A Circuit of Southern Morocco
Spend seven days discovering the villages and villas of Southern Morocco as you follow 'The Memory Road', travelling from Marrakech to Ouarzazate. This exclusive 4x4 journey takes you through a range of stunning landscapes, from the green Valley of Argan to the sand dunes of the Sahara Desert.
Itinerary at a Glance:
- Head off the beaten track and find there is more to Morocco than markets.
- Get to grips with the local life of Southern Morocco during a village lunch and tour of the historic grain store in Amtoudi village.
- Head deep into the desert to the oasis-like Lake Iriki, and enjoy a dinner under the stars.
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Day 1: Argan Valley
Your driver will meet you at Marrakech airport, and your Moroccan adventure will begin from here. You will be driving around Southern Morocco over the next week in a comfortable 4x4 with the same driver, so settle in.
The drive to your first stop of the trip is around two and a half hours, but will take you into a beautiful argan tree valley, so keep your eyes peeled on the lush views along the way.
Your base for tonight is in Azrarag, where you will stay at the white stone house of La Maison des Arganiers. Perched on a hillside and built over two levels with terraces, this charming house commands striking views over the surrounding valley. Once you have arrived and dropped your bags, hopefully there will be time this afternoon to head out for a walk to explore the local area and meet women making argan oil from the kernels of the argan trees. If you arrive too late, this will happen the following morning. Back at the house, relax with a massage and then eat dinner under the stars.
Day 2: Local Life
Travelling onwards this morning you will arrive in the Red Beach area in time for a picnic lunch. Sit and admire the views and take a stroll to stretch your legs before getting back in the 4x4 for the rest of the journey, onto La Maison de L'Oasis, your hotel for tonight.
Situated amidst a lush palm grove this is the ideal spot for a leisurely bike ride or walk before dinner. After dinner, sit around the fire with a drink and admire the stars or curl up to watch a movie at the outdoor cinema.
Day 3: Views, Views, Views
Your next stop of the trip is the village and surrounding area of Amtoudi, where lunch will be served in an ancient grain store, set on a hill overlooking the village below.
This fascinating building is one of the oldest and most well preserved grain stores in North Africa, providing an insight into the history of Morocco. From this vantage point, you can admire the surrounding desert mountain landscape and the green fields of Amtoudi's farmland. Afterwards, refuelled and refreshed, wander the winding footpaths of the nearby Akka palm grove.
You'll then arrive at the stone-clad La Maison Rouge, with its elegant colonial era-inspired interiors, in time for sunset and dinner.
Day 4: Camp Out
From Maison Rouge, set off this morning and head through the desert sand dunes to a nomadic camp, nestled at the edge of the flats of Lake Iriki. Crossing the bumpy sand dunes, the journey this morning is part of the fun so strap in and enjoy the ride.
This secluded camp offers a range of activities, from desert hikes to camel treks, so pick whichever one suits you more and get your fill of desert thrills. As evening falls, the large dune overlooking camp is the perfect spot to sit and admire a colourful sunset.
Days 5-6: Dar Ahlam
Your Memory Road adventure culminates in a two night stay at the luxurious Dar Ahlam, a restored kasbah (fortress) with a stunning location on the edge of the Sahara Desert in the Ouarzazate region.
Arriving at around lunch time you'll be greeted with a fantastic private dining experience laid on for you in the gardens. With the slogan 'No menu, no bar, no restaurant, but also no "no"', you can be sure of an absolutely top notch lunch.
Over the course of the next two days you'll experience several more fantastic meals, interspersed with time to relax under the shade of palm trees, take a mule ride through the Valley of Roses and sip aperitifs at sunset.
After a busy week you'll also want to make time to relax in the hotel's hammam steam room, take a dip in the heated swimming pool and indulge in a complimentary massage.
Day 7: Home Time
Unfortunately the time has come to make your way back to Marrakech this morning, in time for your flight back home. The drive to the airport is just under five hours long so make sure you have comfortable clothing on and headphones at the ready. Alternatively, we can arrange for a helicopter transfer back to Marrakech, which takes significantly less time.
Isabel is our expert for this itinerary and, as a seasoned traveller, has the inside track on the most memorable adventures.