MOROCCO 'CLASSIC' - 13-days birdwatching from High Atlas to Sahara and the Atlantic Coast. 

”Morocco, with it’s breath-taking scenery, delicious food, rich history and fabulous birding, is an essential destination for all birders”

 

Two departures: 1) 01.03 -13.03.2023 or 14.03 -26.03.2023

TRAVEL DESCRIPTION

Duration                                            13-days

Type                                                   Roundtrip with bus/4X4 and English / German                                                                / Scandinavian and German speaking Miksture                                                                Tour Leaders  

Price                                                   From 14.995 DKK pr. person in shared DBL                                                                      room 

Sngl room                                          300 USD           

Deposit                                              1.998 DKK pr. person

Visa                                                     Depending on country of origin. Information                                                                   when booking the tour

Vaccination                                        Yes, against COVID-19 (If no vaccination PCR-                                                                 test might be needed)

 

Keybirds:

Northern Bald Ibis, Levaillant’s Woodpecker, African Crimson-winged Finch, Pharaoh Eagle-Owl, Cream-colored Courser, Black-bellied Sandgrouse, Crowned – Spotted, Pin-tailed Sandgrouse, Desert Sparrow, African Desert Warbler, Greater Hoopoe-Lark, Temminck’s, Maghreb, Desert, Thick-billed Larks and Dupont’s Lark,  Moussier’s Redstart, Tristram’s Warbler, Barbary Partridge, Fulvous Babbler, Saharan Scrub Warbler, House Bunting, Egyptian Nightjar, Houbara Bustard, Western Mourning Wheatear, Red-rumped Wheatears, Seebohm’s Wheatear (formerly treated as a race of Northern), Common Bulbul, Little Swift, Maghreb Owl (Strix mauritanica  - split from Tawny Owl9, Barbary Partridge, Levaillant’s Green Woodpecker, North African Blue Tit, ssp  subpersonata of White Wagtail, House Bunting, Pallid Swift, Cirl Bunting, Tristram's Warbler, Long-legged Buzzard, Bonelli's Eagle, White-crowned Wheatear, Desert Wheatear, Thekla Lark, Great Grey Shrike, Trumpeter Finch, Lesser Short-toed Lark, Lanner Falcon,  Pharaoh Eagle Owl, Bonelli’s Eagle, Red-rumped Swallow, Eurasian Crag Martin, Blue Rock Thrush, Black Wheatear, Grey Wagtail, Barbary Falcon, Tristram’s Warbler, Little Owl, Sahara Scrub Warbler, Bar-tailed Lark, Fulvous Babbler, Brown-necked Raven, African Desert Warbler, Desert Sparrow, Egyptian Nightjar, White-crowned Wheatear, Black-winged Kite, Black-crowned Tchagra,  Little Swift, Pallid Swift, Southern Grey Shrike, Woodchat, Spanish Sparrow, Sardinian Warbler, Stone Curlew, Glossy Ibis, Laughing Dove and Brown-throated Martin, Lesser Black-backed Gulls of two races, Audouin's Gulls and Flamingo

Habitats Covered

Foothills, high mountains, valleys, pristine spruce forest, alpine meadows, wetlands, marshes, reed beds, lakes, agricultural landscapes, semi-desert and desert 

 

Expected Climate

Generally cool and sunny - cold in the mountains 

 

Group Size

8 - 10 with one Miksture leader

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Tour Pace & Walking

Relaxed to moderate at times with generally easy walking

 

Accommodation

Comfortable lodging in hotels and guesthouses 

Ease of Birding

Easy to moderate 

Other Attractions

Spectacular scenery, interesting mammals and other wildlife, Morocco culture and traditions 

Photographic Opportunities

Very good

.

SCHEDULED 2023 DEPARTURE

 

01.03 - 13.03 2023 AND 14.03 - 26.03.2023

Tour Leader: Michael Westerbjerg Andersen

Tour price (Per person): DKK 14.995

Segl: DKK 1.998 

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THE TOUR AT A GLANCE...

 

Day 1. Departure. Copenhagen – Marrakech

This morning from Copenhagen Zurich to Marrakesh, where we land in the afternoon.After arriving in Marrakesh, we make a transfer to the hotel where we have two nights. A stroll around the hotel can provide Common Bulbul, Little Swift, House Bunting and maybe Maghreb Owl Strix mauritanica  - split from Tawny Owl.

Day 2. Marrakech - Oukaimeden – North African endemics

Our Morocco tour explores the magnificent High Atlas at Oukaimeden. African Crimson-winged Finch, Barbary Partridge, Levaillant’s Green Woodpecker, Moussier’s Redstart, Seebohm’s Wheatear (formerly treated as a race of Northern), North African Blue Tit, ssp  subpersonata of White Wagtail, House Bunting and various egrets and herons. Among more common European species like Hawfinch, Pallid Swift, Western Jackdaws (here at its southern limit), Firecrest, Short-toed Treecreeper, Meadow Pipit, Winter Wren, Mistle Thrush,  Eurasian Jay, European Robin, Common Wood Pigeon, Cirl Bunting and Great Spotted Woodpecker, etc. The White-throated Dippers reside along the region’s fast flowing mountain-streams. 

 

Day 3. High Atlas Mountains - Ouarzazate - Boumalne du Dades

"Tristram's Warbler, " Long-legged Buzzard, Bonelli's Eagle, Black-bellied Sandgrouse (and perhaps Crowned Sandgrouse), Thick-billed Lark, Temminck’s Lark, Western Mourning, Red-rumped Wheatears, "Maghreb Wheatear,"etc

 

Day 4. Boumalne du Dades - Tagdilt Track (”The Lark Trek”)

This is without doubt one of the top areas for birding in the Southern of Morocco. Excellent chances for seeing Black-bellied Sandgrouse, Crowned Sandgrouse, Pin-tailed Sandgrouse, White-crowned Wheatear, Desert Wheatear, Red-rumped Wheatear, Thekla Lark, Great Grey Shrike, Trumpeter Finch, Temminck's Lark, Greater Hoopoe Lark, Desert Lark, Lesser Short-toed Lark, Cream-coloured Courser, Thick-billed Lark, Maghreb (former Mourning) Wheatear, Lanner Falcon,  Pharaoh Eagle Owl, Bonelli’s Eagle, Red-rumped Swallow, Eurasian Crag Martin, Blue Rock Thrush, Black Wheatear, Grey Wagtail, Barbary Falcon, Tristram’s Warbler and Little Owl.

 

Day 5. Boumalne du Dades - Todra Gorge - Goulmima - Merzouga
Tristram's Warbler, Black Wheatear, Blue Rock-thrush, Rock Dove, Crag Martin and possible Bonelli's Eagle! Next we travel eastwards and stop at a scrubby wadi to seek out the elusive Scrub Warbler, maybe also rewarded with Thick-billed Lark and Trumpeter Finch. Finally after another exciting stop we continue to the northern edge of the Sahara and arrive at our Desert Hotel for three nights. Dinner and accommodation in Merzouga. BD 

 

Day 6. and 7. Merzouga - Erg Chebbi Dunes – Rissani. Sahara; desert birds
A full two days to explore this fantastic area. Amongst the desert specialists found in this area are such North African endemics as the recently-recognized Maghreb Lark, Hoopoe Lark, Desert Lark, Bar-tailed Lark, Fulvous Babbler, Brown-necked Raven, Spotted Sandgrouse, Crowned Sandgrouse, African Desert Warbler, Saharan Scrub Warbler, the rare and localized Desert Sparrow and House Bunting, as well as the impressive Pharaoh Eagle-Owl, the elusive Egyptian Nightjar and, with luck, the endangered Houbara Bustard. 

 

Day 8. Merzouga - Tazzarine - Draa Valley - Anti Atlas Mountains - Ouarzazate
Long day. Transfer day from Merzouga to Ouarzazate. Roadside birding could produce plenty of White-crowned Wheatear and Southern Gray Shrike. Barrage at Mansour Eddahbi: Ruddy Shelduck, Black winged Stilts, Maghreb Lark, as well as Cormorants and Herons and a selection of waders. 

 

Day 9. Ouarzazate - Anti Atlas Mountains - Souss Valley - Agadir
A long drive to the west will take us over the Anti Atlas mountains, into the Souss Valley and on to Agadir at the Atlantic coast. Various larks and wheatears by the roadside. Have to look for Black-winged Kite, Black-crowned Tchagra,  Little Swift, Pallid Swift, Southern Grey Shrike, Woodchat, Spanish sparrow, etc. explore the nearby estuaries of the Oued Sous and Oued Massa, which at this time of year are packed full of migrating waders, gulls and terns.

 

Day 10. Oued Massa 
South of Agadir is the famous Oued Massa: Target birds: the secretive Black-crowned Tchagra, Moussier's Redstart, Sardinian Warbler, Little Owl, Stone Curlew, Glossy Ibis, Moroccan Cormorant, Laughing Dove and Brown-throated Martin. 

 

Day 11. Agadir - Tamri Estuary - Essaouira
Early in the morning we will head north, stopping firstly at a beach where there will be Lesser Black-backed Gulls of two races, Audouin's Gulls and a few Yellow-legged Gulls. We will continue north to Tamri in search of one the rarest birds in the world – the Bald Ibis. Morocco supports a colony of about 250 pairs that breed in this coastal area. 

 

Day 12. Oued Souss - Marrakech
After breakfast at the hotel, we visit the Oued Souss: Flamingos, shorebirds and large numbers of roosting gulls and terns. 

 

Day 13. Departure home. Marrakech - Airport

                   

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FINANCIAL ARRANGEMENTS:

 

Price per person (in shared double-room DKK 14.995,- incl. international flights to/from Marrakech

 

Single supplement:   DKK 1.998,-

 

Deposit: : DKK 3.000/person

 

Group size: minimum 8 and maximum 10   

A

vailability: Spaces available for 2023    

 

Leader:   Michael Westerbjerg Andersen

To book a seat on this tour a deposit on 3.000 DKK per person should be paid (if Miksture cancel 100% this deposit will be returned, of course) – You are not reserved a seat before the deposit is paid. The remaining amount per person should be paid latest 1.th December 2022.

 

 Please see under IMPORTANT NOTES below.

 

The tour fee includes:

  • Guiding by Miksture/Michael Westerbjerg Andersen and his team

  • Services of tour leader

  • Local (English- speaking) ornithological guides

  • Meals according day-to-day programAll breakfasts (B) and dinners (D) in Morocco

  • All lodgings in Morocco, 3***/4**** in Marrakech and Agadir – guesthouse in the desert

  • Airport transfers;

  • Transportation according program in Morocco in comfortable vehicles

  • Reserve entrance fees

  • Administration from Miksture

  • 2 full day birding in the Sahara Desert by 4x4

  • Necessary permits sites and other paperwork  

  • International flight Scandinavia to/from Marrakech, MoroccoInterna- tional flight Copenhagen – Marrakech, Mo- rocco via European airport

The tour fee does not includes:

  • Visa fees;
  • Gratuities (drivers, hotel staff, restaurants etc.)

  • Alcoholic beverages, drinks and soft drinks

  • Lunches

  • Personal expenses for eventual extra arrangements not mentioned in the program

  • Travelinsurrance – mandatory! 

  • Money for own expenses and anything strictly personal (e g laundry, phone calls, any excess luggage charges, snacks).

 

IMPORTANT NOTES: a) Due to constantly fluctuating exchange rates, we quote our tours in USD. The tour price is however fixed only in the currency printed in bold, and the actual cost in the other currencies listed will be adjusted according to prevailing exchange rates at the time of final invoicing (usually 4 months before the tour.) The same applies to approximate flight and single supplement rates, which are also quoted in the respective fixed currency. b) Rates are based upon group tariffs; if the tour does not have sufficient registration a small party supplement will have to be charged. c) Furthermore, these costs are subject to unforeseen increases in tour related costs and may have to be adjusted as a result. d) Lastly, we may be forced to change or alter the itinerary and / or the designated Miksture leader/s at short or no notice due to unforeseen circumstances; please be aware that we will attempt to adhere as close to the original program as possible.

 

Special Notes:  It is important for the comfort of your fellow travellers that you do not over-pack. Kindly stick to 20kg (44lb) for check-in luggage and 8kg (+-18lb) for hand luggage.  

 

Much of the tour will be in remote areas with limited medical facilities or hospitals. Please ensure that you have all the necessary medication that you require for the duration of the tour.

 

Although it will be sunny, the temperatures can vary greatly, from comfortable warm days temperatures of 15 to 18 degrees Celsius in the lowlands (but cool in the mornings), to cold with rain and even snow possible at any time in the mountains.

 

Warm clothes, including gloves, woollen hat, raingear, hiking boots and thermals will come in handy for the cooler days.

 

Fitness: In general this tour does not require a high level of fitness, but participants should be in good general health as most of the birding will be done on foot, and may require moderate walking for several hours at a time. Some of the walks in the mountains will, however, be more strenuous. Should you have any physical limitations, please notify us in advance of departure.

 

Morocco cuisine is relatively limited in variety, but usually, salad, soup and meat form the primary basis of all meals. We will have opportunities to try regional specialities at various locations on the tour.

ARRIVAL & DEPARTURE DETAILS:
The main tour will commence in Marrakech Airport, Morocco latest early morning on day 2. As we depart early on this day, you are required to be present in Marrakech early morning or the night before the tour starts. The tour will conclude with a transfer to Marrakech International Airport after breakfast on day 13.

The above information in respect of arrivals and departures is a guide only. Precise arrival and departure information will be sent to you in your Tour Confirmation package once the tour has been officially confirmed. If you wish to arrive early and/or depart late and would like assistance in this regard, kindly contact the Miksture office.

 

FLIGHTS:

Please DO NOT book any flights until you have consulted the Miksture office for confirmation on the status of the tour.