5-Day Desert Tour: Classic Morocco (Options for 4 or 6 days of riding)
When you think of a bike tour in Morocco, this is the tour that you would envision. Rugged mountain passes, sand dunes, Dakar rallye tracks, dry lake beds, stunning oases, clusters of palm trees surrounded by rock and sand, breathtaking canyons, gorges and cliffs. If you only came to Morocco one time in your life, this is the trip you would want to take.
With a few route modifications, we can shorten this tour to 4 riding days, or lengthen it to be 6 riding days. Enquire for exact itinerary descriptions of 4 or 6 day tours.
Arrival in Ouarzazate
Transfer to a 3-star hotel in Ouarzazate. A visit to our location this afternoon will allow you to try on and choose your riding equipment.
Day 1: Ouarzazate to Tamalout
A good introduction to desert riding. Mainly fast and smooth tracks in the morning, give valuable experience of gravel cornering skills. A deep gravel river bed provides a challenge (for some) halfway through the morning, though we make sure there are enough stops for you to catch your breath. We will happily offer riding tips as the day progresses for those who need them.
A picnic lunch (the famous WW man sandwiches) followed by another one of those gravel river beds (Pete likes them) then a traverse of a large plain on fast, packed clay tracks, bring us to the village where we will spend the night. A cosy mountain gite (hostel) in a beautifully cultivated gorge, overlooking the Mgoun river.
Day 2: Tamalout to Zagora
An interesting tarmac road winds through the foothills of the High Atlas to our first fuel and coffee stop. After a quick coffee, we hit the dirt on a beautifully flowing hilly track, that gets increasingly rough and challenging throughout the morning. A steep, and if there has been recent rain, rocky mountain pass at the end of the morning. A picnic lunch on the trail.
The mountains become increasingly canyon-like in the afternoon, before a dramatic descent down the side of a canyon, brings us out onto the Draa Valley. A delightful piste runs through the ancient mud walled villages of this famous region, though there is the option of following the assistance vehicle on road to the hotel (and being the first one to the bar!) A comfortable 4 star hotel with swimming pool in Zagora.
Day 3: Zagora to Chegaga
A later start this morning sees us ride to the top of Jbel Zagora, a 300 metre mountain next to the town offering fantastic views of the Draa Valley to the North, and the desert to the South. We then head South on old Rallye tracks, where you can practice the skill of keeping the bike stable at high speed. A picnic lunch while we refuel the bikes, before we head off on the fast and flowing tracks that head west to the sand dunes of Chegaga. Upon arrival at the bivouac, we enjoy the shade of the restaurant tent and some cold drinks before heading out into the dunes later in the afternoon for some dune practice. Don’t be afraid; it can be done!
A relaxed evening meal in the bivouac, and afterwards, a campfire and tuareg drummers entertain us. Show us your dancing skills.
Day 4: Chegaga to Foum Zguid
Enjoy the desert sunrise if you are an early riser, then breakfast and “kit up”. This morning we continue the traverse of this section of desert, heading west to Foum Zguid. Initially rocky, the piste quickly smoothes out, and we are soon sailing across the (usually) dry lake bed of Lac Iriki. Find out how fast a KTM will really go.
We pick up an old Dakar piste which brings us into the town of Foum Zguid. We arrive at our hotel for a delicious lunch, and although there is a 3 hour loop of riding for those who have the energy, there is the option of just sitting by the pool and enjoying liquid refreshments; you choose.
Day 5: Foum Zguid to Ouarzazate
Today, we will cross the Anti-Atlas mountains, and after a short tarmac liason, we arrive at an incredible gorge, where the local berber villagers grow dates on an intensive scale. One more village, and our last opportunity for shade until lunchtime, before we climb, climb, climb up dramatic tracks clinging to the side of this ancient mountain range. “The most impressive mountains I have ever visited.” (Jeremy, London)
A short descent and a quick blast across agricultural plains, brings us to Tazenakht for our lunch. The tour is nearly over, but the smooth and sweeping gravel track that brings us back to Ouarzazate is a delight.
After leaving the bikes at our shop, enjoy the pool at the hotel, before we pick you up at 8.00 for dinner. Last chance for a team photo, to make a speech or to buy the guide a beer.
Depart from Ouarzazate