Ouarzazate Airport Mini Guide
Gateway to the Desert
Landing at Ouarzazate Airport you are right in the middle of the Sahara Desert, straight into the magical world of the deepest part of Morocco. The airport is small and rather basic, handling domestic flights and some from Paris
, so for most foreign visitors it is only after a long journey that they finally arrive at this wonderful city.
The Oasis in the Desert
Ouarzazate is known as the “Pearl of Morocco” and with several wonderful clear water dams in the area it is a fertile oasis in an otherwise arid desert. From there, an excellent base in southern Morocco, you can take a trip into the Sahara, either for a day or staying overnight to experience the life of the Berbers.
The History and Heritage
The Taourirt Kasbah is in the centre of the city of Ouarzazate, with it's old palace and Jewish Quarter this is a definite must see during your stay. This kasbah, together with the Ait ben Haddou kasbah have both been designated UNESCO World Heritage Sites due to their cultural and historic significance.
A Choice of Accommodation
There are no airport hotels at Ouarzazate, however as the airport is almost in the city centre there is no hassle getting to and from the city hotels which vary from local 1 star establishments to the fantastic Berbere Palace or the Sultana Royal Golf Hotel which is set in extensive luscious gardens.
How about a visit to a rose garden? Not what you'd usually expect to find in the desert, but the Kelaa of Megouna are the Draa Valley's finest rose gardens and there are many both local and foreign visitors to the Rose Festival held there every year.
A Bit Further Afield
Why not hire a car and head for the Ziz Valley? This valley of gorges and date palms is a fantastic excursion, maybe take a guided walk to learn about the date palms and production, or head for one of the spectacular dams in the area with clear magnificent blue water.
Ouarzazate has some great things to see if you have a hire car to get around. Pride of place is the Kasbah at Ait Benhaddou, just outside the main town and one of the best preserved in Africa.
It’s the old fortified town which is mostly abandoned. Built mainly of mud bricks, it is slowly being eroded but is still majestic. For a special experience, organise a night time camping trip into the desert. There, under a starlit sky, you can eat traditional Berber food and sleep like the nomadic people of the desert do.