Climb Mount Toubkal, with Marrakech
Description of Climb Mount Toubkal, with Marrakech
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Small group tours:
Small group travel is not large group travel scaled down. It is modeled on independent travel – but with the advantage of a group leader to take care of the itinerary, accommodation and tickets, and dealing with the language. It’s easy to tick off the big sights independently – but finding those one-off experiences, local festivals, travelling markets and secret viewpoints is almost impossible for someone without the insider knowledge gained from years in the field. Those with a two-week holiday, a small group tour will save valuable planning time.
As the pioneers of responsible tourism, we've screened this (and every) holiday so that you can travel knowing it will help support the places and people that you visit, and the planet. Read how below.
PlanetAccommodation and Meals:
During this trip we spend two nights in conventional Moroccan Riads, one night in a comfortable hotel and one night in a mountain camp. Where possible, we prefer to avoid large hotel chains and use smaller businesses for our accommodation, as this directly supports the local community by creating employment opportunities for residents. Most of income generated is also reinvested into the areas we visit. Where meals are provided, seasonal, fresh food is used wherever possible, this includes meat from local butchers, and fruit and vegetables from farmers markets. Where meals are not provided, our expert guides will encourage guests to visit local cafes and restaurants to try out authentic specialities such as couscous, meat and vegetable tajines, fish chermoula and bocadillos.
Activity & Environment:
Few holidays have as little detrimental impact on the environment and local residents as a trekking trip. We’ll reach an altitude of 4,157m and witness breathtaking panoramic views of the valleys and lower summits of the high Atlas Range. We are very conscious of our effects on the places we visit and leave nothing other than footprints behind as we operate a ‘leave no trace’ policy. Erosion and waste on Mount Toubkal are two growing problems in certain areas of the mountain, therefore our trip leaders encourage clients to stick to advised routes in order to minimise damage. Throughout our Mount Toubkal climb; we keep any rubbish and waste from lunches until it can be disposed of appropriately.
Water is a key issue with walking trips and whilst it is important to stay hydrated, it is also vital that we have a system for providing clean water without causing unnecessary waste with plastic bottles. Lack of recycling is already a massive problem in Morocco so we suggest that instead of repeatedly buying bottled water, guests should re-fill a singular bottle. Since the EU banned the use of iodine tablets, we are no longer able to provide these on our trek. The recommended alternative of Biox Aqua drops is not available in Morocco therefore, we also advise the purchase of purification tablets in the UK to bring on the trip.
Since this is a small group tour, we will have a low impact on the environments and communities we visit and are able to ensure that we do not disrupt or lead to the displacement of local people. The small number also allows us to stay in unique, family-run accommodations that cannot benefit from coach tours and other mass tourism due to their limited sizes.
It all starts at home where we work towards reducing our carbon footprint in our offices through energy conservation measures, recycling policies and the promotion of cycling and walking as a means for our staff to commute. Our head office has become a plastic-free zone with the use of plastic bottles being banned in our head office and we distributed reusable water bottles and tote bags to every staff member. We also support a large number of community and environmental projects in different parts of the world and try to give something back to the places we visit.
PeopleLocal Craft and Culture:
During our climb, we will take a short break at the shrine of Marabout of Sidi Chamharouch for a cultural insight and pass through Berber communities where we have the chance to learn about their way of life. Responsible tourism has helped the revival of Berber culture as people visit to experience their authentic music and tribal customs. After a victorious climb, we spend day four immersing ourselves with the Moroccan culture by relaxing in a Hammam. This traditional steam bath will renew the body leaving us feeling relaxed and refreshed. The rest of the day is free where guests can explore the city at their own pace. Our guides would advise a trip to the souks to purchase souvenirs and crafts made from local residents. By purchasing their goods, we are further supporting the communities we visit by giving back to small street vendors and sustaining their work. Whilst exploring the souks we’ll tease our senses with the sounds of snake charmers, smell of spices and striking multicoloured tapestries.