Mt Toubkal Winter Climb

8 days
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Magnificent trekking in the snowy High Atlas Mountains in Morocco

During the winter Mt Toubkal and the surrounding peaks of the High Atlas turn into a walkers paradise; with empty trails, clear air and spectacular views over the Toubkal Massif.

Starting from bustling Marrakech we venture right into the High Atlas to climb North Africa's highest peak (4167m). Crampons and ice axes are usually required throughout the trip (depending on weather), but this trip is designed to be achievable by those who are fit, even if they are new to winter walking.


  • Magnificent panoramic views from the summit of Mt Toubkal
  • Vibrant city of Marrakech
  • Emerald-green Lac d'Ifni
  • Free transfers for any flight

Key information

  • 3 nights 3 star hotels, 4 nights gite/refuge
  • 5 days walking; 1 free day
  • Group normally 4 to 10, plus winter guide and staff. Min age 18 yrs
  • Altitude maximum 4167m, average 2600m
  • Full porterage included. No previous ice axe and crampon experience required


What's included

  • All breakfasts, 4 lunches and 4 dinners included
  • All accommodation
  • Free airport transfers
  • Crampons

What's not included

  • Travel insurance
  • Visa's and Vaccinations
  • Single supplement



Challenging: 5-6km/3-4miles an hour


High altitude; including steep, rocky terrain

Day by day breakdown
Day 22.7km/1.6miles
Day 38.7km/5.4miles
Day 45.9km/3.7miles
Day 55.5km/3.4miles
Day 68.7km/5.4miles

At Exodus we believe in the power of Responsible Travel.

Every time we travel, we are part of a global movement that creates jobs, builds more sustainable societies, encourages cultural understanding and safeguards common natural and cultural heritage. To learn more about what Responsible Travel means to Exodus click here… 


  • Day 1

    Fly to Marrakech.

    Depending on your arrival time, there may be some time free for exploration of this wonderful, colourful city.
    Comfortable Hotel

  • Day 2

    Drive to Imlil, short walk to Aroumd and free time to explore this remote village.

    After a leisurely morning and lunch in Marrakech we transfer by minibus to Imlil, a journey of just under two hours which takes us from the plains around Marrakech to the heart of the High Atlas range. In the afternoon we take a short walk to our mountain gite in Arroumd where there is some free time to explore the area. Approximate walking distance 2KM
    Basic Hotel

    Meals included: Breakfast Dinner
  • Day 3

    Climb to Toubkal Base Camp, visiting the Mizane Valley and Sidi Chamarouch Shrine.

    Leaving the fields and walnut trees of Arroumd behind, we follow the Mizane valley to the small shrine of Sidi Chamarouch, a place of pilgrimage for many Moroccans. There is time to view the tomb of the local marabout (holy man) albeit from a distance as non-Muslims are not allowed to cross the footbridge. After stopping for a soft drink or mint tea, we continue the climb up to the Neltner refuge at an altitude of 3209m.

    The afternoon is used to practice with the crampons and ice axe. The guides will find an appropriate patch of snow and demonstrate the important techniques of walking in crampons and ice axe arrest - stopping yourself with your axe if you are sliding on a snow slope.

    6 hours walking, 9KM, Alt. gain 1200 m, Alt. loss 0 m
    Basic Hotel

    Meals included: Breakfast Lunch Dinner
  • Day 4

    Ascent of Jebel Toubkal (4167m) the highest mountain in North Africa.

    An early start (6-7am) for the ascent of Toubkal. After crossing the river outside the refuge we immediately start climbing through scree and snow up the western flank of Toubkal. About an hour below the summit we reach a wide open pass for our first views of the south. We then turn north for a climb up the ridge to the summit plateau. Reaching the summit (4167m) provides a great sense of achievement and we are rewarded with breathtaking views all th eway to Marrkech - not viisble on hazy summer days. Descending by the same route we should be back to the refuge in time for a late lunch.

    6 hours walking, 9KM, Alt. gain 960 m, Alt. loss 960 m
    Basic Hotel

    Meals included: Breakfast Lunch Dinner
  • Day 5

    Climb Jebe Ouanoukrim, a challenging 4089m climb.

    Another early start to climb Jebel Ouanoukrim, North Africa's second highest peak that dominates the head of the valley. We start with a more gentle walk up to the valley head, passing a few snowy 'azibs' (summer grazing pastures) to take us to the Tizi (col). From here we can see the scramble that is needed to take us to the summit plateau. The scramble is easy, but a little exposed in some places so the guides will set up a rope where needed. It's about 100 metres in length, with only the middle section requiring any particular care. We then cross the summit plateau to the Timzguida summit at 4089m. The views from here are even more extensive than those from Toubkal, with sweeping vista down the Sous valley towards Taroudant.

    6 hours walking, 6KM, Alt. gain 900 m, Alt. loss 900 m
    Basic Hotel

    Meals included: Breakfast Lunch Dinner
  • Day 6

    Descend through Tizi Ouanoums towards Lac D'Infni. Transfer to Marrakech.

    Today we head for a narrow pass, Tizi Ouanoums, which is jammed in a steep gorge on the side of Toubkal. From here we look down the steep southerly face to the emerald green Lac D'Ifni below. After enjoying the views we return the way we came in time for our transfer back to Marrakech.

    7 hours walking, 9KM, Alt. gain 457 m, Alt. loss 1664 m
    Basic Hotel

    Meals included: Breakfast Lunch
  • Day 7

    Marrakech; free day to explore souks or relax in gardens.

    With a full free day we have lots of time to explore Marrakech and do some serious bargaining for souvenirs. Djemaa el Fna, the open-air market place around which traditional life of Marrakech revolves, is an exciting place to visit. The name literally means 'place of death' as it was the place where the Sultans used to display the heads of their enemies. Now, with the foodstalls, snake charmers, water-sellers, travelling musicians and acrobats, the square is a place of entertainment for both locals and visitors alike.
    Comfortable Hotel

    Meals included: Breakfast
  • Day 8

    Fly to London.

    Fly to London.

    Meals included: Breakfast

Essential Info



No visa required by British passport holders.



There are no mandatory vaccination requirements. Recommended vaccinations are: Tetanus, Tetanus and Hepatitis A.

Eating and Drinking

All breakfasts, 4 lunches and 4 dinners included.

Breakfasts usually consist of porridge, bread and jam with coffee or tea. When eating out, meals are reasonably priced - kebab and bread cost only about £4 (approx. US$6.50). In main towns it is possible to find very good French and Moroccan restaurants where a meal with wine will cost anything from £20 (approx. US$30) upwards. Generally dinner is likely to cost between £5-10 (approx. US$8-15) depending on what you drink. £15 (approx. US$25) a day for food should be sufficient. Local beers, wines and soft drinks are available at very reasonable prices but you can pay UK prices or more for imported alcohol. Your leader can help recommend restaurants each evening.

Vegetarians can be catered for but there is a fairly limited choice of cous cous and tajine or omelettes. This is particularly the case during the more rural or trekking sections of the trip. Please note that if you have any special dietary requirements you should inform the Exodus Office prior to the trip. If you have a specific medical/dietary need (i.e. coeliac or vegan) you may find it helpful to bring some items of food with you from home. 

If you are travelling from UK we advise you buy your own water purification tablets in the UK and take them with you. Bottled water can be purchased throughout the trip. Please note recycling is not fully established in Morocco so plastic bottles are an increasing waste problem.


Marrakech is likely to be warm (rather than hot) during the day, and a little chilly at night. In the mountains expect temperatures to vary from 10 or so degrees in the sun during the day, to below freezing out of the sun and at night. Any warmth provided by the sun soon goes after the sun disappears behind the mountains in the late afternoon. Heavy snowfall, rain and storms can be expected in the mountains during winter, but they are normally reasonably short-lived. Although it would be unusual to experience more than two days in a row of bad weather, you should be prepared for all conditions. If there is a stable high pressure over the mountains in winter, which is common, we will enjoy clear, cold crisp days, and nights with temperatures dropping well below freezing. The first snows often come in late October or early November, but some years can see little snow cover up to December.

Is this trip for you?

Trekking Conditions: This is a strenuous winter trek to an area of outstanding scenic and cultural interest. The trip is designed for confident trekkers who are new to winter walking as well as those who have some experience of trekking on snow. Some sections, especially on Toubkal and Ouanoukrim ascent days, can be steep and rough. It is expected that large parts of the mountainside will be covered in snow, therefore ice axe and crampons will normally be necessary on all departures. Although these sections are not technically difficult they are high and can be exposed. Where there is a high level of exposure the guide will cut steps in the snow and/or provide use of a rope. It is mandatory that you obey the wishes of the guide in these circumstances. Snow cover will of course vary, but the use of ice axes and crampons is essential when crossing steep snowy terrain. Some previous experience would be helpful in order to quickly pick up the necessary skills needed to use both the ice axe and crampons but is not essential. The use of ice axes and crampons is essential when crossing snowy terrain. Some previous experience would be helpful in order to quickly pick up the necessary skills needed to use both the ice axe and crampon but is not essential. The guides will give a full briefing and run a training session before the ascents of Toubkal and Ouanoukrim.

Risk Warnings: This trip goes to high altitudes (maximum 4167m, average 2600mm) where there is a risk of being affected by Acute Mountain Sickness. Please refer to the Altitude Warning below for further information. Winter walking can be dangerous and although we take important steps to manage and minimise this risk, we can never eradicate it altogether. The main danger is from tripping then sliding down a snow slope, and in certain conditions, avalanche.


Hotels & Refuges

You will spend 3 nights in 3 star hotels with en suite rooms and 4 nights in a gite or refuge with shared private facilities. On your route through the mountains, you will stay in small refuges in dormitory-style rooms with basic facilities including hot showers, all huts are clean and provide a warm Berber welcome.

Our hotel in Marrakech has a small swimming pool.

Single supplement GBP60 - hotel nights only.

Expert Blog Entries

  • Reviewed March 2017
    Caroline Brown

    My most awesome week of adventure

    I would highly recommend this trip. I had the time of my life. It was a perfect balance of adventure, fun, challenge, teamwork, culture and relaxation. First time using Exodus - very impressed, can't wait to book my next adventure!

    What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?

    Climbing the steep snow/ice slope with crampons and ice axes for a superb view and awesome feeling of accomplishment!

    What did you think of your group leader?

    Our group leader was THE BEST. He guided us easily, we trusted him fully, he provided us with excellent information and was always available - nothing was a problem! He was also so much fun and easy to get along with - I miss him and everyone on the trip!

    Do you have any advice for potential travellers?

    My advice would be do some winter walking if possible, if not walking and I'd also highly recommend a taster ice climbing session just to get used to crampons and ice axes. I did this and felt it was very helpful.

    Is there anything else you would like to add?

    I had the BEST time!
  • Reviewed March 2017
    Gillian McFall

    Mount Toubkal Winter Climb

    Really good intro to high altitude winter walking!

    What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?

    An hour long picnic at 4,167m, soaking up the sun, sharing time with new friends and taking in the stunning snowy vistas!

    What did you think of your group leader?

    Hassan was excellent throughout the trip, looking after us on the hills and in Marrakech.

    Do you have any advice for potential travellers?

    I was a bit worried about the grade 7 rating. If your fit, can cope with the cold and some very basic accomodation for a few nights - go for it!
  • Reviewed December 2016
    Michelle Knott

    2 peaks in 2 days!

    It was a tough slog but soooooo worth it! The scenery was exquisite and it's the perfect trip to learn new skills using crampons, ice axes and avalanche transceivers.

    What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?

    We were lucky with the weather so had the opportunity to summit Ras Ouanoukrim the day after Toubkal. It was tough going up to the pass (the mind and body were still reeling from the previous day!) but then the technical scramble that followed was both exciting and challenging. The view of Mount Toubkal and Marrakech was incredible.

    What did you think of your group leader?

    Hassan was knowledgeable and good fun. He set a good pace and knew just what to say to motivate me on my way up to the Ouanoukrim pass. The assistant guide Mohammed was patient and always had a smile on his face.

    Do you have any advice for potential travellers?

    You need a good level of fitness and be able to keep a reasonable pace. 2 guides are required to get the group across the ridge for both the Toubkal and Ouanoumrim climbs so it's essential the group keeps together (within reason). Having said that I don't think I'm particularly fast and I made it!

    Is there anything else you would like to add?

    The dormitory experience in the refuge is just experience! Expect large bunk bed frames with multiple single mattresses laid side by side - it was a laugh but bring earplugs!
  • Reviewed December 2016
    Andrew Smith

    Mt Toubkal winter climb

    Overall had a fantastic time.

    What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?

    Both summit successes

    What did you think of your group leader?

    Hassam was an excellent group leader. He had a tough decision to make regarding 2 clients, bur he made the correct one, due their fitness levels and experience. Any other decision could have put the whole group in danger.

    Do you have any advice for potential travellers?

    Well worth doing this trip.
  • Reviewed April 2016
    James Dobbin

    Mixed weather, but amazing in the end!

    A really great trip with an equally great group of people & 2 excellent guides (Hassan and Mohammed). At the start of the week we had bad weather, a lot of snow and low cloud, our first attempt to climb Toubkal was stopped because of it. The following day, the weather was calmer and as we were climbing, the cloud lifted and the most amazing views of the snowy Atlas mountains opened up around us. It was blue sky by the summit, and totally amazing! The following day hike to the pass with views of the Lac d'Infini was equally stunning, another highlight of the trip. Food in the mountain refuge at Toubkal was really good!

    What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?

    Summit of Toubkal and the amazing views!

    What did you think of your group leader?

    Hassan did a great job, he was very experienced (as was his assistant Mohammed), he kept us safe, organised everything well and connected well with the group.

    Do you have any advice for potential travellers?

    Bring some card games or board games in case of any bad weather! Bring plenty of warm winter gear, it really was arctic on the day when the weather was bad. Although water purification tablets were on the trip list, there was no need for them as there was plenty of bottled water available. In total I used £180 of local currency including £50 tips (based on 13.5 Dirham to 1 GBP). Make sure you exchange any spare currency before going through airport security on the way home, you can't exchange it in the UK. On arrival in Marrakech if anyone trys selling you a cash card in the airport, say no (just get real cash), some of our group got one and it was mainly useless, but they at least got it refunded on the way home. If you've got new boots for use with crampons, make sure you've walked them in before the trip.
  • Reviewed January 2016
    Helen Stockham

    A great week of two contrasts

    A great week with the contrast of the hussle and bussle of Marrakech and the mountain vistas of the High Atlas Mountains. We had a fantastic group to enjoy the week with. There was less snow than is typical at this time of year (snow only above ~3700m) however there was still enough to require crampons and ice axes on the two summit days.

    What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?

    The amazing views from Mount Toukbal and Ouanoukrim where we had 360 degree panoramic views for miles, and we could even see the dust from the Sahara. We were very fortunate to have two consecutive days of fantastic clear blue skies and sunshine .

    What did you think of your group leader?

    Hamid our group leader and mountain guide for the week was fantastic. He was very supportive, nothing was too much trouble, he was full of life and always happy. He was also very knowledgeable and had the health and safety interests of the group as a priority. He was very encouraging to members of the group who struggled a bit at times to help them get to the summits. Our second mountain guide for the four High Atlas days, Mohammed was also excellent.

    Do you have any advice for potential travellers?

    We travelled a day early to Marrakech so we had two full days to explore, in addition to the last morning before flying home. The trip notes are slightly incorrect: on the first full day of the trip (day 2) you actually have a leisurely breakfast in the hotel in Marrakech before travelling to Imlil, so you have lunch in Arround (and you don't get the morning and lunch in Marrakech). Take ear plugs and wet wipes for the mountain refuge (Mount Toubkal base camp) - as you sleep in very close proximity to your group members and the bathroom facilities are not the most pleasant. Warm water for the showers is very limited, so be prepared to not have a shower in the mountains.
  • Reviewed December 2015
    Arlene Mansoor

    Well & truly worth the views

    Loved my week in Morocco & up in the Atlas Mountains. Hassan, our guide, was exceptional. It was hard work & you definitely need to be fairly fit. But for all those days walking up & down, the views were worth it, especially in winter.

    What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?

    Getting to the top of Mount Toubkal! (& making it down again in one piece)

    What did you think of your group leader?

    Perfect. Hassan was incredibly knowledgable having grown up in the mountains. He kept us entertained, was up for a laugh and never gave up on me. It was a hard slog. Him and Mohammed were just great. Exodus are very lucky to have such people working with them.

    Do you have any advice for potential travellers?

    This is demanding. You need to be fit. Walking uphill for prolonged periods was hard. Don't think you can wing it!

    Is there anything else you would like to add?

    This is a great trip and reasonably priced. You have more than enough time in Marrakech as well as the mountains. I would definitely recommend it.
  • Reviewed December 2015
    Katherine Miller

    Something very different in Morocco!

    3.5 days of trekking in the high Atlas and a wonderful tour in Marrakech. Day one is just a hike to the refuge (simple), then in the afternoon we opted to practice our crampon and ice axing. A long day, but not terribly physically challenging. The second day was Toubkal and was a little more physically challenging as it's an early start and the altitude starts to kick in. Also, some of the ways to get down from the summit were a little difficult to manage. The third day was the most difficult from a technical perspective. Not quite as physically challenging as Toubkal, but lots of crampons, ice axes and harrowing climbs/descents. The final day is a walk back to your departure point for Marrakech. The tour of Marrakech was amazing and I learned more than I've ever known about Islam and Islamic history. Totally fascinating!

    What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?

    The teamwork and guide support was inspirational. There's also something about looking across miles and miles of mountains to the Sahara that's inspiring as well!

    What did you think of your group leader?

    Hassan and Muhammed were both fantastic, supportive, and quite understanding when things got a little (okay, that's an understatement) difficult and emotional.

    Do you have any advice for potential travellers?

    Be ready for a challenge, but it's definitely all worth it when you're able to look back and say "wow, I did that!" ...and there are a ton of hilarious stories...
  • Reviewed November 2015
    Caroline Hughes

    Mount toubkal winter climb

    Just back from a great week, great group, great fun! Even though the accommodation was basic, the food was amazing and plentiful.

    What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?

    It was great to learn how to walk on the crampons and feel I accomplished something more than just climbing a peak.

    What did you think of your group leader?

    hassan was brilliant. A good combination of keeping us driven and keeping us entertained.

    Do you have any advice for potential travellers?

    Make sure you physically strong as well as fit. I did a lot of circuit training and I probably needed to do more because walking in crampons is more physical than I expected.

    Is there anything else you would like to add?

    It's a great trek - enjoy!!
  • Reviewed November 2015
    Michael Johnston

    Mt. Toubkal Winter Climb

    Fantastic experience. Looked after brilliantly from beginning to end

    What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?

    Reaching the peeks of Toubkal

    What did you think of your group leader?

    Professional and friendly

    Do you have any advice for potential travellers?

    Go for it

    Is there anything else you would like to add?

    Great value

Dates & Prices

An overview of flight options

Exodus is committed to making joining our tours as easy as possible, wherever you live. We generally only block book seats from London, but this certainly does not mean that you need to fly from there. Depending on the route and airlines available, there will usually be various options available for those who want to fly from their local airport.

This page aims to provide a useful overview of the options available to our clients. However, the best flight arrangements should be tailored to your personal requirements, so please contact our Sales team for expert advice.


What kind of options do I have ?

1. We can book for you: Flights from anywhere in the world - not via London  

Depending on the route, this may be direct or via an overseas hub like Amsterdam, the Middle East or elsewhere. On short haul routes there may be direct flights with low cost airlines, charter flights or scheduled airlines. Exodus can book most, but not all, of these for you. The most appropriate airline may be different to that which we use for the group flight from London, but many people now travel on different airlines and meet up with their fellow passengers at the destination.

Pros Cons
  • May be the most direct route
  • Often the extra fare compared to the London flight is minimal.
  • As you will be in the hands a single airline for your entire journey, the airline will be responsible for your bags and your connections.
  • You may not be able to join the group transfers. However, we can usually arrange private transfers, or book your flights to try and coincide with the group transfers. See notes on transfer arrangements below.


2. We can book for you: Connecting flights from your local airport to London

Exodus can book connecting flights to London so you can join the group flight there. Connecting times will be followed according to airline advice, or as requested by clients. There are two types of fares we can use for this option: a 'through-fare' or a 'published fare'.
a) A 'through-fare' is where you will be in the main airline's care throughout. You change planes, but your bags are checked all the way through to your final destination. 

b) A 'published fare' ticket is completely seperate from your onward ticket from London. It is usually cheaper than a through-fare but will need to be paid for and issued as soon as it is booked. This can be a problem if your tour has not yet reached minimum numbers. On 'published fares' neither airline is aware that you have connecting flights, so Exodus is responsible for timing your connection, not the airlines involved. The tickets are also usually non changeable and non refundable.

Pros Cons
  • Depending on the fare type, Exodus or the airline is responsible for flight connections.
  • Through fare tickets can be expensive.
  • On a published fare, tickets must be issued immediately; tickets on published fares can be very difficult to change if onward flight times change; bags are not checked though to your final destination.
  • Published fares are non-refundable.


3. Booking some or all of the flights yourself

You can also book connecting air travel yourself, either to London, or all the way to the start point. There may be certain airlines or routes we don't have access to, so this is always an option. However, if you make your own travel arrangements you become liable for any delays, cancellations or missed connections, and Exodus is not required to offer refunds if you have trouble reaching the start of your trip.

Pros Cons
  • You might find cheaper fares, or routes not available to Exodus.
  • You are responsible for any delays or missed connections, and the cost of the tour is not protected should you miss your flight be cancelled.


 Notes on transfer arrangements

Sometimes it is possible to travel on a different airline to the group flight from London. Where this is the case, we need to think about ensuring you meet up with the group with minimum extra cost and hassle.

  • On certain trips, it is easy to arrive on a different flight and still meet the group at the hotel with time in hand. We can usually arrange private transfers (at extra cost) or offer advice on taking a taxi to the start hotel.
  • On other trips (especially in Europe), the transfer meets the group flight and then travels some distance to the first night's accommodation. Where this is the case, our Sales team will try to arrange flights that arrive before (and depart after) the group. However, we do have to make it clear in your final documentation that if your flights are delayed, the transfer cannot wait for you. While Exodus or our local operators will do what we can to help you reach the start point of the tour, any additional costs must be paid by the client. 


Next steps? 

Call our Sales team on: 0203 733 0698

Email your query: [email protected]

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