What is the general duration of the treks?
The duration of the trek depends on the region of the trek and on your interests. Generally speaking, your trek can range from 2-3 days to almost month time. Even the same trek can be of a different duration for different trekkers depending on their physical fitness, wishes and interests on the route.
How difficult are the treks?
Difficulty of the treks depends on the region of the trek and duration of it. Shorter treks tend to be easier while longer ones require some physical fitness. To give you an indication of the difficulty of the treks, we have graded our treks from 1 to 3:
Grade 1 walks (Easy)
Tend to be short day walks and rambles at low altitudes. Grade 1 walks can be enjoyed by anyone who leads a reasonably active life and no special preparation is required.
Grade 2 walks (Moderate)
Will usually involve some longer walks (4-6 hours/day) at low altitudes (below 3000m). Some previous hill walking experience would be beneficial but these walks should be within the capabilities of those who lead a normal active life. Grade 2 walking tours may contain some optional strenuous days, and in order to get the best out of the trip we would advise that you tone up your fitness before you join.
Grade 3 walks (Strenuous)
Are for the more serious hill walker and a higher level of physical fitness is required. Walking days are normally 6-8 hours and may involve up to
900m or more of ascent and descent. You should be prepared for several consecutive days walking, often at higher altitudes, so stamina is important.
What kind of overnight accommodation is used during the treks?
In cities like Marrakech or Ouarzazate, accommodation will be in hotels or riads. We can offer accommodation that ranges from luxury deluxe to budget hotels. While on a trek accommodation will depend on the time of year and on your personal preference. You will be able to spend the night in local gites (guesthouses) and we also organize camping treks during which you will spend the night in tents.
Whilst we always try to stay in the best possible accommodation along the way, you should be aware that some gites, particularly in the smaller villages, are quite basic. The bedrooms are usually small with shared bathroom facilities. Although simple, the gites do provide a warm bed and are usually run by friendly local families.
Where do we eat our meals and what kind of food is available?
During your trek all meals will be prepared for you. If you stay in a local gite, the family running the gite will prepare a delicious Moroccan meal for you. During a camping trek, all food will be prepared by an experienced cook.
Is it safe to eat during the trek?
Food safety is always a big concern and we take it very seriously. That is why we have chosen the cleanest and most hygienically kept gites for our routs. During a camping trek your cook prepares safe and tasty meals from carefully chosen food items and only hygienic clean facilities are used.
What is the best time for trekking?
Best time for trekking is autumn (September through November) and spring (March through May).
For winter enthusiasts we also offer a Toubkal winter trek.
What is the weather like?
You need to be prepared for sudden weather changes while trekking. That’s why trekking equipment should be chosen carefully before the trip. Sudden rain storms or snow are always a possibility which needs to be considered. The weather during the trekking season is somewhat more stable.
What kind of clothes is needed for trekking?
For Atlas Trekking you need to prepare as you would for walking in any mountain region; it can be warm and sunny during the day but the weather in the mountains can quickly change from sunshine to snow and cold winds (autumn through late spring). Here is the equipment and clothing we suggest.
What type of shoes should I have?
For 1-day excursions comfortable tennis shoes or snickers is enough while higher and longer treks require carefully chosen hiking boots which should be kind of strong, well-made but light boots. Shoes and boots are best to buy before arriving in Morocco. Proper fit is a must for boots and we advise you to wear your new shoes for sometime before trek for your feet to feel absolutely comfortable during trekking.
Should I bring trekking equipment with me?
You can easily rent equipment for a reasonable price in Imlil before your trek, but it’s always preferable and more convenient to have your own equipment during trekking, so we advise you to bring equipment with you.
Do you provide any equipment while trekking?
On all our camping treks we provide all the tents, sometimes dome tents, sometimes sturdy A frames and normally people share one tent between two; a foam mattress each; all the cutlery and utensils, cooking pots, stoves; candles/kerosene lantern, tables and stools, kitchen tent, dining tent and toilet tent; all the main meals while trekking but not snacks. When you stay overnight in local gites, you will not have to bring any equipment. If you spend the night in the Toubkal Refuge, you will need to bring your own sleeping bag (or rent one in Imlil).
What problems can arise on altitude?
Altitude sickness is a serious problem. However the risks of altitude sickness in the High Atlas Mountains is very small. In the years that we have offered treks and walks in the Atlas Mountains, our guides have never experienced a client with altitude sickness. Of course our guides are trained to spot any signs of altitude sickness and know how to deal with it.
What happens in case of emergency?
Toubkalguide is prepared for any emergency situation and knows how to handle it. Our guides are trained in first aid and can deal with most of the basic ailments that occur during a trek. Every client should have his own insurance before coming to Morocco for case of emergency.
What sort of experience do your guides have?
All guides we work with are government approved and have followed a mandatory training in the Center CFAMM, which makes them official and certified guides. Next to this training they of course have many years of guiding experience in Morocco. Most of them have been spending years exploring the country. Our guides are trained in first aid and know how to handle any situation. All our guides speak English and French and are happy to share their deep knowledge of the country and beauty of Morocco with you. We believe in and follow the idea that it’s not enough to take visitors to special places or special cultures, we need to provide guides who can get people feel involved in what they are experiencing, explain it thoroughly and keep them entertained. Our main concern is to make your trip in Morocco safe, memorable and fun!
Is tipping included and if not, how much should I budget?
Tips are appreciated by your support team after the trip. The amount depends on your budget and appreciation of their work. Some trekkers give 10% of the total tour cost as tips.
Can we change the itinerary?
Depending on the situation, you can modify it to some extent after consulting with your guide. However, the date of trek completion should always coincide with the original itinerary. On occasion local weather conditions may require the trekking route to be altered to ensure your safety.