ghislane. The journey takes us through the spectacular Draa Valley and the continuous mile after mile of date palms. We arrive at the end of the road in the village of M'Hamid where the locals are dressed in the traditional blue Berber robes associated with the desert people. 

Meals Included: Breakfast, Dinner

Accommodation: Luxury Desert Camp​

There is a further hour or so off-road and this is where the Sahara begins…

 

The deluxe camp, one of the finest in Morocco, is located amongst the dunes of Erg Chigaga. Enjoy the evening as the Berber staff gather to sing and play drums around the camp fire. Combined with the magic of the night sky and an excellent dinner it will be a moment of time to remember forever.

Day 8

Camel Trek - Hump Day!

At dawn you will have the option of taking a camel ride deep into the dunes to watch the peaceful sunrise. After breakfast, we will head towards the oasis town of Skoura.

Meals Included: Breakfast, Dinner

Accommodation: Kasbah Aït Ben Damiette

This town lies next to one of the largest palm groves in Morocco and is part of an ancient trading route. Our stay overnight will be at the charming rustic Kasbah Aït Ben Damiette where an excellent dinner will be provided.

Day 9

Over the Mountains - Back to Marrakech

Return to Marrakech for another relaxing evening and a celebratory farewell dinner.

Meals Included: Breakfast, Dinner

Accommodation: Riad Les Yeux Bleus

Early morning departure for our return journey across the dramatic High Atlas Mountains to Marrakech. Once again, we will stay at the lovely Riad Les Yeux Bleus where you will have free time to explore the medina on your own.

 

Enjoy our farewell dinner at our beautiful riad.

Day 10

Morocco Farewell

Extend your holiday to Essaouira, Depart Morocco or Points Beyond

 

Meals Included: Breakfast

After a final breakfast at the hotel, you'll be transferred to the airport for your flight home. 

​OR

Carry on with an optional extension to the coastal town of Essaouira.

Imlil Morocco walking hiking tour

Where We Sleep

Quaint village luxury. The accommodations on this Moroccan walking tour were carefully selected by Jo Ann Taylor and are in the style she has created and the Walking Connection has become known for. The lodges. with luxurious amenities and unique local flavor, you will rest comfortably night after night. Your luggage will be transferred between locations and be waiting for you upon arrival.

Riad Les Yeux Bleus

 

Riad Les Yeux Bleus’ blend of contemporary and traditional styles reflects the mixed city e of Marrakech, where vibrant urban life and a varied choice of trendy bars, art galleries, and restaurants coexist in friendly symbiosis with the ancient ways of the city.

Kasbah du Toubkal

 

The Kasbah is also in the Toubkal National Park and set dramatically below the towering flanks of Jbel Toubkal, the highest mountain in North Africa standing at 4167 metres. 

The delightful garden and large terraces offer unparalleled views of the surrounding mountains. The friendly and knowledgeable local Berber team make every effort to ensure your stay is as enjoyable as it can be.

Photo Credit: Maasai Wanderings

Photo Credit: Maasai Wanderings

Photo Credit: Maasai Wanderings

A Dream Come True...

"“Thank you for organizing such an amazing trip to Tanzania.  Everything was first class and far exceeded my expectations.  Each day I kept asking myself, how can this get any better?  And each day it did!

- Cindy R., California

"The guides, the food, the service, and most of all our fellow travelers made this a trip of a lifetime."

- Colleen H., Alberta, Canada

"The accommodations were all excellent and unique, perfectly suited to the terrain we visited. For those who count, the numbers of animals, especially the big ones, were amazing."

- Tom M. and Elizabeth D., Arizona

Questions?

 

Great! We love talking about Morocco and Education for All! Give our FAQs below a quick look. You might find answers there. Or email us: info@WalkingConnection.com or call us at +1 (623) 561.0846 to speak with a team member. Either way, we are at your service, so please don't hesitate to reach out!

Sahara Desert Morocco walking hiking tour

Space is limited on This EXCLUSIVE Adventure with

Gene & Jo Ann Taylor, Co-founder & President of The Walking Connection.

WHAT DOES THE PRICE INCLUDE?

Gene & Jo Ann Taylor, Walking Connection co-founders will be your hosts. •9-nights accommodations •Meals per the itinerary •Private tours with resident local guides eager to share their extensive wildlife knowledge, history and cultural •Access and entrance fees to national parks •Local beverages with meals •Detailed “Know Before You Go” information including recommended website, reading lists, packing list, what to bring, weather and much, much more

WHAT DOES THE PRICE NOT INCLUDE?

International roundtrip airfare or departure taxes. •Travel insurance. •Airport transfers/Transportation to the trip’s starting point. •All items of a personal nature, including beverages and shopping • Photographs or phone calls • Discounts/Refunds on any unused portion of the tour • Anything that is not expressly stated in the itinerary or on the inclusion list above.

WHO IS GOING ON THIS TRIP?

Our adventures typically have between 8 and 12 guests. Walking Connection travel experiences are inclusive for a variety of abilities of positive and like-minded guests, happy to enjoy nature, culture, history and fantastic food along the way including solo travelers, couples and friends traveling together. This trip will be hosted by co-founders Jo Ann and Gene Taylor -- Come Walk With Us!

WHAT IS THE CANCELATION POLICY?

Should you have to cancel your tour the following terms will apply: •Due to the exclusive and small group nature of this adventure, all cancellations requests will forfeit the initial trip deposit. After that: •For cancellations 61-90 days prior to the trip, 70% penalty of the total trip cost. •For cancellations and no shows 60 days or less prior to the trip, no refunds. •No refunds will be made for any unused portion of the tour.

More Details!

 

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We are a minority and woman owned travel company, proudly established in the USA in1989.

All Images on this site are contributed and edited by Gene Taylor Photography.

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