Running for eleven years, our 8 and 10-day Morocco photography tours begin and end in Marrakesh and take the route over the High Atlas mountains down to the dunes and are geared for photographing local people as well as landscapes. The tour is a ‘soft adventure’ for photographers of all levels of ability who want both the assurance of a guided and secure way of experiencing the country, combined with inside tips and advice on getting the most exciting photographs. You can add more days to the trip by visiting Essaouira, Fes, Meknes & Chefchaouen which will give you another photographic experience. Check our tour prices against competitors and you’ll be surprised. We’re the leader in Morocco for specialist photo experiences.
An exotic journey
Nothing can quite prepare you for the landscapes in this part of Morocco. Choosing one of our Morocco photography tours is to enter into another world where rock formations, valleys and desert sands offer a kaleidoscope of shifting colour and texture set against the snow-capped High Atlas Mountains. Add to that, Kasbahs, dunes and oasis communities and it’s quite the smorgasbord for scenic landscape enthusiasts. For many, the highlight of the tour is photographing the local families, including nomad people, who are now our friends. During the past eleven years, we’ve built these relationships, allowing you to make portraits of them at your leisure.
This tour is different
Many Morocco photography tour itineraries for this part of the world essentially offer a similar description. There’s the exotic element in the published itineraries; Kasbahs, snow-capped mountain views, village children – it’s all there. This tour is different for introducing you to local people and families where you can photograph them in their homes. Secondly, we’ll get you to the more unusual spots in the best light for the photo opportunities you have in your mind. If you don’t have any preconceptions about what images you want to get, then you’ll be pleasantly surprised. This tour is about the real country away from the cities where the people and lifestyles are arguably more interesting. The tour also offers lots of technical variety so you’ll be using most of your kit.
The week’s tour plan
Your images are our priority. Those that have been on the guided photo tours are pretty focused on getting memorable shots every day – the itinerary is planned to keep that in mind. We confine driving to the late morning or afternoon when the light is less useful, arriving for landscape shots at about the right time. Each day we’ll offer you a mix of landscape and people photography, either reportage or portraiture. We cover 1800km for the tour but you’re not travelling every day and not constantly changing hotels; it’s nicely paced. We get the balance about right in terms of variety and keeping fresh. In the evenings there’s the opportunity to review the day’s images for individual feedback so bring your laptops and plenty of cards – you’ll be shooting a lot of photos across different genres giving you a huge variety of imagery.
The places you’ll visit
After your arrival day, on day one from Marrakesh, we travel towards the desert which offers some stunning scenes as well as opportunities to stop and photograph the rural river valley communities. Our arrival in Ait Benhaddou sets up two days exploring both the famous Ksar there and some village families. Then eastwards, and for days four and five we are based near the Gorges at Dades and Todra, where we’ll photograph rock formations and local families as well as nomad families. Our next location further on into the desert is the wonderful Ksar and the oasis of Elkhorbat. By day seven we’ve arrived at the colourful market of Rissini and the dunes in Merzouga where you have the chance of an overnight desert camp stay. Our last night before heading back to Marrakesh is at the palmeraie of Skoura.
Photography tours for your portfolio
The tour is for all levels of ability so you don’t have to be a landscape expert or have a brilliant sense of composition. You can pick some of this up as you go on the tour. However, it’s assumed that you have some knowledge about how to use your camera controls. Don’t worry if you’re not completely comfortable with exposure control. Some of the tour locations challenge even the most experienced photographers and we’ll cover this as part of the tuition on the spot, but there will be limited time to explain what shutter speed or depth of field (DOF) is. The week is open to all ages but there is some walking over short distances. The tour is primarily about building a set of great Morocco photos for personal or competition use. Take a look here for a great tour portfolio courtesy of Brian Law.
Travelling across desert plains you’ll see evidence of grandeur from a bygone age. Dramatic rock formations, an extraordinary testament to natural forces, form a backdrop to sweeping river valleys and crumbling Kasbahs. The architectural splendour of the region’s most famous Kasbah –-Ait Benhaddou, dating back to at least the 13th century is undiminished and it still houses many families within its mud-brick walls. In the Dades and Todra areas, there are the remnants of hundreds more, many of which are seeing the reintroduction of local families.
Berber people are the original inhabitants dating back several thousand years. With their distinct customs and an officially recognised language, they populate great swaths of the country. Predominantly in the High Atlas, they are smallholding farmers living in traditional communities sometimes in difficult circumstances who are warm and generous people. Some live as nomads coming down to the river beds in winter and venturing up into High Atlas plains with their goats for the summer months. Many of the people you’ll meet on the tour will be Berber.
The tour offers a variety of expansive vistas to photograph with classical landscape framing, particularly useful in the High Atlas just south of Marrakesh, in the Dades Valley and in the desert dunes. These locations as well as others in the desert regions around Ait Benhaddou also lend themselves to more intimate abstract landscape interpretations, treating scenes as graphic elements with shape and form coming to the fore. In the dunes, we concentrate on finding shapes and flow in the sand as well as passing camel trains which is always a favourite.
High Atlas Landscapes
Your tour accommodation
All the hotels on tour are carefully selected for their unique style and traditional charms. Many guests have been surprised by the level of comfort. Wifi and air-conditioning are standard along the route and three have swimming pools. There’s no room sharing or supplement coming as a single person – you’ll have your own en-suite private bathroom. Couples are welcome and this is also a popular option. Evening dining is regional cuisine served in the hotels. Alcohol is available in some of the establishments but as we head towards the desert, the menus become more limited in choice and wine and beer are less frequently available. All the hotels can cater for vegetarians and vegan diets. View our link here for choosing the right photography tour.
Join a group and reserve your place
We run our Morocco photography tours in the spring, autumn and winter. Please request dates and check for availability. You have the choice of a guided photography tour with a tour leader who will take you to the best places and people to photograph, or a tutor-led tour with me, if you would like on-the-spot tips and guidance. Prices start at USD 1750/ £1400 for the 10-day guided tour without a tutor including transport, accommodation, breakfast and local fees per person. Guided photo tours are USD 2650/ £2100, based on a minimum group size of 3 for 10-day tours and USD 2150/£1700 for 8-day tours. Please use the adjacent form for an initial enquiry. We also offer a 10% loyalty discount for previous clients.
Our Morocco photography tours offer exceptional value, introducing you to local people for portraits and providing a comprehensive photographic experience from a published photographer and guide. It’s designed as a tour to include a range of imagery and experiences. For a longer trip including the imperial cities of the north, we have a Grand Tour of Morocco with upgraded accommodation.