Flyways Birding

Magical Morocco!

Pharoah Eagle Owl
African Scrub Warbler
Greater Hoopoe Lark
Levaillant’s Green Woodpecker
African Crimson winged Finch
Desert Sparrow
Egyptian Nightjar
Crowned Sandgrouse
Northern Bald Ibis
Red rumped Wheatear
Moussier’s redstart
Thick-billed Lark
Maghreb Wheatear
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Magical Morocco!
From the Atlas Mountains to the Sahara Desert!

March 8 – 19 2024

Tour leader – Jonathan Meyrav
Local leader – Hamid from Gayuin Birding Tours

Tour at a glance:

Tour leaders – Jonathan Meyrav and Mercedes (Meche) Alpizar

11 nights
10 full days of birding
6-11 people with 2 guides
Difficulty – easy
Photography options – good

Morocco is a fascinating country combining many unique habitats and amazing nature. Nestled in North Africa and bordering both the Atlantic Ocean and the West Mediterranean Sea, Morocco has always been a land of diverse cultures from Africa, Europe and everything in between! The people of Morocco are known for their hospitality and kindness. From the Sahara Desert to the high Atlas Mountains and the coast, this magical country is a fascinating destination for birding, nature, culture, food, architecture and much more!
Our tour begins in colorful Marrakech; from which we will head up to the Atlas Mountains and then head East to the beautiful sand dunes of Merzouga near the Algerian border. After enjoyind the specialties of the desert we will traverse the “anti-Atlas” mountains and head down to the beautiful town of Agadir. After birding the Atlantic coast, we will work our way back up to Marrakech where
our tour ends.

Click for our Full Program

Day 1 – March 8th 2024 – Arrival to Marrakech and transfer to the hotel.

Most flights arrive in Marrakech in the afternoon, dinner and accommodation at Hôtel Palais Al Bahja in Marrakech.

Day 2 – March 9th – Marrakech to the high Atlas Mountains – Oukaimeden

We will meet our guide at the hotel and start the drive up to the Atlas Mountains. Our destination is the town of Oukaimeden, situated at 2600m above sea level. As we drive along the cultivated fields, we should find a good mix of resident species such as Southern Grey Shrike, Little Owl, Sardinian Warbler, Spotless Starling, Moroccan Magpie, Moussier’s Redstart and House Bunting. Slightly higher up, among the rocky slopes, we will search for Blue Rock Thrush and the beautiful and endemic Levaillant’s Green Woodpecker. When we reach the ski resort at Oukaimeden, we will check the snowline for the handsome African Crimson-winged Finch, a hardy Finch which is only found in the Atlas Mountains. Other species here include Rock Sparrow, Seebohm’s wheatear, Black Wheatear, African Chaffinch, Alpine Chough and Atlas Horned Lark. Dinner and accommodation at the Auberge Le Maquis in Ourika.

Day 3 –March 10th – High Atlas to Ouarzazate – Boumalne du Dades

After an early breakfast we leave the mountains behind, if needed we will put in some more time for the Levaillant’s Green Woodpecker. From the flat plains of Marrakech, we turn back uphill, and drive to Boumalne du Dades via the Tizi-n-Tichka pass (2260 meters), a spectacular and long drive. On the Pass we’ll try for the rare and endemic Tristram’s Warbler. This species has very specific habitat requirements away from its wintering grounds and not always easy to find. As the road climbs into the hills, we will keep an eye open for raptors such as Long-legged Buzzard and Bonelli’s Eagle. Before reaching Boumalne du Dades we’ll stop in Amerzgane to look for the rare Maghreb Wheatear.
Dinner and accommodation at the “” in Boumalne du Dades.

Day 4 – March 11th – Boumalne du Dades – Tagdilt Track

Today we will start early and to head to the famous Tagdilt Track. This is without doubt one of the top areas for birding in the Southern of Morocco especially for rare desert species. We will take the time to search for Red-rumped Wheatear, Thekla Lark, Trumpeter Finch, Temminck’s Lark, Short-toed Lark, Trumpeter Finch, Atlas long Legged Buzzard and the highly nomadic Thick-billed Lark. If the heat allows, we will dedicate most of our day to exploring this area, then we visit a rocky canyon in hope of finding Maghreb Wheatear, Desert Lark and our first chance of Pharaoh Eagle Owl. This is a very interesting area where locals live in caves together with their livestock. Dinner and accommodation in Riad Dades Birds hotel – Boumalne du Dades.

Day 5 – March 12th – Boumalne du Dades – Todra Gorge – Goulmima – Merzouga

Our day begins with a visit to Todra gorge where we have another shot at Tristram’s Warbler, with a supporting cast of Black Wheatear, Blue Rock-thrush, Rock Dove, Crag Martin and more. Next we travel eastwards and stop at a scrubby wadi to seek out the elusive African Scrub Warbler, maybe also rewarded with Thick-billed Lark and Trumpeter Finch. Finally, after another exciting stop we arrive at our Desert Hotel for two nights.

Dinner and accommodation at the Auberge De Charme Les Dunes D´Or in Merzouga.

Day 6 – March 13th – Merzouga – Erg Chebbi Dunes

Today we will dedicate the whole day to exploring the beautiful sandy dunes and nearby stony desert of Erg Chebbi – the largest dune system in Morocco. We will search for desert specialties such as Brown-necked Raven, Hoopoe Lark, Desert Sparrow, African Desert Warbler, Desert Lark, Bar-tailed Lark, Fulvous Babbler, Cream-coloured Courser, Spotted Sandgrouse, Crowned Sandgrouse and with luck day roosting Egyptian Nightjar. We will keep an eye to the sky for Blue-cheeked Bee-eaters and “Sahara” Lanner Falcon. Dinner and accommodation at Auberge De Charme Les Dunes D´Or in Merzouga.

Day 7 – March 14th – Merzouga – Tazzarine – Draa Valley – Anti Atlas Mountains – Ouarzazate

Transfer day from Merzouga to Ouarzazate. Drive through the Anti-Atlas Mountains, a series of rocky hills, cliffs and deep gorges of volcanic formations. Roadside birding could produce plenty of White-crowned Wheatear and Sahara Southern Grey Shrike. Before reaching our hotel in Ouarzazate we’ll stop to explore the Barrage at Mansour Eddahbi. Here we have the chance of seeing Marbled Duck, Ruddy Shelduck, Black winged Stilts and Maghreb Lark, as well as Cormorants, Herons and a selection of waders.

Dinner and accommodation at the Hôtel le Fint in Ouarzazate.

Day 8 – March 15th Ouarzazate – Anti Atlas Mountains – Souss Valley – Agadir

Today is mostly a transfer day, from the desert to the Atlantic coast. We will traverse the Anti Atlas Mountains range into the Souss Valley and on to Agadir. We will keep our eyes open for birds and should expect various Larks, Wheaterar, raptors and some migrants. Dinner and accommodation at Résidence Fanti near Agadir.

Days 9-10- March 16-17 – Agadir- Oued Massa – Oued Souss

South of Agadir is the famous Oued Massa, or Massa river. The River originates in the Anti-Atlas and flows northwest ending in the Atlantic Ocean at the Souss-Massa National Park. We will head out early in search of some target birds, the secretive Black-crowned Tchagra, Marbled Duck, Moussier’s Redstart, Sardinian Warbler, Little Owl, Stone Curlew, Glossy Ibis, Northern Bald Ibis, Moroccan
Cormorant, Laughing Dove and Brown-throated Martin.

Later in the day we will visit some wetlands where we can expect good numbers of Greater Flamingos, shorebirds and large numbers of roosting gulls and terns.
Dinner and accommodation at Résidence Fanti near Agadir

Day 11– March 18th – Agadir – High Atlas Mountains and back to Marrakech

Today we will transfer back from Agadir to Marrakech. Our road goes back up through a beautiful part of the Atlas Mountains range where we will make some birding stops and catch up with any target species we may have missed. Late in the afternoon we arrive to Marrakech, where our tour ends.

*Those interested can stay another day in Marrakech to enjoy the beautiful city and world famous markets, others can arrange to fly out

List of main target Birds for this trip:

There are many fantastic birds to be seen on this tour, but these are the regional highlights and specialties we will put in an extra effort to find:

Pharaoh Eagle Owl, Marbled Duck, Northern Bald Ibis, Egyptian Nightjar, Blue-cheeked Bee-eater, Lanner Falcon, Long-legged Buzzard, Bonelli’s Eagle, Cream-colored Courser, Spotted Sandgrouse, Crowned Sandgrouse, Laughing Dove, Little Swift, Levaillant’s Green Woodpecker, Desert Lark, Bar-tailed Lark, Thick-billed Lark, Hoopoe Lark, Desert Wheatear, Desert Sparrow, Red-rumped Wheatear, Maghreb Wheatear, White-crowned Wheatear, Scrub Warbler, Tristram’s Warbler, African Desert Warbler, Common Bulbul, Fulvous Babbler, Alpine Chough, Brown-necked Raven, Trumpeter Finch, African Crimson-winged Finch, House Bunting, Temminck’s Lark, Atlas Horned Lark, Black-crowned Tchagra, Audouin’s Gulls and many more!


Tour price: 2570 € per person sharing (6-8 pax)
2320 € per person sharing (9-11 pax)
Single supplement: 200 €

Price includes: 

Airport transfers

11 nights accommodation

Transportation throughout + 4X4 jeep trip in the desert.

All meals from dinner on day 1 to breakfast on the last morning.

All guiding services and entrance fees

Price excludes: 

International flights

Visa to Morocco (if needed)

Travel insurance

Medical treatment and prescription drugs

Additional drinks during meals, alcoholic drinks and items of personal nature