Erg Chebbi and Erg Chigaga
Tizi n' Tichka
Dades ValleyYou may have heard of many a valley so what makes the Dades Valley special? Stretching from the High Atlas Mountains in the north to the Jbel Sarho in the south, this route is blessed with oases, palm groves and fortresses. Fortresses so much so the valley is also referred to “The Valley of a Thousand Kasbahs” owing to the several fortresses built for added protection. However, what truly sets it apart is the fact that enroute one can enjoy both, a semi desert on one side and snow covered peaks on the other. Once again representing the true contrast that is abundantly visible in the quaint country of Morocco.
Erg Chebbi and Erg ChigagaThe vast expanse of the Sahara may not be the most human friendly dessert but the sand dunes located south of Marrakech are certainly what one wants from the “dessert” experience. These two areas, marked by huge wind-blown sand dunes, offer the entire African extravaganza. From camel rides with shadows falling onto the dunes due to the blazing sun to cool, starry nights in a luxurious tent is what Erg Chebbi and Chigaga promise. The only difference between the two is that Erg Chigaga is the more rustic yet less visited area compared to Chebbi owing to its Chebbi’s incredibly accessible roads and luxurious options to spend nights at the edge of the dessert. However, both reveal the dessert with equal exquisite.
Atlas MountainsThe Atlas Mountains shared by Morocco, Algeria and Tunisia have recently attracted trekkers, climbers and skiers. Why? These mountains being situated in a primarily “desert” country have snow covered peaks! Moreover, these mountains are dotted by Berber villages and it really couldn’t get more authentic than that. It truly is a sight to see their lifestyle; calculating distance in hours and days, their dependence on travelling markets since they don’t have local village shops or vendors and their use of intact ancient techniques makes you an expert on the forgotten culture of the Berbers.
Tizi n' TichkaThe drive to the Tizi n’Tichka pass goes through a winding road where the landscape and view change very often offering a condensed version of Morocco’s natural beauty. On passing the highest point, the Tizi n’Tichka pass that separates the province of Marrakech from Ouarzazate, you will see an impressive change in view and altitude followed by a panoramic view of the Jebel Tistouit. And of course, you will be able to see a number of villages and towns from the height you are at. A visit to the village of Telouet and its kasbah is a must. The kasbah’s embellishments in the marble and iron work will blow you away. Taking the road less travelled always resulted in something unique.
OukaïmedenOukaïmeden is a ski resort in the Atlas Mountains near Jebel Toubkal, about 80 kilometres from Marrakesh, Morocco. The skiing area is at an altitude of between 2,600 metres (8,500 ft) and 3,200 metres (10,500 ft) and has two ski lifts. There are some hotels and ski rental facilities nearby.