Dades Gorge and the winding road in Morocco

The Dades Valley and the Dades Gorge in Morocco are definitely one of the must see places. Beautiful old Kasbahs and spectacular red-colored canyons, formed by the Dades River are waiting for you to explore! There are plenty thinks to see inside the Dades Valley: Including the breathtaking Dades Gorge, the spectacular winding road and the monkey fingers.

 

Dades Gorge and Dades Valley Road Trip

 

The Dades Gorge (Dades Valley)

The beginning of the Dades Gorge is just a few kilometers after the town Boumalne Dades. The Gorge is 45 km long and formed with the most dramatic red rocks formations. You have to know that the red-colored walls of the Dades Gorge range up to 500 meters! So it was an amazing experience driving this spectacular road inside the Dades Gorge. We passed interesting Berber villages and stopped at some viewpoints to inhale the dramatic landscapes. The contrast between this red rock colors, the green oasis with the palm groves was immense.

Monkey Fingers

There are lots of photo spots next to the gorge road. Definitely, you should stop at the “monkey fingers” a magnificent rock formation just 9 km from Boumalne Dades. We had been there in the morning, for photographers we recommend this spot at sunset. Then the lightning will be much more beautiful and intense. In general, for taking some great shots, you should take some time to explore all the area.

We also passed a few gigantic and ancient Kasbahs. They are located just next to the Dades River but the most of them can´t be visited. Anyway the panorama of the Dades Valley is breathtaking too.

Dades Gorge & The winding road of Morocco

The winding road inside the Dades Gorge was an absolute highlight of our visit. Driving Morocco’s famous zig zag road by car was quite adventurous but perfectly safe. After a set of hairpins turns, you will get rewarded with stunning views from the top.

Drink a Moroccan mint tea at the beautiful café-restaurant Timzillite and enjoy the best view of the winding road in Morocco.

The winding road of Morocco

After driving this zig zag road, we recommend to continue the road (approx. 15 km) for exploring a bit more of the breathtaking scenery. The landscapes are amazing there!

Dades Gorge or Todra Gorge

Lots of Morocco visitors ask themselves: Should I visit either the Dades Gorge or Todra Gorge? In our opinion it is not really possible to say which place to prefer. Both, Dades Gorge and Todra Gorge are really worth a visit.

The Dades Valley and Dades Gorge with its winding road offers one of the top photo motifs of Morocco. The landscapes are really dramatic and the red rock forms, like the Monkey fingers, are unique.

The Todra Gorge is probably one of the most impressive canyons in the world. Additionally you have the possibility explore the beautiful oasis in Tinghir.

How to go to the Dades Gorge (Dades Valley) by car?

From Marrakesh to Dades Gorge it’s an approximately 320 km drive. Going from Quarzazate to Dades Gorge it’s about 110 km, just follow the N10 route in direction Tinghir. You will pass at El-Kelaa M’Gouna, the entrance to the Rose Valley. Arriving in Boumalne Dadès, best you follow the road R407 inside the Dades Gorge. From Tinghir to Dades Gorges it will take about 70 km.

It is best that you rent a car in Marrakesh to go to the Dades Valley!

Where to stay at Dades Gorge (Dades Valley)?

Hotel recommendation:

For the night we had an unforgettable stay at the lovely Maison D’Hôtes Restaurant Chez L’Habitant Amazigh guest house. It’s a typical Berber hotel with traditional Moroccan decoration. The hotel is located in the heart of the Dades Gorges and from the cozy terrace you are going to have a wonderful view at the Dades River. The hotel is a fantastic starting point for hiking tours inside the Dades Gorges.

The host family was just lovely – they made us a great evening with singing traditional Berber songs and playing drums. We even had the chance to get a free lesson of learning Berber language! That was really interesting and we learnt a lot about the Berber history and culture in Morocco.

Maison D’Hôtes Restaurant Chez L’Habitant Amazigh” guest house is clean and cozy. The price for the rooms are unbeatable and the location is perfect. Dinner and breakfast was tasty and really fresh made.

Other great hotel deals at Dades Gorge (Dades Valley):

Maison d’Hôtes La Vallée des Figues

The Auberge La Vallée des Figues comes with a terrace overlooking the mountains and valleys. Set in a traditional Berber architecture, it features a Moroccan lounge.

Auberge Kasbah Ait Marghad

An excellent location, with wonderful view. The Auberge Kasbah is a great starting point for excursions.

Dar Essyaha

The Dar Essyaha is a traditional Moroccan hotel set on a hill at 1600-metres altitude overlooking the Dades Gorges. Just 11 km from Boumalne Dades.

Riad Dades

A lovely old traditional Moroccan house overlooking the gorge with a great view!


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11 Comments

  1. Super!! Wundervolle Bilder und sehr interessanter Post. Ist mir komplett neu Dades Gorge. Sehr sehr cool!!
    lg Sabrina

  2. These photos are simply stunning. My favorite is the Winding Road of Morocco, such a great view! I would love to visit Morocco and see the The Dades Valley and Dades Gorge. It’s a photographer’s dream place with all the red and panoramic views!

  3. I have a weird fascination with gorges and rock formations. I’m not a geologist or anything, I just love rocks. This is a gorgeous road trip to take. Not sure I see the resemblance to monkey fingers, but they are still beautiful formations:)

  4. Great article! Went to Morocco as a kid but I would love to go back and do a road trip, including the gorges and Atlas Mountains! Thanks for sharing!

  5. What a landscape! Morocco is a place I hope to visit sooner rather than later, and I love the idea of this road trip. Your photos are lovely. I particularly like to image of the hairpin turns in the road- winding indeed. Stunning!

  6. Although I’ve been to Morocco a few times Dades Gorge or Valley, whichever way you call it, is not one of the places I’ve yet seen. I’d love to visit, your photos of the beautiful water-worn rocks look lovely, especially the monkey fingers ones! And the red-painted buildings almos disappear against the rock, except the ones standing against the blue sky behind. I love the architecture of that cafe Timzillite!

  7. Food and Footprints Reply

    The view of the winding road is absolutely stunning! We love mint tea, so sipping that while admiring the view would be amazing! Definitely want to visit Morocco ASAP

  8. Morocco is a country i really love. Marrakech ia my favourite city, but the best os what you are showing in this post. It’s driving a car and explore the beautiful landscapes.

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