Erg Chigaga Tour

An Adventure into Morocco’s Hidden Sahara

Erg Chigaga tour map

The itinerary below is an example of what we can and have put together. We can use this as a base for your own customized journey through Morocco.


Pricing shows in an estimate. Prices will vary. Our tours are all private. Feel free to contact us with any questions you may have.

Check Out the Full Itinerary

Day 1 – Arrive Marrakesh (or Casablanca)
Airport Transfer, Dinner
A driver will be waiting for you at Casablanca airport to take you to your riad in Marrakesh. An early flight arrival you will give you time to put your toe in the exotic water that is this wonderfully flamboyant city. Before the guided tour of the Medina tomorrow, this afternoon you might like to enter into the spirit of Marrakesh by taking a ride in a caleche, the horse-drawn carriages that are the most romantic way to see the city from beyond its pink walls. You’ll have dinner this evening in the comfort of your riad.

Day 2 – Marrakesh Guided Visit
Private Guided Visit, Breakfast, Lunch
Don’t worry if you get lost in the Medina should you choose to wander on your own, just point yourself in the direction of Jemaa el-Fnaa (or La Place as it’s better known among local Marrakschis) and you will soon find your way home. That won’t be a problem once you’ve experienced a private guided tour (which includes lunch) as your guide unravels the clustered streets and shows you the more interesting places to visit. He’ll intrigue you with stories of life within the nineteen kilometers of wall that encircle the Marrakech Medina. The tour lasts from 9:30am until 5:30pm, and before you set off you will be able to discuss with your guide (see our Marrakech travel information) the sights you would most like to see.

Day 3 – Telouet | Ait Ben Haddou | Ouarzazate | Skoura
Transport (5hrs), Breakfast, Dinner
Your route today takes you over the 2260 meters-high Tizi n’Tichka pass, a sashaying engineering feat completed in 1936. You zig-zag through a desolate terrain of hairpin bends, but the ravishing views make it all worthwhile. Have your camera at the ready and your driver will find somewhere safe to stop.

For those who want to explore further off the beaten path, Telouet makes an impressive stop via the back way towards Ait Ben Haddou. It is said that the ruins of a slave village can still be seen, although little remains, and Telouet itself is rapidly disintegrating. Ait Ben Haddou is next on the agenda. It’s a walled town of traditional mud and straw buildings and you get an eerie sense of history as you walk the shadowed streets between crumbling walls, although as it is now a recognized UNESCO site of special interest much work has been done to restore some elements of it to its former grandeur.

The road then descents to Ouarzazate the tribal home of the Glaoui family who demanded tolls from anyone passing through the mountains on their way to and from Marrakech. Salt was important to the Glaoui fortunes, and a large Jewish community once lived nearby who oversaw the production of this precious commodity. Next, you head to Skoura in the Valley of the Kasbahs, where you have the afternoon to relax in this peaceful oasis before dinner is served.

Day 4 – Dra Valley | Zagora | M’hamid | Erg Chigaga
Transport (6hrs), Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner
This morning you leave Skoura and head two hours south to the remote village of M’hamid where the paved road ends. Lunch is taken with a local family, after which, nicely rested, you begin the next part of your journey off-road, traveling into Morocco’s wildest Sahara region – Erg Chigaga.

Day 5 – Erg Chigaga Sahara Desert
4×4 Sahara Exploration, Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner
The dramatic 300 meter-high dunes of Erg Chigaga undulate into infinity like a vast ocean of sand, and today is dedicated to fully absorbing the desert experience. Little disturbs the silence other than the sound of your feet as you trek among the dunes (not quite as easy as your guide will make it look). You can meet nomadic families of the Ait Atta Berber tribe that live here and learn about life in this wildest desert of Morocco.

Day 6 – Lac Iriki | Foum Zguid | Taroudant
Transport (8hrs), Breakfast, Dinner
Prepare yourself for a long drive today that is both diverse and arduous. For three hours you travel off-road through the ‘badlands’ of Erg Chigaga, passing the fifty mile-long dry lake bed of Lac Iriki, made famous by the Paris-Dakar rally. At Foum Zguid you stop for lunch before welcoming a good road that takes you through the Anti-Atlas, a UNESCO Argan-tree Bioreserve, and finally to Taroudant, known as the ‘Grandmother of Marrakesh’ because it looks like a smaller Marrakesh with its surrounding ramparts, and was used briefly as the country’s capital by the Saadians in the sixteenth century, before they moved onwards to the Red City.

Day 7 – Tiznit | Aglou | Mirleft
Transport (5hrs), Breakfast, Dinner
Today, we set the compass for southwest and head to Morocco’s untouched beach haven of Mirleft in Morocco. Discover what the French have known for a long time in this continually sunny paradise. The large beaches, long sunny days, and fun surf spots make this a hidden paradise. For those travelers who would not rather go to Mirleft, going to Essaouira (see our Essaouira travel guide) is always an option.

Day 8 – Sidi Ifni | Mirleft
Transport, Breakfast
You have the day free in Mirleft. One of the funnest activities here is a surf lesson on Morocco’s ‘Wild Beach’. Activities are best arranged beforehand, and include a surf camp and/or fishing. If you feel like exploring, you will find there is an oasis and a ruined fort nearby, and Sidi Ifni has some glorious Spanish Art-deco architecture. If you happen to be there on a Saturday morning there is a camel market at Guelmim as well.

Day 9 – Agadir | Marrakesh
Transport (5hrs), Breakfast
A languid drive along the coast watching the crashing of the Atlantic surf. You pass Agadir, the largest seaside resort in Morocco which has been completely rebuilt since it was devastated by an earthquake in 1960. It’s here where you can stop off at an eco lodge to enjoy a mountain bike ride and lunch, which is a great option for families. You’ll then continue back to Marrakesh to enjoy one last night before your departure.

Day 10 – Depart from Marrakesh (or Casablanca)
Airport Transfer
You depart from Morocco today and we hope you had a fascinating journey with our team! If you are leaving from Casablanca, try to arrange your flight out in the afternoon as this will give you enough time to travel from Marrakesh.

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