Hollywoodland in the sand and the one of the best hotel views ever – Ourzazate and Dades Valley, Morocco

A few hours east of the Tichka Pass is Ourzazate, the “Hollywood of Morocco” and a jumping-off point for most of the tours to Merzouga.  While Ourzazate is a sleepy looking town to drive through, the surrounding desert is home to enormous motion picture sets and a sprawling studio complex. The above photo is a small section of a huge series of desert studios.  The studio and surrounding desert are where Gladiator, Kingdom of Heaven, Lawrence of Arabia, Kundun and The Last Temptation of Christ were filmed. Oh yeah.  Two of my personal favorite films – The Hills Have Eyes…