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Rissani, Morocco
Fast Facts
Pack & Saddle
Overland Adventure
Market / Fair
Historic Interest
Tourist Attractions
Kid-Friendly Hotels




Points of Interest Nearby

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Situated on the edge of the Sahara with only the Tafilalt oasis between it and the vast expanse of the desert, Rissani is the last ksar along the Wadi Ziz. Yet this village with its small canals is more than a gateway to the Sahara Desert. Explore the souk, more authentic than the market in Marrakech. Bike to the oasis and tour a 17th century kasbah. Walk to Sijilmassa and visit the ruins of the northern terminus of the trans-Sahara caravan route. Shop for pottery. And, of course, organize a desert safari. But before you depart, visit the town's only parking lot, which is filled with donkeys rather than cars. This mode of transport doesn't require a driver to "honk". The scene, not to mention the noise, could well become the most talked about moment of your family's Moroccan adventure.
Getting There
Rissani is located east of Marrakech and northwest of Merzouga. The nearest airport is located in ErRachidia 130 km (80 miles) away. Royal Air Maroc offers flights to/from Casablanca and ErRachidia twice weekly. Buses to Rissani depart regularly from Fez and ErRachidia.
When to Travel
The best time of year to visit Rissani is late fall (October-November) and early spring (February-March). December and January, characterized by warm days and cold nights, are ideal months for touring but often too cold for desert safaris. (The nighttime often falls below 0°C or 32°F in winter.) From June to August the average daytime high exceeds 40°C (104°F) making desert safaris and cultural touring all but unbearable.
Health & Safety
Heat exhaustion, dehydration and sunburn are the most common ailments afflicting travelers to the Sahara Desert. Dysentery is the most common ailment afflicting travelers to Morocco. Pack high factor sunscreen and apply it to all exposed areas, including your child's nose, ears, and toes, before you set out and repeat applications throughout the day. Encourage the children to drink regularly but take care about what they swallow. Drink bottled or sterilized water only.
Things to Keep in Mind
The souk (market) is held every Tuesday, Thursday and Sunday.
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Travel Trivia
Arizona shares a border with which of the following U.S. states: