Ride the Kasbah

Mountain bike holiday in Morocco`s desert world - Jebel Sahro




From $980 Land only

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Holiday Overview


  • Bike across the Tazarzart Pass
  • Cycling through the Todra Gorge
  • Cycle the isolated and exotic Draa Valley
  • Morocco has it all for a short bike holiday destination

This is a classic mountain bike holiday adventure in Morocco's arid Jebel Sahro region. With the snow-covered peaks of the High Atlas to the north and the Sahara to the south, the climate of the Jebel Sahro in southern Morocco is the perfect place for cycling outside the summer months. From the intoxicating city of Marrakech, we drive across the Atlas Mountains to Tinerhir and begin biking in the magnificent Todra Gorge, whose towering walls attract rock climbers from all over the world. Ascending on tarmac and then hard pack, we find ourselves in a remote mountain area, with nomadic Berber shepherds and views of the Atlas peaks. Crossing the Tamtattouchte Pass (2800m), we drop down into the beautiful Dades Valley, the so-called 'Valley of the 1000 Kasbahs'. Our journey continues, through Boulmane Dades and by way of the striking rock formation of Bab n'Ali (Ali's Gate), to finally end up at the oasis town of Zagora on the very edge of the Sahara. With its flexible itinerary and time to explore the souks and sounds of Marrakech, this great biking adventure is perfect for anyone looking to make a winter escape to Morocco and the pink and ochre coloured mountains of the Jebel Sahro!

explore international

Explore International. This is one of our Explore International holidays. Participants on these trips can book through KE or through one of our international partners. This helps us to gather together sufficient numbers of like-minded adventurers to get your holiday up and running quickly. Led by an English-speaking guide, the cosmopolitan nature of these groups can be an important part of the experience!

Is this holiday for you?

ADVENTURE CYCLING. The Jebel Sahro is a great place for a mountain biking holiday. This holiday is suitable for regular and reasonably fit bikers with mountain bikes fitted with semi-slick tyres or cross-country tyres with a non-aggressive tread pattern suitable for dry conditions and offering low rolling resistance. Biking on hard pack roads and loose gravel tracks, the route is not overly technical but there are enough climbs to offer a challenge, as well as some great, fast descents. There are also singletrack options throughout for fitter, technically adept bikers. We will stay in comfortable hotels each night. This trip is suitable for cyclists who are used to paved roads, forestry roads and easy double track. Daily rides are relatively short and vehicle support is always available. Average 60 km (37 miles) of biking per day. We start and finish the trip in Marrakech and with 2 nights included in Marrakech, there's plenty of time to explore the souks, sights and sounds of this exotic city. EXCELLENT BIKE HIRE AVAILABLE LOCALLY.

Brief Itinerary

View in full
  • Meet at the group hotel in Marrakech. Transfers from Marrakech Airport are provided.
  • Transfer over the spectacular High Atlas to Tinehir. Optional warm-up ride on arrival.
  • Cycle to Todra Gorge and follow jeep tracks to Tamatattouchte Pass (2800m). Descend to Msemrir.
  • Bike through the Gorge du Dades. Downhill ride to El Kelaa M'Gouna. Short drive to Boulmane Dades.
  • Cycle across the Jebel Sahro via the Tizzi n'Tazazart (2270m). Descend through Bab n’Ali to N’Kob.
  • Ride the palamaries of the Draa Valley to the Saharan town of Zagora.
  • Transfer to Tansikht. Cycle the Kasbahs of the Draa Valley to Agdz. Drive to Marrakech.
  • Departure day. Marrakech Airport transfers are provided.
Sat 22 Oct - Sat 29 Oct Code JEMB/05/16/ Adult$980 Status 2 more to guarantee Book now
More information
  • Ride the Kasbah
  • The departure reference for this tour is JEMB/05/16/
  • This tour begins on Sat 22 Oct and departs on Sat 29 Oct
  • This departure is available to book. Secure your place today with a deposit of $400
  • Single Supplement $240 - Includes all group hotel nights
Sat 24 Dec - Sat 31 Dec Code JEMB/06/16/ Adult$980 Status 2 more to guarantee Book now
More information
  • Ride the Kasbah
  • The departure reference for this tour is JEMB/06/16/
  • This tour begins on Sat 24 Dec and departs on Sat 31 Dec
  • This departure is available to book. Secure your place today with a deposit of $400
  • Single Supplement $240 - Includes all group hotel nights
Sat 04 Feb - Sat 11 Feb Code JEMB/01/17/ Adult$980 Status Available Book now
More information
  • Ride the Kasbah
  • The departure reference for this tour is JEMB/01/17/
  • This tour begins on Sat 04 Feb and departs on Sat 11 Feb
  • This departure is available to book. Secure your place today with a deposit of $400
  • Single Supplement $240 - Includes all group hotel nights
Sat 04 Mar - Sat 11 Mar Code JEMB/02/17/ Adult$980 Status Available Book now
More information
  • Ride the Kasbah
  • The departure reference for this tour is JEMB/02/17/
  • This tour begins on Sat 04 Mar and departs on Sat 11 Mar
  • This departure is available to book. Secure your place today with a deposit of $400
  • Single Supplement $240 - Includes all group hotel nights
Sat 25 Mar - Sat 01 Apr Code JEMB/03/17/ Adult$980 Status Available Book now
More information
  • Ride the Kasbah
  • The departure reference for this tour is JEMB/03/17/
  • This tour begins on Sat 25 Mar and departs on Sat 01 Apr
  • This departure is available to book. Secure your place today with a deposit of $400
  • Single Supplement $240 - Includes all group hotel nights
Sat 22 Apr - Sat 29 Apr Code JEMB/04/17/ Adult$980 Status Available Book now
More information
  • Ride the Kasbah
  • The departure reference for this tour is JEMB/04/17/
  • This tour begins on Sat 22 Apr and departs on Sat 29 Apr
  • This departure is available to book. Secure your place today with a deposit of $400
  • Single Supplement $240 - Includes all group hotel nights
We sell this holiday on a Land Only basis and recommend that you book your flights to Marrakech Airport, which is approximately 15 minutes drive away from the group hotel in downtown Marrakech. Please refer to the 'Joining Arrangements and Transfers' section of the holiday dossier for further details.

Flights SHOULD NOT be booked until you have received your booking confirmation and the trip is showing 'Guaranteed to Run' or 'Limited'.

If flying from the UK there are a number of low cost airlines offering flights to Marrakech. These include Easyjet who have flights from London, Manchester & Glasgow, Thomson Airways who have flights from London, Manchester, Birmingham, Bristol & Glasgow and Ryanair who have flights from London. Click on the 'Flight information' link below for further information on booking low cost airlines. Alternatively if you would prefer to book a 'flight inclusive package' using scheduled airlines from the UK please contact our flights department for a quote. Whilst flight prices are likely to be more expensive you will benefit from full financial protection.

BOOK WITH KE CONFIDENCE - No surcharge guarantee

We have undertaken to guarantee that all of our Land Only prices will not change once you have booked your holiday. Unlike some of our competitors we have decided never to surcharge, whether you are booking for this year or the next.

Map & Itinerary

The Route

  • point
  • trip direction
  • peaks
  • transfer
  • bike

Holiday Itinerary

  • Meet at the group hotel in Marrakech. Transfers from Marrakech Airport are provided.

    Meet at the group hotel in Marrakech. On arrival at Marrakech Airport you will be met by a KE representative who will assist with the short transfer to the group hotel in the city. Depending on your flight arrival time and after settling in you may have the opportunity to do a little exploration. Marrakech is a friendly city and it is quite easy to get around. Most people head for the central square of the Djemma el-Fna close to the imposing tower of the Koutoubia Mosque. You should also reassemble your bike ahead of an early start in the morning. KE Land Only services begin with the evening meal.

    • Accommodation Hotel

    • Meals d

  • Transfer over the spectacular High Atlas to Tinehir. Optional warm-up ride on arrival.

    After breakfast, we’ll make an early start, loading our bikes for an approximately 5-hour vehicle transfer across the High Atlas Mountains to Ouarzazate, where we’ll break the journey for lunch. We will then continue our drive for a couple of hours more to the oasis town of Tinerhir. Depending on the road conditions, we may arrive in time to take a short ride along a country lane that winds its way slowly up from the town to the start of the spectacular Todra Gorge and our overnight hotel. This provides a gentle start to the trip. The Todra Gorge is becoming something of a Mecca for rock climbers.

    • Accommodation Hotel

    • Ascent 200m

    • Distance 12km

    • Meals bld

    • Descent 200m

    • Time 1 hr cycling

  • Cycle to Todra Gorge and follow jeep tracks to Tamatattouchte Pass (2800m). Descend to Msemrir.

    Our starting point today is the magnificent Todra Gorge, which divides the High Atlas Mountains from the Jebel Sahro to the south. The first 20 kilometres of today’s ride is on tarmac as we climb easily through the gorge and towards the High Atlas. The early morning sun illuminates the rock walls of the gorge, painting them a range of colours, from rose pink to deep ochre. As we proceed into the gorge, we gain superb vistas of distant snow-capped peaks and rolling foothills. Arriving at the village of Tamatattouchte we say goodbye to the tarmac and follow a good, hard-pack jeep track into a remote highland area. The route climbs steeply at first on an interesting rocky stairway, before levelling out in a high valley where nomadic Berber herdsmen tend their vast flocks of goats. The final climb to the pass (2800m) is via a series of hairpins, set at a reasonable gradient and on an excellent surface. From the col, it’s a long and at times rough and rocky descent to the village of Msemrir, where we pick up a short transfer to our hotel in the spectacular Gorge du Dades.

    • Accommodation Hotel

    • Ascent 1850m

    • Distance 70km

    • gps data View now

    • Meals bld

    • Descent 1700m

    • Time 6 - 7 hrs cycling

  • Bike through the Gorge du Dades. Downhill ride to El Kelaa M'Gouna. Short drive to Boulmane Dades.

    There will be many stops for photos this morning, as the first 20 kilometres of our ride follows the snaking, tarmac road through the spectacular Dades Gorge. The rock formations are astounding and there are some impressive kasbahs framed by almond and fig trees. Before leaving the road we can ‘take five’ on the terrace of an enchanting cafe and admire the views ahead. An undulating jeep track winds through a stunning wilderness of red mountains and arid plains and after a further 16 kilometres we go back in time as we arrive at the fantastic village of Bou Thrar. Here, we will take our lunch on the rooftop terrace of an old riad and enjoy the views of neighbouring kasbahs and the surrounding, dramatic mountain scenery. It will be hard to tear ourselves away from this endearing village, but ahead of us looms the ascent to a pass at the head of the valley. Zigzagging out of the valley, we can look back to the towering, snow-covered, peak of Mgoun - Morocco’s third highest mountain. At the pass itself there are exhilarating views in all directions. A final blast takes us across the extensive plains to El Kelaa M’Gouna. Here, we rendezvous with our support and have a short road transfer (approx. 30 mins) to Boulmane Dades and our hotel for the night.

    • Accommodation Hotel

    • Ascent 1200m

    • Distance 60km

    • gps data View now

    • Meals bld

    • Descent 1400m

    • Time 5 - 6 hrs cycling

  • Cycle across the Jebel Sahro via the Tizzi n'Tazazart (2270m). Descend through Bab n’Ali to N’Kob.

    A short transfer takes us towards the village of Tagdilt and the start of our day's ride on hard-pack jeep track. A rolling 20 kilometre ride sees us passing small villages and oases, as we ride into the starkly beautiful Jebel Sahro Range. From the village of Izemgane, we commence our passage over the Jebel Sahro on what must be one of the most beautiful ascents in the world. First a series of zigzags take us to a serene and restful plateau area, where we can admire mount Amalou n’Mansour which, at 2712 metres, is the highest mountain in the Jebel Sahro range. The ascent continues and culminates at the crest of the Tizzi n’Tazazart (2270m) in a stunning area devoid of the human touch - this is wild, arid, isolated nomad country. Then, through a landscape of flat-topped mesas, deep gorges and twisted rock pinnacles, we have a long, winding and at times rocky descent to the stupendous rock formations of Bab n’Ali. These famous twin rock towers are a major Jebel Sahro landmark. Beneath them is a welcoming auberge, which sells refreshing ice-cold drinks. Still on a jeep track, we ride more easily through a valley, with almond trees and oases alongside. A final short climb brings us within range of the Draa Valley and our final destination for the night, N’kob. There are fabulous views across the palmerie (oasis) from the hotel terrace.

    • Accommodation Hotel

    • Ascent 1100m

    • Distance 65km

    • gps data View now

    • Meals bld

    • Descent 1800m

    • Time 5 - 6 hrs cycling

  • Ride the palamaries of the Draa Valley to the Saharan town of Zagora.

    After a transfer of almost 40 kilometres, we reach the start of the quiet and well made jeep road that follows the east bank of the river. We follow this relatively smooth `piste` for around 50 kilometres, with just a short section that is noticeably rougher. We are now most definitely in the land of the kasbahs and they are bountiful, lining a route that is dotted with beautiful palmeries, crammed with date palms, olive and almond groves and citrus trees. In contrast to the yesterday's ride, today is relatively flat, but the vastness of the landscape as we head south towards the dunes of the Sahara gives us the feeling of being on an epic journey. On reaching the edge of the Sahara, at the desert gateway town of Zagora, we will head for the world famous sign - Tombouctou 52 jours - for celebratory photos. The last 20 kilometres of the day's ride is on tarmac. Our hotel is in a quiet spot just out of town.

    • Accommodation Hotel

    • Ascent 600m

    • Distance 75km

    • gps data View now

    • Meals bld

    • Descent 800m

    • Time 6 - 7 hrs cycling

  • Transfer to Tansikht. Cycle the Kasbahs of the Draa Valley to Agdz. Drive to Marrakech.

    After an early start and a transfer of just over an hour to the village of Tansikht, we start our final day of biking. We follow the richest and most magical section of the Draa Valley westwards, riding initially on a good jeep road, along a narrow green strip of lush palmeries, beneath the distinctive Jebel Kissane. En-route, we cycle through lots of friendly Berber villages, where children will likely try to sell us dates. We will also have time to explore the ancient watchtowers that are a feature of this part of Morocco. After about 17 kilometres of biking on hard-pack trails, we reach the fantastic kasbah at Tamnougalt. Here, we can have a welcome cold drink and take a tour of the kasbah, before continuing on tarmac to Agdz in time for lunch. We will then load up the support vehicle for the transfer back to Marrakech. The road crosses the Tizi n’Tinifitt (pass) and drops down to Ouarzazate, before beginning the climb up to the Tizi n'Tichka. We will stop off for a final, celebratory dinner at a wayside restaurant and arrive back at our Marrakech hotel in the evening.

    • Accommodation Hotel

    • Ascent 400m

    • Distance 30km

    • gps data View now

    • Meals bld

    • Descent 400m

    • Time 2 - 3 hrs cycling

  • Departure day. Marrakech Airport transfers are provided.

    KE Land Only services end after breakfast. You should pack your bike away, in readiness for the homeward flight. The remainder of the day is free to explore the streets, souks and colourful sights of Marrakech. A popular option is to simply sit and watch the world go by from one of the restaurants overlooking the Djemma el-Fna. Marrakech Airport transfers are provided.

    • Meals b

Holiday Information

  • A locally based professional bike guide
  • Marrakech Airport transfers on Day 1 and Day 8
  • One or more support vehicles and drivers
  • Hotel accommodation
  • All meals
  • Bottled water during the rides
  • Travel insurance
  • Moroccan Visa (if applicable)
  • Tips for our local bike guide and support crew
  • Marrakech Airport transfers (other than on Day 1 and Day 8)
  • Miscellaneous expenses - souvenirs and drinks etc.

Breakfasts are continental style, with tea and coffee, orange juice, cereals as well as muesli, bread, jam, honey and cheese. A morning snack is also provided and this usually consists of Moroccan 'trail mix' of dried figs and dates, peanuts, sugar coated peanuts and other nuts. Lunch usually starts with the Berber speciality of mint tea, followed by a buffet of rice, pasta or cous cous, with a freshly prepared salad - onion, tomatoes, green peppers, grated carrot, green beans, with tinned sweetcorn or peas added. Hard and soft cheeses, tinned fish, olives, biscuits and bread are also on the lunchtime menu. Dinner starts off with soup and bread. The main course is usually rice, pasta, cous-cous, spaghetti or chips, with a vegetable stew (or tagine) consisting of some of the following - onion, potato, carrot, green pepper, zucchini, turnip, and parsnip. green beans, peas. There will be some meat (usually chicken, lamb or beef). Meat is not prominent in the menu. All dishes come with traditional sauces that are rarely (spicy) hot. Desserts usually consist of fruit, some fresh but more likely tinned, including pineapple, apricot, pears, peaches or mixed. Moroccan tinned fruit is excellent quality. To round off dinner, there is the usual range of hot drinks. During the day, the group will be provided with water and with snacks in the form of dried dates and mixed nuts, and possibly also bananas, but It’s a good idea to bring along a few of your favourite energy bars from home.

All meals are included from dinner on Day 1 to breakfast on Day 8.
All clients arriving at Marrakech Airport on Day 1 and departing from Marrakech on Day 8 are provided with transfers to and from the group hotel. Clients arriving or departing outside of these days should make their own arrangements to meet at the group hotel in Marrakech by the evening of Day 1 of the itinerary. Taxis are always available at Marrakech Airport. The standard fare to the city should be about £6 although you may have to pay a little more if arriving late at night. The airport is approximately 6 kilometres from the city and the journey takes 10-15 minutes.
During this holiday the group will spend 2 nights in a city centre hotel in Marrakech. The accommodation for the rest of the trip is in comfortable Moroccan style hotels, on a twin-sharing basis. All rooms will usually have private facilities other than in Zagora. All the hotels are clean and very friendly, varying from good standard kasbahs to simpler establishments, although they are usually not heated. Many have outdoor swimming pools that you can use (weather permitting). If you are travelling by yourself, you will be paired up with another single client of the same sex. Single room occupancy can be pre-booked at supplementary cost. Additional hotel nights in Marrakech can also be arranged. For hotel prices and single supplement costs please refer to the Dates and Prices page of the trip on our website. Hotels are subject to availability and prices may vary.

View the gallery below for images of the style of accommodation used

When on the trail we will rise reasonably early to make the most of the day. We will usually be up and about by about 08:00 and we then have ample time to enjoy a continental style breakfast and pack our kit bags before setting out on the day’s ride. Whilst riding we will regroup at suitable, shady if available, spots as well as taking longer breaks for a breather during both the morning and afternoon rides. On the days that our support crew can follow us, lunch is usually a freshly prepared picnic buffet, served with refreshing mint tea. We generally try and stop for lunch after more than half the day’s ride has been completed. When we arrive at our overnight accommodation, we have time to settle in, unpack and freshen up before relaxing with a snack and a beer or a cup mint tea or coffee. Dinner is a 3-course or buffet-style meal and is a chance for us to chill out and discuss the day’s ride and events.

The trip will be led by an experienced, English-speaking local bike guide. There will also be one or more support vehicles and drivers.

We suggest that £120 (or equivalent in US dollars, Euros etc.) will adequately cover your needs. You should allow £30 for drinks etc. and around £30 for local crew tips. If you are intending to buy more expensive souvenirs, you should budget accordingly (credit cards can be useful in this respect). Some of the merchants in the Marrakech souks will be able to take credit cards and there are some fantastic souvenir opportunities to be had. However, don’t expect to get a bargain without haggling for it. The unit of currency in Morocco is the Dirham. It is not normally possible (and it is certainly not necessary) to purchase Moroccan currency outside the country. Your travel money should be carried in the form of cash or travellers cheques. Sterling, euros and dollars are all readily exchanged. You can also draw cash from ATM's in Marrakech using credit or debit cards.

Tips are the accepted way of saying ‘thank you’ to your local guides and crew. They do not form part of their wages. KE always pays local crews the best rates of pay, no matter what country they are in and any tips they receive are seen as a personal thank you from group members. For our part, we advise local teams that tips are not a duty or a prerequisite but are a bonus and entirely dependent on the service that is given. We recommend that you give a tip if you feel that the services you have received have been good. As a rough guide we suggest you allow a total of £30 for tipping your crew.

Taking a bike on an aircraft is usually straightforward. Different airlines have differing policies with regard to baggage allowances and transporting bikes. We strongly advise that you check the current policy of your chosen airline for carrying bikes and their baggage allowances before purchasing your air ticket. The baggage section on your chosen airline’s website will usually contain this information. We suggest that you are aware of the weight and dimensions of your intended check-in baggage in advance of your arrival at the airport as airlines may charge for both excess and oversize baggage, or refuse to carry oversized baggage. If you are using a domestic flight to connect with your International flight then it is likely that a different baggage policy will exist for the domestic and international flight sections. Again you should check the baggage policy with your chosen domestic airline prior to booking your domestic flight tickets. Any additional charges incurred for transporting your bike on any of the flights required for this adventure (international, domestic and internal flights within the trip itinerary - if applicable) are the responsibility of each individual client.

We recommend semi-slick tyres or cross-country tyres with a non-aggressive tread pattern for this trip. Choose dry condition tyres with a low rolling resistance. Your Bike MUST BE at least a mid level Mountain Bike such as a Specialized Rockhopper or Trek 6500. Please call us if you are unsure about the suitability of your current bike. Front suspension is essential and comes as standard on the vast majority of modern mountain bikes. Many of the roads and tracks we follow are only suitable for four-wheel drive vehicles, and in many places not even these! We cannot stress enough the importance of ensuring that your bike is in perfect working condition before you start this trip. You are depending on your bike to transport you throughout your holiday, across demanding terrain. It is VITAL to ensure it is THOROUGHLY SERVICED to guarantee it is in good mechanical order before departure. If you are not mechanically minded, get your local bicycle dealer to service it for you. For home mechanics, points to note particularly are:

a) Check rims and if they are worn / cracked / dented replace with a new rim / wheel to avoid wheel failure. It is especially important to check that the rims on rim-braked bikes are not worn concave by the brake blocks – replace them if they are.

b) Check wheels are true and spoke tension is tight.

c) Check and, if required, adjust / grease ALL bearings and quick release skewers.

d) Check and, if required, replace brake and gear cables.

e) Check disc / brake pads, mounts and cables / hydraulic lines - replace if necessary.

f) Check - lube / threadlock and tighten - all bolts (esp. suspension pivots, bottom brackets, disc rotor bolts and disc mount bolts).

g) Check chain, cassette and chain rings for wear – replace as necessary.

h) Make sure you have the right tyres, inner tubes and BIKE SPECIFIC SPARES.

Whilst not essential, it is a good idea that you familiarise yourself with how to carry out at least some basic repairs to your bike e.g. fixing a puncture, changing an inner tube. Naturally our bike guides will always be happy to assist with any repairs, but due to the often remote nature of our trips, being able to carry out a simple repair can save time and the inconvenience of waiting for assistance.

Travelling with a bike is usually as straightforward as travelling with any other type of baggage, providing you have packed it adequately. We have many years experience of travelling with our bikes, and nowadays we think that the best way to travel and fly with a bike is to partially dismantle it and put it into a purpose made soft bike bag. Although more expensive than a cardboard bike box, they are smaller in size to transport and are considerably easier to handle. To pack your bike you simply remove both wheels and pedals and prepare it for travel as follows. Obviously, extra care when packing your bike can minimise the chances of accidental damage occurring in transit. Ask your local bike store for plastic wheel hub protectors (which will prevent damage to your bike bag) and plastic fork and frame spacers, insert the spacers into the dropouts, tape them in place and then put extra padding over this area. Use pipe insulation lagging (from your local DIY store) to cover frame tubes, forks and seat post. If required, remove your bars from the stem and attach them carefully to your frame/forks using plastic ties or pvc tape -ensure that your Ergo/Sti levers are well padded to minimise the chance of damage. You may also wish to remove your rear gear mech, pad it with foam and tape it to the chainstay out of harm's way. Finally, you should partly deflate your tyres, but leave some air in them to help absorb any impact on the wheels. Don’t forget to pack wheel skewers, pedals and any bolts you have removed, these are the items that tend to get left behind. Finally, find an old cardboard bike box and cut out panels to fit inside your soft bike bag for extra protection. Don’t forget to bring sufficient packing materials to pack your bike on the way home. PLEASE DO NOT USE a purpose-made rigid bike box -these are heavy (which can put you over your baggage allowance) and are also too bulky to be easily stored or transported on the group’s support vehicle.

Throughout this trip we have the back up of one or more support vehicles. Each morning our main baggage will be loaded onto the support vehicle which will follow the group on the day's ride. The local biking leader and the support vehicle driver will watch over the group and will carry mobile phones, allowing you to contact them in the case of a breakdown or other incident. We want everyone to enjoy their cycling experience on this trip and we recognise the importance of group members being allowed to cycle at their own pace. So, although the group will become split up at times, we have regular stops to ensure that it's never long before we regroup. The support vehicle will pick up any group members who wish to take a break from cycling at any time.

One option is that you take your own bike on this holiday. It is the bike you know best and will provide you with the best riding experience. However, another realistic option for this holiday is to hire a bike locally. We have established a relationship with a bike hire company in Marrakech who can provide a choice of 2 different bikes which are suitable for this itinerary. The first of these is the Cannondale Rush 2. These are excellent quality, alloy framed bikes with 29 inch wheels and 100 mm full suspension, RockShox forks and shock, Shimano Deore components, a triple chainset and Shimano hydraulic disc brakes. The second model we can provide is the Cannondale Trail 3 29'er. These are aluminium framed hardtail bikes with RockShox 100 mm front suspension, Shimano components, Shimano hydraulic disc brakes and a triple chainset. The Rush 2 full suspension bikes are generally available in sizes S, M, L and XL and cost €170 (euros) for the duration of the trip. The Trail 3 29'er hardtails are generally available in sizes XS, S, M, L and XL and cost €120 (euros) for the duration of the trip. These costs are accurate at November 2015 and subject to change. Payment will be made locally and does not cover you if you lose the bike or damage it beyond 'fair wear and tear'. When you pick up your bike, you will be required to post a significant security deposit which will be held against your credit card details. If you want to hire a bike, please contact the KE office and we can reserve one on your behalf. We must stress that your hire contract will be with the local hire company and that KE cannot be held responsible for any issues arising from bike hire. If you do hire a bike, we recommend that you take your own shoes, pedals and possibly even your saddle, which will go a long way towards making it feel like your own bike. You will also need to take your own helmet, which must be worn at all times when riding.

All KE clients will receive a FREE KE trek bag.  These have been specially made to stand up to the rigours of adventure travel.  Your KE bag will be posted to you when your trip is guaranteed to run or on receipt of your booking if the trip is already guaranteed.  If you have travelled with us before and already have a KE trek bag you can select an alternative free gift in the booking process.

This holiday involves going to moderately high altitude.  During the course of your trip you will reach altitudes in excess of 2500 metres.  Most people will have no difficulty with this level of altitude but before coming on the holiday, we recommend you read the advice on trekking at high altitude.  You can also talk to one of our trekking experts if you have any concerns about altitude.

The following is a basic checklist to help you with your packing. We recommend using the layering principle of clothing for predominantly warm climatic conditions during the day and cooler to cold evenings. Good padded cycling shorts are essential.


Your bike MUST be at least a mid level Mountain Bike such as a Specialized Rockhopper or Trek 6500. Front suspension is essential. It is vital that your bike is THOROUGHLY SERVICED and in perfect working condition before the trip. It is possible to hire bikes in Morocco for this trip. See bike hire information below.



  • Stiff-soled cycling shoes or SPD’s


  • Base-layer - short sleeve cycling top (x 2)

  • Mid-layer - long sleeved cycling top (x 1)

  • Outer layer - lightweight waterproof jacket

  • Fleece jacket or jumper

  • Additional warm clothing (December departure)**

Daypack and contents

  • Cycling daypack (e.g. Camelbak) of at least 15- 20 litres total capacity is recommended

  • Water bladder - min. 3 litres

  • Lightweight waterproof top

  • Multi-tool

  • Puncture repair kit

  • Inner tube

  • Pump

  • Camera

  • Sun cream

  • Small roll of gaffer tape

  • Fleece Jacket or Jumper

  • Lightweight loose trousers to wear for modesty in villages

  • Basic First Aid Kit. Including: antiseptic cream, throat lozenges, diarrhoea treatment (Imodium), painkillers, plasters and blister treatment, Insect repellent, and re-hydration salts (Dioralite).


  • Regular biking gloves

  • Warm biking gloves or warm overgloves


  • Padded cycling shorts (x 2)

  • Cycling tights or tracksters

  • Baggy overshorts for modesty


  • Biking glasses

  • Cycling helmet - mandatory

  • Buff

Trek Bag Contents

  • Travel and apres biking clothes (inc warmer clothes for cooler evenings)

  • Training/Leisure shoes for apres biking

  • Wash bag, towel, toiletries, including anti-bacterial handwash

  • Warm hat

  • Insect repellent (75 - 100% DEET)

  • Small padlock (to lock trek bag)

  • Swimwear

  • Headtorch/Headlamp

  • Bike spares**

  • Chamois Cream (e.g. Assos / Ozone)

** December departure. Late in the season it can be quite cold under clear skies in the Jebel Sahro and we recommend extra warm wear, an extra jumper or jacket and a fleece hat.


Please note: If you are hiring a bike you do not need to bring spares – just a pump, repair kit and a couple of standard 26 x 2 to 2.25 inch inner tubes with Presta valves.

You should bring the following with you as a minimum. Whilst not essential, it is a good idea that you familiarise yourself with how to carry out at least some basic repairs e.g. fixing a puncture, changing an inner tube. Naturally the bike guide will always be happy to assist with any repairs, but due to the often remote nature of our trips, being able to carry out a simple repair can save time and inconvenience waiting for assistance.

  • Tyres You will need: 1.9 to 2.1 inch semi-slick tyres suitable for predominantly dry conditions.

  • Pump

  • Plastic tyre levers

  • Small tube of grease

  • 1 rear brake cable

  • 1 rear gear cable

  • Spare set of brake blocks / disc pads (front and rear)

  • 2 spare spokes for front and rear wheels

  • Spoke key

  • 4 x inner tubes

  • Liquid chain lube (bottle not aerosol)

  • Multi-tool with allen keys

  • Chain link extractor (if not on multi-tool)

  • 2x puncture repair kits

  • A rag and brush for cleaning bike and drive train.

  • Spare chain links

  • Spares specific to your bike**

KE tools and spares

On all of our trips we carry a toolkit and a basic range of spares for emergencies. As bikes become increasingly part specific it is impossible to carry a comprehensive range of spares compatible with all makes and models of bike.
** Please ensure you bring any bike-specific spares that might be needed - such as disc brake bleed kits (and appropriate fluid), shock pumps etc.

For each holiday there is a minimum number of participants required to enable it to go ahead. Once the minimum number is reached, the trip status will change from 'Available' to 'Guaranteed to run'. You can check the trip status for each departure in ‘Dates and Prices’ table. Other than in exceptional circumstances, we will not cancel a trip once it has achieved this guaranteed to run status and so you are free to proceed with your international flight booking and other travel arrangements.

A passport with 6 months remaining validity at the end of your stay is generally required. The information that we provide is for UK passport holders. Please check the relevant embassy or consulate for other nationalities. It is your responsibility to ensure that you have the correct travel documents and visas for your holiday. Visa requirements and charges are subject to change without notice. If you are travelling outside the EU you should have at least 2 blank pages in your passport.

Visa Morocco

UK and USA passport holders do not require a visa for short stays.

You should contact your doctor or travel clinic to check whether you require any specific vaccinations or other preventive measures. You should be up to date with routine courses and boosters as recommended in the UK e.g. diphtheria-tetanus-polio and measles-mumps-rubella, along with hepatitis A and typhoid. A good online resource is Travel Health Pro.

The unit of currency in Morocco is the Dhiram.

We recommend you check if you require an adaptor for your electrical items at:


The better conditioned you are the more you will enjoy your trip. We suggest that you adopt a sensible weekly exercise regime and fit in a number of long cycle rides in hilly country to ensure you are physically capable of taking part in this trip - this will also provide you with an opportunity to make sure all your riding kit is tried and tested before you travel. Cycling is obviously the best activity to prepare for this trip, however, running, squash and swimming are also good for developing aerobic fitness and stamina.

As a reputable tour operator, KE supports the British Foreign & Commonwealth Offices ‘Know before you go’ campaign to enable British citizens to prepare for their journeys overseas, and we recommend that all KE travellers take a look at the FCO Travel Advice for their chosen destination on the official FCO website: www.fco.gov.uk. North Americans can also check out the U.S. Department of State website: www.travel.state.gov for essential travel advice and tips.

KE treat the safety and security of all clients as the most important aspect of any trip we organise. We would not run any trip that we did not consider reasonably safe.  Should the FCO advise against travel for any reason, we will contact everyone booked to travel to discuss the situation.  We receive regular updates direct from the FCO and are in constant touch with our contacts on the ground.  If you have any questions about government travel advice, please call our office.

The region of the Jebel Sahro is extremely hot in the summer months. However, between November and April we can usually expect to find mostly pleasant temperatures for mountain biking. Daytime temperatures at low level will usually vary between 20 and 30 degrees Centigrade, falling away to as low as 5 degrees Centigrade at night. Crossing the higher passes, we can expect temperatures to be much lower than in the valleys. During the Christmas departure, it can be several degrees cooler than this and we recommend additional warm wear at this season. This part of the world receives very little rainfall and we can usually anticipate fine weather. However, weather in mountainous areas is notoriously difficult to predict, and rain or even short-lived storms can occur at any time of the year.

  • Lonely Planet Guide - Morocco

  • The Rough Guide to Morocco

  • Atlas Biker. Nicholas Crane

  • Lords of the Atlas. Gavin Maxwell

Carte Du Maroc. 1:100,000 Series

A good map series. Several sheets are needed to cover the route of this bike trip and are difficult to obtain outside of Morocco.

Extend Your Holiday


When booking your holiday, you will be able to 'add an extension option'.

Once we have received your booking we will contact you to discuss additional services required for the extension and to take any additional deposit.

Imperial Cities of Morocco

This exotic extension starts in Meknes, the beautiful 17th-century imperial headquarters of Sultan Moulay Ismael.  A fortified city-within-a-city complete with elaborate palaces, decorative mosques, mystical dungeons and charming gardens!  After exploring the heart of Meknes we move onto the atmospheric UNESCO Roman masterpiece of Volubilis, the best preserved archaeological site in the country and an atmospheric place to explore.  However nothing can prepare us for the magical riot of Fez, with its UNESCO old town and city walls extending for 10 miles!  The fantastic medina, mediaeval Fez el Bali and the modern "ville nouvelle" is a wonderful melting pot on the senses. We finish in cosmopolitan Rabat, complete with tree-lined boulevards and beautiful colonial architecture. This fantastic extension ensures you are completely immersed in a variety of contrasting cities!  (Please note this extension includes a local driver but not a KE leader.  This gives you more freedom to explore at leisure pre/post KE group trip). 

Imperial Cities of Morocco

From $870 per person

More info

Into the Sahara Desert

For a real taste of the Sahara this adventure is hard to beat!  After journeying across the Atlas Mountains we arrive in the oasis town of Agdz for a night in a traditional Moroccan house.  Next we head to our comfortable fixed Berber camp at Erg Chegaga and take in a spectacular desert sunset before settling down under star-filled Saharan skies!  In the morning we'll watch sunrise over the dunes before exploring this magical landscapes by 4WD.  After a night in Ouarzazate, we make our way back to Marrakech via the magnificent UNESCO Kasbah of Ait Ben Haddou.  (Please note this extension includes a local driver but not a KE leader.  This gives you more freedom to explore at leisure pre/post KE group trip).

Into the Sahara Desert

From $550 per person

More info

Marrakech Full Day City Tour

Marrakech Full Day City Tour

From $105 per person

More info

Golden Tulip

From $55 per room per night

Riad Villa Harmonie

From $91 per room per night Located in the heart of the historic medina and just a short walk from the Djema El Fna, Riad Villa Harmonie is a beautifully restored riad. Built around 2 patios, with palm and orange trees, banana plants and roof-top terrace, this is the ideal place to relax away from the hustle and bustle of the city, but close enough to explore the souks and medina on foot. Rooms are decorated in traditional Moroccan style with modern comforts and private bathrooms. There are 3 different grades of room available depending on size, facilities and location.

Riad Slitine

From $157 per room per night Riad Slitine is in the heart of the medina, close to the Bahia and Badi Palaces, the Tombs of the Saadian Kings. The building dates back to the 17th century and has been recently refurbished in style. The house, built around four patios, has a swimming pool ideal for cooling off in the heat of the Moroccan summer. Complete with hammam, beauty treatments and jacuzzi, the Riad Slitine is truly luxurious. Riad Slitine has 16 luxury, air-conditioned rooms and suites, all with modern comforts including mini-bar, hair-dryers and wifi. Prices are reflective of room size, location and facilities.

Riad Petit Prince

From $113 per room per night Situated in the heart of Marrakech between the central Djema el-Fna and the new town of Gueliz, this family-run riad offers a serene and cosy atmosphere in the middle of bustling Marrakech. Riad du Petit Prince is comfortable and stylish with its leafy terraced seating areas and refreshing plunge pool in the shade of the courtyard. The restaurant serves both Moroccan and European meals. One advantage of staying here is that you are just as close to the shops, restaurants and clubs of the modern French quarters as you are to the Djema el Fna Square. There are 3 grades of room available. Massages are available (additional cost).

Riad Aladdin

From $122 per room per night Backing on to the Badi Palace in the medina, Riad Aladdin consists of three riads linked by a beautiful terrace where you can watch storks gliding to their nests in the Palace ramparts. With its terraces and comfortable lounges, there are many inviting nooks and crannies to escape the busy day. The 17 rooms are spread around the patios, each with its own Moroccan style. In summer you will appreciate the cool of the patio with its shady shutters, and in winter, the warmth of the hammam and the gentle breeze on the terrace. All rooms have air-conditioning and there are 3 different grades available.

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