“The trip was great... our guide was the best we have ever had and we have traveled with B&R, Backroads and Vermont Biking.”
– Anne B,
Morocco Custom March, 2010
Mar 28-Apr 7
Mar 27-Apr 6
Custom trips available and can start any date. Call or email for details
11 days/ 10 nights
Ouarzazate / Marrakech
30-40+ miles daily
Gently rolling with some short steep hills
Land Cost (current year):
US $200 Please note: Our bicycle fleet for this trip are 2014 Cannondale Quick 1 performance hybrids which are suitable for the roads in Morocco. Bikes come with flat pedals, rear racks and a map cover. Racing bikes available on request.
Single suppl: US$75
1 night hotel in Ouarzazate at a 4 star hotel with 1/2 day guided visit, breakfast and airport transfer on arrival.
Single suppl: US$175
2 nights hotel with breakfast daily, 1/2 day guided visit for each day and airport transfers on departure.
Single suppl: US$175
2 nights hotel with breakfast daily, 1/2 day guided visit for each day and airport transfers. Flight from Marrakech to Fes (through Casablanca) not inc.
11 Days- Classic
Exotic and alluring, Morocco offers a fascinating culture; we’ll follow the ‘trail of the kasbahs’ into the Sahara, hike in the High Atlas, bike along the coast to the resort town of Essaouira, explore the town of Marrakech and more...
Only Great Explorations:
- Small groups, extraordinary guides, and authentic experiences.
- An evening to remember: an evening in the desert being entertained by a troupe of berber musicians.
- A ride you will never forget: the descent from the Tin Mal mosque to Ouirgane with a view of Mt.Toubcal, Morocco's highest.
- Private Land Cruiser for each 4-5 guests, with driver.
- Order off the menu at restaurants you won't find in guidebooks.
- Distinctive, charming hotels too small for larger groups.
- We design and operate our own trips so there are only good surprises.
Day 1 :
Ouarzazate - We suggest connecting by air through Casablanca; we’ll be at the airport in Ouarzazate to greet you on arrival and whisk you to our hotel. Note that the evening flight from Casablanca usually arrives just after midnight - you can sleep in and have a leisurely breakfast before we start biking.
Zagora - Following the magical Draa River, we cycle along this fertile valley where lush palmeries secret date palms, olive groves, and citrus trees. We’ll stop close to Agdz for lunch before continuing on to lively Zagora, which dates from French colonial times.
Distance: 33 km, elevation gain 156 m or 67 km, gain 155 m.*
The distance between Ouarzazate and Agdz is 80 km.
M’Hamid - Our cycling route will lead us to Tamegroute, where we’ll visit an ancient library which boasts a magnificent collection of Koranic texts, dictionaries, and astrology works, some on gazelle hides. We will also visit a local co-operative to learn how the distinctive pottery found in this region is made. Afterwards, we’ll continue deep into the Sahara (Tomboctou is only 52 days away by camel caravan). Trading our bikes for camels we’ll be led by Berber escorts to our private tented camp, where festivities await.
Distance: 49 to 100+ km, elevation gain up to 272m.*
The distance between Zagora and our drop off point is approximately 45 km.
Ait Ben Haddou - Up with the sun, we’ll enjoy breakfast surrounded by dunes before departing the desert. We’ll visit a local market, where fruit, vegetables, herbs, handicrafts, sheep, goats and donkeys are brought to be sold. Late afternoon, we’ll cycle a quiet road to the UNESCO World Heritage Site of Ait Ben Haddou. This is Morocco’s most spectacular ksour, a collection of towered and crenellated Kasbahs that once guarded the lucrative caravan route through the Atlas mountains. We’ll stay at the intimate Ksar Ighnda, a charming and luxurious hotel.
Distance: 35 km, elevation gain 235 m.*
The distance between M'hamid and Ait Ben Haddou is 280 km.
Ait Ben Haddou - After the journey back from the desert, you will appreciate having an extra day in Ait Ben Haddou. Choose to take a day off to relax and explore Ait Ben Haddou on foot, or cycle up to the incredible kasbah at Telouet, described so ovocatively in Gavin Maxwell's 'Lords of the Atlas'. After lunch in Telouet, return to Ait Ben Haddou for an afternoon around the swimming pool.
Distance: 32 km, elevation gain 580 m.*
Ouirgane - We’ll transfer today over the High Atlas, beginning our ride along a flat stretch of magnificent road where views of snow-capped peaks and lush farmland provide a dramatic change of scenery. Reaching the Ouirgane valley, we’ll stay at a charming hotel with extensive gardens. Next day, we’ll hike into local villages where we’ll be offered tea and a chance to bake bread in community ovens. Afternoon options include cycling along the enchanting Oued Nfiss to the extraordinary Tin Mal mosque, built in 1156 and recently restored and open to visitors.
Distance D6 : 32 km, elevation gain 580m or 71 km, gain 745m.*
Distance D7 : 40 km, elevation gain 415m or 40 km, gain 775m.*
The distance between Ait Benhaddou and Ouirgane is 220 km.
Essaouira- After a transfer towards Marrakech, we’ll turn west towards the coast, beginning our ride with the Atlantic Ocean in the distance. We’ll bike a stunning road, dropping to the hip town of Essaouira, famous for its artisan shops, European feel, and several kilometers of sandy beaches. On our second day, we’ll join a local historian exploring the medina here, where the maze of tiny streets reveal spice markets, marquetry workshops, ancient hammams and more. Cycling options include routes along the coast; for those who like to walk there are also hikes to secluded beaches from town. We’ll stay at the exclusive Villa Maroc, one of the top Riad hotels in the city, located in the heart of the medina.
Distance D8 : 22 to 50+ km, elevation gain 450+ m.
Distance D9 : 49 km, elevation gain 270m or 25 km, gain 127m.*
The distance between Ouirgane and Essaouira is 210 km.
Marrakech - If you wish an early morning ride, there may be time for a short spin along the beach. Leaving Essaouira we’ll reach Marrakech in time for lunch. Afterwards, we'll visit the city’s sites including the Marjorelle Gardens, Museum of Yves St. Laurent, and El Bahia Palace; as dusk sets on the extraordinary Jemaa El Fna, we’ll watch as snake charmers, acrobats and street performers of every kind imaginable entertain. We’ll stay at a wonderful Riad near the historical center and for our final night, dine at one of the most atmospheric restaurants in Morocco.
DAY 11: You can depart at your leisure anytime on this day.
*Distance and elevation gains may vary depending on hotels chosen for specific departure.
Map of the Area
What's Included in the Cost of Your Trip?
Services of one or more experienced Great Explorations guides and support vehicle.
10 nights lodging.
All breakfasts, 8 lunches, and 9 dinners.
Entrance fees for selected historical sites and museums.
Detailed map and route instructions.
All baggage transportation.
All transportation from initial meeting point to final drop-off (see arrive/depart cities).
All tips in hotels, restaurants etc. (excludes discretionary tips for guides).
Please note: Final itinerary is subject to revision; any changes made are done so in an attempt to provide the best possible trip given route conditions and available services. Due to the nature of our business and exchange rates, prices are subject to change. All prices quoted are U.S. dollars but we gladly accept payment in Canadian dollars also. Due to cancellations and waiting lists, trip availability fluctuates daily. If you have any questions or would like to confirm space on this trip before making your reservation, please contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org or by telephone at 604.730.1247
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