Morocco is country of contrasts, Sahara Desert in the South to beautiful beaches to the stunning Atlas Mountains.  This is my third visit in a year and I decided to Explore Morocco Camel Trek with Lahcen who is a wonderful Berber guide.  Lahcen was born and brought up in the Sahara desert and knows the desert well.  He has a company called Explore Morocco Travel.

If you need some help making your Moroccan travel dreams come true, he can help you arrange everything!  We discussed my itinerary and planned what I wanted to do.  In my case this was to explore the desert for a few days on a Camel trek. However, he can help y0u arrange any kind of Morocco trip, from exploring the country to surfing, yoga whatever your heart desires. This is my diary.

DAY 1:

Arrive at Marrakesh International Airport and Lahcen picks me up in his very comfortable and modern 4 x 4 vehicle.  I spend the rest of the day exploring Marrakesh and stay in a lovely traditional Riad.

PHOTO: Jamaa El Fna Square

DAY 2:

Lahcen arrived at the Riad bright and early because we have a long drive ahead of us! A leisurely 8 hour journey through the beautiful Moroccan countryside and Atlas mountains, stopping along the way to take pics and for a delicious lunch!  This is a great way to enjoy the countryside.

PHOTO: Atlas mountains in the distance

There is a lot to see and it is a wonderful journey through villages.

PHOTO: A typical village along the way

Villagers going to market, donkeys walking along the road, it is a fascinating scene.

DAY 3:

Mohamed arrived with the Camel caravan the next morning and off we go after loading up with everything we could possibly need!  I was surprised by the amount of stuff we took along to make the journey comfortable. Lahcen was a good guide, full of interesting information about desert life and life of a Moroccan Berber.

PHOTO: The Camel Caravan in the desert

We ate  delicious food at every meal.  The food was the best vegetarian food I have eaten in Morocco – and I have visited some expensive hotels and resorts!  Berber Omelette for breakfast, delicious soups, salads and tagines.

DAY 4:

Another full day of trekking with stops for lunch and a rest.  I loved experiencing the desert with the Camels, a true desert experience.  We made camp in the prettiest oasis at night and enjoyed the desert peace and quiet.  Another delicious dinner and so many photo opportunities.  This is a million miles away from a typical tourist tour.  Arrange your own deluxe program, tailor-made to you and your family.

PHOTO: Desert camp on Explore Morocco Camel Trek

Perfect sunsets and the best starlit nights are a magical experience.  The peace and quiet of the desert is something everyone should enjoy at least once!

PHOTO: A magical Sahara Sunset

It is an awesome experience waking up in the desert!  The camels enjoyed their breakfast too!

PHOTO: Camels enjoy their breakfast

The Camels were a delight, calm, friendly and well trained.  I absolutely loved them! I loved experiencing southern Morocco from the top of  Camel, seeing such interesting things along the way with real Berber guides.

PHOTO: Spotted a baby Camel along the way

DAY 5:

What a great experience! We then swapped the Camel Caravan for the comfortable 4 x 4 and drove back to Marrakesh! Experience both the Anti Atlas and Atlas mountains.

PHOTO: Views on the way to Marrakesh

I returned to Marrakesh and a great Riad for a couple of days shopping, Hammam, and exploring!  Thanks to Lahcen and Mohamed for looking after me and for a one off special experience! Explore Morocco Camel trek.

EXPLORE MOROCCO TRAVEL:

Get in touch with Lahcen from Explore Morocco Travel and he will arrange anything from a day trip to a two week tour or trek!  Take a look at the website and see all the different possibilities awaiting you!  Here is a message from him:

Marhaba! I am Lahcen and I would love to show you all the beauty of my home: Morocco and the desert.

Born into a big Berber family in the middle of the south Moroccan desert, i spent my childhood as a nomad travelling around the southern desert.  Merzouga and the dunes of Erg Chebbi is what I call home. Do you want to explore it with me?

I have several years experience as a camel as well as a 4 x 4 and Motorbike driver.  I would love to explore the county with you on a private tour and tell you one stories about life of the nomad people in the desert.  Apart from Berber and Arabic, I speak Spanis, French and English.

About Explore Morocco Travel:

Southern Morocco with its beautiful, varied landscapes doesn’t fail to impress tourists from all over the world again and again. The drive from bustling Marrakech over the Atlas Mountains to the desert is lined with traditional villages and kasbahs as well as a overwhelming nature. Meet the friendly people along the way, drink as much “Berber Whiskey” (mint tea) as you can handle and savor the delicious moroccan food along your journey. Imagine yourself on the back of a friendly camel, walking slowly into the sunset, at the top of the golden sand dunes, looking at the splendid stars and getting up early to catch the first light of the sun.

We can organize your journey according to your very special needs – everything as you like it, at your pace. You can find some examples of our most popular tours and day trips here on this webpage. Please do not hesitate to ask for special programs or if you have special needs, we will be very glad to assist you to make your holidays the most memorable of your life.

Our tourguides speak English, Spanish and French. If you prefer another language such as German or Italian, do not hesitate to ask for it ! We will do our best to fulfill your requests.

Our services do also include airport transfers and we know some of the most beautiful Riads in Marrakech !

Are you ready to fall in love with Morocco ?

Tel : +212 671 430 215 / +212 621 368 331
E-mail: exploremoroccotravel@gmail.com
 

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Beautiful Atlas Mountains, Morocco

My 5 Top Tips for a Trip to the Atlas Mountains.  Are you taking a trip to Marrakesh?  Make time to get out to the Atlas Mountains.  They are only a two hour drive from the city and so breathtaking,  I would not miss the chance to get out there and see for yourself.

I took a couple of day trips out from Marrakesh, but next visit I will definitely go and stay out in the mountains at Kasbah Tarandot.  More later!

TIP No.1:

Hire a car and driver to show take you into the mountains, or rent a car if you are staying in Marrakesh  and enjoyed a memorable day exploring the mountains.  The morning was spent winding our way up higher and higher,  stopping to take in the view on the way.  The driving is easy.  The first trip we hired a car and driver but next trip was a self drive trip.

Photo: Explore the mountains

The road from Marrakesh to the mountains

An easy drive into the mountains, one long road ahead.

Spot Goats, Donkeys and wonderful views en route.

Top Tip No.2:

I ‘borrowed’ this bike for a photo!

If you hire a car and drive yourself watch out for speed traps!  I have never seen so many police catching speeding motorists, they have very strict speeding laws.  Also, make sure you buckle up or prepare for an on the spot fine.

Morocco is perfectly safe with well maintained cars and good roads.  It was a pleasant surprise. Just make sure you stick to the speed limit.

Top Tip No.3:

Ignore all the warnings you have read!  I avoided Morocco for years after being told ‘You will be hassled all the time, and it is not safe!’  and ‘It is so dirty everywhere’, ‘Marie, you will hate it!’.  Well, regular Divalicious readers know just what a pampered Princess I can be and I just loved it!  My advice is ignore all those warnings.  If a street vendor tries to sell you something (remember the poor chap is just trying to earn a crust for goodness sake!)  Do NOT engage in conversation, politely ignore.

I felt perfectly safe at all times, was not hassled in any way.  Morocco is a surprisingly enlightened country compared with others in the region and Marrakesh is a wonderful melting pot of cultures.  The people are a delight and you will love them!  This comes from a tall blond who doesn’t exactly blend in with the locals.

Top Tip No.4:

Kasbah Tamadot:

Visit Kasbah Tamadot.  This is a very special place, above and beyond Diva expectations.  Friends of mine stayed there and recommended a visit.  I was not disappointed and I will be back to stay.  The location is magical and the hotel is a perfect mountain retreat in every way.  The staff are a delight.  The hotel, with its Berber tent suite accommodation is just a heavenly, with exquisitely tasteful design and spectacular mountain views.  I almost cried  and clung to the gatepost when it was time to leave! (I didn’t really, but you know what I mean?)

Lunch with a view anyone?

Start saving now, it is worth every penny!  The suites, designed in the style of traditional berber tents, are the epitome of understated chic.

Kasbah Tarandot

Suite with a view of the mountains

Everywhere at Kasbah Tamadot is super chic, it is impossible to take a bad photo.  Lunch was simple but delicious.

Kasbah Tamadot, Atlas Mountains, Morocco

I enjoyed meeting the resident pets, including Camels, Goats, Donkeys, Mules and even Peacocks.

Even the Camels are friendly at Kasbah Tamadot!

TIP No.5:

Hike in the Atlas Mountains!  Whether you make time for a post prandial stroll or a two day trek, just walk and breathe in the pure mountain air and enjoy the views!

After lunch, we asked the hotel for advice on a suitable short hike.  They were amazing and provided us with water, a map and even a guide to set us off along the right track.  We were invited to shower on our return.  Such wonderful hospitality considering we only stopped for lunch!

Hike with a view at Kasbah Tamadot

I look forward to returning to http://www.kasbahtamadot.com

After lunch we clambered back into the 4 x 4 and Ali drove on to a Lake about another 20 minutes further into the mountains.

We were really tired by this time, the fresh mountain air, a good lunch and hike completely finished us off. We drove serenely back down the mountain to Marrakesh and a nap before dinner!  However, if you have time do stay overnight in the Atlas Mountains.

 

 

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Photo at Anantara Qasr Al Sarab

5 Top places to visit this winter!  Well, this is based on my recent Travels rather than all time favourites. I would find it impossible to choose five, wouldn’t you?

VENICE

I know, everyone loves Venice but that it is because it is one of the best places to visit in the world!  Venice has everything from beautiful architecture, magical ambiance, excellent shops, interesting museums and so many art galleries you will never see them all!

Iconic Venice, I will never tire of visiting this magical city

Avoid high season, is my biggest tip!  Treat yourself to a water taxi, by far the best way to see everything.  Avoid the touristy Gondoliers and take a fabulous Riva Water taxi.  However you can avoid the crowds by staying off the well worn tourist route, they generally do not stray very far!  Read all about Venice in my Venice blog.

PALAWAN ISLANDS, The Philippines

El Nido Islands, Palawan, The Philippines

If you want to take a long haul trip, I really recommend visiting the islands of The Philippines.  They are not called the most beautiful in the world without good reason.  Yes, it is a bit of a trek to get there but well worth it.  Go now before the world discovers them and they become spoiled.  Avoid the more touristy Boracay and head to Palawan.

Read my blog to find out where I stayed and more information.

ABU DHABI

Regular readers will know how much I love Abu Dhabi and visit every year!  Don’t just use it as a stop over, stay and see the country.  I particularly like the Liwa desert and stayed at the Anantara Qasr Al Sarab Hotel for the second time.  The desert is a very special place and it is nice to enjoy the luxurious surroundings of the hotel.Liwa Desert, Abu Dhabi, UAE

You will enjoy the city of Abu Dhabi too, there is so much to see and do, including the Sheikh Zayed Mosque which is awe inspiring.  I loved staying at the world famous Emirates Palace hotel Read my blog for more information.

Emirates Palace Private Beach

If you stay at Emirates Palace, I promise you will never want to leave!  However, get out and explore the country in a hire car.  It is perfectly safe to drive and you will feel very comfortable and safe driving anywhere in Abu Dhabi.  Almost impossible to get lost too.

MOROCCO

Atlas Mountains of Morocco

My latest discovery!  Indeed, I am already planning a return trip. Explore Marrakesh and the Atlas Mountains.  Read my blogs to discover more details, see the HOME page at the top.  Marrakesh was a delight and so much nicer than I expected, perfect for a few days short trip if you are travelling from europe.

The Medina in Marakesh

Explore the Medina, Majorelle Gardens eat delicious Moroccan meals and so much more.

Cote d’Azur France:

Cap Martin, Roquebrune Cap Martin, France

I know, I live here part of the year and so am a little biased but please come and visit! You will love it.  Monaco is one of the safest places to be and you will enjoy a trip very much.  Again read my blogs on the subject for more information.

MonacoDon’t forget to visit Monaco or stay a while during your trip. There are wonderful hotels, great events throughout the year, terrific restaurants and so much to see or do.  Enjoy the beautiful weather and beaches too!  Avoid high season on the Cote d’azur and Monaco would be my top tip.  High season is during July and August.

 

 

 

 

 

 

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