Cultural Route 1: Casablanca – Merzouga – Fez

Casablanca – Meknes – Azrou – Errachidia – Erg Chebbi – Boumalne Dades – ImilchilFez

Cross Morocco from North to South in a minimum of 6 days…
…with a few changes in this circuit

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With this 9 day route on a 4WD off-road vehicle, you will cross the country from North to South: from the Moroccan Atlantic coastline, through the Middle Atlas mountains and past the Sahara desert, with its wonderful Dades and Todra Gorges, to the gorgeous High Atlas mountain ranges.

You will discover three of the four imperial cities of Morocco: Meknes, Rabat and Fez. Moreover, you will get in touch with an ancestral culture, the Berber. In a journey through the senses, you will hear the colours of music, you will discover the fruits of religion, you will taste the flavour of gastronomy, you will admire the beauty of architecture and art, you will caress the textures of crafts and you will dive in the diversity of languages and traditions of this country.

For more information, please, contact us.

Day 1
The adventure begins: CasablancaRabat – Meknes

The journey starts in the Atlantic coastline, with a visit to Casablanca and Rabat, Morocco’s kingdom capital and one of the three imperial cities. The south bank of Bu Regreg river mouth isolates Rabat from the neighbour city of Salé.

We continue our travel until we reach Meknes, third imperial city of the country, at the foot of the Middle Atlas Mountains. In 1996, UNESCO listed the city as World Heritage for being representative of a 17th century Maghreb capital.

Optional tours:

  • Visit to Volubilis, roman city 30 Km from Meknes. It is the biggest roman settlement in the country and the better preserved ruins in the North of Africa. It is listed as World Heritage since 1997.
  • Visit to Moulay Idriss, one of the main pilgrimage meeting points in the country. The city hosts the mausoleum of Moulay Idriss, great-grandson of Mahoma, saint and founder of the first royal dynasty of the country.

Days 1 and 2
Berber lands: Ifrane – Azrou – Midelt – Errachidia – Erfoud

We start our ascent to the Middle Atlas and discover Berber villages. Our first stop is Ifrane, the so-called “Moroccan Switzerland”. Next, we visit Azrou, a city surrounded by pine and cedar forests. We keep on crossing Morocco and pass by Midelt, until we reach Errachidia, former Ksar es-Souk, military city that served as a base for the French Foreign Legion and that was built early in the 20th century forming a checked pattern in the purest military style.

We head towards the desert gate after crossing the Ziz Valley until we reach Erfoud.

Days 3,4 and 5
The desert, our home: Hassi LabiedMerzouga

We restart our journey and we arrive to Hassi Labied, our home, a village 5 km from Merzouga, in front of Erg-Chebbi, a vast expanse of mobile sand dunes. During our stay in Hassi-Labied, we may visit Merzouga, Rissani market, the fossil quarry, Erg-Chebbi sand dunes and its nomad settlements, M’fis, Mharch, Taouz, the burial mounds, Khamilia -where we can listen to gnaoua live music-, or Sergi and Yasmina lakes.

Day 6
The thousand kasbahs valley: Todra Gorges – Boumalne Dades

We move forward on the road to Tinghir, to the Todra Gorges. From there, we proceed until we reach Boumalne Dades, at the foot of the south slope of Central Atlas. The views from the cliffs that overlook the city are outstanding, with the Dades River at the south and the ocher kasbahs changing hues under the sunlight.

Days 7 and 8
Central Atlas: Dades Gorges – Imilchil – Khenifra

Next day we head towards Imilchil and we make a stop in the Dades Gorges, to admire its wonderful rocky formations and the karst reliefs.

We start discovering the Central Atlas mountains, with Berber villages such as Imilchil and its harsh landscape. In Khenifra we say goodbye to the incredible places and villages of the area.

Day 9

The medieval spirit: Fez

Our last stage is the enigmatic city of Fez, capital of Fez-Boumalne region. It is one of the four imperial cities, together with Marrakech, Meknes and Rabat. It is regarded as the religious and cultural centre of the country.

The city is divided in three areas. Fez el Bali is the old area, inside the walls. Fez-Jdid is the new area, where the Jewish town, the Mellah is located. The Ville Nouvelle (New City) is the French area, at the northeast of the city. Fez el Bali’s medina is the biggest pedestrian precinct in the world and in 1981 UNESCO listed it as World Heritage.

Remember, we may customize cultural route 1 to your needs!