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Summary

This travel guide outlines a 3-day trip from Marrakesh to the Sahara desert, highlighting key stops such as the Atlas Mountains, Ait Benhaddou, Gorges du Todra, and the Merzouga desert. The journey is filled with natural wonders, cultural heritage sites, and unique experiences like camel safaris and star-gazing in the desert. The guide also offers practical tips for each location, ensuring travelers make the most of their adventure.

🏞️ Day 1: Journey to Merzouga

The first day starts early in Marrakesh, heading towards Merzouga, with stops at the Atlas mountains and Ait Benhaddou, ending with lively entertainment at Auberge des Peupliers.

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πŸ”οΈ Atlas Mountains

The Atlas mountains, stretching about 2,500 km through Morocco, Algeria, and Tunisia, offer breathtaking views and separate the Mediterranean and Atlantic coastlines from the Sahara desert. The morning drive through the Atlas mountains provides an opportunity to witness the magical landscapes and the perfect light conditions for capturing stunning photographs.

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<div class="-md-ext-youtube-widget"> { "title": "Marrakech Escape: High Atlas Mountains + Colorful Market ...", "link": "https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=TooqI0DWFQI", "channel": { "name": "When Adventure Knox"}, "published_date": "Oct 8, 2023", "length": "12:29" }</div>

<div class="-md-ext-youtube-widget"> { "title": "Hiking the Highest Mountain in Morocco\ud83c\uddf2\ud83c\udde6", "link": "https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=gqugG5s551M", "channel": { "name": "Bernardo Bacalhau"}, "published_date": "May 15, 2023", "length": "12:38" }</div>

<div class="-md-ext-youtube-widget"> { "title": "A journey through the Atlas Mountains - Lonely Planet travel ...", "link": "https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=yQVpYgwE7OE", "channel": { "name": "Lonely Planet"}, "published_date": "Sep 10, 2015", "length": "1:40" }</div>

Tips

Leave early and ask your driver to stop for photo opportunities to fully appreciate the beauty of the Atlas mountains.

🏰 Ait Benhaddou

Ait Benhaddou, a UNESCO world heritage site, is renowned for its earthen clay architecture and has served as a filming location for numerous movies and series, including Gladiator, Kingdom of Heaven, and Game of Thrones. Visitors can wander through the narrow streets and marvel at the intricate architecture that transports them back in time.

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<div class="-md-ext-youtube-widget"> { "title": "Ait Benhaddou - An Incredible Fortified Village | Ouarzazate ...", "link": "https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=WxWYVS51fHI", "channel": { "name": "Peter and Yen"}, "published_date": "Jul 29, 2023", "length": "19:04" }</div>

<div class="-md-ext-youtube-widget"> { "title": "Morocco: How the movies saved A\u00eft Benhaddou M A", "link": "https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=puKzBLQpTqU", "channel": { "name": "OUTBOUND WITH RON"}, "published_date": "Feb 25, 2024", "length": "13:05" }</div>

<div class="-md-ext-youtube-widget"> { "title": "AIT BEN HADDOU in Morocco - free entrance and top things ...", "link": "https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=b0yY6bKbulQ", "channel": { "name": "Travel smarter with Seb"}, "published_date": "Jun 23, 2023", "length": "14:31" }</div>

Tips

Take the time to explore the narrow streets, appreciate the unique architecture, and capture the essence of this historic site through photography.

🏨 Auberge des Peupliers

Auberge des Peupliers is a cozy bed & breakfast nestled between the mountains, where the evening transforms into a lively celebration with local music and dancing. The vibrant atmosphere and spirited entertainment create an unforgettable experience, making it worth staying up for despite the short night.

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Tips

Be prepared for a night filled with music, dancing, and cheer, as the locals provide an entertaining and lively ambiance that adds a unique charm to the stay.

Travel Information
🌐   Website: https://auberge-merzouga.com/
πŸ“Β Β Β Address: Auberge Les Roches, Merzouga, Morocco

🏜️ Day 2: Desert Adventures

The second day is filled with natural wonders at Gorges du Todra and an unforgettable camel safari in the Sahara desert, ending with a night under the stars.

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🏞️ Gorges du Todra

Gorges du Todra offers a mesmerizing landscape of age-old limestone river cliffs, carved by the Todgha and the Dades rivers, reaching up to 160 meters high on each side. It provides an impressive opportunity for walks and even rock climbing, making it a paradise for adventure enthusiasts.

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<div class="-md-ext-youtube-widget"> { "title": "Todra Gorge, Morocco [Amazing Places 4K]", "link": "https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=DIJL8NMTClk", "channel": { "name": "Amazing Places on Our Planet"}, "published_date": "Jul 20, 2014", "length": "5:59" }</div>

<div class="-md-ext-youtube-widget"> { "title": "Todra Gorges - Todgha Gorge Tour Excursion", "link": "https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=w9zYbSnU5Es", "channel": { "name": "Hyper Morocco Tours"}, "published_date": "Nov 10, 2017", "length": "2:14" }</div>

<div class="-md-ext-youtube-widget"> { "title": "The spectacular TODRA Gorges, the best place in Morocco for ...", "link": "https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=akiCFle7NvY", "channel": { "name": "TripsCulture"}, "published_date": "Sep 15, 2022", "length": "10:54" }</div>

Tips

Accessible via a well-maintained road, Gorges du Todra is an ideal stop for a short visit, especially for those on a tight schedule. The beautiful valley and palmtrees add to the charm of this natural wonder.

πŸͺ Merzouga - Sahara Desert

Merzouga, the gateway to the Erg Chebbi dunes, is a small village in the southeastern part of Morocco, known for being the base of most Sahara desert safaris. It offers the quintessential camel safari experience and the opportunity for an overnight stay in the Sahara desert at a Berber camp, surrounded by the majestic sand dunes.

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<div class="-md-ext-youtube-widget"> { "title": "Our Journey Into Morocco\u2019s Sahara Desert - Fez to Merzouga ...", "link": "https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8JSjOcD1qsM", "channel": { "name": "Sammy and Tommy"}, "published_date": "Dec 16, 2023", "length": "9:20" }</div>

<div class="-md-ext-youtube-widget"> { "title": "INCREDIBLE 24 Hours in the Sahara Desert - Merzouga ...", "link": "https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-jL6dA7k-N4", "channel": { "name": "Sammy and Tommy"}, "published_date": "Dec 20, 2023", "length": "17:11" }</div>

<div class="-md-ext-youtube-widget"> { "title": "TRAVEL VLOG | 3-Day Merzouga and Sahara Desert Tour ...", "link": "https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Y4MVnzxaZ8o", "channel": { "name": "Jessica Faye"}, "published_date": "3 weeks ago", "length": "23:38" }</div>

Tips

To fully immerse in the desert experience, booking a camel safari is a must. The safari includes a magical 2-hour ride, chasing the sunset with postcard-worthy views and a touch of Aladdin-esque nostalgia. Additionally, spending a night at a Berber tent camp provides a unique opportunity to savor a delicious dinner made with local products and spices, while exchanging stories with the locals. The night sky in Merzouga is perfect for stargazing, offering a clear view of the Milky Way and a myriad of stars, making it an unforgettable experience.

Day 3: Sunrise and Return

The final day begins with a stunning sunrise over the dunes, followed by a choice of return to Merzouga by camel or 4x4, and then back to Marrakesh.

<div class="-md-ext-markdown-card"> { "content": "Travel Time Tips\n\n\n> Sahara Desert Sunrise\n>\n> \u2b07\ufe0f (8.5 km, \ud83d\ude98 13 min)\n>\n> Return to Marrakesh\n>\n", "color": "#232425", "background": "#FFF9F2", "darkmodeColor": "#e0e0e0", "darkmodeBackground": "#333"} </div>

Sahara Desert Sunrise

An early morning climb up the dunes rewards with one of the most beautiful sunrises.

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Tips

Waking up early for the sunrise is a must; the views are unforgettable.

Return to Marrakesh

The journey back to Marrakesh can be made by camel or 4x4, offering different experiences.

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<div class="-md-ext-youtube-widget"> { "title": "The TRUTH about the 3 Day Tour from MARRAKECH to the ...", "link": "https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=anwcAR89SYk", "channel": { "name": "Chris Kermis"}, "published_date": "Jun 14, 2022", "length": "40:24" }</div>

<div class="-md-ext-youtube-widget"> { "title": "Merzouga Desert \ud83d\udc2a Roadtrip to the SAHARA from Marrakech ...", "link": "https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=tKm2kDRErT4", "channel": { "name": "mtl food snob"}, "published_date": "Dec 28, 2019", "length": "7:03" }</div>

<div class="-md-ext-youtube-widget"> { "title": "WHAT A MOROCCAN DESERT TOUR LOOKS LIKE ...", "link": "https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Q8w_CMMRXN8", "channel": { "name": "Keith & Dev"}, "published_date": "Jun 26, 2022", "length": "17:30" }</div>

Tips

Choosing the 4x4 allows for a later departure and a unique ride over the dunes.