7 unforgettable places to go trekking in Morocco

Robin McKelvie

written by
Robin McKelvie

updated 20.05.2024

Few countries boast such impressive natural diversity as Morocco. From its balmy coastline to the remote landscapes of its interior, the country offers everything from relaxed beach breaks, to mountain escapes, with trekking a highlight for many. 

In summer, beginners will enjoy gentle forays into the Atlas Mountains. Come the depths of snow-ravaged winter, tackling some of Africa’s toughest terrain presents a serious challenge even to experienced hikers. 

Read on for a run-down of unforgettable places to go trekking in Morocco. It's fair to say, Morocco rewards every traveller who explores its vast valleys and peaks.

Not sure how to start planning your Morocco trip? Browse our customisable Morocco itineraries for inspiration, or talk to our local experts.

Jebel Toubkal

North Africa’s highest peak, Jebel Toubkal vaults 4167m into the heavens in the Central High Atlas, serving views that more than reward the effort of trawling up.

This quasi-mythical mountain is the most eulogised peak in the country, and well-deserves the praise heaped upon it.

In summer, it's an adventure most reasonably fit people can tackle in two or three days from Imlil — altitude sickness, sunstroke and dehydration permitting. Located at the trail start, the Kasbah du Toubkal is an ideal base.

In winter, when the trails are thick with snow, Toubkal is an even more serious beast requiring specialist gear and skills. 

For an exhausting but exhilarating challenge, try the Toubkal Circuit — a gruelling trek that takes around a week to complete.

Where to stay

Riad Atlas Chateau - owned by Driss Lachguer, a popular Berber mountain guide, this family-run guesthouse provides spacious, pristine rooms with private bathrooms (except some cheaper rooms), plus a/c and heating. 

Imlil village in Atlas mountains, Morocco © Shutterstock

Imlil village, Atlas mountains, Morocco © Shutterstock

Jebel Saghro

When the snows make the High Atlas tricky, the mountain range of Jebel Saghro offers beautiful wintry landscapes but with fewer challenges. 

A continuation of the Anti-Atlas, it has slightly milder temperatures and trails that are usually still passable, without the same level of difficulty as Toubkal.

At 2712m, the highest peak — Amalou n'Mansour — is much lower than the High Atlas peaks. This means the risk of altitude sickness is generally less of a problem. The local cave paintings are a bonus.

Where to stay

Hotel Tomboctou - a kasbah built for Sheikh Bassou in 1944, this is one of the country’s most memorable small hotels. There’s a range of tasteful and cosy rooms (cool in summer and heated in winter), plus a courtyard pool, good restaurant, and small bar.

M’Goun Massif

The traverse of the M’Goun Massif in the Central High Atlas need not be as taxing as taking on Toubkal if you avoid ascending the high peaks such as M’Goun itself (4071m). 

This lets you spend more time savouring the drama of the mountain scenery and valleys that are home to the local Berber tribes.

The area is at its best in late spring with carpets of wild flowers and dramatic snow-melt rivers in valleys like the Ait Bougmez and the Tessaout. 

If you have a week to play with, enjoy exploring the lower slopes and valleys, or use your time to acclimatise properly and tackle M’Goun itself.

Where to stay

Kasbah Assafar - this skilfully restored pisé kasbah in the village of Aït Khyar has a terrace that makes the most of its lofty position (1400m altitude). Owner Boullouz Aziz is a very experienced mountain guide who can organize walking and mountain biking in the Vallée des Roses and the Jebel Saghro.

Going to Morocco? Start preparing for your trip with our useful travel tips for travelling to Morocco.

BenHaddou, Morocco © Shutterstock

Ait ben Haddou, Morocco © Shutterstock

Jebel Sirwa

Though the Anti-Atlas in the south of Morocco is a much less heralded mountain range than the High Atlas, it still boasts a number of tempting peaks.

 Sirwa, a chunky 3304-metre-high volcanic mountain, connects the two ranges.

From Atougha, Mount Sirwa can usually be climbed in two days, though a guide is recommended particularly for the potentially dicey final section. 

Alternatively, make a week of it, taking time to ramble the Berber valleys, with their steeply terraced fields.

Rif Mountains

Though Morocco’s northern Rif Mountains aren't as renowned as many of the country’s mountain ranges, they're a firm favourite with local walkers, especially families. 

Base yourself in Chefchaouen and myriad day trip options beckon. For example, you can enjoy a relaxed half-day saunter along the banks of the Ras el-Maa river. Simply choose your duration, then retrace your route or catch a taxi back. 

For a more challenging experience, try the day hike up Jebel al-Kalaa, which overlooks the town. Or, for overnight hiking trips, the Talassemtane National Park beckons.

Where to stay

Dar Antonio - this cosy guesthouse has seven colourful, warm rooms. There's also a kitchen, two shared bathrooms, courtyard and rooftop terrace.


Jemaa Bouzafar — a 15th century hilltop mosque above Chefchaouen © Mikhail Markovskiy/Shutterstock

Ifrane National Park

Nature lovers can indulge themselves in Morocco’s ‘Little Switzerland’ and its visual feast of flora and fauna in the Middle Atlas. 

The Atlas Cedar tree-shrouded slopes here are at their best in spring and autumn.

While walking the trails, look out for Barbary macaques. Once found throughout North Africa, it’s now an endangered species and the Ifrane National Park is one of its last preserves.

Where to stay in Azrou

Le Palais des Cerisiers - this Alpine-esque lodge boasts a grand wooden staircase and large comfortable bedrooms, some with balconies overlooking  cherry-blossom trees (hence the name) to the hills beyond. 

Non-guests are welcome to eat in the refined restaurant. There’s also a swimming pool and spa, and mountain bikes are available for exploring the cedar forest.

Paradise Valley

Most visitors to Morocco don’t normally associate the coastal beach resort of Agadir with hiking, but the lush oasis of Paradise Valley isn't far inland. 

A deep palm-fringed gorge follows the river north to Imouzzer Ida Ou Tanane, some 60km away.

Those short on time can take the short (about 3km) walking trail from Imouzzer Ida Ou Tanane out to the ‘Cascades’ waterfalls. 

If you have more time, hire a guide and mule to explore the valley’s Berber villages and camp under the stars.

Where to stay

Hotel Aferni - it’s worth asking for a room with a bathtub and balcony in this pleasingly old-fashioned three-star hotel. It boasts a pool and terrace, with TVs and safes in each room. 

For more Moroccan inspiration, read our guide to the best things to do in Morocco.

And, to kickstart your perfect trip, browse our customisable Morocco itineraries, or talk to our local experts.

Top image: Imlil village, Atlas mountains, Morocco © Shutterstock

Robin McKelvie

written by
Robin McKelvie

updated 20.05.2024

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