Take the scenic drive through Morocco’s Sahara desert to connect between the two imperial cities on a shared Marrakech to Fes desert tour. This desert safari requires at least 3 days to enjoy it to the most. The distance between Marrakech and Fes is 530 Km. Drive past ancient Kasbahs, Berber villages, meet the nomads, and spend the night in a Merzouga desert camp. To sum it up, Marrakech to Fes desert trip is a can’t miss adventure.
Here are the Shared 3-day desert tour from Marrakech to Fes Highlights :
- Drive across the High Atlas Mountains and Tizi Ntichka pass
- Witness the majesty of the UNESCO world heritage Kasbah of Ait Ben Hadou
- Admire the scenery of the Valley of the roses to Dades Canyons
- Walk along the stream in Todra oasis to the massive cliffs of Todra Canyons
- Ride your camel for a dramatic sunset view over Erg Chebbi dunes
- Spend the night at your Sahara desert camp in Merzouga
- Drive from Merzouga to Fes past the Middle Atlas Mountains and cedar woods
Day 1: Marrakech – Atlas Mountains – Kasbah Ait Ben Hadou – Dades Valley
Your shared desert tour to Fes from Marrakech will start in the morning with pick up from your hotel or the nearest accessible point to your riad. After driving past Marrakech suburbs, full of small towns, and different farms, we start driving uphill to cross the High Atlas Mountains. A quick stop for a coffee and toilet will be made before we reach the famous Tizi Ntichka pass ( 2260 m high ).
Numerous stops will be made to take photos and stretch your legs before the landscape dramatically changes upon approaching Kasbah Air Ben Hadou. This UNESCO classified village is one of the most visited landmarks in Morocco. It is famous for having been -and still is- used for different Hollywood epics ( Game of thrones, Kingdom of heaven, Gladiator, etc…. )
If you wish, you can hire a local guide with the rest of the group ( optional ) for a visit of the village before you choose a local cafe for lunch.
In the afternoon, we continue to Dades Valley past Ouarzazate, Skoura oasis and Klaa Mgrouna, the latter is famous for its Damascus rose plantation and distillation. The journey between Ouarzazate and Dades is also known as ‘’ The road of 1001 Kasbahs’’
Upon arrival at Boumalne Dades, deviate to a minor road driving past amazing scenery of Dades River, with different fortified Berber villages in the backdrop.
Arrive at your Dads Hotel just before it gets dark, and enjoy your dinner.
Day 2: Dades Valley – Tinghir – Merzouga – Sahara Desert
After having enjoyed your breakfast, get ready for an amazing journey which will be the highlight of your shared Marrakech to Fez desert tour: Your next stop will be at Tinghir oasis, where you will have the chance of walking along the stream under the shade of date palm and olive trees witnessing local Berbers taking care of their crops or herding their cattle.
The walk will lead you to the majestic cliffs of Todgha Gorges where you will have the opportunity to take some photos and enjoy the silence.
After lunch at leisure at one of the local cafes, you will continue to Rissani past various small towns, oases, and Ksours ( fortified villages ). From here, you can spot the pink sand dunes approaching over the horizon. Upon arrival in Merzouga, meet your camel caravan, and start an hour-long camel ride over Erg Chebbi sand dunes marveling at one of the best sunset views.
Continue your camel trek to your Sahara desert camp. A delicious Moroccan dinner will be served tonight at your Bedouin camp, and your nomad hosts will be entertaining you around the campfire with their drums under the crystal clear sky.
Overnight at your Merzouga desert camp.
Day 3: Merzouga – Midelt – Ifran – Fes
After an early sunrise camel ride crossing Erg Chebbi dunes, arrive at the camp operator's lodge in Merzouga for breakfast, shower and maybe a quick swim at the lodge pool before you meet your new driver who will be taking you to Fes today. The journey will take you across the Ziz Valley, dotted with thousands of date palm trees, enjoying amazing views of some of the greatest oases of Morocco.
From here you will cross the Middle Atlas Mountains to Midelt, a small town halfway to Fez, where you will stop for lunch at leisure. In the afternoon, you will drive past the cedar forests where you might have the opportunity to spot wild monkeys ( also known as Barbary apes ) before you reach the small town of Iran, which is famous for being a popular winter resort for Moroccans.
Your estimated time of arrival to Fes is 17h00, and your shared 3 days desert tour from Marrakech to Fes will come to an end with a drop off at your hotel or the nearest accessible point to your Riad.
- A/C modern minibus ( no more than 17 passengers for day 1 & 2 and no more than 6 on day 3 )
- English / French speaking driver
- First night at hotel Le Vieux Chateau including dinner and breakfast ( Private A/C ensuite room )
- Sunset camel trek in Erg Chebbi
- Overnight at a Sahara desert camp in Erg Chebbi including Moroccandinner
- Drop off at a location of your choice in Fes.
- Sand boarding
- Shower and breakfast at the camep operator's lodge in Merzouga
- Drop off at a location of your choice in Fes.
- Lunches on the way
- Personal expenses
- Local guide in Kasbah Ait Ben Hadou ( 3 Euros per person – Optional )
Know Before You Go:
- Please note the above driving times do not include time for sightseeing, lunches, drinks, and photos
- This shared Morocco desert tour is perfect for easy-going travelers with limited expectations. Otherwise a private tour would suit you much better
- Your luggage is welcome on this Marrakech to Merzouga trip. It will be safely stored at the van while camping in the desert
- Please make sure you prepare a small backpack / rucksack for the camel ride and overnight in the camp
- Please bring your own bathroom condiments and towel for the camp
- Warm blankets are supplied during the winter. However, warm sleeping clothes are necessary as temperatures can reach 0°C
- Hat, sunglasses, good walking shoes and wet napping are of good use during this tour.
- Please wear jeans, trousers or long shorts for the camel ride to have a comfortable trek in Erg Chebbi dunes.
- If you wish to experience sand boarding in the dunes of Erg Chebbi, there are a few sand boards in the lodge to take with you to the camp. Just ask for it and if available, you will be given one