Ouarzazate Travel Guide

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A view from Galawey palace

A view from Galawey palace

Rivka Berger, Israel

Ouarzazate is a useful base from which to explore the ksour and Kasbahs of Ait Benhaddou. However, there is not a lot to do in the town itself. During the 1980’s, the Moroccan government had big plans for this town, as the first stop on the "Saharan Adventure", there is even an airport here. The town became known as "Morocco’s Hollywood" as it has been used as a base for many "exotic" film like David Lean’s "Lawrence of Arabia", Bernardo Bertolucci’s "Sheltering Sky" and "Jesus of Nazareth".

The local Glaoui Kasbah Taorirt and the centre artenasal (across from the Kasbah) are worth a visit. Ait Benhaddou is one of the most fantastic sights of the Atlas as the kasbahs are the most elaborately decorated and best preserved (thanks to UNESCO). They have been built and re-built as sets for such movies as Jesus of Nazareth, Lawrence, and Orson Welles’ Sodom and Gomorrah.

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