The destination of the 5th GIVI Explorer Adventure has been finally announced: in November 2018 the members of the highly anticipated annual adventure travel will meet in Casablanca to start an amazing tour of Morocco. The final destination is Marrakesh, but the GIVI Explorers will loop across the Atlas mountains and get a taste of the sand dunes in Merzouga before reaching the magical city that attracted so many travelers and personalities along the years.

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PROGRAM

  • DAY 1 – 2
    Casablanca

    The beautiful city of Casablanca welcomed the Explorers last Friday, ready for yet another adventure, this time in the magical Country of Morocco.
    The first day, as per our GIVI Explorer tradition, was dedicated to the distribution of the custom made riding gear and the assignment of the motorcycles. Before dinner, personnel from both the promoter and GIVI introduced the itinerary of the trip and explained a few basic safety rules for the group ride.Saturday 10 was the first day on the road. After a quick check of the motorcycles, the group headed to the showroom of Mob Shop, GIVI importer for Morocco, where it was greeted by several members of the local media. After a few interviews, pictures and videos, the Explorers finally hit the road, headed to the ancient city of Fez.The first leg of the trip (Casablanca to Fez) covered 347 Km in a little more than 5 hours, with an average speed of 62 km/h.
    The streets in this part of Morocco are wide and well paved, and besides the usual herd of sheep or the occasional obnoxious dog getting in the way, the ride was smooth and comfortable for everybody. The landscape was beautiful: rolling hills reminiscent of Tuscany suddenly giving way to plateaus covered in red clay and vast patches of olive trees.
    The city of Fez, final destination for the first day of the ride, is the second largest city in the Country and it was founded in the 8th century. Fez is considered the religious and cultural capital of Morocco, and the Medina (the old city within the ancient walls) hosts, hidden among its narrow alleys, more than 800 small and large mosques and a myriad of tiny shops and restaurants. It has also been designated as UNESCO World Heritage site in 1981.
    Tomorrow the group will cross the Atlas mountains to end in Arfoud, an oasis city in the Sahara desert.
  • DAY 3
    Fez – Atlas Mountains – Arfoud

    The 4th day the Explores left the city of Fez to head towards the Atlas mountains. They clocked a total of It was a great ride, with the landscape changing constantly with the elevation change: from pastures to forests, to the patches of snow at the very top of the mountain range. After a visit to the monkey colony that lives by the millenary “big cedar” tree in the Parc National D’Ifrane – near the town of Azrou – the group reached the pass at 2,192 meters and immediately started to descend towards the Sahara desert. It was once again a changing landscape that greeted the riders, from deep canyons carved by twisty (and fun!) roads, to blue montain lakes and finally the first signs of the desert approaching, with everything around becoming progressively flat and dry, without any sign of vegetation. For this reason, the sudden appearance of all the palm trees at the bottom of Ziz Valley was even more impactful, giving everybody a good idea of what the sight of an oasis could have been to an ancient traveler crossing this desolate but beautiful land.

    Just around twilight, with the last light barely tracing the outline of the mountains in the distance, the GIVI Explorers reached the city of Arfoud, built around one of the largest oasis in the Sahara desert.

  • DAY 4
    Merzouga – Sahara Desert

    The 4th day of the Adventure started off nice and easy, without the usual “crazy-early” wake-up call. Instead they covered only 60 km and dedicated the morning to a few interesting visits to a fossil shop and the market in Merzouga (the real one, where all the locals go and not the usual tourist trap).

    After lunch it was finally time for the most anticipated part of this trip: the visit to the Sahara desert.
    The whole experience included a short off-road stretch, a camel ride (actually dromedary) among the sand dunes and a night in the berber tents, under the stars.
    Unfortunately not everything went as smooth as expected, with a few riders falling victim early on to some deep sand patches. Luckily, only a few egos were hurt in the process, but the time lost pushed the arrival to camp way past sunset.
    The dromedary ride was awesome, though. The experience of bumping around, sitting high up on the top of these funny looking yet magnificent animals, among the reddish sand dunes at sunset was definitely one to remember. The Berber camp didn’t disappoint either, and the tents were decorated and comfortable just like any other regular hotel room in the city.

  • DAY 5
    Todra Gorge – Boumalne Dades

    The 5th day everybody got up just before dawn, but “thanks” to a very unusual cold and gloomy weather, even for November, the Explores missed the opportunity to admire the sunrise among the dunes. Regardless, it was another epic day of riding, for a total of 295 Km in about 5 hours. After riding the dromedaries back to the motorcycles, the group hit another stretch of off-road before getting back on tarmac and heading towards the world famous Todra Gorge. A nice, scenic route, that made it very hard to resist the urge to twist the throttle beyond any reasonable limit…

    That is exactly when disaster hit. One of the riders had a very bad crash and it’s a true blessing that he walked away untouched.
    Let’s hear it from the rider himself:
    “Somewhere between the ever-shifting dunes of the Sahara and the immutable majesty of the Todra Gorge, disaster happens.
    Having tackled an exciting hilly pass on one of those beautiful riding days that you wish would go on forever, I ease up on a straight section to admire the looming mountains. It’s only for a second, but it’s enough to hit a patch of sand on the road that puts my bike into a tankslapper, resulting in rider and bike going their separate ways at some speed. Thanks to the full riding protection of my Hevik Ikaro jacket and Givi X33 helmet, once I stop tumbling I find myself covered in little more than a few small bruises and scrapes, not to mention copious amounts of sand. The biggest ache comes from the desire to jump back into the saddle. The bike, alas, is not able to oblige – severe damage means it will never be ridden again.
    Apart from the fact that it’s possible to crash in a straight line, the incident has left me two lifelong takeaways: always keep an eye on the road ahead no matter how tempting the scenery, and always use the very best riding protection. Even if you have one disaster, a second one can be averted.” – Leow Ju-Len from Singapore

    It was a big scare, of course, not only for Ju-Len but for all the members of the Explorer family. The thought that he was 100% ok and the view of the magnificent Todra Gorge just a couple of hours later, helped everybody to regroup and enjoy the rest of the ride.
    Let’s talk about the Todra Gorge for a minute: it is an incredibly tight passage among tall and imposing red rock cliffs, one of those things that words can’t really describe. It is, of course, a very popular destination, but neither the burble of the Todgha river, nor the buzzing of the tour buses, the voices of the tourists and the yelling of the street vendors cannot distract from this powerful show of nature.

    From there the Explorers turned around, in the direction of Boumalne Dades. A fast, twisty road, with smooth pavement and beautiful views all around, the perfect ending to a nice day on the road. Not even the rain in the last few kilometers could spoil it (well, Ju-Len probably begs to differ…)!

  • DAY 6
    Dades Gorge – Ouarzazate – Aït Benhaddou

    Wednesday November 14, was the 6th day of the 2018 Morocco Adventure. The Explorers were set to ride all the way to Agoudal pass before heading to the Dades Gorge and eventually end their day in Ouarzazate. But the few drops of rain of the night before turned into a full fledged storm up in the mountains and the off-road loop to the pass had to be canceled. The rain also caused the temperature to drop significantly and the big challenge of the day was dealing with the cold weather. The travelers bundled up with all they had in their cases and bags and hit the road around 9 in the morning. The first stop was the vantage point of Timzzillite, an hotel and restaurant that has become World famous for the magnificent view of the switchbacks that exit the Dades Gorge, on route R704. After that, the group headed South, following the East flank of the Atlas mountains all the way to Ouarzazate. It was a sensational ride, made mostly of nice roads with fast & sweeping corners, surrounded by the now familiar and beautiful Moroccan landscape. Once in Ouarzazate, a small town mostly known for being the hub where many famous Hollywood movie productions were based, some of the Explorer elected to stop and rest, while others pushed for another 70 kilometers roundtrip to reach and visit the fortified village of Aït Benhaddou.
    What an incredibile place! A complete fortified village (ksar in local language) made of adobe (dried mud), sitting on the top of a hill that dominates the only passage through the valley. The village was built in a very strategic position, as it was on the caravan route between the Sahara and Marrakesh, and today is on the list of the UNESCO World Heritage sites. It was also featured in many movies, “The Gladiator” being the most famous in recent years.
    A curios fact: the whole ksar needs to be renovated and rebuilt every three to four years, because the rain progressively washes out the adobe and weakens the buildings.

Watch the gallery

 

THE PROTAGONISTS

  • JOSEPH PERUCCA + VAN PHAM CAM

    On KTM 1290 R (2018)
    From Italy – Givi Oversea Operational Director,
    Team Leader and Promoter
    From Vietnam – Givi Media P.R.

  • PIETRO ABROSIONI

    On KTM 1090S (2017)
    From Italy – P.R. Givi Usa – Media and Write Up

  • NIKKASIT WONGSAWAS

    On KTM 1090S (2017)
    From Thailand – Media

  • SATVINDER SINGH KELAE + JULIA JINAN JINGOP

    On KTM 1090R (2017)
    From Malaysia – Public Members

  • HARRY JANG

    On BMW R1200GS (2017)
    From Korea – Korea Givi Importer

  • ZAMANI IBRAHIM

    On BMW F800GS (2015)
    From Malaysia – Public Member

  • TSENG PO YEN

    On BMW 310GS
    From Taiwan – Taiwan Givi Importer

  • ENRIQUE PERDIGON + LILIANA GAITAN

    On BMW R1200GS (2017)
    From Colombia – Givi Importers – Comercializadoras Europeas

  • MARCO BOZ

    On BMW F700GS (2018)
    From Paraguay – Sport Car Import – Givi Importer for Paraguay

  • RONALD MONTANO + GILBERTO
    MONTAÑO CABRERA

    On BMW R1200GS (2017)
    From Bolivia – Givi Importer

  • JU-LEN LEOW

    On TRIUMPH TIGER 800 (2017)
    From Singapore – Journalist

  • DANNY MULDER + LYNDA EDWARDS

    On DUCATI Multistrada 1200 (2017)
    From South Africa – Linex Yamaha Givi Distributor

  • RON ANGEL + EATHER ANGEL

    On BMW R1200GS (2017)
    From Australia – Australia Givi Importer

  • NEIL CAMPBELL + ADELE HAKELE

    On KTM 1290 S (2018)
    From Australia – Public Members

  • VAIDAS GAURILCIKAS

    On BMW R1200GS (2017)
    From Lithuania – Givi Importer – Bikeshop

  • AUDRIUS GAURILCIKAS

    On BMW R1200GS (2017)
    From Lithuania – Givi Importer – Bikeshop

  • GIEDRIUS PUTRIMAS

    On KTM 1090R (2017)
    From Lithuania – Givi Importer – Bikeshop

  • ARVYDAS PAPINIGIS

    On KTM 1090S (2017)
    From Lithuania – Givi Importer – Bikeshop

  • ON HAI SWEE

    On BMW F700GS (2018)
    From Malaysia – Givi Partner

  • STANLEY HO

    On BMW R1200GS (2017)
    From China – Givi Dealer

  • GROSMAN OREN + VERED DE YONG

    On BMW R1200GS (2017)
    From Israel – Israel Givi Importer

  • VORASAK KASEMTANAKUL

    On BMW 310GS
    From Thailand – Givi Importer – Comforta

  • MARCO ANTONIO PEÑA ARAUZ

    On KTM 1090R (2017)
    From Bolivia – Givi Dealer

  • ANUAR BIN SABARUDDIN

    On KTM 1190R (2015)
    From Bolivia – Givi Dealer

  • RUBINI SERSE + SONZOGNI MIRIAM

    On KTM 1190R (2015)
    From Italy – Givi Agent

  • AH HOI

    On KTM 1190R (2015)
    From Malaysia – Givi Dealer

  • KEKO OCHOA

    On YAMAHA XTZ660Z
    From Spain – Journalist

 

 

EN – AreYouAnEXP

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