Target species in this tour:

Long-legged Buzzard, Barbary Falcon, Lanner, Cream-coloured Courser, Crowned Sandgrouse, Spotted Sandgrouse, Bar-tailed Lark, Desert Lark, Thick-billed Lark, Temminck's Lark, Atlas Horned Lark, Hoopoe Lark, Brown-necked Raven, Desert Sparrow, Seebohm's Wheatear, Maghreb Wheatear, White-crowned Wheatear, Red-rumped Wheatear, Desert Wheatear, Scrub Warbler, Tristram's Warbler, African Desert Warbler, Trumpeter Finch, Crimson-winged Finch, Fulvous Babbler, Barbary Partridge, Levaillant's Green Woodpecker, Moussier's Redstart, Laughing Dove, Blue-cheeked Bee-eater, Common Bulbul, Isabelline Warbler, Olivaceous Warbler, House Bunting, Pharaoh Eagle Owl...


Rates per person sharing:

€ 1,300 / £ 1,105 / USD 1,440

Group size: Min. 5 - Max. 12 participants

Single suplement: € 250 / £ 215 / USD 280

* Pounds Sterling and US Dollars are given as an estimate based on 7 July 2016 exchange rates. All prices have to be paid in Euros to Spainbirds Nature Tours S.L.

GUIDE: Santi Villa

What it is included:

- Travel from Marrakech airport in modern, fully seat-belted, air conditioned vehicles

- Trip in 4x4 vehicles on the Merzouga & Erg Chebbi day

- 8 Nights accommodation in four stars hotels with en suite bathroom

- All meals from lunch on day 1 to breakfast on day 9 (2 courses lunches and buffets in evenings & breakfasts)

- Services of professional birding guide

- Basic travel insurance

- Bird checklist

- All taxes

What it is NOT included:

- Air fare (Easyjet & other companies operate daily flights from several UK airports)

- Any drinks during lunch or dinner and other items of a personal nature


MOROCCO: Atlas & Deserts

8 - 16 April 2017



Day 1 / 8 April: Marrakech – Ouarzazate

Meet and welcome at Marrakech airport, followed by a road long journey (with stops!) to Ouarzazate, crossing the Atlas mountains through the Tizi-n-Tichka pass. On our first proper stop for birding we will try for Levaillant's Green Woodpecker, the African Blue Tit and the africana subspecies of Common Chaffinch. Further special stops will give us chances to look for Tristram's Warbler, Moussier's Redstart, Hawfinch and Long-legged Buzzard. Transfer to Ouarzazate. Dinner and accommodation.

Day 2 / 9 April: Ouarzazate – Boumalne Dades

We will wake to the sound of House Bunting song ! In the morning we will visit the Al Manssur reservoir where we will undoubtedly add quite a few ducks and waders to our list. Ruddy Shelduck, Marbled Duck, Black-winged Stilt and Little Ringed Plover are often found here while in the surrounding fields we will have good chances for Fulvous Babbler, Desert Lark, White-crowned Wheatear, Black Wheatear and Blue-cheeked Bee-eater. Once we have reached the town of Boumalne we will sort out rooms in our hotel to dedicate the rest of the evening exploring the plains next to our accommodation. Desert Wheatear, Temminck's Lark and Lanner Falcon might be seen on our first birding in this region. Dinner and accommodation.

Day 3 / 10 April: Boumalne Dades – Tagdilt Track

Today we will start very early, to head to the Tagdilt Track before sunrise. This is without doubt one of the top areas for birding in Southern Morocco. Excellent chances exist for seeing Red-rumped Wheatear, Desert Wheatear, Trumpeter Finch, Hoopoe Lark, Temminck's Lark, Mahgreb's Wheatear, Cream-coloured Courser and Thick-billed Lark. If the heat allows, we will dedicate most of our day to exploring this area, with an afternoon trip to visit the Dades gorges where Bonelli's Eagle, Barbary Partridge and Tristram’s Warbler breed. Dinner and accommodation.

Day 4 / 11 April: Boumalne Dades – Merzouga

After looking for Scrub Warbler in one of the "wadis" on route, we will drive towards Erfoud, the gate town to the sandy deserts of the Sahara. Today we make stops at the Todra gorges (Alpine Swift, Crag Martin, Blue Rock Thrush and House Bunting), the palm tree plantations at the Tafilalt Valley (Blue-cheeked Bee-eater, Rufous Bush Robin, Common Bulbul, Laughing Dove and the algeriensis subspecies of the Great Grey Shrike). Arrival to our hotel in Merzouga where we allocate rooms. Dinner and accommodation.

Day 5 / 12 April: Merzouga – Erg Chebbi dunes

Today we will dedicate the whole day exploring the sandy dunes and the nearby stony desert of Erg Chebbi in 4x4 vehicles. Brown-necked Raven, Hoopoe Lark, Desert Sparrow, both ‘Desert Olivaceous' and Isabelline Warblers will be possible, Desert Warbler, Desert Lark, Crowned and Spotted Sandgrouse and different migrant passerines are all possible. In addition, we will visit the lake of Merzouga where we might see Greater Flamingo, Ruddy Shelduck, Marbled Duck… although some years the lagoon is completely dry. Good oportunities for Egyptian Nightjar and Pharaoh Eagle Owl roosting by day. Dinner and accommodation in Merzouga.

Day 6 / 13 April: Merzouga – Rissani - Ouarzazate

A journey back to Ouarzazate doing some birding in the morning in the Rissani area where we should have good opportunities to find again some of the specialties of the region including Barbary Falcon, Lanner, Crowned and Spotted Sandgrouse and the scarce Pharaoh Eagle Owl. Fulvuous Babbler, Laughing Dove and a good selection of Paleartic migrants would be also amongst our targets. Transfer to Alnif and then Agdz. Dinner and accommodation in Ouarzazate.

Day 7 / 14 April: Ouarzazate – Marrakech

We will start our day visiting the most famous Kasbah in Morocco, the historical town of Aït-Ben-Haddou. Then back to road to cross the Atlans mountains through the Tiz-n-Tichka mountain pass. We will have our lunch in a local restaurant in the mountains having some time to find Tristram’s Warbler, Moussier’s Redstart and perhaps Levaillant’s Green Woodpecker. Drive straight to Marrakech where we will stay for two nights.

Day 8 / 15 April: Marrakech - Oukaimeden – Marrakech

For our last full day in Morocco we will transfer to the ski resort of Oukaimeden trying for its mountain specialties. After journeying through the picturesque villages at the Lourika Valley we will arrive to the High Atlas where we should see the scarce (African) Crimson-winged Finch, Seebohm's Wheatear, Horned Lark, Alpine and Red-billed Choughs, Moussier's Redstart and Rock Sparrow. Chances for Golden Eagle and the rare here Lammergeier. Picnic lunch and then travel back to Marrakech. After a quick stop to our hotel we will visit in the evening the impressive Jema-el-fna square. Little, Common and Pallid Swifts breed in town too! Dinner and accommodation at our hotel in Marrakech.

Day 9 / 16 April: Marrakech – airport

After our breakfast at our hotel we will transfer to the airport where the trip ends.