We Love —
- Take the road less travelled, and head to the south of Morocco on this 7 night tour, to the ancient Berber towns of Agadir, Guelmim, Tafraout and Taroudant.
- Highlights of the tour include dramatic scenery of the Anti Atlas Mountains, unique desert rock formations and the amazing Legzira beach.
- You will stay in quality hotels throughout with special extras so you can be assured of a restful and relaxing night after the day's adventures!
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Your Destination —
Discover the soft sandy beaches of Agadir, the ancient Berber villages in the Anti Atlas Mountains and the sweeping sand dunes of the Sahara - all on this exciting 7 night tour.
You will explore lush valleys, irrigated by springs, palatial kasbahs recalling an ancient past and fortified villages which have stood the test of time. Taste, see, and feel the history of this unique and mesmerising country, as you travel to villages untouched by modern tourism, and gain insider knowledge with the help of an expert guide all the way.
All this, against a backdrop of burnished red sands and snow-capped peaks... Welcome to Morocco!
Your Itinerary —
This tour includes Half Board dining. (Breakfast and dinner, unless specified as otherwise in itinerary below.)
On arrival at Agadir Al Massira airport, and after clearing immigration & customs, you will meet your holiday representative just outside of the airport terminal, with a Voyage Prive banner.
The drive to your hotel will take approximately 30 minutes.
Agadir, is a Berber word meaning a fortified granary or village, and a dominant feature of many villages in the South and Atlas (you will be seeing several on your tour this week).
The city is the regional capital and its main activities include the production of fruit and vegetables in the Souss valley, exportation of fish – it actually produces the largest sardine production in the world, and, thanks to its climate and 9km long sandy bay which is one of the most beautiful bays in the world, tourism. It has professional golf courses, sea water treatment spas, chic marina, casinos & lots of sporting activities.
This region is the home of the argan forests – producing the immensely popular argan oil used in cosmetics and gastronomical dishes.
Its history dates back to the 12th century, when the Ksima tribe settled, and Portuguese sailors made it their centre for fishing and arms smuggling. Over the years, the city changed hands from the Saadian and Alaouite dynasties, even being the subject of a dispute in 1911 between Kaiser Wilhelm II, King of Prussia & Emperor of Germany, tried to set up a naval base. France ceded part of the Congo to Germany in return of control of Morocco, until its independence was restored in 1955.
Agadir was rebuilt after the earthquake in 1960, and you will find beautiful tree-lined avenues, a pedestrian promenade along the 6-mile long golden sandy beach – leading to the trendy marina, seawater centres, professional golf courses & an amazing surrounding countryside.
Its landmark is the citadel – Agadir Oufellah – bearing the inscription God, King & Country, where the bay can be seen in all its glory.
You will spend tonight in the Hotel Timoulay & Spa. Dinner will be taken in the softly lit, warm and friendly Ayour restaurant, overlooking the pool terrace & gardens.
Day 2: Agadir - Souss Massa National Park – Tiznit – Goulimine
After breakfast & check-out, your personal driver will meet you at the reception of the hotel & the adventure begins towards the « Gateway to the Sahara » Goulimine.
Today, you will have the privileged opportunity to enter the internationally renowned Souss Massa National Park, a protected area characterised by its bio-ecological richness, and ecosystems (wetlands, cliffs, argan forest, steppes, etc), with over 300 species of plants, 250 species of birds and 20 mammals such as Addax antelope, red-necked ostriches, Oryx algazelle and the beautiful ‘Bambi’ golden gazelle. This is the home of the Bald Ibis, one of the rarest birds in the world. The best time to visit is in winter, when tens of thousands of migrating birds gather, stopping over from Europe to Africa. Back to nature at its very best.
A light refreshment will be taken at the beautiful & usually isolated fishermen’s Tifnit beach – surfers’ paradise – before continuing to the former silver capital, Tiznit. This is the place to buy traditional silver Berber jewellery such as the famous hand of Fatima, an ancient talismanic motif.
Continue South along one of the region’s most beautiful routes, offering wonderful views of the ocean, rugged hills and empty coves to the cosmopolitan spot of Mirleft. A late lunch can be taken in one of its beckoning cafés, historically popular with artists, musicians recovering from Saharan crossings.
Then, its on to Sidi Ifni, standing on a rocky plateau above the Atlantic, and finally to Goulimine, which, from the 10th to 19th centuries as an important commercial centre located on the caravan route from Niger, Mali & Senegal, trading gold, spices, cloth & slave with Timbuktu. It’s also known as the town of the « blue men » due to the indigo robes of the Saharan nomads, coming once a week from the desert to trade their camels.
Check-in to the recently opened 4* Oasis Palm Hotel.
(Breakfast & Dinner)
After breakfast, you will discover the longest & wildest beach that Morocco has to offer, La Plage Blanche. Lost in Saharan dunes and facing the Canary Islands, this heavenly site was named Playa Blanca by Spanish explorers. The white beach is an untouched expanse of fine white sand, located in the heart of an ecological park of 250 square kilometres scattered throughout by many kasbahs of discrete charm.
Continue to Legzira Beach, one of Morocco’s unique beaches. Like its other Atlantic counterparts, the 8 km-long stretch of beach is windy, rocky, and expansive. What sets Legzira apart, however, were its two mammoth stone arches. Naturally formed after years of erosion, these sedimentary giants jut out into the perpetually crashing waves and are accessible during low-tide. However, one of the arches collapsed recently.
This is the haven for European para-gliders and surfers, the bongo drums and wetsuits manifest themselves a little ad nauseam, but through the Atlantic mists scraps of Moroccan life, like donkeys and fisherman, can still be found.
The driver will arrange for a freshly cooked fish lunch to enjoy before continuing to one of the South’s most amazing oases – the Tighmert oasis. Here, the Saharoui tribe, the Azwafit, live – and claim that Tighmert is the first and last step to paradise. There is a small eco-museum, showing off the nomadic and Berber memories & ways of life. You will be invited into a nomad’s tent for the obligatory glass of mint tea & experience their hospitality.
When you are ready, your driver will take you back to the Oasis Palm Hotel and time for a cleansing hammam in their spa. Dinner is in the hotel.
(Breakfast, Lunch & Dinner).
After breakfast, check out of the hotel, and leave « The Gateway to the Sahara » for the Anti-Atlas Mountains, via Bouizakarne and spectacular desert mountain landscape, stopping in the village of Taghjijt for a ‘noos noss’ coffee, then on to the Berber village of Amtoudi. An oasis, patches of irrigated land like green velvet against the stark & rugged ochre background, agriculture is the main activity, producing figs, apricots, almonds, olive and dates, & small fields of vegetables, corn & barley (for local needs).
One of the most fascinating aspects of Amtoudi, which sets it apart from other oasis settlements, is the 800-year old ancient grain storage facility, or « Agadir », perched high up on a hill overlooking the village & the oldest traditional bank system in the world. It is considered to be both the most well preserved agadir in North Africa and is well worth the visit. In the past it was of great value as it stored the grain that could mean life or death for the inhabitants of an area where rain is very scarce. However, bandits and rival tribes also had to eat, and would often invade villages with agadirs in an effort to help themselves to the stored provisions. The position of the agadir of Amtoudi village made this a very difficult task for would-be thieves, as visitors will come to appreciate.
Some free time for lunch in the village of Timoulay, & continue via Izerbi & Agigal villages, passing shepherds cloaked in chill shadows, their goats up in the trees feasting on Argan nuts, to the Berber heartland which is Tafraout, a village that looks as if it has fallen out of the sky, perched on alarming boulders the size of mansions. It’s cupped in a shallow bowl between rocky outcrops, a perfect balance uniting nature & man. A cluster of slender minarets and low pink homes, like something from the pages of 1001 nights.
Tafraout is where proud Berber tribes, traditions and folklore pre-dating the Arab conquest by centuries, a realm set quite apart from the hubbub of the kingdom's big cities and ubiquitous urban sprawl. An ancient oasis, Tafraout was first « discovered » in the 60s by the flower power generation, when droves of tie-dyed hippies trundled south in their combi vans.
These days, it's patronised by the world's leading rock climbers, lured by the sleek, wind-sculpted faces of sheer granite, set against a backdrop of utter tranquillity.
Before checking into your hotel, you will visit the village of Agard Oudad, lying at the foot of a group of strangely shaped red granite rocks known locally as « Napoleon’s Hat ».
Check into Hotel Les Amandiers. Dinner is in the hotel.
(Breakfast & Dinner)
After breakfast in the hotel, it’s time to leave for Taroudant, passing by impressive panoramic views in the Anti Atlas, amongst picturesque villages, Igherm & the palmgrove oasis of Tiout. You will have the chance to take a short walk through the oasis & a glass of mint tea in a Berber family’s home. There will be time for lunch during the day, and your driver will propose a stop en route.
Continue to ‘little Marrakech’, which is the former rebel stronghold Taroudant, but its pace of life is a long way from that of the imperial city. Hidden by magnificent red-mud walls and backed by the snowcapped peaks of the High Atlas, Taroudant’s souks and squares form this market town where Berbers trade the produce of the rich & fertile Souss valley.
Check in to the Riad Dar Zitoune, located outside of Taroudant's city walls, where you will experience the relaxing sensation of getting away from it all.
In the late afternoon, join your driver guide for an orientation tour of Taroudant, for photo stop of the remparts & 5 monumental gates, and take a horse and drawn carriage tour of the medina, with free time for shopping in Talmaklat Square, mingling with the Blue Women and their flowing indigo veils, a popular fashion associated with the blue men of the desert.
Return to Riad Dar Zitoune for a fabulous dinner, in sublime peace & tranquillity. (Breakfast & Dinner)
Day 6: Taroudant - Agadir
After a lazy breakfast in the Riad, it’s time to return to Agadir via the Souss Valley – and hopefully passing by the Argan trees with the goats perched in their branches.
Check in to the Hotel Timoulay & Spa, and time to relax by the pool, or maybe take a relaxing hammam in the beautiful spa.
This evening, you will be picked up and taken to Agadir’s trendy marina, to the most popular restaurant in town – the Pure Passion – for a delicious 3-course dinner. Time for a stroll in the marina, and return to the hotel.
(Breakfast & Dinner)
Day 7: Agadir
Breakfast is in the hotel & this morning you can now chill out & enjoy the day at either the pool or at the beach.
Mid-afternoon (you can fix the time with your driver), it’s time to discover Agadir by going to the landmark, Agadir Oufellah for an amazing panoramic view, down to the ancient fishing port, past the residential area, the Talborjt mosque, synagogue & church to the El Had Souk (its closed on Mondays). Here, you will see the mountains of fruit & vegetable from the Souss Vally, amongst everything & anything that you can buy – mixing with the Gadiris doing their local shop. Return to the beach promenade, to walk through the marina and check out some of its boutiques, & then a farewell drink at Les Blancs, looking over this wonderful bay.
Return to the Timoulay Hotel for dinner & overnight.
(Breakfast & Dinner)
Day 8: Departure
Breakfast in the hotel, check-out & departure to Agadir airport.
Your Hotels —
Sleeps up to
Just for you:
- Mint tea & bottle of mineral water in room on arrival
- Sauna per person on return from the tour
- Access to the fitness room
This elegant hotel fuses traditional Moroccan and art deco style, to beautiful effect. All rooms look over the pool & gardens - they are spacious and sunny, with twin beds, mini bar, TV with satellite channels, ensuite bathroom and balcony. Free WIFI is available throughout the hotel. Dinner will be taken in the softly lit, warm and friendly Ayour restaurant, overlooking the pool terrace & gardens.
Just for you:
- Mint tea & Moroccan pastries on arrival
- 1x hammam per person
All rooms are elegantly decorated, with TV, mini fridge, air conditioned and ensuite shower room & balcony or terrace. Dinner will be taken in the Noun international restaurant (choice of menu). There is the Pergola pool bar for aperitifs, open till 7pm, and the Bodega Bar, open till 11pm serving drinks & tapas
Just for you:
Mint tea & pastries on arrival
This simple and traditionally styled hotel offers great views from its poolside. Its staff are renowned for their friendliness & their beef, almond and prune tagine!
Just for you:
Mint tea & pastries on arrival
In the heart of the region of Souss, in the south of Morocco, and just a few miles away from the city of Taroudant, you'll find the charming Riad Dar Zitoune. Relax on the locally made berber furniture, enjoy doing nothing in the beautiful gardens, shaded by olive and citrus trees, or swim in the magnificent pool, designed in the shape of a moorish gate.
Please note: the bed for the 3rd/4th guest sharing is likely to be a sofa bed or camp style bed.
Your Journey —
Flights: The flights included are with either a scheduled or no frills airline and are subject to live availability and prices can change. You can choose your preferred departure times during the booking process. Please select your flight options carefully as departure and arrival airports may differ. Direct flights are available on Tuesdays, Thursdays and Saturdays.
Transfers: Private transfers are included throughout (Agadir airport to first hotel = 23km / 30min)
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- a large selection of room types and flexibility in departure dates & length of stay
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