Road Cycle Tour of Toubkal

Classic road biking holiday from the Atlas to the Moroccan Sahara




From $1,300 Land only

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Holiday Overview


  • Spring and autumn riding in the sun
  • Exploring the vibrant souks of Marrakech
  • Cycling through the Draa Valley to the oasis town of Zagora
  • Bike the Tizi n`Tichka and Tizi n`Test, Morocco`s highest roads

Early and late in the year, Morocco is the perfect destination for a road cycling holiday, with predictably good weather and a growing number of low-cost flight options into Marrakech. South of this magical, 'Arabian Nights' city, our ground-breaking new cycling holiday follows generally good tarmac roads, biking across the Atlas Mountains by way of the Tizi n'Tichka (2260m) to the desert frontier town of Zagora and then returns via an alternative, exciting and little-used road over the Tizi n'Test (2092m). En route, we will stay in simple hotels and gites and will have an experienced KE biking leader, as well as a local guide accompanying the group in the support vehicle. The whole range of Moroccan experiences awaits us - the colourful street vendors and Berber acrobats of Marrakech's central Djema el-Fna square, the exquisite flavours of the local cuisine, spectacular views of the rugged Atlas peaks and the stunning landscape of kasbahs and palm trees in the Draa Valley, as we cycle across the Jebel Sahro to the edge of the Sahara. Making a bike circuit around Mount Toubkal (4167m), North Africa's highest peak, and involving some superb days of climbing and descending on sinuous mountain roads, this is a classic long distance cycling holiday.

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?

ROAD ADVENTURE - If you are looking for a road cycling holiday with a difference, early or late in the season and in a part of the world that see few road cyclists, this is one to consider. We ride a mix of main and minor roads, with only short sections of these roads seeing any weight of traffic. This is a trip for regular weekend road cyclists who will enjoy the challenge of biking around North Africa's highest peak. We have chosen to run the trip either side of the hot summer period, when the temperatures should be ideal for the ride - warm, but not too warm. This is totally supported riding - at the start of the day, when the group sets off biking, your kit bag will be loaded into the support vehicle and transported to the next overnight halt. Apart from a fixed rendezvous for lunch and regular water stops, you are free to cycle at your own pace, with the support vehicle never far away. This holiday has 7 days of fairly continuous riding, with a daily average of 100 kilometres and close to 1000 metres of ascent and descent. There are 2 short vehicle transfers, the first to avoid a section of potentially busy road and the second to avoid a stretch of unmade road. Accommodation is in a mix of simple hotels, with 1 night in a basic but charming gite. Stunning scenery, atmospheric overnight accommodation and a magnificent point-to-point route make this an unforgettable experience. EXCELLENT BIKE HIRE AVAILABLE LOCALLY.

Brief Itinerary

View in full
  • Meet at the group hotel in Marrakech. Transfers from Marrakech Airport are provided.
  • Two hour drive to Taddert. Cycle to Ouarzazate via the High Atlas Pass of Tizi n'Tichka (2260m).
  • Morning Kasbah tour, then onto bikes and cycle over the Tizi n'Tinififft pass (1660m) to Agdz.
  • Ride the palm lined Draa Valley to the Saharan gateway town of Zagora.
  • Bike westwards below the High Atlas. Cycle onto the Berber town of Tazenakht.
  • Continue west over several quiet passes including Tizi n'Taghatine (1886m). Descend to Aoulouz.
  • Cycle the challenging 30km climb of Tizi n’ Test (2100m). Descend to Atlas hill town of Ijoukak.
  • Ride to the market town of Asni and enjoy cycling the home straight to Marrakech.
  • Departure day. Marrakech Airport transfers are provided.
Sat 24 Oct - Sun 01 Nov Code MSMB/07/15/ Adult$1,300 Status Limited Availability Book now
Sat 13 Feb - Sun 21 Feb Code MSMB/01/16/ Adult$1,300 Status Available Book now
Sat 19 Mar - Sun 27 Mar Code MSMB/02/16/ Adult$1,300 Status 2 more to guarantee Book now
Sat 02 Apr - Sun 10 Apr Code MSMB/03/16/ Adult$1,300 Status Available Book now
Sat 30 Apr - Sun 08 May Code MSMB/04/16/ Adult$1,300 Status Available Book now
Sat 22 Oct - Sun 30 Oct Code MSMB/05/16/ Adult$1,300 Status Available Book now
Sat 12 Nov - Sun 20 Nov Code MSMB/06/16/ Adult$1,300 Status Guaranteed Book now
Sat 11 Feb - Sun 19 Feb Code MSMB/01/17/ Adult$1,300 Status Available Book now
Sat 18 Mar - Sun 26 Mar Code MSMB/02/17/ Adult$1,300 Status Available Book now
Sat 01 Apr - Sun 09 Apr Code MSMB/03/17/ Adult$1,300 Status Available Book now
Sat 29 Apr - Sun 07 May Code MSMB/04/17/ Adult$1,300 Status Available Book now
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, 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.

For clients departing on the Saturday, returning to Manchester, will receive a £20 discount off the land only cost.

BOOK WITH KE CONFIDENCE - No surcharge guarantee*

* Against Land Only services.

Map & Itinerary

The Route

  • airport
  • point
  • pass
  • pass
  • 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 quite easy to get around and most people head for the central square of the Djema el-Fna beneath the imposing tower of the Koutoubia Mosque. You will also need to put your bike together in readiness for the morning. KE Land Only package services begin with the evening meal, usually taken at the hotel.

    • Accommodation Hotel

    • Meals d

  • Two hour drive to Taddert. Cycle to Ouarzazate via the High Atlas Pass of Tizi n'Tichka (2260m).

    After an early breakfast, we load our bikes onto the support vehicle and drive out of Marrakech on the main road towards Ouarzazate. We are quickly into the foothills of the Atlas Mountains and cross the Tizi n'Ait Imguer (1470m), which is a regular Sunday morning challenge for local Marrakech road bikers. After just 2 hours drive, we reach the little town of Taddert (1670m) and the starting place of our ride. Here, we can choose one of a number of excellent cafes, where we can have a cup of coffee or a coca cola, or even an egg and tomato 'tagine' to set us up for the ride. Just outside town is a great lay-by where we can unload our bikes for the off. This first day of biking is brilliant and starts with a steady 1-hour climb to the Tizi n'Tichka (2260m). At the pass, there are good views and an unmissable photo opportunity, before we begin the descent. Relatively steep at first, with switchbacks, the angle soon eases and the road straightens to allow good speeds to be achieved. About an hour or so down from the pass, we will stop at a cafe for lunch. Passing through a picturesque landscape, with several Berber villages, it's 93 kilometres from the pass to our overnight stop at Ouarzazate (1160m), but the generally smooth tarmac and downhill inclination means we can cover this is around 4 hours including lunch and water stops.

    • Accommodation Hotel

    • Ascent 850m

    • Distance 100km

    • gps data View now

    • Meals bld

    • Descent 1450m

    • Time 4 - 5 hrs cycling

  • Morning Kasbah tour, then onto bikes and cycle over the Tizi n'Tinififft pass (1660m) to Agdz.

    There's no need for an early start today, as we have just a short stage to ride. So, after breakfast, we have time to explore one of the well-preserved kasbahs and the colourful market streets or 'souks' of Ouarzazate. Mid morning, we set off on a quiet road that skirts the western edge of the Jebel Sahro range of mountains. Again, it's a pretty good surface all the way, undulating a little and with some long, straight sections. We climb to cross an unnamed pass (1600m) after 35 kilometres and descend to the village of Ait Saoun which provides us with the opportunity of a cafe stop for our lunch. The high point of the day is at the Tizi n'Tinififft (1660m), beyond which there is a superb downhill all the way into Agdz (942m), our overnight stop. Set amongst red hills, Agdz is located on the old camel caravan route between Marrakech and Timbuktu - its name means 'resting place'.

    • Accommodation Hotel

    • Ascent 950m

    • Distance 70km

    • gps data View now

    • Meals bld

    • Descent 1100m

    • Time 3 - 4 hrs cycling

  • Ride the palm lined Draa Valley to the Saharan gateway town of Zagora.

    Today we have an early start for the ride down to Zagora on the edge of the Sahara, on good tarmac all the way. Although this takes us away from the circuit of Toubkal, this really is an unmissable detour, following the famous Draa Valley. It is a relatively level ride on the west bank of the Draa River, made interesting by the scenery, which features farmland and palm trees, with lots of small villages, some of which take the form of impressive fortified 'kasbahs'. Passing through these small oases, we have the chance to stop for mint tea or coffee at wayside cafes and also to check out the villages themselves - we may be lucky enough to come across a local market in full swing. During the hottest part of the day, we will stop for lunch at one of the villages en route. Zagora (725m) is the biggest town in the region and is recognised as the 'Gateway to the Sahara'. We will certainly want to stop for pictures alongside the famous sign that points out into the desert with the warning - 'Tombouctou....52 jours' - supposedly the time it takes for a camel caravan to reach Timbuktu.

    • Accommodation Hotel with swimming pool

    • Ascent 350m

    • Distance 95km

    • gps data View now

    • Meals bld

    • Descent 550m

    • Time 4 - 5 hrs cycling

  • Bike westwards below the High Atlas. Cycle onto the Berber town of Tazenakht.

    To reconnect with the road around Toubkal, we start the day with an early drive back to Agdz, which takes 2 hours. Here, after a cafe stop, we set off on an excellent and very little used road that heads west to eventually link up with the main road on the south side of Toubkal. Little wider than a single track road, this strip of tarmac makes its way along the Oued Tamsift Valley to the remote village of Tasla. Our route is pretty straight with just the odd undulation and we will be obliged to stop off for a picnic lunch at a convenient roadside location, as we pass no cafes until later in the day. Beyond Tasla, we encounter a stretch of rough road with lots of potholes and this continues via a couple of minor passes to the cobalt mining town of Bou Azzer. We then drop down through a rocky gorge, a 10 kilometre downhill that leads to the junction with the main road coming up from the south, from the desert-edge settlement of Foum Zguid. There is a small teashop at the junction, the only one we pass all day. From here, there is slightly more traffic (but it's still fairly quiet) for the final part of the day's ride which takes us over a couple of easy passes. Notable is the final 300-metre climb to the Tizi n’Taguergoust (1640m), before we drop down into the small Berber town of Tazenakht (1398m), which is famous carpet making. We check in at our hotel and have a chance to look around some of the many carpet shops that are run on a cooperative basis. This is a good place to get a bargain.

    • Accommodation Hotel

    • Ascent 1050m

    • Distance 90km

    • gps data View now

    • Meals bld

    • Descent 600m

    • Time 5 - 6 hrs cycling

  • Continue west over several quiet passes including Tizi n'Taghatine (1886m). Descend to Aoulouz.

    Today, we will pass south of Toubkal through the lower eastern ranges of the Anti Atlas. There are 2000 metre summits away to the south, whilst to the north the hills rise up to 3000 metres in the Jebel Sirwa region. We get as early a start as is reasonable, riding on a good and relatively level tarmac road across a pretty arid landscape. We are now on the N10, the main road across the southern side of the Atlas, that links Agadir and Ouarzazate. But, the traffic on the road can be very light on this part of the ride, with one vehicle every five minutes or so. There is a very gradual ascent to the top of the Tizi n'Ikhsane (1650m) where there is a small tourist shop with a very friendly owner. Then, as we crest the summit of the Tizi n'Taghatine (1886m), our ride suddenly turns into a big downhill as we drop down towards the Souss Plateau and the small town of Taliouine. This is a centre for growing saffron and a good place for us to stop for lunch. The next stretch of road can sometime be busier and the quality of the road surface is also variable - so care is needed. Shortly before our arrival at Aoulouz (771m), most of the traffic turns off and we can enjoy a quiet end to the day's ride. Aoulouz is well off the tourist trail and another place famous for saffron growing. This is one of the longer days of the trip, but with significant stretches of downhill it shouldn't feel too bad.

    • Accommodation Hotel

    • Ascent 850m

    • Distance 120km

    • gps data View now

    • Meals bld

    • Descent 1400m

    • Time 6 - 7 hrs cycling

  • Cycle the challenging 30km climb of Tizi n’ Test (2100m). Descend to Atlas hill town of Ijoukak.

    The first part of the day's ride takes us westwards towards Taroudant, with a short initial climb and then a long descent across the Sous Plateau to the junction of the N10 with the minor road that we must take back across the Atlas Mountains. This junction marks the low point of our trip (at just 450 metres). From here, we begin the long climb on a quiet road up to the Tizi n'Test (2100m) via a series of switchbacks. For the first 18 kilometres of the climb, the landscape is quite barren. But, from the first village, at Tachguelte, the beauty of the area becomes more apparent and it is obviously more appealing to Moroccan and foreign visitors, since there are teashops and coca cola stalls every few kilometres. This is a long ascent, but the gradient is easy and we can settle down to admire the views of the villages in the valley bottom and listen to muezzins' calls to prayer echoing across the hillsides. Towards the top of the climb, we can expect to meet other westerners for the first time since Zagora, as this valley is a popular paragliding site, particularly amongst the French. We will have a couple of water stops during the ascent and maybe stop for lunch within sight of the top, depending on our progress. Just like on an Alpine climb, there is a good cafe at the col and we will certainly appreciate a coffee stop. The tarmac on the ascent is pretty good, but on the descent there are potholes in places - so, again, care needed. It's a super descent, sweeping through numerous bends and with views of Mount Toubkal, to Ijoukak (1050m) on the fringes of the Toubkal National Park. Here, we overnight in a simple, but charming and pleasantly located gite, run by a friendly family. A fantastic day's riding.

    • Accommodation Gite / Hostel

    • Ascent 1750m

    • Distance 110km

    • gps data View now

    • Meals bld

    • Descent 1300m

    • Time 6 - 7 hrs cycling

  • Ride to the market town of Asni and enjoy cycling the home straight to Marrakech.

    We make another early start from our gite, to tackle the final day of biking back to Marrakech. This is not all downhill, but the first couple of hours include some of the best fast descent of the holiday. Then, from Ouirgane, the road crosses one of the northern spurs of the Atlas which involves 2 short climbs and a total of 300 metres of ascent. A crest in the road marks the end of this stage of the day's ride and offers good views of Mount Toubkal to the south-east. We then drop down to the town of Asni which is the place where KE's trekking groups turn off on their way to Toubkal. Asni is a busy place on a Saturday, as this is the day of the weekly market or bazaar and we are likely to find the remaining stretch of road to be slightly busier than the rest of the circuit. We can blast the last stretch into Marrakech on good tarmac, using the prominent landmark of the Koutoubia Mosque to guide us. We will stop for lunch at a cafe in the vicinity of the Djema el-Fna, before returning to the group hotel in the early afternoon. At under 6 hours, this is not a long day and we get to our hotel with plenty of time left to pack our bikes away. Those opting to depart from Marrakech today (easyJet flights to Manchester) will have time for a quick shower, before transferring to the airport. Those flying home on Sunday will have the afternoon free to do some independent exploration. Later, the group will spend some time at the nightly spectacle of the Djema el-Fna and enjoy a well-earned celebratory dinner at a traditional hotel.

    • Accommodation Hotel

    • Ascent 700m

    • Distance 100km

    • gps data View now

    • Meals bld

    • Descent 1450m

    • Time 6 - 7 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 homeward flight. Depending on your flight time, you may have some time 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 Djema el-Fna. Marrakech Airport transfers are provided.

    • gps data View now

    • Meals b

    • Time 5 - 6 hrs cycling

Holiday Information

  • An experienced KE bike leader
  • Marrakech Airport transfers on Day 1 and Day 9 of the itinerary
  • One or more support vehicles and drivers
  • All accommodation as detailed in the trip dossier
  • All meals
  • Bottled water during the rides

  • Travel insurance
  • Moroccan Visas (if applicable)
  • Marrakech Airport transfers other than on Day 1 and Day 9
  • Tips for the guide and local support crew
  • Miscellaneous expenses - drinks and souvenirs etc
  • Bike Carriage on the flights - please check with your carrier for charges

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.

All clients arriving at Marrakech Airport on Day 1 and departing from Marrakech on Day 9 are provided with complimentary airport 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 no more than £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. Hotel contact details and an emergency number will be provided with your booking confirmation.

During this bike holiday, we will generally meet for breakfast at about 7.30am. After we’ve eaten, we will pack our trek bags and load them onto the support vehicle. We will generally start our day’s riding at around 8.30 am. We will have regular stops to allow the group to reform and cafe stops wherever it seems appropriate. The support vehicle will bring up the rear to to make sure nobody is lost. Lunch will be at a restaurant where we will have the opportunity to taste a wide variety of Moroccan food. We usually arrive at our hotel by mid to late afternoon, around 3 or 4pm, so there is time to shower, change and relax or attend to any bike maintenance that may be required. Our evening meals will be either at the hotel restaurant or at a nearby one that we know to be good. This is a great time of day for reliving the events of the trip so far and for general socialising.

During this trip the group will spend 2 nights in a hotel in Marrakech, 1 night in Ouarzazate, 1 night in Agdz, 1 night in Zagora, 1 night in Tazenakht and 1 night in Aoulouz. We normally use a gite in Ijoukak. At most of the hotels we use, the accommodation is provided on a twin-share basis. If you are travelling by yourself you will be paired up with another single client of the same sex. At the gite in Ijoukak, there are twin-share rooms and rooms sleeping 3 to 5 persons. Even here, we usually manage to retain the twin-share arrangement. Depending on availability, it is usually possible to pre-book single room occupancy for all nights (7) except at the gite in Ijoukak.

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

Breakfasts at the hotels and gites that we use are 'continental' in style, with tea and coffee, orange juice, porridge and cereals as well as bread, eggs, fruit, jam, honey and cheese. At lunchtime, we will almost always stop at a wayside cafe and the meals that we are presented with will include local staples such as tagine (slow cooked stew of vegetables or meat) or cous-cous (again there are vegetarian and meat varieties). Additionally, there will always be bread, fresh salad and usually fruit for desert. On approximately alternate days, we will have lunches made up of picnic materials carried in our support vehicle. These will include bread, a choice of salads, pasta, potato salad, tinned fish, boiled eggs and again fruit for desert. The Berber speciality of mint tea will also be provided at lunch time and you can usually buy coca cola or alternative soft drinks. Evening meals are usually taken at the hotel and may be buffet style, with a choice of food. Or, there may be vegetarian and meat options of that favourite Moroccan dish, the tagine. Desserts usually consist of fruit, some fresh but also 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 included from dinner on Day 1 to breakfast on Day 9.

We suggest that £150 (or the equivalent in US dollars, euros etc.) will adequately cover your needs. You should allow £40 for drinks etc. and around £40 for 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 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 dhiram. 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 (dhirams) from ATM's in Marrakech using credit or debit cards.

This trip will be accompanied by an experienced KE biking leader. In addition, there will be a local guide and one or more support vehicles and drivers.

Tips are the accepted way of saying ‘thank you’ to your local guides and porters. 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. We advise our local staff that tips are a bonus and entirely dependent on the service that is provided. We recommend that you give tips if you feel that you have received a good standard of service. As a rough guide we suggest you allow a total of £40 for tipping your crew. More detailed guidelines on tipping will be provided with your final joining instructions.

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.

A road bike or standard cycle-touring bike is recommended for this trip. It should be fitted with a compact or triple chainset and a nine or ten speed cassette. We strongly recommend also that you fit 25mm tyres to provide a bit more comfort on the variable road surfaces that will be encountered. Please call us if you are unsure about the suitability of your bike. 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. 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 or dented replace with a new rim or wheel to avoid wheel failure. It is especially important to check that your bike’s rims are not worn concave by the brake blocks - replace them if they are!

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

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

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

e) Check and tighten, if required, all bolts (esp. crank, bottom brackets, aheadset, stem/handlebars).

f) Check chain, cassette and chain rings for wear - replace as necessary.

g) 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. changing an inner tube and fixing a puncture. Naturally, the bike guide will always be happy to assist with any repairs. However, this is a trip into a remote area any being able to carry out a simple repair can save you the inconvenience of having to wait 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 bike bag or hard bike case. If you are using a softer bike bag, then you may need to add further protection to the bike when packing it. 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 harms 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, if you are using a softer bike bag, 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 note that bike bags or bike boxes will not travel with us during the course of the trip. Bicycle transportation bags or boxes will be left in secure storage.

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 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. On most of our road biking trips it is usual that there can be a fair distance between the front and rear cyclists in the group and there may be times when other group members, vehicle support and biking leader are out of sight. Our regular water stops will allow the group to reassemble and 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 Cannondale Synapse Ultegra road bikes at a cost of €140 (euros) (January 2014 - price subject to change) for the duration of the trip. These are carbon framed bikes with full Shimano Ultegra components, triple 52/39/24 chainsets and 12/27, 10-speed cassettes. They are available in a range of sizes. This cost will be paid 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 security deposit of €900 (euros) and this will normally 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.

The altitudes attained on this holiday are not extreme and the maximum altitude attained is no more than the equivalent of a pressurised cabin on an international flight. You may ‘feel’ the altitude the first time you trek above 2000 metres but all that is required is a slower pace to compensate. You should pay particular attention to your hydration levels while trekking above 2000 metres.

No visa is required for travel to Morocco by the holders of the following passports: United Kingdom, United States of America or Australia. Please note that your passport must be valid for at least six months after your date of entry to Morocco and that this entitles you to stay in the country for up to three months. Holders of passports not on the above list should contact the Kingdom of Morocco visa information service to see if a visa is required. (Most people will find that no visa is required).

We do keep our information up to date but be advised visa requirements are subject to change. It is recommended that you contact the relevant commission in the case of recent alterations.

The following is a basic checklist to help you with your packing. We recommend using the layering principle of clothing for varying climatic conditions. Good padded cycling shorts are essential.

Your Bike MUST be a road bike or standard cycle-touring bike fitted with a compact or triple chainset and a nine or ten speed cassette. It is vital that your bike is THOROUGHLY SERVICED and in perfect working condition before the trip.



  • Road or touring cycling shoes
  • Waterproof cycling overshoes


  • Base-layer - short sleeve cycling top (x 2)
  • Long sleeved cycling top (x 1)
  • Lightweight waterproof jacket
  • Lightweight Fleece top or jumper.
  • Lightweight windproof gillet.


  • Regular biking gloves
  • Long fingered gloves


  • Padded cycling shorts (x 2)
  • Cycling tights or tracksters


  • Eyewear - Biking glasses
  • Cycling helmet – mandatory


KE Trek Bag Contents

  • Travel and après biking clothes
  • Training/Leisure shoes for après biking
  • Wash bag and toiletries
  • Antibacterial handwash
  • Swimwear
  • Chamois Cream (e.g. Assos or Ozone)
  • Small padlock (to lock trek bag)
  • To be carried on the bike in your jersey pockets or in a small saddle bag. Note: If you don’t want to carry any of this, you can leave it in your day-pack in the support

    • vehicle – see below
    • Mobile/Cell phone (optional)
    • Mini-pump
    • Multi-tool
    • Puncture repair kit & tyre levers
    • Inner tube
    • Small camera
    • Sun cream

    Other items affixed to your bike

    • 1 or 2 waterbottles
    • To be carried in the support vehicle in your day-pack for
    • easy access
    • Lightweight waterproof top
    • Lightweight trousers and shirt to cover up when visiting villages en route
    • Basic First Aid Kit. Including: antiseptic cream, throat lozenges, diarrhoea treatment (Imodium), painkillers, plasters, insect repellent (75-100% DEET) and re-hydration salts (Dioralite).


    Please note: If you are hiring a bike you do not need to bring spares – just a pump, repair kit and a couple of inner tubes.

    • If you are taking your own bike, you should bring the following with you. 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 our 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.


    • You will need 700 x 25 Touring/Road Performance tyres suitable for mostly dry with occasional wet conditions.
    • Pump
    • Plastic tyre levers
    • 1 rear brake cable
    • 1 rear gear cable
    • Spare set of brake blocks (front and rear)
    • 2 spare spokes for front and rear wheels
    • Spoke key
    • 4 x inner tubes
    • Spare chain links
    • Liquid chain lube
    • 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.
    • Any spares specific to your bike

    KE tools and spares

    • On all of our trips we carry a track pump, toolkit and a basic range of spares for emergencies. If any other spare parts are needed, our support vehicle will make a detour to the nearest bike shop, which can be found in some of the larger towns en route.


    Energy Gels/Sports Drinks/Power Bars

  • You should take a supply of the gels, power bars, sports drink mix (sachets) and other high-energy snacks that you normally use.
  • 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.

    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: North Americans can also check out the U.S. Department of State website: 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.

    It is hot in Marrakech in the summer months. But, by running this bike trip in the period between October and April, we aim to avoid the scorching summer days. We can expect daytime temperatures throughout the ride to be between 25 and 30 degrees Centigrade. The temperature will be lower than this at the highest passes on our route and night time temperatures will be around 15 to 20 degrees Centigrade. The weather is usually stable during the period of the year that we run this holiday. 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. Visit the World Meteorological Organization’s website at for climate statistics for Marrakech.

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