Ouarzazate
History & Heritage

Enter your dates to find available activities

Our most recommended Ouarzazate History & Heritage

Marrakech: 3-Day Sahara Desert Tour to Merzouga

1. Marrakech: 3-Day Sahara Desert Tour to Merzouga

Spending a night in the Sahara Desert is an unforgettable experience for visitors to Morocco and this three-day tour lets you travel further and explore more along the way. Visit UNESCO-listed Ait Ben Haddou, the Valley of the Roses, and Tinghir ; stop at traditional Berber villages around the Todra Gorge; then take a camel trek through the Erg Chebbi dunes the highest in Morocco and sleep beneath the desert stars at Berber campsite. Day 1 : Marrakech - Tinghir Your shared 3 day desert tour from Marrakech to Merzouga will start early in the morning. Depart from Marrakech around 7:30 AM to ait ben haddou through tizi Ntichka pass and the high Atlas Mountains. Many stops will be made along the way. Visit the UNESCO World Heritage Kasbah ait ben haddou, which was also served as a set for various Hollywood blockbusters. Continue to Ouazazate and Kasbah Taourirte before lunch. In the afternoon, drive to Tinghir via the valley of the roses before you reach your hotel located in Tinghir. Dinner and overnight. Day 2 : Tinghir – Merzouga After breakfast at your hotel in Tinghir, your journey will start today with a drive along the road of 1001 Kasbah to Ouasis of Tinghir, where you will deviate to a minor road driving along the river to todra canyons. After some time at leisure to enjoy the immensity of the hugecliffs, and lunch at a local café (at your leisure), continue early in the afternoon to Rissani , famous for its date market, and being a starting point of the ancient trading caravans crossing the sahara desert to Tomboctou. After a quick stop, continue to Merzouga driving through some rocky desert landscape. Upon arrival at the edge of Erg Chebbi dunes, meet your camel caravan, and ride your camels through the amazing color-changing sand dunes with the sunset in the horizon as a backdrop. Reach your Sahara Desert camp, nestled in the middle of nowhere just before darkness. After some time to admire the sand dunes and the surrounding landscapes, get ready for a Moroccan dinner served under the stars next to a camp fire. Late at night, enjoy berber music with the local hosts playing drums. Day 3 : Merzouga – Marrakech After an early breakfast and a camel ride back to the main road, meet your driver and drive back to Ouarzazte. After some time at leisure for lunch, carry on in the afternoon to Marrakech through the high atlas mountains. Your shared 3 day desert tour will end in Marrakech around 7:00 PM.

...
Marrakech: All-inclusive 4 Day Private Desert Tour

2. Marrakech: All-inclusive 4 Day Private Desert Tour

An example of the itinerary you will follow: Day 1: Marrakech, Ouarzazate, Dades Valley Your driver will pick you up from your accommodation and you will set off on your 4 day adventure. Pass through the Tizi n'Tichka pass in the High Atlas mountains and from Marrakech to Ouarzazate you can enjoy the scenic route, the landscapes with changing colors and terrain and the Berber villages along the way. You will have free time to visit the Taourirt Kasbah in Ouarzazate and have lunch on site. Then, on to the green valley of Dadès and the valley of roses by the palm grove of Skoura. You will have dinner and stay overnight at a charming guest house in the valley. Day 2: Dades Valley, Todra Gorges, Dunes of Merzouga After breakfast, you will set off on the road to the 1000 Kasbahs, then check check out Tinghr with its magnificent palm groves. At Todra Gorge, the bravest explorers can trek along the canyon, 300 metres above the ground. Then continue towards Merzouga and the erg Chebbi dune in the Sahara desert. In the largest desert in the world, you can experience the sunset on the back of a camel as you ride towards the oasis where the camp is located. You may spend the night in the nomadic tents or under the stars and play music or sing along with the locals and become immersed in true nomadic culture. Day 3: Merzouga, Tazarine, Agdz, Ouarzazate Watch the sunrise over the dunes of erg Chebbi, followed by breakfast in the camp. Return to a hostel via camel trek for a quick shower then drive to Rissani, a small town in southern Saharan Morocco where you can stop to visit a fossil workshop, before continuing to the junction of the Drâa and Agdz valley. Enjoy a relaxing dinner and hotel stay in Ouarzazate. Day 4: Ouarzazate, Aït ben Haddou, Telouet, Marrakech Go on a tour of the movie sets and studios located in Ouarzazate: the "Hollywood of Africa". Visit the Ksar of Aït ben Haddou, a world heritage site. Aït ben Haddou has been used to date as a backdrop for more than twenty films, including "Gladiator", "Indiana Jones "and" Lawrence of Arabia ". Take advantage of this walk through the area to admire the traditional architecture of the kasbahs. Continue on home to Marrakech through the mountains.

...
From Marrakech: Day Trip to Ouarzazate and Ait Benhaddou

3. From Marrakech: Day Trip to Ouarzazate and Ait Benhaddou

Start your day trip with pickup from your Marrakech accommodation from 7-8 AM. Hop inside your air-conditioned car and soak up the scenery as you travel into the Atlas Mountains. Your first stop will be at a small village called Ait Ben Barka near the amazing natural areas surrounding Toufliht. Explore the area with your driver and learn about the schedule for your trip, and the sights that you will see on your trip. You'll take a little break to enjoy the beauty of this natural landscape and get excited for the next part of your journey. The second stop on your tour will be the Tizi n'Tichka pass, 7,415 feet above sea level (2,260 meters).  Your third stop will be at Atlas Film Studios at Ouarzazate. This is the largest film studio in the world, famously featured in the TV series Game of Thrones. You will have the opportunity to visit the studios to explore on your own. You'll be able to learn more bout the actors and films that have been filmed here, and take some pictures of the unique Moroccan scenery in the area. After the studio, you will go for lunch at one of the best restaurants in the area, with excellent prices and stunning panoramic views. The next and last visit after lunch will be at the famous Kasbah Ait Benhaddou, recognized as a UNESCO site and one of the most extraordinary kasbahs in Morocco. You'll end your day of scenic views and memories by relaxing in your comfortable air-conditioned vehicle on your drive back to Marrakech. You'll be dropped off at your accommodation in Marrakech between 8-8:30 PM.

...
3 Days 2 Nights Desert Trip to Marrakech from Fes

4. 3 Days 2 Nights Desert Trip to Marrakech from Fes

Drive through a cedar forest and see the resident monkeys, before descending to the Sahara Desert. Arrive at the traditional kasbah at the foot of the Erg Chebbi dunes. Enjoy the beauty of the sunset on a camel ride across the dunes. At the Berber camp, enjoy mint tea and dinner, gaze at the stars and spend the night in a tent. On the second day visit Merzouga, Tinghir and Ouarzazate. Head out on the rugged Road of a Thousand Kasbahs along the ancient caravan route. This area has been a popular location for Hollywood films, such as The Last Temptation of Christ and Jewel of the Nile. Stop for lunch and a walk in Todgha Gorges and then travel through the Dadès Valley past dramatic escarpments. Dinner and overnight at a hotel in the Gorges or in Ouarzazate. On the third day, visit the town of Ouarzazate, including the Kasbah of Taourirt and the Atlas Studios – the largest and most famous movie studios in Africa.

...
From Marrakesh: 2-Day Desert Zagoura Tour

5. From Marrakesh: 2-Day Desert Zagoura Tour

Spend two days exploring mountainous and desert scenery, as well as traditional Moroccan cities and towns with an experienced guide.   Day 1: Depart from Marrakesh at 9:00 AM in a modern, air-conditioned minibus and head to the Atlas Mountains. Drive through the range, taking in magnificent views of the surrounding countryside and snow-capped mountains. You’ll soon arrive at the Kasbah Aït Benhaddou, an ancient fortified village that exemplifies Morocco’s traditional earthen clay architecture.   Afterwards, continue to Ouarzazate for lunch at a local café or restaurant. Continue on along the Drâa Valley to reach the town of Zagora. Here, you’ll meet your camels, who will take you on a 1.5-hour trek into the dunes. From atop these tall, sometimes graceful animals, you’ll get amazing views of the desert on your way to your camp in the dunes.   Day 2:  After a traditional Berber breakfast, head out just before sunrise on another 1.5-hour camel ride to get the best views of the changing colors of the sky. Head back to Zagora by camel and say goodbye to your traveling companion.   From Zagora, head back to the Atlas Mountains by minivan, with plenty of stops for photos and lunch. You’ll arrive at Marrakesh between 5:00 PM and 6:00 PM and be taken to your hotel.

...
Fes To Marrakech: 3-Day Desert Tour

6. Fes To Marrakech: 3-Day Desert Tour

Travel between the 2 imperial cities of Fes and Marrakech with a Moroccan desert tour. On this 3-day guided excursion, discover the secrets of the Sahara desert. Day 1: Fes – Midelt – Merzouga You’ll be picked up from your accommodation in Fes and head first to the fertile plains of Sais and to the cedar forests in the middle of the Atlas Mountains. Stop for lunch in Midelt, then continue along the majestic Ziz River, where palms stand in fortified kasbahs. Drive to Erfoud through the oasis and continue on to Merzouga, where you’ll climb onto your camel and follow your guide for a stunning ride through the orange dunes. From the back of these animals, you’ll watch the sun set over the dunes. You’ll then spend the night in a desert camp, to experience the nomad life. If you select the upgrade on checkout, you’ll spend the night in a luxurious en suite camping set-up. Day 2: Merzouga – Tinghir, Dades Wake up early in the morning to watch the sun rising over the desert before breakfast. Your first stop of the day will be to Rissani, known for being the location of the mausoleum of the founder of the Alaouite Dynasty of Morocco. Then, head to Tinghir on the route of the 1000 kasbahs, exploring the kasours and oases in the High Atlas mountain range. Take an hour to explore the Todgha River and admire this beautiful site and the canyons. Before lunch, visit the Berber village of Azrou with your guide to discover their traditional lifestyle. In the afternoon, you’ll drive to the Dades Valley to visit one of the oldest kasbahs in the region. You’ll then be dropped off at your guest house or hotel in Dades. Day 3: Dades – Kelaa Mgouna – Ouarzazate – Ait ben Haddou – Marrakech After breakfast at your hotel, travel to Kelaa Mgouna in the Rose Valley, a famous rose plantation. Visit one of the rose growers’ cooperatives and discover how the workers mix distilled rose water to create scents. Continue along the kasbahs to Ouarzazate, known as the “door of the Sahara”, often used as a filming location. Next you’re off to Kasbah Ait ben Haddou, a UNESCO-listed fortified village. Explore this beautiful site with your guide and learn more about its Moroccan earthen clay architecture. In the afternoon, take the Tizi-n-Tichka pass through the Atlas Mountains, where Berbers have been living for centuries. You’ll arrive back in Marrakech in the late afternoon.

...
From Marrakesh: 2-Day Trek to Ait-Benhaddou and Ouarzazate

7. From Marrakesh: 2-Day Trek to Ait-Benhaddou and Ouarzazate

Day 1: Marrakech – Telouet Kasbah – Ait Ben Haddou Kasbah Depart from your Marrakech hotel at 8:30am by air-conditioned vehicle and head toward Ouarzazate. Admire the majestic Moroccan scenery and small, tiered villages as you soar toward the High Atlas by way of the winding Tizi-n-Tichka pass. Continue on the meandering roads to the Telouet kasbah, an ancestral residence of the Pasha Glaoui of Marrakech. Enjoy a leisurely lunch at the historic kasbah, and then cross the Telouet trail, which used to be a trade route connecting sub-Saharan Africa to Marrakech. Once you reach the stunning red landscapes and green olive trees of the Ounila Valley, discover the Aït Benhaddou kasbah, a UNESCO World Heritage site. Take in a beautiful sunset from the top tower of the kasbah before sitting down to dinner and checking in for your overnight stay in the 3-star Ait Benhaddou hotel. Day 2: Aït Benhaddou – Ouarzazate – Fint Oasis – Marrakech Enjoy breakfast and then get back in your air-conditioned vehicle for the drive to Ouarzazate, the site where movies such as Lawrence of Arabia, Star Wars and Gladiator have been filmed. Take in the panoramic views and visit the ancient Taourirt kasbah, another UNESCO World Heritage site and home to two film studios and the Museum of Cinema. Explore the studios and continue on to the Fint Oasis, a beautiful palm grove made up of four traditional Berber villages. Visit a Berber house and enjoy Moroccan mint tea. Sit down for lunch then return to Marrakech in the late afternoon.

...
From Marrakech: 3-Day Private & Luxury Desert Trip

8. From Marrakech: 3-Day Private & Luxury Desert Trip

Day 1: Marrakech, Kasbah Ait Ben Haddou & Dades Gorges: Start your 3-day adventure with a pickup at your hotel or riad in Marrakech. After meeting your driver, depart to the High Atlas mountains, crossing the pass of Tizi N'Tichka with stops along the way to enjoy spectacular panoramic views. Whilst here, visit the Argan oil Cooperative where you will discover their fascinating production process and learn about the countless benefits this product has on the human body. Continue South and head down a 6-kilometer track that will take you to the fortified town of Ait Ben Haddou. At this location you will get to visit the famous Kasbah, a World Heritage Site. Enjoy a delicious Moroccan lunch in the village before travelling to Ouarzazate. Continue on your journey toward the Valley of the Roses, passing through the great palm grove of Skoura before reaching the Dades Gorges.  Day 2: Dades Gorges, Todra Gorges and Merzouga Dunes (desert): Begin day two with a delicious breakfast before travelling to Merzouga. On the way, observe the stunning gorges from a strategic place on the mountain as you travel along a road dotted with beautiful Kasbahs. After several stops, reach one of the southern highlights, the Gorges of the Todra. Enjoy lunch at the site and continue on into the desert until you reach the impressive Merzouga Dunes where you will enjoy some delicious tea. Leave your luggage at the lodge and leave in a caravan for a 1-hour trip, which will take you to your campsite. Stop in the middle of the road to watch the sunset in the dunes and stretch your legs before following the path to the camp. Before dinner, you will have the opportunity to climb the dunes that are near the camp and enjoy tea as you take in the peace and quiet. Spend the night at your camp base under the stars.  Day 3: Merzouga, Draa Valley, Anti Atlas, Ouarzazate & Marrakech: Wake up before dawn and enjoy the sunrise on the Great Dunes. Return back to your hostel where you can shower, eat a delicious breakfast and begin your trip, passing through Rissani, one of the oldest cities in Morocco. Crossing the arid you will witness spectacular pre-desert landscapes until you reach the Draa Valley. Whilst here, make several stops and enjoy this beautiful valley that runs along the longest river in Morocco. Cross the Anti Atlas to reach Ouarzazate where you will have lunch on site. In the afternoon, cross the High Atlas before arriving back in Marrakech in the evening.

...
Marrakesh: 3-Day Merzouga Instagram Journey

9. Marrakesh: 3-Day Merzouga Instagram Journey

Day 1: Marrakesh, Tizi 'n Tichka, Kasbah Ait Ben Haddou, and Boumalen Dades Pickup begins early in the morning, at which point you depart from Marrakesh towards the Kasbah Ait Ben Hadou, passing by the collar of Tizi Ntichka and High Atlas Mountains along the way. Many stops are made during the journey, which include the Kasbah Ait Ben Haddou, a UNESCO World Heritage Site dating back to the 11th century. It is a striking example of the architecture of the traditional Moroccan South, and a picturesque site filled with emotion. Following lunch, continue through the Roses Valley to reach your accommodation at Dades. Following a traditional dinner consisting of Berber dishes, spend the night in a local hotel and enjoy the magnificent views of the valley. Day 2: Gorges of Dadès, Gorges of Todra, and Merzouga After breakfast at the hotel, depart for the Toudra Gorge. The gorge is naturally constituted from high limestone cliffs that have been hollowed out for millennia, and is a delight for climbing enthusiasts. Following lunch, your journey continues to the fascinating dunes of Merzouga - a village marking the beginning of the Sahara. On your way to Merzouga, stop at one of the most fascinating sites of Morocco, which contains unreal sculptures created by the German artist Hannesjörg Voth. Once having arrived to Merzouga, your vehicle is replaced with a camel upon which you enjoy a traditional 1-hour camel ride. You then cross the dunes and admire the sunset, which consists of a multitude of colors which change over time. After a traditional dinner accompanied by Berber rhythms, spend the night under the stars in a nomad tent in the middle of the desert. Day 3: Merzouga, Ouarzazate, and Marrakesh Your day begins with a sumptuous sunrise, before a traditional breakfast is served. Once having traveled back to Merzouga by camel, continue through the Draa Valley and the Berber village of Agdez to reach Ouarzazate, where you visit the Kasbah of Taourirte. Admire the exterior architecture of this 17th-century monument, which is a sand castle with bronzed walls rising to the sky. Crossing the Atlas chain, take the road to Marrakesh safely and comfortably before arriving to your accommodation in the evening.

...
Morocco: Private Tour of Aït-Ben-Haddou & Ouarzazate

10. Morocco: Private Tour of Aït-Ben-Haddou & Ouarzazate

Begin your full-day tour of the incredible Moroccan landscape with a drive from Marrakech through the Tizi-N-Tichka Pass. Visit a cooperative run by women in the Atlas Mountains, where the famous argan oil is produced by hand and organic delicacies and beauty products are sold.  Just before Ouarzazate, the gateway to the desert, enjoy the unique chance to visit the Aït-Ben-Haddou Kasbah. This ancient town is not only a UNESCO World Heritage Site but often a location used in Hollywood films and television series, such as Gladiator, Kingdom of Heaven, Prince of Persia and Game of Thrones. Enjoy a 1-hour tour with a local guide and discover what makes this little town so unique. After lunch in a local restaurant with a panoramic terrace in the newer part of Aït-Ben-Haddou, continue to Ouarzazate and enjoy the choice of visiting either the venerable Kasbah Taourirt and the Old City or the Film Museum on the other side of the street. Stop for a coffee or tea over the High Atlas and return to Marrakech.

...

Other Sightseeing Options in Ouarzazate

Want to discover all there is to do in Ouarzazate? Click here for a full list.

What people are saying about Ouarzazate

Overall rating

4.5 / 5

based on 962 reviews

The whole experience from start to finish was great! Our driver was amazing and so helpful even though we slept most of the way! We saw amazing places and learnt about the different cultures and history behind the places we visited. The Sahara and night at the camp was once in a lifetime. Definitely recommend. The journey was long but we did sleep in the car since it was only our group, felt we had a private tour from start to finish. Only needed money for lunch but everything else was your choice, if you wanted to buy anything from the small shops or give tips. Only thing I would say, at the kasbahs they told us we needed to buy a head scarf for the Sahara so we did thinking it was true but then when we got there it wasn’t actually needed. We didn’t mind too much as we can use as a scarf but it is optional and shouldn’t be made to feel like you have to. Apart from that would definitely recommend.

Hicham our guide and driver was excellent, very knowledgeable and got us thru some very long days of driving comfortably. Highlight of our trip across Morocco !

3 days 2 nights desert was amazing. A group of only 7 people and the driver was very patient, fun and good person!

Mohamed was a great guide! He drove quickly but safely. All the activities along the way were worthwhile.

Great stay, with a driver always attentive Hassan I recommend this tour