Archive for the ‘Skoura Palmary’ Category

Moroccan Kasbah’s of the Great South

Thursday, March 26th, 2015
Ait Benhaddou, Kasbahs of the Great South

Ait Benhaddou, Kasbahs of the Great South







The Moroccan Kasbah was a place for the local Caid or Pacha to live in and a place of defense when a city was under attack not unlike the medieval European keep. Sometimes, they were built on hilltops so that they could be more easily defended such as the famous Ait Benhaddou near Ouarzazate. It is no accident that many great films like Lawrence of Arabia and Gladiator were filmed here because it retains the character and atmosphere of centuries ago when it was an important post on the camel caravan route from Africa to Morocco.

Ait Benhaddou Kasbah was a busy teeming Ksar (a fortified town) with fortified towers and reinforced walls. Inside the Ksar, there was a central mosque surrounded by family homes, communal areas and small palaces. In its earlier history, Ait Benhaddou is believed to have housed thousands of inhabitants. It was composed of six Kasbahs and nearly fifty houses, made with red pisé and connected through a complex maze of narrow streets. Visitors can step straight into the medieval past and it is a great place to take the family to explore.

Valle of One-Thousand Kasbahs, Skoura Palmeraie

Valle of One-Thousand Kasbahs, Skoura Palmeraie







Morocco’s Southern region and in particular the region of Skoura is referred to the “Valley of one-thousand Kasbahs,” referring to the way-stations of ancient caravan routes traveled by tradesmen and adventurers. They brought with them customs and crafts, beliefs and skills, and they sought shelter and social interaction within secure Kasbah walls.

Skoura has superb Kasbahs on its doorstep, including the ruins of the Kasbah Amerhidil, and it is an excellent base from which to explore the Dades Valley, the Todra Gorge and the Valley of the Roses.

The Glaoui Kasbahs at Telouet and Taourit are also historic sites to visit on a Morocco Tour. Telouet, the seat of Thami El Glaoui Pacha of Marrakech under the French is an imposing ruin with a central living area which is relatively well preserved with the Glaoui’s living quarters bedecked in flowered zellij tiles looking out on to the village of Telouet. Kasbahs were also fortified mansions built by the rich and powerful caids and local feudal leaders. Kasbah Taourit is another imposing Glaoui Kasbah in Ouarzazate the capital of the South. The Krupp cannon which founded the fortunes of the Glaoui’s which enabled them to dominate rival tribes still lies outside Kasbah Taourit.

Ksar Ighnda Boutique Kasbah Hotel

Ksar Ighnda Boutique Kasbah Hotel









Throughout the centuries Morocco’s strong and enduring Kasbahs have kept silent vigil guarding communities from potential attack which was all too common in the feudal era which lasted right up to the 1950’s chronicled in Gavin Maxwell’s epic account “Lords of the Atlas.”

Some of Morocco’s finest boutique riads and hotels are now converted Kasbahs. Built or rebuilt in traditional style, they have been renovated to accommodate tourists in luxury and style.

A few of the best examples are found in Ouarzazate and Skoura region. In the Ait Benhaddou Region, Riad Ksar Ighnda is a restored Kasbah with modern architecture that offers a luxury experience and stay inclusive of a private pool, roof top dining, a Hammam and is away from the city center.

In Skoura there are boutique riad guests houses, Les Jardins Des Skoura and Kasbah Ait Ben Damiette, converted Kasbahs that are French owned and offer up luxurious stays surrounded by gardens. Both are located in the heart of the Skoura palmeraie.

More Kasbah’s are being renovated and turned into boutique hotels and guesthouses to offer Moroccan travelers an exciting authentic experience.

The most well known Kasbah Hotel in Skoura is Dar Ahlam, “Dream House” which is an an opulent boutique hotel in the heart of the Skoura palmeraie. Built around a labyrinthine converted Kasbah from the early 20th century, this luxurious property consists of nine suites and three private villas in the attractive gardens with a large swimming pool.

Richard Branson’s Kasbah Tamadot is another well-known luxury Kasbah Hotel located in the foothills of the High Atlas Mountains. This property offers fantastic service, a beautiful spa, restaurant, and a stunning mountain backdrop.

Kasbah Bab Ourika in the Ourika Valley offers outstanding views of the High Atlas and is a great value place to stay with friendly staff and fantastic food made from produce from their own garden.

At Imlil at the foot of Jebel Toubkal with breathtaking terrace views of the peaks and valleys, Kasbah Du Toubkal is the perfect base for exploring the Atlas Mountains and experiencing Berber culture.

Today, as as Morocco traveler, the ancient Kasbahs of the Great South can be discovered through historic visits on a private tour and visitors also have the opportunity to stay in one.

For more information about Ancient Kasbahs of Morocco’s Great South or a Kasbah Tour.

For more information about the Fes Festival of World Sacred Music Morocco’s Imperial CitiesSeaside Resorts,Sahara Desert,Berber villagesA Taste of MoroccoMagical Kasbahs, Ruins & WaterfallsAbsolute Morocco, The Best of MarrakechFes, and Ouarzazate

Discover The Best of Morocco - Travel Exploration
Travel Exploration specializes in Morocco Travel.  We provide Tours and travel opportunities to Morocco for the independent traveler and tailor-made tours for families and groups with a distinctly unique flavor. From Morocco’s Seven Imperial Cities, to the Magical Sahara Travel Exploration offers a captivating experience that will inspire you. At Travel Exploration we guarantee that you will discover the best of Morocco! Call Travel Exploration at 1 (800) 787-8806 or + 1 (212) 618882681 and let’s book a tour to Morocco for you today.

Morocco Travel Update: King Mohammed VI Travels to Ouarzazate & US Secretary of State Hillary Clinton Travels to Marrakech, Your Morocco Travel Guide

Tuesday, November 3rd, 2009

Morocco Travel Update: King Mohammed VI Travels to Ouarzazate & US Secretary of State Hillary Clinton Travels to Marrakech, Your Morocco Travel Guide

Morocco Travel News, King Mohammed VI of Morocco visited the Ouarzazate region today, passing through the main street, Rue Mohammed VI. The King was in the Saharian town of Errachidia prior to his arrival in Ouarzazate. King Mohammed VI of Morocco’s final destination for the day was his villa in The Royal Golf, juxtaposed near Lake El Mansour.


The Royal Golf borders Lake El Mansour, a lush, beautiful area just 20 kilometers outside Ouarzazate. Lake El Mansour is worth a visit on any Moroccan travelers vacation to the Ouarzazate region. There is a luxurious Moroccan modern Kasbah Hotel called the Royal Golf Sultana, owned by a lovely French couple (Veronique and her husband) who built this magnificent, palatial modern Kasbah overlooking Lake El Mansour. The Royal Golf Sultana is worth a one or two night stay during an Ouarzazate tour and an ideal place to relax.


When traveling to the Ouarzazate region of Lake El Mansour one can feel like he/she is in Lugano on the Swiss, Italian border. Home to Ait Benhaddou Kasbah – a UNESCO World Heritage site, the Dades Valley, the Todra Gorge (Gorge of Todra), the Valley of Roses, the Skoura Palmary, and the Draa Valley by far any Moroccan traveler can discern that the Ouarzazate region offers many unlimited Morocco travel opportunities.


This day in also marked another set of Moroccan travel news. America and Morocco continue their celebration in good historical relations with Secretary of State Hillary Clinton’s arrival in Marrakech, Morocco. Hillary Clinton’s visit to Marrakech, Morocco makes this visit to the Maghreb the final leg of her twelve-day North African peace effort tour. Hillary Clinton’s visit to Morocco is part of a diplomatic mission to relaunch the stalled Middle East peace process. Clinton’s visit to Marrakech includes a visit on both Monday and Tuesday with her Arab counterparts attending the sixth Forum for the Future, jointly organized by Morocco and Italy. Clinton travelled to Morocco on Sunday after talks in the Middle East with Palestinian president Mahmoud Abbas and Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu. The United States is pushing hard for both sides to resume peace negotiations, which were suspended after the Israeli offensive against Hamas militants in the Gaza Strip in December 2008. The Middle East situation and furthering dialogue between the West and the Islamic world will be the two main themes at a dinner Forum on Monday evening. The Forum for the Future is a joint initiative between the Group of Eight industrial powers and some 20 countries in the Middle East and North Africa, along with the European Commission and the Arab League.

Ouarzazate-Day-Of King-Mohammed-VI-Arrival

Hillary Clinton and her daughter, Chelsea visited the Sahara region in March 2009 for weekend camel-riding trip in the Sahara desert.The legend of Hillary Clinton in Morocco is a long one and according to African Travel Magazine, Hillary Clinton’s family heritage is from Morocco.African Travel Magazine states, Hillary’s grandfather, a Moroccan Jew living in Rissani, married an American woman, and then immigrated to the U.S.A.”  According to the correspondent “Hillary Clinton visited her grandfather’s home in Rissani and along with Morocco’s King’s sister Lalla Myriem visited the Mausoleum of Moulay Ali Chérif – forbidden to non-Muslims.” “At the same time during this trip Hillary Clinton, she also visited her sister’s daughter who is married to a Berber tourist guide and lives in the Atlas Mountains.”


Morocco and the United States have a long history of friendly relations. As a North African nation Morocco was one of the first states to seek diplomatic relations with America. In 1777, Sultan Sidi Muhammad Ben Abdullah, considered one of the most progressive of the Barbary leaders who ruled Morocco from 1757 to 1790, announced his desire for friendship with the United States. The Sultan’s overture was part of a new policy he was implementing as a result of his recognition of the need to establish peaceful relations with the Christian powers and his desire to establish trade as a basic source of revenue. Faced with serious economic and political difficulties, he was searching for a new method of governing which required changes in his economy. Instead of relying on a professional army to collect taxes and enforce his authority, he wanted to establish state-controlled maritime trade as a more reliable, and regular source of income, which would free him from dependency on the services of the standing army. The opening of his ports to the United States of America and other states was part of that new policy. The Sultan issued a declaration on December 20, 1777, announcing that all vessels sailing under the American flag could freely enter Moroccan ports. By issuing this declaration, Morocco became one of the first states to acknowledge publicly the independence of the American Republic.

King-Mohammed-V- Morocco

King Hassan II of Morocco, the father of King Mohammed VI has been considered by thousands of Israelis as “their” king. Many Moroccan Jews fled whom consider the king to be a direct descendent of the Muslim prophet Mohammad. 

 Hassan took power in 1961 after the death of his father, Mohammed V. When Hassan ascended to the throne, he was an unknown quantity with a reputation as a playboy. But ruling with a deft mixture of pro-Western democracy and traditional autocracy, he earned the respect of his people. He also survived several coup attempts.

Mohammed V was widely credited with having saved Morocco’s Jews from deportation during World War II, and Hassan continued the philo-Semitic policies of his father. Although there was an outbreak of anti-Jewish incidents following the establishment of the state of Israel in 1948, the Jewish community was generally safe under the protection of both Mohammed V and Hassan II.

For more information about Morocco Travel to Ouarzazate

For more information about Travel and Tours to Morocco plus highlights on Moroccan culture visit Morocco’s Imperial CitiesSeaside ResortsSahara DesertBerber villagesA Taste of MoroccoMagical Kasbahs, Ruins & Waterfalls, Absolute Morocco, The Best of MarrakechFes, and Ouarzazate.

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Discover The Best of Morocco - Travel Exploration

Travel Exploration specializes in Morocco Travel. We provide Tours and travel opportunities to Morocco for the independent traveler and tailor-made tours for families and groups with a distinctly unique flavor. From Morocco’s Seven Imperial Cities, to the Magical Sahara Travel Exploration offers a captivating experience that will inspire you. At Travel Exploration we guarantee that you will discover the best of Morocco! Call Travel Exploration at 1 (800) 787-8806  or 1 (917)703-2078  and let’s book a tour to Morocco for you today