Climb Mt Toubkal
Day 1 Marrakech
You are welcome to arrive in Marrakech at any time, as today is a designated arrival day with no planned activities. Please note that there will be an important welcome meeting this evening at our joining hotel. Please check the hotel notice board for more information on the location of this meeting or ask at reception. Please bring your passport and travel insurance documents to this meeting, as you will be required to fill out some important pre-tour admininstation documents. After learning more about our tour and plans for the following day, you are welcome to join our CEO and your travelling companions for an optional dinner in a local restaurant.
Day 2 Imi Oughlad/Azzadene Valley (1B,1L,1D)
After an early breakfast we depart by minibus. Leaving the plains around Marrakech we wind our way through the Moulay Brahim Gorge and the foothills of the western High Atlas Mountains. We pass via the village of Asni to Imi Oughlad, where we’ll meet our mules and muleteers to begin our trekking adventure. Our trekking mules will carry your larger bags as well as tents and equipment. Luggage is limited to 12kg per person for the trek and bags must be soft duffle bags or frameless backpacks. You will carry only your own daypack when trekking - for water, camera, jacket, sunscreen, etc. It can be that sometimes the mules take a slightly different track at some points, or go faster than we walk. As you may not see them for long stretches, you should be prepared to carry the things you need with you while walking between stops. We wind our way up past cornfields and woods of juniper and pine to the Tizi ‘n Tacht pass (2000m), where we have views back down to Imlil and the Ait Oussaden valley. We descend to the Azzadene Valley, passing red clay terraced villages to reach the village of Tizi Oussem (1720m) where we stay in a mountain gîte for the night. Gîtes are accommodation in family houses, or mountain huts, usually in mountain villages and are very, very simple. If you have this expectation in mind we are sure you will be pleasantly surprised. Sleeping arrangements are multi-share. Matresses are provided. You will need to have your own sleeping bag and sleeping sheet, and bath towel. (Bathroom facilities are basic and shared, and hot water is not always available). You will enjoy delicious homemade dinners of local produce, dining in a traditional manner, often sitting on the floor in a cozy salon. Approx driving time: Marrakech to Imi Oughlad, 1.5 hours. Approx walking time: 6 hours excluding stops (ascent: 850m, descent:300m).
Day 3 Berber villages/Armed (1B,1L,1D)
A full day walking that takes us through the villages of this grand valley to high passes with stunning views. Walk over the Tizi ‘n Tizikert pass (2930m) where we are rewarded with magnificent views over the Mt Toubkal summit, the Tazaghart Pass and the peak of Taddat (3800m). We then descend to Armed (1900m) where we stay in another village gite for the night, enjoying another local dinner cooked by our trek team. Approx walking time: 7 hours excluding stops (ascent: 1200m, descent: 1000m).
Day 4 Mizane Valley/Toubkal base camp (1B,1L,1D)
Today we ascend the beautiful Mizane Valley via the pilgrimage hamlet of Sidi Chamharouch, with the shrine of a marabout (please note that only muslims can cross the bridge to visit the shrine). From here our trail continues to zigzag steadily upwards to reach the Mt Toubkal base camp. Time permitting, we can either enjoy a 2 hour optional climb to the summit of Ouanoums (3650m) or simply relax at our base camp for the night. Tonight we camp in two person tents near the busy Mt Toubkal refuges, which sit at an altitude of 3207m. Foam mattresses are provided for you to sleep on during our camping. If you would like more comfort please bring a light weight self-inflating mattress such as a thermarest. Pillows are not provided so you may also wish to bring an inflatable pillow. You will need to bring a sleeping bag and we recommend a lightweight sleeping sheet as well (for extra warmth or for when hot). Bathroom facilities are "au naturelle", we will hide our "hole in the ground" toilet with a tent, and ask that all toilet paper is burnt. You can also make use of the toilets and showers at the base camp refuge, but you will be asked to pay and the camp may be some distance from the refuge. Approx walking time: 5-6 hours excluding stops (ascend: 1300m, descend: 0m)
Day 5 Mt Toubkal/Armed (1B,1L,1D)
An early start today for the challenging trek to the summit of Mt. Toubkal, at 4167 metres. After conquering the highest mountain in North Africa, enjoy the magnificent views in all directions and relish the sense of achievement that there is on having reached the summit. We descend back to our basecamp for lunch and then to the camping site in Armed. Approx walking time: 10 Hours excluding stops (ascend: 960m, descend: 960m).
Day 6 Imlil/Marrakech (1B,1L)
A long descent leads us back via Sidi Chamharouch and Armed to reach Imlil. After a quick lunch we bid farewell to muleteers and transfer back to Marrakech. We have the early evening to explore this wonderful city - perhaps for some serious bargaining for souvenirs. Djemaa el Fna, the open-air market place around which the traditional life of Marrakech revolves, has always been an exciting place to visit. The name literally means 'place of death' as it was the place where the Sultans used to display the heads of their enemies. Now, with the food-stalls, snake-charmers, water-sellers, travelling musicians and acrobats, the square is a place of entertainment for both Moroccan and overseas visitors. The modern shopping centres and boulevards of the French-built new town are also only a short walk away. Please note that only certified local city guides are allowed to guide travellers in the medina, therefore your CEO cannot accompany you through the souks, but will be able to help you find a local guide if you wish. Of course, you are also free to wander at your leisure, just make sure to get a map! We spend this evening in a Marrakech hotel. Approx walking time: 4-5 hours excluding stops(descent 1470m). Approx driving time:1.5 hours, Imlil to Marrakech.
Day 7 Marrakech (1B)
You are free to depart Marrakech at any time. Please note that hotel check out time is normally mid-morning, but luggage storage is available (possible extra charge to be paid locally). We are able to organise extra nights accommodation if you wish to extend your stay. Please enquire at the time of booking.