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A family holiday suitable for children aged 8+, offering a perfect blend of trekking in the High Atlas Mountains and culture in the intoxicating imperial city of Marrakech.
This holiday has been created for active families. It is not a children's holiday, but an adults holiday that children will enjoy. This distinction is very important to us, as we believe it is what sets it apart. Where possible, accommodation has been carefully selected to ensure that you can have a rich, cultural experience, without having to be too self conscious of noise and disturbing others. These are not, though, family hotels. Many feature traditional architecture and unattended swimming pools. Children are welcome on the simple understanding that parents accept full responsibility for their safety and behaviour.
After being met at Marrakech airport, your holiday begins in the pretty mountain village of Imlil. Your first night is spent in a cosy guesthouse with gorgeous views of the valleys. If the weather is nice, you will be able to enjoy a traditional Moroccan meal on the roof terrace. The next morning, you begin a three day trek in the Atlas mountains, staying in remote Berber villages. An additional mule will be provided which the children can ride (and rest) on long flat stretches. The walk is moderate and there will be plenty of stops for snacks and lunch, but is more suited to children who are happy undertaking 4-5 hour walks at home.
The holiday ends in Morocco's finest city, Marrakech. In the 1960's, Marrakech had quite a reputation as a destination on the hippy trail, it is now an exceptionally accessible city, which both adults and children with love. The main draw of the city is the world famous Djemaa el Fna, which comes alive at night with story tellers, acrobats, musicians and food stalls. There are also the souks to explore, which are chaotic, but a lot of fun to navigate around. The medina is also culturally rich, with highlights such as the Medersa Ben Youssef and the Palais el Badi & Bahia. In the new town, the Jardin Majorelle, designed by the late Yves Saint Laurent, provide a welcome respite from the chaos of the city.
Please note: Sleeping bags are required for this trek.
This family activity holiday is a balance between trekking, relaxation and a smattering of culture. It is not a children's holiday, rather it has been designed for parents and children who want to have an active holiday to suit a mixture of tastes and interests.
This holiday has a minimum age of 8. The reason for this is that the accommodation we use is not considered appropriate for young children, as some have unattended plunge pools. Whilst in the pools, your children are your responsibility and they do need to be supervised for their safety and the comfort of others.. If you would prefer to stay somewhere that does not have a pool, please contact us.
For the trekking, you all need to be relatively fit. You will walk for about 4-5 hours a day, but as well as being accompanied by a guide and a mule to carry your bags, an additional mule will be provided in case one of the children needs to rest their weary legs.
Tourdust trek grading: Moderate
The time in Marrakech is self-guided and the trekking will be just you.
This was one of the most amazing holidays I’ve had. I had been wanting to take Erin, my 10 year old on an adventure and experience a very different culture and way of life for some time and this was a fantastic experience.
Although being slightly apprehensive about it being just the two of us – the support and organisation from Tour Dust and their team of colleagues in Morocco was fantastic, everything went according to plan. Our team in the Atlas mountains were lovely, Hassan our trek guide kept a good pace and was really helpful throughout (even trying to find replacement batteries for me in the villages when I needed them) and gave us the opportunity to be able to extend out trek to see the neighbouring valley and stunning waterfalls on the first day. Mustafa our cook created the most amazing picnics for the two of us, (my only complaint was that there was just too much food to eat!) whilst Lassan our muleteer was great with Erin.
This trip was a wonderful balance of adventure and relaxation. I really loved being in the mountains, the scenery is breath-taking and unexpectedly so varied, red and ochre hills, dotted with juniper bushes, walnut and olive groves, set against snow-capped mountains and there is something very special about seeing the villages that we were going to be staying at in the evening in the distance and experiencing a glimpse of life in the Berber villages. At the end of our trek we celebrated with a mint tea at the neighbouring Kasbah Toukal - hearing the prayer calls as dusk settled echoing throughout the valleys, will be something I’ll remember for very long time. Finishing our stay in Marrakesh at the very tasteful Riad Wo owned by the very hospitable Elsa, was fabulous, a beautiful place amongst the chaotic, intoxicating beauty of Marrakesh, a perfect end.
This holiday is a definite 5 out of 5 and more - yes we had one or two up’s and downs getting sick at different times but I think that’s to be expected, just bring a good first aid kit! It certainly hasn’t put us off - now all I want to do is go back as soon as I can.
I particularly enjoyed being in the mountains! The views were spectacular. I’d recommend this trip for family’s or couples who are wanting a fun but not to challenging trip . Anyone reading this don’t think about it just do it! Take a chance and go on the biggest adventure of your life! Erin aged 10
Nicky Boden reviewing Marrakech & Mountains Family Trek
We had an amazing time thank you. Challenging it certainly was!
We had a great experience.....such contrast in scenery, climate, culture and accommodation.
The organisation was really good and everything ran like clockwork.
The food was well prepared and the guide, Mohamed, took us up to the summit of Mount Toubkal when others weren't prepared to go due to the snow.
We absolutely loved Riad Boussa in Marrakech. However we did find the 2nd night in the mountain refuge a little difficult. It was more basic than we had expected and it did assume that everyone could climb a very upright ladder to get to the attic in which we slept. Fortunately we were the only ones staying there but it would have been much more tricky if there had been others as well.
Caroline Dreyfuss reviewing Marrakech & Mountains Family Trek
This was one of the most exceptional holidays we have enjoyed as a family. We would definitely score this as a 5+. All aspects of the trip from the transfers, to the accommodation, our hosts and guides in the mountains and our short stay in Marrakech were well organised and worked perfectly.
The tailor made trek was well suited to our fitness levels. The routes took us through dramatic mountain scenery, steep, terraced valleys and many Berber villages. Each day of the trek pushed us a little but was balanced with a leisurely lunch and time for tea at the end of the day. Our team of guide (Ibrahim), cook (Hassan) and muleteer (Abdullah) were marvellous. Ibrahim was a wonderful guide with a true passion and pride for his home and the mountains, whilst Hassan produced exceptional food throughout our trek. The mountain scenery is stunning but what perhaps made the trip was the real insight we felt we gained into the Berber way of life from staying in the villages and trekking through the valleys. The accommodation in the mountains was, as described, simple but always clean and cared for.
We stayed at the Dar Adrar guest house in Imlil at the start and end of our treks. This comfortable and welcoming guest house provided a great chance to rest weary legs and to chat with other families trekking in the mountains.
The Riad Dar Vedra provided a wonderful bit of luxury at the end of our holiday and a tranquil oasis in the madness that is Marrakech. Stephane and Marie Aude and their staff were wonderful and attentive hosts providing suggestions on restaurants and places to visit which really helped make our short stay in Marrakech.
We would not hesitate to recommend Tourdust to others, in particular to families looking for a slightly more adventurous holiday. We will certainly be coming back!
David Withycombe reviewing Marrakech & Mountains Family Trek
Our Tourdust holiday surpassed all our expectations for wilderness, adventure & culture, throughout the eight day days in Morocco. The three day trek was fabulous; achieving approx. 30km in three days trekking to almost 3,000m to the snow line, spectacular waterfalls, mountain passes, remote Berber Villages only accessible on foot. Enjoying cooked mountain picnics, mule rides for the children and our very friendly guide (Olaiat), chefs (Mohamed & Ibrahim) and muleteer (Mohamed & Pipin) who lead us on our trek. We have stayed in remote Berber guest houses, and enjoyed amazing food. It has been a fabulous experience in gorgeous alpine scenery, very warm sunny days and cool evenings. The second day of the trek through the valley was a real highlight with orange and apple blossom, bright blue iris and earthy thyme proving a heady mix of scents. Card games and Moroccan Uno late into the evening with our Beber friends was great fun and we were really sad to say goodbye to them all, but especially our lovely guide Olaiat, who showed great kindness, care and attention throughout the trek. Our children (13, 11 & 10) were enthralled by his stories of Morocco, Berber life, football and Uno skills!
We then moved onto Dar Housina in Marrakech - an elegant Riad in the medina where we could experience the hustle, bustle & excitement of the souks (yes, we got lost many times!!), a caleche ride, your recommended restaurants and then escape to the calmness and tranquillity of our gorgeous roof terrace and splash pool. Again, the hospitality was fabulous.
I hope it doesn't all sound too clichéd, but we had a truly wonderful holiday.
Thank you to all the Tourdust team who helped us to plan the trip, put together the itinerary for us and all the arrangements, so that it worked so perfectly. We would have no hesitation in recommending Tourdust and have already taken a sneaky look at your website since we returned yesterday to see where else you could take us..... next year perhaps!
Anna Woodman reviewing Marrakech & Mountains Family Trek
We had an amazing time, it was possibly the best holiday and most amazing experience we’ve had. Our guide, Mohamed (not the Dar Adrar boss, another Mohamed), was very knowledgeable and a safe pair of hands – he really helped me with my vertigo during some hairy points - please pass on our thanks for this, as he was very patient and reassuring. He was also very caring about the children and gave advice on coping with the heat and when Nancy suffered a bit with the altitude. Samir’s cooking was absolutely delicious, eating tagine and salad with mint tea on pretty blankets on the side of a mountain is an experience we will never forget. We looked forward to the delights each mealtime would bring and were amazed at how such tasty food was seemingly whipped up with ease in such isolation. Ibrahim the muleteer was fantastic too, they were a great trio and really looked after us. The trek was just right for us at 3 days and about 36 kms, the children loved it and coped really well physically, with a few well-needed breaks on the mule. The guesthouses in the mountains were basic but beautifully located and all part of the experience, a great way to get an insight into Berber life, and all the locals were extremely welcoming. Dar Adrar was a perfect base, Omar and the rest of the staff were very hospitable, the food was great and they even found us a tube of toothpaste when we arrived at 11pm and realised we’d forgotten ours. The transport was very good too, prompt and with careful drivers. Although our Riad in Marrakech was not the one we’d expected to stay in, Riad Adore was very luxurious and again extremely well-run and friendly with a great hammam!
Jo Cammell reviewing Marrakech & Mountains Family Trek
Mohammed met us at the airport as advised and transfers went smoothly with water and Moroccan biscuits provided In the car. The Dar Imlil was absolutely great. Nice touches e.g. if we needed bottled water we just had to ask and it was produced free of charge, the small non-alcoholic selection of drinks in the mini-bar were also included. Simple, relatively cheap things to do but all add to a lovely feeling. Staff were all pleasant and meals were excellent- really can’t recommend going out given our one experience of doing so. Prices for meals in hotel very good and always service with a smile.
The guide organised for the walking was Ibrahim, who as your guide indicated was not overly talkative, suited us perfectly. We were able to decide where to go on the 1st day and then plan ahead for the 2nd day. An excellent induction into the foothills of the Atlas mountains. My husband is thinking of returning in the next year to perhaps climb Mt Toubkal. The picnic lunch was excellent with lovely mint tea provided. We did not need 1/3 of the food provided.
Transfers to Marrakech went smoothly and Les Deux Tours is a beautiful quiet place. One bottle of water provided per day and meals more expensive- more like western prices- but as expected. Breakfast excellent. Staff universally pleasant and helpful. The shuttle bus into town worked well for us and if you wish to eat later and return to the hotel later the shuttle drivers are amenable to negotiating a late pick up at specified places for a fixed fee- 150Dirhams (10pm).
As to the overall score. For tour dust organisation and information- 5/5. For the Dar Imlil- 5/5. For transfers- 5/5. For guiding- 5/5. For Les Deux Tours- 4/5- the only negative being the lack of simple things like extra water, and higher than justifiable prices in the bar and restaurants.
David Tooth reviewing Marrakech & Mountains Family Trek
We were very impressed with your organisation from the UK and on the ground. You understood what we wanted, made it all very easy, were really kind to sort out the amendments to the trip and the people you dealt with in Morrocco were are efficient and charming. I would definitely recommend you to people travelling in Morocco.
Lucy reviewing Marrakech & Mountains Family Trek
Trip was great in all respects - smooth arrangements, great accommodation, good mix of activities - only regret is we didn't have longer!
Helen Burn reviewing Marrakech & Mountains Family Trek
Our holiday in Morocco was fabulous with a great mix of locations and activities. Our guide, Ibrahim, who was with us in both the mountains and the desert, was absolutely brilliant and was very sensitive to the balance between guiding us, but allowing freedom for us to experience the adventure as a family. He was hugely supportive with the children, who, aged 8 and 6, thoroughly enjoyed themselves and walked so much further than we ever imagined they could! In fact our 8 year old chose to walk almost all of it and our 6 year old declared that she 'would go anywhere if Ibrahim was there as he made it all so safe and fun'!
The food on the trek was high quality and in enormous quantities and the experience of staying in the Berber villages felt very special - we even saw a Berber wedding. The desert camp made us smile with the1920s luxury French explorer set-up and was a lovely relaxing end to the holiday. All in all a great experience, which we would thoroughly recommend!
Clare Hebbes reviewing Marrakech & Mountains Family Trek
We had an absolutely fabulous trip, teens, adults and child. The trekking was the highlight for all of us, and we could have done another day. Not to worry - it was a first for us, so we weren't to know. The guide Yussuf was great with all of us - kept the pace just right, helped Lydia when necessary, played cards with us all, talked about the villages, the life, the local history. Omar, who was in charge of the mule with Lydia was also very kind to her. Even shared his MP3 player with her, though I don't know what she made of the Berber pop! The food on the trek was something we all really looked forward to: not just the picnics but the breakfasts and dinners (to be honest, these were our favourite meals in Morocco). We also enjoyed hearing Ibrahim singing while he walked.
Any negatives? Well the gite in Tiziane was a bit grubby, but we got on with it ok, having our own sleeping bags, and the other gites and refuges were comfortable and clean.
The rest of the trip: well, Chez Momo was lovely and good food, but we didn't really want to just hang around by the pool after the previous days' trekking. Hence we called Mohamad and arranged the trip up to Tin Mal. It was nice that we were able to do that and pay later. I think Chez Momo's not on your usual itineraries. If it is, a few suggestions about things to do in the area might have helped - even just how to walk down to the village and anywhere to visit in it. They weren't able to do that in the reception there (I guess most guests are just there for the relax).
Dar Vedra in Marrakech was so stylish, a great location, and we had the place to ourselves. Again, lovely breakfasts, helpful staff. One of the most comfortable beds I've ever stayed in.
Essaouira: I know it wasn't your usual accommodation, but it was ideal for us, being so close to the old town and beach. Good clean accommodation, nice breakfasts, clean pool, helpful staff. But the charms of Essaouira were outside the hotel. We got in the sea, once we'd walked a bit South down the beach, and enjoyed exploring the town, eating at the seafood stalls, riding camels etc.
This was outside Tourdust's control, but the weather was with us the whole time. We left the mountains just as it was starting to get cooler, and arrived in Marrakech after the summer heat had dispersed.
Altogether the organisation was fantastic, all the pickups went smoothly and it was reassuring to know that we could call you or Mohamad up if we needed any help or advice. I know that one of my friends has already been in touch, looking to do similar.
Joanna Rowan Pease reviewing Marrakech & Mountains Family Trek
The service we received from everything organised by yourselves was second to none. The three hotels/riads were excellent and absolutely top notch. The food where included was fantastic. The people in the hotels were attentive, knowledgeable and friendly. The guide in the mountains (Youssef) was brilliant, the kids really liked him and we could not have asked for a better guide. Mohammed kept popping up in different places to see how we were getting on. We had the same driver for all out transfers who was prompt (even with the 5.30am pick up in Essaouira), courteous and friendly.
Stuart Hardman reviewing Marrakech & Mountains Family Trek
The walking was just right for us. We were a little anxious about whether the boys would happily participate - they haven't been great walkers. But they were fantastic: bounding ahead of us slow oldies, often over quite challenging terrain. They took to our guide, who struck a good balance between helpfulness and letting us get on with things. Accommodation was fine - and the guest house was lovely. And the food was just right.
Marrakech was a bit of a shock to the system after the tranquility of the mountains, and boys were a little uncertain about it at first - the chaos and the noise. But the accommodation was a great base to retreat to, and by the end boys were happily guiding us through the souks. I loved the vibrancy of it all - quite a contast to Stockholm.
Nicholas Howe reviewing Marrakech & Mountains Family Trek
We absolutely loved our trip, thank you.
The organisation from your side was perfect - everything went very smoothly, just as planned, and we felt very well looked after from start to finish. We really appreciated you changing plans for us at the last minute, and we were pleased with the arrangements we had. Even the day treks from Dar Adrar were very spectacular, and our guide Rashid was able to vary the to and from journeys to make it even more interesting. Mohammed and his team looked after us very well, and drinking mint tea on the terrace each afternoon was a joy. The boys were able to do all the walking, but found it really fun to ride on the mule anyway. We were all blown away by the delicious lunches and dinners. All so healthy, tasty and beautifully presented. It was a holiday we will never forget, and I hope we will go back many times!
Marrakech was also fabulous, although it took a little getting used to after the peace and quiet of the mountains!
So basically, we had a great time and would not hesitate to recommend Tourdust to other holiday makers, especially families who might not have considered that such a fun and adventurous holiday could be open to them with children.
Sarah Sharrock reviewing Marrakech & Mountains Family Trek
Having returned home after my trip to Morocco from 8th-15th August with your company I wish to compliment you in what was a fabulous first vacation to Morocco and first taste of trekking with my two children.
Mohammed and Abdu my guide, Muleteer and cook were outstanding in providing such a quality experience for us all up in the mountains. My children were particularly well cared for and the genuine hospitality shown by the owners and families at the various accommodations along the way made their first trekking experience a memorable one from start to finish.
My accommodation at Chez Momo and the wonderful Dar Vedra Riad in Marrakech were excellent and made us feel immersed in the architecture of Morocco. In particular Sebastian at Dar Vedra was a wonderful host during our time in the city and all the staff at Chez Momo were friendly and very accommodating to our needs.
Eight days passed very quickly. It was our first taste of trekking amidst this type of terrain and we only saw just a small part of Morocco but certainly this country has more to see and it will not be our last visit. I will thoroughly recommend to my friends Tourdust as a company and reiterate how much we all enjoyed trekking amongst the Atlas mountains and watching the buzz of activity in the city of Marrakech. It was the perfect itinerary for myself and my two 9 year olds.
Carole Sankey reviewing Marrakech & Mountains Family Trek