6 - 12
If you’ve ever wanted to go hiking in Morocco, then this is the perfect trip. You'll explore the breathtaking Atlas mountains and have the option to summit Mount Toubkal.
Sunlight streams between the palm trees and dust thrown up by the road as you enter bazaars thronging with the pulse of life. Shisha smoke and the rich scents of coffee and sugary mint tea fill the air. The Muezzin wails from high, delicately carved, minarets as the locals enthusiastically haggle for goods below. Life in Morocco envelopes you as a warm and incredibly ornate blanket, never changing, in a welcome embrace.
As you make your way up into the High Atlas, stretching your legs on the steep mountain sides along the beautiful trails, the scent of ice fills your nostrils. You’ll soon appreciate why the Atlas Mountains offer some of the best hiking in Morocco.
The locals wear thick djellabas - as if in a sci-fi movie - meandering from one earthen Berber village to the next, perched between terraced apple orchards and walnut groves that lead up in giant steps to the snowy mountains souring above; peaks pointing towards Mount Toubkal (also known as Jebel Toubkal), at 4167m the highest mountain in North Africa.
(Available as a small group tour or a tailor-made holiday)
You will be staying at the dramatically located and absolutely stunning Kasbah du Toubkal, an award-winning lodge constructed in the Berber style. Nestled in the mountains at 1800m altitude with incredible views all around, it is one of those remote magical places where friendships are formed.
You'll gain a real understanding of how the traditional ways of life can be appreciated, and the dreamlike qualities of Morocco fill your days with tranquillity.
Fly into Marrakech Menara Airport where you will be met and transferred to a traditional Moroccan house called a 'riad' nearby the Medina & Old Town. To allow for members of the group to arrive at different times during the day, we leave today free for you to rest, acclimatise and explore a little for yourself.
We can give you ideas of where to go and where to eat, depending on your arrival times.
After breakfast this morning you will set out for a half day guided tour of old Marrakech; one of the most vibrant cities in the world. Don't forget your camera as the sites and colours are crying out to be photographed! Enjoy a walking tour to appreciate the souks, interweaving network of streets and intricate architecture.
Enjoy a lovely dinner at the Riad - your first dinner all together and final dinner in the city. The hills are calling...
This morning we escape the buzz of the capital and head into the Western High Atlas Mountains and our base for the next week: the beautiful, dramatically located Kasbah du Toubkal. Only 40kms (90mins) from the city, the traditional village of Imlil seems to be literally a world away from the sensory assault of Marrakech. The mountains here are home to the indigenous Berber people who have inhabited Morocco for at least 5000 years. They live in small clusters of earthen houses which cling precipitously to mountainsides and are often only accessible by mule or on foot.
An award winning, striking lodge in Berber style, nestled in the mountains at 1800m altitude, with breathtaking 360º views, the Kasbah is a real highlight of this adventure, and central to your Moroccan experience, offering something very different to similar itineraries with other companies. It gives us a place to relax, to be inspired and awed by the scenery around us, as well as a wonderful insight into Berber culture. Access to the Kasbah is on foot or by mule only.
To 'find our feet' and acclimatise, we enjoy a guided circular walk from the Kasbah today in the Imlil valley; an introduction to the terrain, the geography and the views of the High Atlas Mountains. The area around Imlil village is known for its lush irrigated terraces, apple orchards and walnut groves. We explore some of the areas of reforestation that has taken place since the great flood of 1994.
We will walk for around 5 hours, enjoying a delicious picnic lunch, and passing through the village of Aremdt, before returning to the Kasbah to relax, admiring the scenery and enjoying another delicious meal of local dishes. Max altitude reached will be 2100m.
Walking from the lodge this morning we enjoy a route that takes us a little higher today. Depending on the snowline, we will ascend up to 2,200 and the col of Tizi 'n' Tamert, visible from the Kasbah. We walk through the village of Tamatert from where we can view both the stunning Imane and Air Mizane valleys. We descend the col into the Imane valley, to Tinhourine village.
Our return to the Kasbah is via the col at 2000m and the village of Aguersiwal, following river courses and across seguias on picturesque and exciting trails.
Our route today varies depending on the season:
During the winter months we enjoy a valley and lower altitude hike (up to 2200 - 2500m altitude) to the beautiful Azzeden Valley, which modern life has only lightly touched. From the Kasbah at 1800m, we set off on a mule track via long switchbacks, westwards and over T'zi Mzig pass (2450m). The region we are walking into is more traditional and less used to tourism than the Imlil valley, so we need to be mindful with our clothing to respect the traditions and culture of this valley. We start our descent from the col through the forest of juniper trees to the village of Tizi Oussem, and on down the Ait Azzeden valley to the Id Aissa where we find the Trekking Lodge. It has twin and triple room facilities, some ensuite and some not. Enjoy the relaxing option of a Hammam (steam bath) on arrival before settling to dinner with a mind blowing view.
We spend 2 nights at the lodge so we use mules to help us carry any luggage, and to enable you to walk with just a day pack.
When the high snow has completely disappeared there is the option of choosing to attempt to summit Jebel Toubkal, which at 4167m is the highest peak in the High Atlas Mountains. Our 3 day trek is designed so as to take our time to ascend gradually and take all measures to avoid the affects of altitude.
Heading out from the Kasbah we accompany the full group to Tizi-n-Mzig for lunch (2450m) before splitting to take the route to the basic Lepiney hut where we stay in rustic dormitory style accommodation with shared bathroom facilities, at 3450m. Our group will have its own room at the hut and we bring our own food and a cook, so an excellent meal is assured! We continue on to Base Camp at Neltner tomorrow.
Mules will support the group and carry luggage today. See additional packing list for those doing the trek.
Having settled in to the Trekking Lodge, and enjoying the more remote feel of the lovely Azzeden Valley, we spend today exploring our new 'back door step' in more detail with a lovely circular route. We can walk with just a light day pack, returning to the Trekkers Lodge tonight. The 4 or 5 hour walking route will be chosen to accommodate the groups aspirations as well as the weather conditions, but will not disappoint! Options include heading to the Tamsoult Waterfall (2400m), also known as the Irhouliden Cascade, where we can enjoy another delicious picnic lunch, or heading to the opposite side of the valley to Tizi iZggar for some mint tea with a Berber family.
We also have the option to visit to a women's association that is growing fruit trees for the High Atlas Foundation, to enhance the economic well being of farms in rural Morocco.
We enjoy another beautiful day of walking, passing the col of Ougelzim (3650m) and descending to Toubkal base camp in Neltner (3207m) with its two mountain huts. We will stay in the Mouflon, a large mountain hut with reasonable facilities where we are usually able to secure a private room for our group.
We return to Kasbah du Toubkal via one of many stunning trails, winding through the Azzeden valley which is dotted with remote villages. The route will be chosen to accommodate the groups aspirations as well as the weather conditions, but will not disappoint! Enjoy another delicious picnic lunch en route but leave space for a fabulous dinner tonight!
Leaving base camp early in the morning you climb a steep scree slope to the east, entering a hanging valley before another steep slope brings you to the col of Tizi'n'Toubkal (3940m). The hardest bit is already over and you enjoy ascending easy slopes to the narrow summit crest of this magnificent peak. Stand tall, knowing that you are on the highest point in the range, the country, and in fact in the whole of North Africa!
Please note, this summit climb is non-technical but moderately difficult with some scree slopes and a risk of altitude sickness - see Health section for more information. Suitable trekking clothing is required, including sturdy, worn-in boots and windproof clothing. Trekking poles are recommended.
The climb will take 2.6 - 3hours, ascending 960m. We return to base camp for a picnic lunch before the 3-4 hour trek back down to join the rest of the group in the welcoming and familiar comforts of the Kasbah de Toubkal for a well earned shower & Hammam!
Depending on the season, your aspirations, and whether you climbed Mt Toubkal yesterday, you have plenty of options today to choose from, one of which is to relax and enjoy the Kasbah, or enjoy a gentle half day walk in the valley.
For our winter departures, or in the summer, for those not doing the Toubkal trek, you may wish to walk to the religious shrine of Sidi Chamharouch (4 - 5hrs walking). Trek up to the cool waters by the sanctuary of Sidi Chamharouch, taking the route towards Mount Toubkal. Following the Reraya river, you pass the village of Aremdt and cross over and up to the other side of the Ait Mizane valley, enjoying a scenic picnic en route.
We provide a transfer back to Marrakech in time for your flight homeward.
Single rooms are available on a first come, first served basis, however, due to the nature of the accommodation we are using on this adventure, there are some nights where single rooms are not possible, so the supplement price reflects this (it varies depending on the season, so please check with us if you are not sure). We will charge on a pro-rata basis if a single room is not available to book for part of the trip where it would have been possible.
Carbon Compensation is not the perfect solution, and it is important to first reduce our carbon emissions as much as we can, yet trees remain an excellent natural technology to sequester carbon dioxide from the atmosphere to slow global warming.
For every client and guide who attends a YellowWood Adventure, we donate £30 to our partner charity WeForest to plant 15 trees to (over) compensate for the carbon footprint of the tour.
We also invite our clients to match this with an optional additional £30 for another 15 trees to be planted to help compensate for the carbon footprint of their international flights.
WeForest run many tree planting and tree maintenance projects such as this seedling nursery in the Amhara region of Ethiopia, the Amazon Rainforest in Brazil and many other projects in other countries including Zambia, Malawi, Tanzania & India.
Click Here to find out more about their amazing projects around the world.
We fully believe in, and practice Responsible Tourism, using local hotels, owned and run by locals. We put time and effort into building our relationship with them to ensure you have a a great trip.
We choose hotels based on cleanliness, comfort, safety, proximity to our route (to avoid unnecessary extra road travel), and a warm client welcome, as well as reliability in their service to us. Some hotels will be basic, in modern buildings or in town centres. Wherever we can, we will choose smaller more characterful, individual hotels, but in areas where tourism is still developing, this may not be available. An aspect of our adventures is to escape the ‘trappings’ of modern Western lifestyles and to experience new things which are exciting and memorable, and reflects the countries we are visiting.
This is adventure travel and on occasion the advertised services at a hotel (eg wifi, or hot showers, or continuous power) may not be functional on our arrival. This tends to occur in the smaller, more remote hotels. Very rarely a hotel lets us down and we are required to find alternative suitable accommodation that might not be our first choice. This trip involves hotels, a wilderness lodge and camping.
The list below gives information on our first choice of accommodation for this adventure; where hotels and hostels are fully booked or unavailable, we will use an alternative of a similar standard, and equally well situated. The Kasbah du Toubkal is guaranteed, as is the Trekking Lodge in the Azzaden Valley. We will provide you with an accurate list of accommodation, with contact information to leave with relatives, prior to departure on your adventure.
Marrakech (Day 1): 3* Riad style accomodation with single, double & twin rooms available.
Kasbah du Toubkal (Day 2-4, 6 & 8): Premier Mountain Retreat full of character, charm and certainly the WOW factor. Accommodation is in single or twin rooms, en-suite, though en-suite dormitory style 'Berber Salons' are available also, for 3 or 4 people to share, with a £150 discount each off the price of the holiday if that is desired. The Kasbah offers full board, with water included at all meals. Alcohol is not served, but you are welcome to bring your own with you, to be consumed on the premises. 4G phone signal, and Wi-fi available in communal areas.
Trekking Lodge, Azzaden Valley (Day 5): The Trekking Lodge in Azzaden Valley is a traditional Berber style property, reached on foot. If offers comfortable dormitory style ensuite rooms with 3 twin rooms and a triple room, plus another twin room not ensuite. No single rooms are available. Meals are fully catered for.
Berber Village Homestay (Day 7):
Toubkal Refuge (Day 5): There are 2 refuge options at Base Camp and where we stay will depend on availability. Both offer dormitory style accommodation with shared bathroom facilities
Unless you have booked a single room (where they are available) and paid the single room supplement for those nights, you will be sharing a twin room with another client (of the same gender). In the Azzaden Trekking lodge you may be in a triple room, or may have bathroom facilities that are not en-suite. In the Toubkal Refuge you will be staying in dormitory accommodation with shared bathroom facilities.
Supporting you on your holiday will be an experienced member of the YellowWood Guiding team. They will be joined by a local city guide in Marrakech, and an experienced English speaking walking guide will join the team for the duration of the trek.
This ensures you the perfect balance of information and support on your trip; your Moroccan guides offer insight into local life and customs, as well as routes during hiking, whilst your YellowWood guide ensures the smooth running of your adventure.
Your group will be any number from our minimum group size of 6 up to a maximum of 12 clients. This number works really well with the ratio of guides, and ensures the optimum level of service to you during your adventure.
We get clients booking alone, as couples and in small groups of friends. If you have a group of friends or family who are interested in having their own customised trip, then please let us know and we can cost it for you.
You are visiting the High Atlas Mountains in Morocco and will be walking at altitude and over some rough terrain and taking on steep ascents and descents. For the walking in the Imlil and Azzaden Valley, as well as to/from the Berber village, the routes can be chosen to meet the needs and aspirations of the group, but we have pitched this top as an Intermediate Hiking Grade WITHOUT the summit attempt of Jebel Toubkal. The hiking is at the natural pace of the group, with regular stops. You will be carrying just a day pack and your water bottle. We highly recommend a filtration water bottle such as Aquapure Traveller.
To get the most of out of this adventure, you need to be a regular walker and in good physical condition so that you can enjoy consecutive days of hiking. You do not need to be experienced in trekking, however.
For those choosing the optional summit trek of Jebel Toubkal (4167m) during our summer departures, the activity Grade of this adventure increases from a 5 to a 6/7. We recommend that you have experience of hiking or have prepared for the adventure to get the most out of the summit attempt, which includes walking on scree slopes, and steep sections. You will be sleeping above 3000m at the Jebel Toubkal base camp and altitude sickness is a possibility: please see our section on Health.
As with all active holidays, the fitter you are the more you can relax and enjoy the stunning route, and the better you can cope with challenges such as the outside elements. Clients are advised to get in as much regular walking/ short runs before the trip as is convenient.
NB: If you have bought new hiking boots for this adventure, training is the right time to wear them in, not on the trip itself!
For general information on health issues in Morocco, please see the general information on Morocco, however, for this specific adventure, the following points are worth separate consideration.
Our guides are fully First Aid trained and there to support you.
The highest altitude that you will be experiencing in the High Atlas Mountains is at around 4167m, if you choose to join the 2 day Jebel Toubkal trek. If you do not choose this trek, the highest altitude you will experience will be around 3100m. Both altitudes can be difficult for people coming from lower altitudes. You will be sleeping at 1800m in the Kasbah du Toubkal and at
While we do our best to create an itinerary that allows for some time for acclimatising, altitude affects everyone differently, and to varying degrees, and the whole of the Sanetti Plateau is high. If you experience any of the following symptoms during this adventure, make sure to inform your guide and they will support you in descending to a lower altitude as soon as possible.
Your YellowWood adventure starts at the airport in Marrakech on the start day of the trip. We understand that arriving into an unfamiliar airport can be very daunting, so we aim to give you as much information here as possible to help you prepare.
Flights are not included in the cost of your holiday, and whilst we are happy to help advise you, responsibility for booking the correct flights rests with you. We recommend that you use a comparison tool such as www.momondo.co.uk or www.skyscanner.net when searching for flights. We will send you a Flight Information Sheet with further pointers on which flights to book for your adventure.
For the latest travel advice from the Foreign Commonwealth & Development Office including security and local laws, plus passport and visa information, check www.gov.uk/foreign-travel-advice. As the situation in our destination countries can change, please do ensure you check regularly before your adventure. We also receive notifications direct from the FCDO so we are always aware of the ‘status’ in our destination countries.
Holiday insurance is essential for all Yellow Wood Adventures. Unfortunately anyone without insurance is not able to take part in the holiday, so please make sure you arrange cover. We recommend sorting your insurance when you book so that if you have problems during the run up to your holiday, and need to cancel, you are covered, particularly in the light of effects that the pandemic has had on travel.
Prior to the holiday, we will ask you to send us details of your insurer, policy number, 24 hr emergency assistance contact details and the name, address, and telephone numbers of your NOK or persons to be notified in the event of an emergency.
Your insurance needs to cover you for hiking /trekking with the following fairly standard inclusions:
We would also recommend that you have cover for the following optional items:
For information on Morocco, such as climate, weather, language, social norms, food & drink etc, please have a read of our Country specific information.
Toukbal - Morocco - in June was a small family group trek, plus Sam from YellowWood. The local experience in the Atlas was excellent, top class local guiding and very comfortable Kasbah accommodation softening the two mountain refuges.
Balance was just right for all of us - ages ranging from 36 to 70. Trekking was topped and tailed between a day's acclimatisation in Marrakech and a chance to revisit the Souks on the way out. A great trip - thank you, YellowWood & Sam.
Date of experience: June 2022
Sam (Yellow Wood MD) organized and led a tour for two others and I to climb Toubkal in Morocco. It was a superb trip and I highly recommend YellowWood. Each step was perfectly arranged. Sam was present throughout and always involved but not overbearing. Felt safe, well organized and a super adventure.
What you need will depend on the season in which you are visiting Morocco, and for summer departures, whether you are going on the Jebel Toubkal ascent Trek. Please see the separate section for the latter, as the accomodation choices for the trek necessitate different kit.
Don't hesitate to ask if you have any questions.
All adventures can be tailored as private bespoke trips.
Please contact us for more information:
+44 207 846 0197
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This payment is due 56 days before departure date (we send reminders).
Contact us with any questions about your adventure or booking.
+44 207 846 0197
To help you choose the right adventure for you, we have given each itinerary a grading that relates to the level of Walking / Trekking you will experience during the trip. This grading can be found on the Yellow map on the adventure page of the website.
All of our trips involve a level of general activity so are designed for people who are in good health, enjoy the outdoors, and have a taste for adventure and some level of fitness. As will be clear from our destinations, the climate (and altitude) may be different to that which you are used to, so please take this into consideration when choosing the most suitable holiday.
Please read our Adventure Itinerary & Essential Information for more information and don't hesitate to contact us if you would like to chat through whether you have found a suitable adventure for you.
You need to be in good physical health to enjoy your active holiday, but you don’t need to be an experienced hiker. These itineraries offer a mix of sightseeing and easier walking for around 2-4hrs a day, with the emphasis on sights and cultural experiences.
Walks will be well marked or on defined pathways, and often around sites of interest. The expected amount of descent/ascent will depend on the landscapes of the destination, but will not exceed 400m/day, and will often be much less. Walks are at low altitude (below 3000m).
You will not be required to carry more than a day sack with water and essentials. Ensure you are aware of the weather conditions likely in the destination you are visiting and have a pair of comfortable and worn in walking shoes/boots.
You need to have a good level of fitness and be a regular walker for these adventures, with ideally some trekking experience. You can expect to be walking for 3-6 hours per day, not including rest stops, normally on good trail paths but with some uneven surfaces at times.
You will not be required to carry more than a day sack. You may be walking in more challenging temperatures. You will generally be walking at low altitude (below 3000m) but may walk at altitudes up to 4000m. The amount of ascent could be up to 800m in a day but will frequently be less. You may walk on consecutive days.
Ensure you are aware of the weather conditions likely in the destination you are visiting and have suitable clothing for this adventure.
You need to have a good level of fitness with previous experience of trekking. Extra training before your trip will ensure that you get the most out of your adventure. Areas will be remote and terrain uneven.
Expect to walk for 5 – 8 hours a day, not including breaks, with some very steep ascents and descents. You will be walking at altitude (over 3000m but not higher than 5000m).
Ensure you are aware of the weather conditions likely in the destination you are visiting and have suitable equipment/clothing for this adventure (see the packing list for your adventure).
Please check individual itineraries for details of what you will need to be carrying with you.
Get in touch via our Enquiry form to check our availability, discuss the adventure and check we can meet your needs.
Complete our Enquiry Form; contact details, additional requirements (eg diet or health requirements) & questions you may have. Include as much information as you are able to, so we can help you with the detail you are looking for
Click on 'Send Enquiry' (receipted).
We will be in touch as soon as we are able, to answer your questions and help you plan your adventure.
+44 207 846 0197