Hotels that feature on our Morocco desert tours.
Chez Laila – Skoura
Immaculately run by Madame Laila, her maison d’hôtes in Skoura is one of our recommended venues en-route to the desert. Relax, explore the palmeraie and enjoy good food are three mottos for here. Laila offers the best of French and Moroccan cuisine and decor furnishing the salon and dining area with warm Moroccan colours merged with a French farmhouse feel – the downstairs is laid out in a French/Moroccan style with a large fireplace and comfy sofas. She offers the nightly choice of French or Moroccan cuisine and it’s really of a high standard. Breakfast and lunch are often served outside on the terrace under shade with the adjacent pool offering a cooling influence during the spring, summer and autumn months when the temperature is between 25-35 degrees. The perfect spot to pitch up for a night or two and enjoy the calming surroundings or stroll in the palmaraie – Morocco’s largest by the way. You can also rent a quad bike from Laila for more off road thrills. Skoura is situated 4.5 hours from Marrakesh on the south side of the High Atlas and it’s a fascinating village with stunning views of the Atlas and is beautifully situated en-route to the desert about midway between Marrakesh and the dunes.
Riad Nezha – Merzouga
Things slow down a little once you’re arrived at Morocco’s dunes at Merzouga in the south east of Morocco. We like Merzouga as a base for the Sahara for both the comfort and adventure it offers. Merzouga is a small village and it’s hotels are situated against the dunes making it easy to explore and return to the comfort of hotel facilities. Riad Nezha, our chosen accommodation, is run by Brahim, born on the spot of his hotel, he’s a chatty host managing his friendly staff (Hamid as seen in the photo oversees guest arrivals). Ask Brahim about his experiences each year in the US as part of a Moroccan fossil exposition contingent. Built in a traditional style of decorated faux mud brick walls, Riad Nezha is located right on the edge of the dunes with stunning views from it’s rooftop terrace where breakfast is served. All rooms are air-conditioned with marble and tiled bathrooms. There’s generous private parking and a sizeable swimming pool making Riad Nezha one of the most comfortable places to stay in Merzouga as part of any Morocco desert tours program.
This is such a special place and rarely included in most Morocco desert tours. It’s perhaps too close to the dunes (at 2 hours away) to provide the accommodation for compacted full on Morocco Tours or indeed 4 day Morocco desert tours so becomes a lunchtime stop off. A night here staying in the converted Ksar is a treat. The hotel is part of the old Ksar – a mud brick construction of narrow passage ways and houses. The hotel is within these walls and has been converted in keeping with the character as well as offering comfort. There’s even a swimming pool on the top terrace. The rooms are well equipped with air-conditioning units and the bathrooms have enchanting small details that make it a welcome place to stay. However it’s really the surrounding village passageways that make it a fascinating place to pitch-up. The locals are extremely friendly and it’s really untouched by tourism.
We haven’t featured the classical Moroccan Riad which is often found in towns and cities. That’s for a later date! Darren Lewey organises desert tours across Morocco.
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