27 Feb 2017
Agadir, Morocco
Sustainable Tourism

The Atlas Kasbah: pioneer of integrated tourism

On the foothills of the Moroccan Atlas Mountains, the eco-lodge Atlas Kasbah offers another way to discover the Berber country… Built according to a model of traditional architecture, it offers activities that respect the environment and local cultures. The Kasbah is perfectly integrated into the landscape and the local communities!

Discovering the Berber country to better protect it

With the goal to offer a sustainable alternative to mass tourism, Hassan Aboutayeb then founded the Kasbah, on a 12,500 square metre plot of land, which combines tourist accommodation, food production activities and environmental preservation: from the very beginning, special attention has been paid to the involvement of local communities and the preservation of the environment.

A multi-faceted eco-lodge

Even if it includes 11 rooms and a restaurant, the establishment is not a mere lodging. It also offers several activity areas to learn, recharge your batteries, contribute to local development, participate in the preservation of local heritage and discover the ways of life and values of Berber communities. In addition to local and international tourists, it welcomes groups of researchers and students in sustainable development and integrated tourism. It is also open to discovery classes from French high schools in Morocco in order to help them discover the hinterland and the issues involved in its protection.

A team with ecological values…

The ecolodge aims to be a relay in terms of ecological knowledge and awareness of good practices: the products consumed are partly produced on site, and are always in season, waste water is treated by a phyto-purification and solar filtration system, rainwater is used to water the garden and irrigate the orchards, and organic waste is given as food to farm animals or composted.

Solar water heaters, the use of photovoltaics, natural ventilation using traditional construction techniques, traditional bread ovens … every year, the actions carried out by Atlas Kasbah in the field of energy lead to the avoidance of the emission of about 17 900 kg CO2 eq.

…but above all strong social and community values

Local know-how (adobe, pottery, cooking, argan processing, agriculture …), are highlighted and awareness of local natural and cultural heritage allows the meeting of communities.

The team comes from the local communities and is mainly composed of women, who are particularly vulnerable in this region.

The eco-lodge also participates in local development by using labeled and ecological local products and by offering hiking or mule trekking guided by locals, who receive the benefits directly.

The Atlas Kasbah: pioneer of integrated tourism | The Switchers

And the eco-lodge doesn’t stop there…

The team is participating in the Mesguina eco-tourism route project to extend its vision to the entire sub-region and to bring together various similar initiatives.

It is also involved in a logic of circular economy for the conservation of agro-biodiversity in the Souss Massa region: it is thanks to this participation that the tourism component has been integrated into the UNDP project!

The Atlas Kasbah: pioneer of integrated tourism | The Switchers
Atlas Kasbah Sustainable Tourism
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