Experience the magic of the Sahara with a captivating 3-day tour from Marrakech to Merzouga

Escape the bustling souks of Marrakech’s Jemaa El Fna and immerse yourself in the serene silence of the desert. As you venture further, vast sand dunes stretch as far as the eye can see, creating a mesmerizing landscape. When the sun begins to rise, the grains of sand come alive, glistening in a spectacle like no other.

During this unforgettable journey through the Moroccan desert, you’ll encounter tranquility that surpasses all previous experiences. To truly make the most of your visit to Morocco, I highly recommend spending a night in a Merzouga luxury desert camp. It’s an experience that will leave an indelible mark on your memories.

Look no further for all the necessary information and the best recommendations to secure your tour. Get ready to embark on a remarkable adventure in the enchanting Moroccan Sahara Desert!

Discover the best times to visit Merzouga Desert!

For an ideal visit, I recommend planning your trip during the shoulder months of Spring, encompassing March, April, and May, as well as the Autumn months of September and October. During these periods, the weather is delightful, with pleasant warmth, and the tourist crowds are fewer, allowing you to enjoy a more serene experience. The coastal regions maintain their tropical climate with minimal temperature fluctuations.

If you visit in December, it can still be a favourable time to explore Morocco. Most parts of the country offer pleasant and warm temperatures, except for the Sahara desert region, which can be chilly. If you plan to venture into the Sahara, make sure to dress in layers to protect yourself from freezing temperatures.

Make the most of your journey to Merzouga by selecting the optimal time to visit, ensuring an enjoyable and comfortable experience throughout your adventure!

Here are some essential tips to keep in mind for your 3-day tour from Marrakech to Merzouga:

  • If you have booked a group 3 days desert tour from Marrakech to Merzouga, be aware that you may not be able to bring all your luggage to the dunes. It’s recommended to carry a small backpack with essential items to easily take to your camp for the night. Don’t forget to pack the following items in your small backpack:
  • Remember to pack some water and any necessary medications for your trip.
  • You can safely leave your luggage at the hotel in Merzouga, even if you won’t be staying there for additional nights.
  • Remember that a proper Sahara desert camp stay is not luxurious due to the shifting dunes. However, the facilities are clean, and the bathrooms and toilets are shared unless you opt for luxury accommodation.
  • During winter, make sure to wear warm clothing, as Morocco is generally pleasant, but the desert can be freezing at night.
  • When traveling to the Sahara desert camp on a camel, be prepared for the journey to take more than an hour. It’s advisable to wear leggings or similar comfortable attire for the ride.
  • Traditional Moroccan foods are typically served for dinner on the night of your stay, usually included in the price. However, it’s recommended to check the details when making your booking.

Remember these tips to ensure a smooth and enjoyable experience during your tour from Marrakech to Merzouga!

Day 1: Marrakech – Tizi n’Tichka – Ait Ben Haddou – Ouarzazate – Boumalne Dades Valley (6 hours, 330 kilometers)

Our thrilling 3-day tour from Marrakech to Merzouga begins early in the morning after a delicious breakfast in Marrakech. Excitedly, we set off on the first leg of our journey, departing from the vibrant city of Marrakech and making our way toward the magnificent Atlas Mountains through the picturesque Tizi n’ Tichka Pass. As we ascend through this mountain pass, we are greeted by the breathtaking beauty of the icy slopes and awe-inspiring landscapes.

Leaving the Atlas Mountains behind, our adventure continues to the iconic Kasbah Ait Ben Haddou, where we will indulge in a delightful lunch. This historical treasure, situated amidst the foothills of the Atlas Mountains, holds immense significance as one of the UNESCO World Heritage Sites. A visit to this magnificent ksar, a fortified village, allows us to immerse ourselves in Morocco’s rich history and architectural wonders. Ait Ben Haddou is a testament to the ancient caravan route connecting the Saharan Desert to Marrakech, enchanting all who visit with its timeless charm.

Following our satisfying lunch, we proceed towards the captivating city of Ouarzazate, the gateway to the Sahara Desert. This cinematic city has been the backdrop for numerous famous movies, offering a unique blend of culture and artistry. From Ouarzazate, our journey leads us to the enchanting town of Boumalne Dades, where we will spend the night.

Tizi n’Tichka:

The road leading to Tizi N'tichka PAss between Marrakech and Ouarzazate
Tizi Ntichka

Situated in the Atlas Mountains, Tizi n’ Tichka stands as the highest point in Morocco. This mountain pass is a must-stop destination on our 3-day tour from Marrakech to Merzouga. As we traverse this captivating route, we also immerse ourselves in the heart of the Atlas region, renowned for the cultivation and extraction of Argan oil. Argan serves as a vital cash crop, playing a significant role in Morocco’s economy.

Kasbah Ait Ben Haddou:

Ait Benhaddou, a remarkable UNESCO World Heritage Site, holds great historical importance. This ksar, a fortified village, once thrived as a crucial stop along the caravan route from the Saharan Desert to Marrakech. Located in the foothills of the High Atlas Mountains, this architectural gem invites us to step back in time. Among the numerous ksars scattered throughout Morocco, Ait Benhaddou shines as the most renowned, beckoning visitors with its enchanting allure. It beautifully exemplifies the ancient earthen Moroccan architectural style, capturing the imagination and evoking a desire to stay forever.


Pharaonic film set in Atlas Film Studios in Ouarzazate
Atlas Film Studios, Ouarzazate

Welcome to Ouarzazate, the renowned gateway to the Moroccan Sahara Desert. As we arrive here, we bid farewell to the Atlas Mountains and set our sights on the vast expanse of the Sahara before us. Not only is Ouarzazate famous for its role as a gateway to the desert, but it is also a renowned filming location. Numerous iconic movies, such as “The Mummy” and “Lawrence of Arabia,” have been filmed amidst the captivating landscapes of this city.

As we continue our journey on the first day of the 3-day tour from Marrakech to Merzouga, Ouarzazate, serves as our last major city stop before we venture into the breathtaking canyons and gorges of the Dades Valley. This is a perfect opportunity to take a brief break and enjoy a quick bite at a local café or purchase any necessary items that may not be readily available in the smaller town of Boumalne Dades, our next destination.

Boumalne Dades Valley:

Dades Valley with adobe Kasbahs and snow-topped Atlas Mountains in the horizon
Dades Valley

Nestled within the Tinghir Province of Morocco, Boumalne Dades is a charming town located on the edge of a desert plateau, surrounded by the awe-inspiring gorges of the Dades Valley.

The Dades Valley Gorges are a striking testament to the power of nature, carved over time by the flowing waters of the Dades River originating from the High Atlas Mountains. These gorges showcase a stunning array of natural hues, ranging from earthy browns and yellows to vibrant oranges and purples.

Stretching between 200 and 600 meters in depth, they create a genuinely mesmerizing spectacle.

In addition to its visual allure, the Dades Valley is also a popular destination for rock climbing enthusiasts seeking thrilling adventures amidst its dramatic landscapes. To conclude our eventful first day, we will enjoy a traditional

Berber dinner at a guest house in Boumalne Dades, immersing ourselves in the region’s rich cultural heritage.

Day 2: Boumalne Dades – Tinghir – Tinjedad – Merzouga (4 hours, 250 kilometers)

As we embark on the second day of our remarkable 3-day tour from Marrakech to Merzouga, we bid farewell to our cozy guesthouse in Boumalne Dades after enjoying a delicious breakfast, ready to resume our journey.

Our first stop takes us to the breathtaking Todra Gorges in the scenic Tinghir Province. Prepare to be captivated by the towering cliffs and the mesmerizing beauty of the gorge. Take your time to soak in the awe-inspiring surroundings before we continue our adventure.

After immersing ourselves in the natural wonder of Todra Gorges, we proceed to the charming town of Tinjedad, where we will savor a delightful lunch, refueling for the remainder of our journey.

Our final destination for the day is the desert town of Merzouga, where we will conclude our day’s journey and find rest for the night. Merzouga, located on the edge of the Moroccan Sahara Desert, holds a magical allure that will leave you in awe.

Prepare to be enchanted by the golden dunes, the desert’s vastness, and this extraordinary destination’s unique atmosphere. As evening approaches, take a moment to witness the captivating beauty of the desert as the sun sets, painting the sky with a breathtaking display of colors.

Todra Gorges & Tinghir Oasis:

A couple walking in Todra gorges near Tinghir Oasis
Todra Gorges

Experience the awe-inspiring Todra Gorges, also recognized as Todgha Gorges, where the River Todra has carved steep wadis over time. These striking limestone river canyons boast narrow passages, sometimes measuring around 10 meters wide.

During the dry seasons, the wadis may be mainly dry, with minimal water flow or a tiny stream trickling through. However, when the monsoon season arrives, the river surges with renewed vigor, creating a mesmerizing sight to behold. In the dry months, the Todra Gorges offer an excellent opportunity to hike through the wadis and discover the rich native flora and fauna that thrive in the region.

As you venture to Tinghir, also known as Tinerhir, you’ll find it to be the perfect base for fully appreciating the majestic beauty of the Todra Gorges. Tinghir is predominantly inhabited by the Berber people, adding to its cultural significance and vibrant atmosphere. The town is adorned with lush palm trees, creating a picturesque setting. Furthermore, Tinghir is renowned for its abundant fossils, including Ammonitida and others, owing to its ancient history as an area submerged under the sea during the Mesozoic period.


Continuing on our second day of the 3-day tour from Marrakech to Merzouga, we come across the charming town of Tinjedad.

Tinjedad is renowned for its abundance of naturally occurring minerals and fossils, mainly the mesmerizing red Hematoid quartz. Despite being a small and less frequented town by tourists, its undeniable beauty captures the imagination.

During our visit to Tinjedad, we will make a brief stop for a delightful lunch before continuing our journey to the final destination of the day, Merzouga.


Merzouga Desert towering sand dunes
Merzouga Desert

On day 2 of our 3-day journey from Marrakech to Merzouga, we reach the enchanting village of Merzouga, a highlight of our tour. Nestled on the edge of the Sahara Desert, Merzouga is an ideal starting point for exploring the mesmerizing and vast dunes. This part of our Morocco desert tour is particularly special, holding a dear place in our hearts.
Merzouga, though small, stands out due to its proximity to Erg Chebbi, one of the Sahara’s most spectacular ergs or sand seas. The immense, wind-sculpted dunes of Erg Chebbi create an unforgettable landscape.
Upon arrival in Merzouga, a plethora of activities await. Among the things to do in Merzouga, we embark on a memorable camel trek into the Sahara, leading to our traditional Berber desert camp. The experience peaks as we witness the desert sunset and enjoy a local Berber dinner under a canopy of stars. This extraordinary moment, amidst the serene beauty of the Sahara, promises to be an unforgettable part of our journey.

Day 3: Merzouga – Rissani – Nqob – Tamnougalt – Ouarzazate – Marrakech (9 hours, 570 kilometers)

As we embark on the last day of our 3-day tour from Marrakech to Merzouga, we are prepared for our adventure’s longest and most challenging stretch. Despite the potential fatigue, we are eager to embrace the incredible experiences that await us on this final leg of our journey.

Our day begins with a mesmerizing sunrise, casting a golden glow upon the majestic dunes of the Sahara Desert at Erg Chebbi. After bidding farewell to our trusty camels, we gather our spirits and prepare to hit the road again.

Venturing forth, we traverse the captivating landscapes of the Draa Valley, passing through breathtaking valleys that trace the meandering path of the Draa River. Along this scenic route, we make our first stop at Rissani, where we are treated to captivating photographic opportunities that showcase the true essence of this remarkable region.

Continuing our journey, we venture further into the Draa Valley, making our way through the charming towns of Nqob and Tamnougalt. These hidden gems offer glimpses into the region’s rich cultural tapestry, with their historical significance and captivating landscapes leaving an indelible mark on our memories.

As the sun reaches its zenith, we find respite in the familiar city of Ouarzazate, where we pause to savor a well-deserved lunch. This city, known for its cinematic allure, provides a moment of reflection as we prepare for the final stretch of our adventure.

With our spirits rejuvenated, we embark on the final leg of our journey, driving straight back to the vibrant city of Marrakech. As we bid farewell to the enchanting landscapes of the Moroccan Sahara Desert, our 3-day tour reaches its grand finale.

Here’s a detailed depiction of the locations we will encounter on the third day of our 3-day tour from Marrakech to Merzouga:

Draa Valley

Draa Velley palm oasis with Kasbah in the center
Draa Valley

Draa Valley, famously known as the date basket of Morocco, provides a refreshing oasis amidst the otherwise barren Sahara Desert and Dades Gorges. This lush green valley is brought to life by the River Draa, Morocco’s longest river, formed by merging the River Dades and the River Imini. Inhabited by the Drawi people, the Draa Valley boasts a rich abundance of flora, fauna, and age-old traditions. Each turn presents a new opportunity for an Instagram-worthy shot as we traverse this scenic route.


Located in the Errachiada Province of Morocco, Rissani resembles Erg Chebbi in terms of its size and area. It was once the capital of Tafialet, the largest oasis in Morocco. Rissani is home to historically and architecturally significant sites that offer fantastic photo opportunities. Notably, the mausoleum of Moulay Ali Cherif stands out, as he was the third great-grandfather of Moulay Cherif, the founder of the Alaouite Dynasty. In the past, Rissani played a pivotal role as a prominent caravan center. Today, it thrives as a bustling commercial town, particularly on Tuesdays, Thursdays, and Sundays, when its traditional market, known as a souk, comes alive. The souk is renowned for its leather and goatskin products, making it an ideal spot for shopping during your 3-day tour from Marrakech to Merzouga.


Nqob also spelled as Nkob or N’kob, is a town near Ouarzazate in the Zagora Province, nestled in the Atlas Mountains. It is situated close to Jbel Sgharo and offers one of the most stunning stretches along the N9 road trip. Nqob boasts numerous kasbahs and two oases, with many of these kasbahs transformed into hotels, making them a prime attraction in this charming town. As the capital village of the Ait Atta Berber tribe, Nqob immerses visitors in Moroccan traditions, history, and culture. The surrounding Saghrou Mountains present excellent opportunities for trekking, ranging from day hikes to extensive multi-day journeys deep into the mountains.

Frequently Asked Questions – 3 Days Tour from Marrakech to Merzouga

Is the entirety of Morocco located within the Sahara Desert?

No, Morocco encompasses various landscapes, including the vastness of the Sahara Desert. However, the country also features other remarkable terrains like river valleys, gorges, canyons, and high mountains.

What is the weather like in the Sahara Desert in Morocco?

In the summer, the Sahara Desert tends to be hot and dry, with cool breezes providing respite at night. The days are sunny and pleasant in winter, but the temperature drops significantly once the night falls.

How many days are recommended for a visit to Merzouga?

One night and two days in Merzouga are typically sufficient to enjoy camel riding and experience desert camping in the heart of the Sahara Desert. While there may not be many additional activities in Merzouga itself, a visit to Erg Chebbi is highly recommended.

What are the notable attractions between Marrakech and Merzouga?

The route between Marrakech and Merzouga offers a wealth of remarkable sights, appealing to both history enthusiasts and nature lovers. From the snow-topped peaks of the High Atlas Mountains to the captivating river canyons and gorges of Todra and Dades, the historical sites of Rissani, and the charming villages along the Draa River, the journey presents multiple opportunities for scenic stops.

How can one travel from Marrakech to Merzouga?

There are various ways to reach Merzouga from Marrakech. The most popular option is a road trip, which allows for a memorable journey. However, flying into Moulay Ali Cherif Airport in Errachidia, the largest town near Merzouga, is an alternative for those with limited time. From there, you can take a local bus or hire a grand taxi to reach the village of Merzouga.

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