In Morocco

Ouarzazate is a city in south-central Morocco, located on the edge of the Sahara Desert. It is the capital of the Ouarzazate Province and the region of Drâa-Tafilalet, and has a population of about 71,000 people. Ouarzazate is a popular tourist destination, as well as a starting point for excursions into the desert and the nearby valleys. It is also a famous film-making location, with several studios and sets that have hosted many international productions. Ouarzazate is a city that offers a unique and memorable experience for travellers who want to explore the culture, history, and nature of Morocco.

History and Culture

Ouarzazate was originally a small crossing point for African traders on their way to northern Morocco and Europe. In the 16th century, it became part of the Saadi dynasty, which ruled over most of Morocco and parts of Algeria and Mali. The Saadi sultan Ahmed al-Mansur built a kasbah (fortified citadel) in Ouarzazate, which still stands today as a historical and architectural attraction. The Kasbah was later expanded by the Glaoui clan, a powerful Berber family that controlled the region in the 18th and 19th centuries. The Glaoui also built several other kasbahs in the area, such as the Taourirt Kasbah and the Aït Benhaddou Kasbah, which are UNESCO World Heritage Sites.

Ouarzazate became a French protectorate in 1912, and a garrison town and administrative center in the 1920s. The French built a church, a hospital, and a modern city around the old kasbah. Ouarzazate gained its independence in 1956, along with the rest of Morocco. Since then, it has developed into a modern and cosmopolitan city, with a diverse and vibrant culture. Ouarzazate is home to people of various ethnicities and backgrounds, such as Berbers, Arabs, Africans, and Europeans. The city celebrates its heritage and traditions, as well as its openness and tolerance, through its music, festivals, cuisine, and art.

Film Industry

Ouarzazate is often nicknamed “Ouallywood” or “The Hollywood of Morocco”, because of its prominent role in the film industry. The city has several film studios, such as the Atlas Film Corporation Studios, the CLA Studios, and the Oscar Studios, which offer state-of-the-art facilities and equipment for filmmakers. The city also has many film sets and locations, which can recreate various historical and geographical settings, such as ancient Rome, medieval Europe, biblical lands, and exotic deserts. Ouarzazate has hosted many famous films and TV shows, such as Lawrence of Arabia, The Man Who Would Be King, The Mummy, Gladiator, Kingdom of Heaven, Game of Thrones, and many more. The city also has a cinema museum, which displays a collection of film memorabilia, props, costumes, and posters.

Ouarzazate attracts many filmmakers and celebrities, who come to enjoy the city’s scenery, climate, and hospitality. The city also benefits from the film industry, as it creates jobs, boosts the economy, and promotes tourism. Ouarzazate is proud of its film legacy and aims to preserve and develop it for the future.



Nature and Adventure

Ouarzazate is not only a city of culture and history, but also a city of nature and adventure. The city is surrounded by stunning landscapes, such as the High Atlas Mountains, the Draa Valley, and the Sahara Desert. The city also has a large artificial lake, the El Mansour Eddahbi Dam, which provides water and electricity for the region. Ouarzazate offers many opportunities for outdoor activities and sports, such as hiking, biking, rafting, kayaking, camel riding, quad biking, and sandboarding. Ouarzazate is also a gateway to many natural wonders and attractions, such as the Todra Gorge, the Dades Gorge, the Skoura Oasis, the Tizi n’Tichka Pass, and the Erg Chebbi Dunes.

Ouarzazate is a city that appeals to all kinds of travellers, whether they are looking for relaxation, culture, or adventure. Ouarzazate is a city that will surprise you with its diversity and beauty. Ouarzazate is a city that deserves to be discovered and enjoyed. Ouarzazate is the door of the desert, and the door to a world of possibilities.

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