Earth : Africa : North Africa : Morocco : Tagounite
Tagounite is a village in the Zagora region of the Moroccon Sahara.
Tagounite is the second last village on the road into the desert, lying between Zagora and M'Hamid. It is a melting pot for the different cultures of the area, inlcunding Berber, Drawi, Saharaui and Gnawi. In the tiny villages in between Tagounite and the Draa river one can explore the rich and diverse history, culture, vegetation and architecture of this oasis area. Tagounite is much less touched by tourism than neighbouring Mhamid and much smaller than Zagora.
Many of the buses going to Zagora, an all those going to M'Hamid, stop in Tagounite. There is a direct CTM bus from Marrakesch (about 8 hours) and at least one direct non-CTM bus a day from Agadir and one from Marrakech.
Tagounite itself is small and can easily be explored by walk. To explore all the nearby villages towards the Draa a car or bike would help. The Taxi stand is at the northern end of town, where the public buses stop too.
The Kasbahs and little villages east of Tagounite towards the Draa river.
Explore the villages and Kasbahs west of Tagounit towards the Draa river (Ktawa). By walk this takes some time and you might only reach a few villages but trails are nice and often shady. Shared taxis might be found sometimes. 4x4 day-trips can be organized by Ibrahim (+212 668784939). He is very nice and helpful, speaks french and english and is part of the "Association de Development Touristique Tagounite et Ktawa" that organizes the "festival kasbahs" and works for the preservation of local material culture.
Go to the dunes of Erg Lehoudi. There are some camps there for different budgets. Ibrahim can arrange a budget stay. To walk here from Tagounite takes 3-4 hours. Cars can be arranged. Or a grand-taxi going to M'Hamid (10 Dirham) could drop you on the way, from where it is about 1 1/2 hours walk. If you walk, make sure to take enough water and a GPS or guide.
Visit local music- art and culture-festivals, happen mostly in March and October, like the Festival Kasbahs.
The usual tourist items of the area can be found in a few shops on the main street. Local Items like dates and the milk and meat of camels can be bought in shops or in the market (thursday and sunday) just behind the taxi stand.
Tagounite has the LAST ATM on the way into the desert. It is located on the southern end of the village, next to the post office.
Peace Cafe: This nice place offers good local and some Western food for little money. The Spaghetti are very good! The owner Said is a very friendly and helpful guy and speaks good english. He is also a host on couchsurfing and can help you with all activities.
There are a few basic hotels in town.
Hotel Essada: Clean, basic hotel right next to the taxi stand. Starts around 50 dh a person. No wifi
Camping Les Palmeraies: one can come with a camper car, own tent, or rent a nomad tent on site.
Hotel Gazelle: just in front of Peace Cafe. Has wifi