"Zagora" Top 5 Page for this destination Zagora by angiebabe

Zagora Travel Guide: 114 reviews and 304 photos

Drive down through the scenic Draa Valley

From Ouarzazate the P31 leads you down the magical Draa Valley past fertile palmeraie crammed with date palms,almond and olive groves and citrus trees to Zagora.

Zagora as a town was officially established by the French as an administrative post but with its oasis and prolific date growing providing the staple food for desert dwellers, has been inhabited for centuries. And also being an important stopping place for camel caravans travelling between Timbuktu and Sijilmassa (Rissani).

It was from here that the Saadians in the 16th century set out to conquer the rest of Morocco and also venture deeper down into the southern regions for slaves and gold.

Though not really a lot to do in the town its interesting to travel down and visit a major town servicing an area on the edge of the Sahara, seeing the mix of people there and in particular the variety and colour in the clothing worn and the architecture of the buildings.

I remember my second visit in 3-4 years being surprised to see so many large and rather impressive buildings had sprung up on the way into town.

Its a town though that provides a good range of services that the traveller might need such as internet cafes, pharmacies, supermarket, bakeries, restaurants and a good choice of quality hotels. There are of course the carpet shops with their touts and plenty of agencies for excursions around the area and south further to the dunes of Tinfou, Laoudi or Nesrate, or to the end of the tarseal at the town of Mhamid and into the sahara desert sands and hamada of Chigaga and Sahara Occidental.

Wednesdays and Sundays are the major souk days where typically fruit, vegetables, handicrafts and hardware, sheep, goats, donkeys are brought into be sold. Dates are of course the mafor commodity here in Zagora.

The town does have its large market on Wednesdays and Sundays is a bustling t

Jebel Zagora, palmeraies and Amezrou

There is not really a lot to see in central Zagora with the main attractions being the famed '52 days by camel' to Timbuktu sign of the famed and exotic camel caravan journeys down through the deserts into the countries of the sub-sahara - and heading south 2km across the river the views and remains of the Almorahvid fortress from Jebel Zagora and the interesting kasbah at Amezrou with jewish quarter and silversmiths where many berber families still live.

The Almoravides were here in the 11-12th centuries and built the fortress up on Jebel Zagora in an ideal spot for watching over the camel caravan routes. The Kasbah des Juiffs is a huge partly-ruined kasbah where many berber families still live and 3 jewellery workshops can be found.

A few kms south on the road to Mhamid is the ancient town of Tamegroute with its visitable Koranic library containing one of the oldest korans surviving from the 13th century, kasbah city where many families still live and pottery kilns producing famed and beautiful green ceramics and roof tiles

Pros and Cons
  • Pros:good choice of hotels for a stopover after a stunning drive down the Draa Valley or as a base for the sights around the area such as on further to the sahara sands and stunning Beni Slimane Pass
  • In a nutshell:an interesting town near the edge of the sahara
  • Last visit to Zagora: Feb 2009
  • Intro Updated Jan 16, 2011
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Reviews (24)

Comments (25)

  • BruceDunning's Profile Photo
    Jun 28, 2010 at 2:18 PM

    It is astounding to know that such long history for this area prevails and today living for locals still untouched. I believe GEn Patton came through here on way to visit Rommel in WWII. NIce comments

  • balhannah's Profile Photo
    Aug 21, 2009 at 5:40 AM

    Your Restaurant tip was on the front page. Really interesting reading, and love the photo of the 1st tip. I've never tried Couscous, wonder if we get it in Aus?

  • tiabunna's Profile Photo
    Mar 29, 2009 at 3:54 AM

    I've really enjoyed this trip you've shared here, Angie. Deserts do have their own appeal, don't they? As usual, some great photos too.

  • Donna_in_India's Profile Photo
    Mar 15, 2009 at 8:53 AM

    Hi Angie - that tangine looks delicious. I had the best tangine in Marrakesh!! Yummy! Donna

  • JLBG's Profile Photo
    Mar 10, 2009 at 10:42 PM

    Great tip and photos on the bat mosque, I mean the ksar mosque! Your whole page is a real pleasure to read and reminds me of former trips in the desert.

  • iammaria12000's Profile Photo
    Feb 14, 2009 at 5:16 PM

    Hello Angela, Your reviews of Zagora are really great and helpful.I'm planning on going there in August w/my daughter. I guess it will be the hottest time of year to go into the desert? Have you been there in August? Tnx for sharing! Maria (Netherlands)

  • Oct 25, 2008 at 5:05 AM

    I've been learning how to throw pots in Spain and would like to find a place in Morocco where I can improve my skills, learn more. Has anybody got any ideas out there ?

  • Toyin's Profile Photo
    Aug 2, 2008 at 2:57 PM

    Quite an interesting tip of Zagora. Excellent narratives. Thanks fro sharing.

  • DAO's Profile Photo
    Apr 23, 2008 at 3:35 PM

    Yep, need a better scanner and a PA to do them all. Sound familiar? You are making me hungry now with the restaurant tips!

  • SWFC_Fan's Profile Photo
    Apr 21, 2008 at 12:39 PM

    Wonderful photos and tips here, Angela! The scenery in and around Zagora is stunning - I particularly like the huge sand dunes! Let me know if you have any questions when planning your Greek island hopping trip! :-)

angiebabe

“be prepared, be respectful, try the food, meet the people, walk, walk, walk, keep your eyes open and take your camera”

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