Ouarzazate in Morocco is around 200 kilometers south of Marrakech and is a popular stopover for round trips, but also for excursions and desert tours. The city itself is worth seeing, but the immediate area also has some great attractions to offer. Ouarzazate is best known for its film studios in which world-famous films were made, and for the Kasbah Taourirt, which is well-preserved and can be viewed from the inside. However, one of the best things to do in Ouarzazate is a visit to the clay town of Ait-Ben-Haddou, which is not far from Ouarzazate.
Things to do in Ouarzazate
There are a few interesting attractions to discover in the city itself, with almost everything revolving around films and film productions. However, also close to Ouarzazate are real highlights to discover, such as the world-famous UNESCO World Heritage Site Ait-Ben-Haddou. Here are the best things to do when you visit Ouarzazate:
The most important attraction right in the city of Ouarzazate is the impressive Kasbah Taourirt, a residential castle made of rammed earth, which was built in the early 20th century. This Kasbah is still very well-preserved and a third of it has been opened to the public for visits. Guided tours can be booked on site.
Another fascinating sight is the Cinema Museum in the center of Ouarzazate. It is located right across from the beautiful Kasbah Taourirt, so a visit to these two attractions can be easily combined. Statues, decorations, costumes, film equipment and other stuff from previous film productions are exhibited here.
Ouarzazate Film Studios
Ouarzazate is famous for its film studios, which can be visited as part of a guided tour, unless a film is being made. The Atlas Cooperation Film Studios, for example, are famous for their film productions, such as “The Pope”, “Gladiator” and “The Mummy”. But also the CLA Studios are worth visiting, because here some scenes from Game of Thrones were filmed.
The main attraction around Ouarzazate is the UNESCO World Heritage Site of Ait-Ben-Haddou, which is located around 30 kilometers away. The beautiful mud brick city is one of the most interesting places to visit in Morocco and should not be missed on any trip. Built around 1,000 years ago, this village still enchants with a unique backdrop. It is no wonder that this location was also a set for many famous movies.
Many visit Ait-Ben-Haddou on an excursion from Marrakech. However, it is really charming to stay in this historic city, because this place is magical, especially during sunset!
We recommend the Chez Brahim, wherefrom you will enjoy magnificent city-views. But also the Paradise of Silence with pool and really delicious cuisine is recommendable!
A visit to the Kasbah Amridil, which is located 40 kilometers away in the beautiful oasis of Skoura, is also wonderful and worthwhile. This Kasbah is very well-preserved and had even been inhabited until 1960. There you get a great impression of the past Kasbah and Berber life.
Don’t miss a visit to the upper floor, where you can enjoy a breathtaking view of the beautiful landscape and the green oases!
Fertile valleys, networks of hiking paths, remote Berber villages and snow-smeared peaks across North Africa’s highest mountain range.
The three ranges of the Atlas Mountains create a striking, sometimes harsh barrier between the arid Sahara and Morocco’s milder coastal climate. The middle of these ranges, the High Atlas Mountains, begins close to the Atlantic in Agadir and run in a jagged line northeast through the country, encompassing some of the region’s most authentic pockets of culture.
The mountains’ broad russet slopes are dotted with scrubby pines and lacy cedars, and the peaks gleam with snow even in the warmer months. Dirt roads and narrow footpaths snake through the otherwise pristine landscape, and in the moist, green valleys you’ll wind past herds of goats, wild herbs and small, remote Berber villages.
Nestled on the slope of a desert plateau, Boumalne Dades is a quaint town with nuggets of scenic and cultural delights. A cluster of beautiful red hued adobe houses built using traditional building techniques and materials, the city’s rich history finds pride of place in its Jewish Tiylit Castle and the colonial Kasbah of Mohdach. It’s in the labyrinth like streets of the old kasbah that you get a glimpse of the real Boumalne Dades, where locals meander past colorful stores while the tantalizing aroma of freshly grilled meat wafts through the air. The city comes alive on Wednesday and Saturdays, with crowds thronging to its bustling markets for Berber specialties like dates, figs and ethnic trinkets. Spend your time admiring local people dressed in traditional Tisbnay and T’ichtat or join them in a performance of Ahidous, the traditional music of this region. Explore the nearby Dades Gorge or wander through the Valley of Roses to experience the natural grandeur of this Moroccan hamlet.
- Hotel pickup / drop-off
- Transfer in comfortable vehicle
- English speaking driver
- Local guides
- Meals as per itinerary
- Tips and personal expenses