Marrakech is becoming the home for Hundreds and thousands of tourists throughout the year. It has a rich and diverse culture with moderate weather, which makes it suitable for every visitor, especially tourists from the UK and the US. See the Incredible video below.
Marrakech is also known as Pink (and sometimes red) city because of the color of the walls in the city. Many people think that they cannot do a lot of things in Marrakech. Especially when they are on a short trip, but let me tell you that when this time you come to this astonishing city, then you do not have to restrain yourself in this Pink City. There are many outstanding Day Trips you can plan from Marrakech that will show you the different colors of Marrakech, which you could never imagine. You can easily enjoy the Breathtaking views of the Country site and Mountains in these day trips from Marrakech. So, without wasting any more time, let’s see what those places and activities which you could do on those trips are.
Essaouira is known as Morocco’s windy city because it is located on the Atlantic Coast. The old town known as Medina is surrounded by Walls built by the European Engineers in the 18th Century. Because of winds, this city is accessible for Surfing and Kite flying. The most famous place for these activities is the city’s crescent beach. Marrakech is a fast pace city, and if you want to gateway from the busy like of Marrakech, then I would highly recommend planning a day trip to Essaouira.
The Famous TV Series “Game of Thornes” used the city’s majestic view as a Background in some of its episodes. Essaouira, like Marrakech, also shares a rich culture, especially its music. It is particularly famous for its music. It hosted the yearly Gnaoua World Music Festival in which more than 500000 guests entertained by the performances of Jazz, Pop, Rock, and even Metal music. Many performances are free, and you should not miss this treat if you are a music fan.
Besides music and surfing, you can enjoy the twisted and thin streets of the Encircled old town (known as Medina). You would amaze to see the number of stalls and local artisans in Medina. I recommend to visit hidden stalls and try to buy real gems from Medina like, leather, traditions, Lamps, shoes, Carpets, and, most importantly, Argan oil. I truly believe that Morocco produces the best Argan oil and its Products. Especially in Essaouira and some cooperatives will show you how they made this oil from scratch. Speaking about Argan Oil benefits than it has countless benefits like studies show it may slow the growth and reproduction of the cells containing
Cancer. It also helps in controlling Diabetes, Acts to slow down the Aging process, etc. The biggest fun is to watch Goat trees, goats climb the trees naturally and help to create the Argan oil.
Visiting a fishing port and market is a thing you should never miss because it is the main Fishing port of Morocco. When you visit this place, you would be surprised to see the infinite amount of small bright blue boats on the port. You can even buy fresh fishes from the fisherman just a little away from the port.
There are numerous bus services available between Marrakech and Essaouira. The average journey time from Marrakech to Essaouira is around 2.5 to 3 hours. Buses are quite comfortable and modern, so you will not feel the journey much. The average per-person cost is approximately 75 dirhams with 10-15 dirhams extra if you have big luggage with you.
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It is located in Toubkal National Park in the High Atlas Mountain Range, around 65 kilometers from Marrakech. If you love mountain climbing, then this place is definitely for you because IMLIL is the beginning stage for those who want to climb the highest peak in North Africa, Mount Toukbal. You can even climb mount Toukbal if you are a newbie. Yes, it does not require ropes, harnesses, or any other technical knowledge to climb it. During winters, it may challenge you a bit, but you can use ice axes or other technical stuff to clear the ice and make your way to the top. You can even hire a guide to climb the top of Jebel Toubkal.
That said, do not worry if you are not a climber or adventurous type person. IMLIL is a small village that offers much more than just mountain climbing like an insight in to Berber culture, and also, it is a small village, and you can easily travel it on foot.
I recommend to relax on the rooftop of Kasbah and eat lunch or take tea and see the changing colors of the Mountains as the sun changes its direction. Also, the sound of Call to prayer (AZAN or Adhan) from mosques sounds more ancient and eternal in the mountains.
There is also a Hammam in IMLIL, which you can use by giving a small entrance fee to the IMLIL Village Association. Yes, there is an association in this Village which is utilizing the tourism money and trying to solve the problems which they are facing like recently the association acquired an Ambulance so that the people of the valley can have the safer way to the hospital.
Currently, there is no direct bus to Imlil. You have to reach that place independently. You can take a bus from the Marrakech to Asni, and from there you can catch a Taxi to Imlil. From there is just a half an hour drive from Asni to Imlil. On the other hand, if you do not want to take multiple stops from Asni to Imlil, then just take a private or shared taxi to IMLIL. Shared Taxi will cost you about $5 for a seat.
In Imlil, there are some hotels like DAR Tighoula, Hotel Soleil, DAR ATLAS CHARME, etc. which offer delicious food. My favorite is their traditional goat and lamb barbecue ribs. You can enjoy cherry in June and walnuts in October. What more you could ask! Great food and fantastic nature define this place.
Ouzoud falls is the aggregate name for the few waterfalls that goes into the El-Abid River gorge. This famous place is in the Atlas Mountains, 155 km north of Marrakech. In my opinion, it is the most memorable day trip from Marrakech. Although the south part of morocco is quite dry and hot, the north part of Morocco is unexpectedly very lusher than you could ever imagine. Just like Imlil, if you do not like busy and crowded places, then you should visit this gem. It would help you to get away from the crowd. If you want to avoid the group entirely, then just visit the place in winter. Also, do try to visit the site at the first time. Most of the crowd Gathers there at noon. The best part of visiting at early in the morning is that you will take a lot of pictures with better daylight and without any fear or hesitation. So, plan your trip ahead and ensure you could enjoy the Ouzoud falls to the fullest.
One thing I would like to mention before going to Ouzoud Waterfalls! Try not to go there over a weekend because it is the most visited place from locals and tourists all around the world. So, Ouzoud waterfalls would not be a quiet place which might be expecting. You can go there in a private or shared taxi. Per person, the cost would be around 250 MAD. Also, it is up to you whether you want to hire a guide for Ouzoud waterfalls, which will cost you about $5 per person or you want to do it independently. I prefer that you should do it independently and save your money.
In summer do not miss swimming in the Al-abid river. You can also enjoy the boat ride in the pools at the bottom of the waterfalls. If you want a little thrill then in just a few MAD, they will take you very close to the Cascades. Remember, if you are going to plan that, then do not forget to take the Umbrella of rain jackets and a waterproof camera to capture the beauty of the falls. Around the falls, you can easily find a lot of monkeys. You could see them hanging and playing around the trees. Most of them will quickly come to you if you offer them some fruits and walnuts.
Located about 35 Km from Marrakech is a hidden jewel of Marrakech. It is the best alternative to the Sahara Desert because to visit the Sahara Desert, you need to spare at least 3 days, but if you are short in time, then this would be the best trip you could look for. Unlike the Sahara Desert, this Desert is more barren, but some white dunes may remind you of Sahara. In summer, this Desert is not habitable due to sweltering weather, but as winter arrives, it provides a suitable environment for both locals and tourists alike. Talking about the locals, most of them leave this place due to a lack of water. Still, you can find some local shepherds in that area.
The best part is that there is no restriction in that area, and you can explore it without any fear. This place is also very famous for Camel trekking and hiking. You can enjoy a day trip to Agafy Desert, but in case you want to spend the night in the Desert, then there are many luxury camps in the Desert which can provide you a tent to stay a night in this beautiful Desert.
You can also visit a Village in Agafy where currently very few people live and can see the Berber culture first hand.
AÏT BENHADDOU AND OUARZAZATE
First, let me speak about Aït Ben Haddou. UNESCO listed it as one of the most historic and vital landmarks of Morocco. It is also becoming the popular film location of many Hollywood movies. Many famous scenes of Game of Thrones filmed there.
The Ksar of Aït Ben Haddou is an excellent example of clay architecture in Morocco. Ksar has a different meaning, but, in Moroccan language, it means the Berber Castle. Before Arabs Berbers invaded this place. More than 80% of the population of Moroccans have Berber roots.
You would be amazed to see the beauty of the ksar, and it looks like a sandcastle. You would be surprised to see that some families still live in that ksar. You can even visit those houses which were used as the location of the famous movie Gladiator. There are many movies like The Mummy, Alexander, Son of God, Prince of Persia, Kingdom of Heaven, Babel, and The Message filmed there.
Usually, there is a small fee for entering the Kasbah, which in turn used for the maintenance and other fixes. Be sure to abide by the time because it will open every day for just 7 hours from 9.00 am till 4.00 pm.
Ouarzazate is located just 30 km from Ait Ben Haddou. Also known as the Hollywood hub. It is the home of the two of the most famous film studios, “Atlas Studio” and “CLA Studio,” but the later one is relatively new and usually known for Game of Thrones.
The main attraction of Ouarzazate is Atlas Studio because it is the world’s largest film studio. You should hire a guide which tells you about the stories of the movies which have been shot there. Once you visit this place, then I am very sure you would be amazed to see how fake the films are. Large artificial sets and Cameras will blow your mind. Moreover, the studio has its stables with donkeys, dogs, horses, etc. to be used in the movies. All the animals are well trained because they are used to working with a lot of different people. The opening timing of the studio is around 8.00 am, and closing is around 7.00 pm.
Ait ben Haddou and Ouarzazate also called traveling twins. Most of the travelers visit both places at a time. Also, most people spend 2 hours in Ait Ben Haddou and remaining at Ouarzazate. If you have time, then I would recommend to stay a day or two in Ait Ben Haddou and explore the kasr to its fullest. Then spare one day to Visit the Ouarzazate. As I explained above, the most attractive place in Ouarzazate is Atlas studio, which you can see in a day. I bet once you visit these travel twins, the fun images of these places will stay with you for the rest of your life.
Just from 40 Km away from Marrakech, you can find this valley, which is one of the best places to visit in Morocco. On your trip, you can enjoy hiking the Atlas Mountains and cherish the beauty of this countryside. If you booked your tour with a good travel company, then they will arrange the bus or taxi for you. Getting there independently is also a choice that is ultimately up to you.
Most of the people visit Ourika valley, Morocco to see the waterfalls of Setti Fatima. Also, most of the tour companies offer a trip to Ourika Valley from Marrakech as a tour package, which made this place even more popular.
The most remarkable thing here is to see the beauty of Berber Village, which is located alongside the Ourika River. If your travel agency permits, then I will Highly recommend to stop there and see the traditional Berber house from the inside. Villagers of this Village are very helpful and friendly towards tourists and often offer you some necklaces and their traditional Jewelry as a gift.
Just like in Essaouira, this place also has Argan oil Cooperatives, but this one is run solely by women of the valley. Also, the Argan trees do not grow over there, but kernels are processed here to create cooking oil, cosmetic oil, Soap, creams, etc. Most women who work in the Argan oil Cooperatives are either widows or women who are unemployed and could not find any other job to do. You should visit the different cooperatives of argan oil in the valley and see how this famous Argan oil is prepared.
There is a lot of things you could do in this valley besides trekking like rock climbing, enjoy the stunning view of Le Jardin du Safran, which is the working farm in the valley specializes in producing spices from the flowers. You will enjoy to see the cultivation and drying process and definitely learn a lot about the process. You can also go to mountain Biking, which is very famous there. Crossing the roped bridges in the valley is a treat for itself. Roped bridges are made to cross the fast-flowing river.
Finally, the beauty of Aghmat will engage you thoroughly. Founded by the Christian Berbers and conquered by Muslims in 683. Just about 100 years ago the Most of the population there is Jewish. They used it as a place of exile. You should visit this place and see the 11th-century Hammams, Ramparts, etc.
Designed by the famous French artist Jacques Majorelle in 1923. The renowned French artist lived there with his wife until their separation in the 1950s. The beautiful Garden is more than 12 acre long and there are more than 15 species of birds living there. The Garden is also known for its number of Cactuses and fountains. It is considered as the Masterpiece of Jacques. The Garden opened to the public in 1947.
In 1980 the other famous artists Yves Saint-Laurent and later after his death in 2008, his foundation manages the Garden. There is a lot to see in this beautiful Garden like the Islamic Art Museum of Marrakech, where the costumes, ceramics, paintings and jewelry, and other personal belongings of Saint Laurent is displayed. Paintings of its original owner Jacques Majorelle are also displayed in the Museum.
Do not forget to visit the Saint Laurent Love Gallery, where you can find the number of posters that the artist sends to his loved for 35 years of his life.
SUNSET CAMEL RIDE IN THE PALMERAIE
Before starting, let me explain what Palmeraie is. There are thousands of palm trees outside of Marrakech. Located in the city’s north section. The area is around 8km in length and covers approximately the area of 55 Square miles. I again recommend that you do not miss the sunset of this place and what better way to experience this oasis by riding a Camel. Ride 1-hour camel ride in the Palmeraie (Palm grove) and try to dress up like nomads to feel the experience. I bet you will never forget that 1-hour camel ride under the shade of palm tree. There are certain things which you should know before going for a camel ride like children under the age of 12 should ride with an adult. Avoid shorts because when you are in contact with camel, then you can catch an allergy, so wear Full clothes with some jeans would be feasible. Bring hats and sunscreen with you to avoid skin problems, and finally, the most important one that people with neck or back pain should not ride the camel because it would be 1 hour Camel Ride and as a camel moves, it is a high chance that you can catch a pain. Also, pregnant women are not advised to ride a camel that long.
Escape the hassle of Marrakech and go to Quad Bike adventure in the palmeraie oasis. Most of the Quad Biking is of Half-day, so you can do a lot in this Half-day like you can see the traditional Berber village, which was built more than 200 years ago, and nothing has changed since then. In this half-day tour, you would be given a break where you can have a Moroccan mint tea and snacks. You would be given a guide as a translator, and they will tell you the stories and history along the way.
Though the driving license is not required, the Children under the age of 14 are not allowed to ride a quad bike. They should be with an adult.
If you wanted a tailored Quad Biking Activity for a group of 12 or more people, then do visit our HALF DAY QUAD BIKING ADVENTURE.