Explore the Desert Oasis of Boumalne Dades

Explore the historic and scenic desert community of Boumalne Dades. "Boumalene" comes from Bou l’Male, which means "a place of business and trade." The area has a history of trading cattle, using the Dades River to grow grass, fruits, and vegetables. 

Start by wandering through the Kasbah (old town). Although Boumalne Dades is known for its natural surroundings, there's still much to experience in and around the city itself. The Tiylit Castle is a great way to learn about the area's Jewish history, or you can simply wander through the kasbah! You'll find endless adobe-style housing made with raw materials that keep homes cool in the summer and warm in the winter. 

Next, explore the Dades Gorge. The Dades cuts through the area's famed red-orange rock, creating a picturesque gorge. Several drives take you up and into the gorge, or you can join a trekking, camel, or jeep excursion. Discover desert dunes, lush palm groves, interesting rock formations, panoramic vistas, mountain peaks, and more.

Or, if you'd rather take it easy, visit a rose collective. The Valley of the Roses is quite literal, as the entire surrounding region is carpeted in blooming rose bushes come springtime! You can visit a local rose cooperative to learn how artisans cultivate the plant and convert its petals into rose water and oil used in the cosmetic industry. Watch the methods in action and take home a local souvenir. 

Continue your exploration of the local culture by meeting with the Berber community that lives in Boumalne Dades, experiencing their culture through art, food, and music. Look for cultural symbols on the doors of buildings, in plazas, or along streets. You may see some of the women dressed in authentic clothing, or you can listen to traditional music while watching community dancing. And don't forget to try some regional food, which you'll find in the many cafes, restaurants, and riads

Read more about unique and interesting cultural experiences in Morocco.