The Achievable Dream 5-part series - the definitive guide on DVD for planning your motorcycle adventure. Get Ready! covers planning, paperwork, medical and many other topics! "Inspirational and Awesome!" See the trailer here!
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So you've done it - got inspired, planned your trip, packed your stuff and you're on the road! This section is about staying healthy, happy and secure on your motorcycle adventure. And crossing borders, war zones or oceans!
On the Road! is 5.5 hours of the tips and advice you need to cross borders, break down language barriers, overcome culture shock, ship the bike and deal with breakdowns and emergencies."Just makes me want to pack up and go!" See the trailer here!
Tire Changing!Grant demystifies the black art of Tire Changing and Repair to help you STAY on the road! "Very informative and practical." See the trailer here!
Ladies on the Loose! For the first time ever, a motorcycle travel DVD made for women, by women! These intrepid women share their tips to help you plan your own motorcycle adventure. They also answer the women-only questions, and entertain you with amazing tales from the road! Presented by Lois Pryce, veteran solo traveller through South America and Africa and author of 'Lois on the Loose', and 'Red Tape and White Knuckles.'
"It has me all fired up to go out on my own adventure!" See the trailer here!
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If you don't have the time to spend riding through France and Spain, you might want to consider renting bikes to tour Morocco, either on tarmac or mixed tarmac/piste. Depending on what bike you chosse, a nine-day fly/ride trip from the UK with a seven-day motorbike hire could cost £1000-1200 including flights, bike hire, fuel, accommodation and food/drink.
The entries below are sorted north to south.
Hana and David at MotoAdvenTours are based near Málaga in southern Spain and have R1200GS bikes to rent. They also offer accompanied tours both in Spain and Morocco for small groups of riders (two or more). There's something to be said about entering Africa by ferry and Algeciras to Tanger Med (post #5 on this thread is the best route). MotoAdvenTours also have a bike storage facility, so last year I kept my Tenere there and flew into Málaga on cheap flights several times during the year to pick it up and ride in Morocco.
I and my friends have used Loc2Roues (French for 'hire two wheels') in Marrakech five times and have been happy with the bikes and the service provided. Noureddine and Celine have G650GS single, F650GS twin and R1200GS options plus lighter weight motorbike and scooter alternatives. New for 2012 is the G650GS Sertao. You can also use their helmets, protective gear, luggage, etc.
Peter Buitelaar at BikersHome in Ouarzazate (bus ride from Marrakech over the Atlas Mountains) has several Yamaha TT600 bikes. You can rent these for unaccompanied tours and after discussions on riding ability and the types of scenery you like, Peter will download GPS routes for you to follow on a Garmin 60 receiver. He also has two 4x4 vehicles so there are other options including a mixed tour whereby partners can accompany the bikes in a 4x4. BikersHome is a great place to head for anyway and Zineb (Peter's wife) is a great cook. Meals taken at Bikershome 'en famille' are a great way to meet other travellers.
Finally, there are of course bike tour companies such as Wilderness Wheels in Ouarzazate run by Peter Grey. As far as I'm aware WW only offers accompanied tours, so you would be riding in a group on a set route.
All the above people are reliable and trustworthy. I've known them several years and I fully recommend them.
There's also a bike rental place in Agadir called Agadir Motos who have Transalps, Teneres and XT660R bikes. I have no experience of this company other than meeting some of their clients on the road. If anyone has used them or other companies in Morocco I'd appreciate information.
Loc2roues is definitely preferable to Atlantic motos in Agadir. Prices are quite similar but Atlantic motos will promise you the earth over the phone (decent off-road tyres eg) and will wrangle with you about the condition of the bike on return to make more money.
Just met a group of four Dutch guys who rented Honda XR250 Tornados from Atlantic Moto at around €45/day.
I am one of those. We rented 4 Honda Tornado 250's from Atlantic Moto. It is a good rental place, maintanance of the bikes was good. Tires were road tires, good enough for most pistes.
We broke a brake lever, a tire and a gear lever axle, and we had to pay for that, it was a fair price.
last year i rented from Loc2roues, but I would recommend Atantic moto above loc2roues, although loc2roues is also a great rental place.
Just came back to Norway after 10 days on motorbike in Morocco. Rented bikes at Agadir Motos - JOUATOURS. We were four guys that flew to Casablanca since the airline tickets were cheapest to that city. Jouatours came up from Agadir and delivered the bikes at our hotel and we also returned the bikes in Casablanca. We had the bikes from Oct 7.th - Oct 15.th. We had two Tenerés and two XT660R. Three of them with a top box and one with soft side bags. We had the option to have a mechanic coming with us, but rejected that. We drove approx 2500 km and had no problem at all. All bikes were in good condition and had brand new tires. We payed about 85 Euros per day, per bike. This was 10 Euros under normal high season rent. Low season is 65 Euros. My experience with Agadir Motos were all positive.
We ended up with 2 XR250 Tornados (~20,000km; air-cooled + big oil cooler, tall suspension, electric start), a Sertao with racks (45,000km) and I chose a Husky Terra (13000km).
Week+ rates were 5000dh/day for the 250s and 8000 for the 650s.
I established beforehand that all the bikes had engine bars and/or bashplates, plus barkbusters so the usual slow speed spills didn’t damage anything. Tanks were near empty.
Tyres on the 650s were road (‘trail’) tyres but worked surprisingly well on the dry piste if treated accordingly. Those bikes were way too heavy to chuck about anyway.
The XRs had knobblies on the front.
A 5th, less experienced XR rider decided to rent a car instead, but as it was stick, that required a driver too.
Loc quickly came up with a solution: 1000/day for a near-new Pajero and 300/day for the driver. Fuel was extra and as far as I know at most places the driver got free lodging.
The benefits of a car meant we could chuck our bags plus a heap of water in the back and have a local on hand to help solve problems/get good prices. Mustapha (not much English) was an enthusiastic and helpful guy, followed us wherever we went without complaint. If anyone wants his mobile number PM me.
I brought my own pump, repair kit, levers and regular tools and asked in advance for a tube for each tyre size plus tools to remove the different wheels and a fuel can (not needed).
Got it all but turned out only the BMW had tools but not the right Torx to loosen a Husky front wheel. I didn’t have the right Torx either.
Realised later my Husky had a slow front puncture on departure (steering felt heavy; should have checked). That led to overheating on the rough road up to the Test, a bigger puncture, a bad repair by the village vulcaniser (was trying to save the new 21” for later) which gave out soon on the first piste.
After a new tube no probs, apart from a nail in the back tyre near Tinerhir. Needed a car to break the bead on that, and lots of pressure to get it fully back on. Clearly I was the puncture magnet on this trip.
That front wheel removal somehow softened the Husky’s front brake which we only partly fixed with a mini-bleed. After that I got used to it.
From the outset I was told the ABS didn’t work.
The FI was not so good either on my Terra, cutting out when warming up and bogging from low revs. I know it’s a high comp engine but the one I rode last year was fine. I suppose Husky diagnostics are hard to come by in Marrakech.
I rode all the other bikes at one point or another:
The XR Tornados (not sold in UK AFAIK) made the piste effortless and could sit on 100kph on the road and return up to 95mpg. Both the XR riders were dirt and even road biking novices and were amazed what they could do on rough climbs which Andy B (ex Desert Rider) and me found barely sustainable on the 650s.
A couple of bulbs blew.
The well-used Sertao lacked the tightness of the Terra and felt much heavier which made it a dog on the piste. But the softer tuned engine was easier to manage than the Husky and first felt lower. The Sertao was by far the comfiest bike on the road and at times more economical than one of the XRs. It used 20% less fuel than the Husky. Rear light assembly broke off on the piste.
Even with the 21” wheel the Husky Terra made a brilliant Super Moto-style road bike, but like the BM, rocky Moroccan pistes give the bike and you quite a beating. Amazing that nothing broke.
Nourdine was relaxed when we brought the grubby bikes back and I was not charged for the tubes I used.
Now I know what they offer I would happily use Loc again to run another tour. My front slow puncture can be excused, the hesitant efi I learned to live with and I should have splashed out on some brake fluid to fix the front but never got round to it.
With the Husky out of my system next time I’ll just rent an XR. They’re tall but so pleasant to ride. Lowering seemed to require removing the back wheel but they’ll do that in the garage for you.
To get to Loc (Google street address is way off) take the 19 bus from the airport (30d), takes about 30 mins to wind its way around to a stop just northwest of Place du Novembre 16. Even then, I would have saved myself a sweaty hour's tramping by putting a marker for Loc (+ their nearby hotel suggestion) in the satnav.
For the lodgings we used on our 10-day circuit, see this.
Myself and a friend have rented Sertao's from Nourdine twice this past year and have found him to be a very straight and helpful guy.
We rented two Sertao's in January this year practically as new and again in October when the bikes had taken a lot of punishment since. A battery went in one which Nourdine replaced and my Sertao leaked oil onto my left foot throughout the trip. Otherwise OK and quite a comfy bike to ride.
Anyways, a happy customer of Loc and will use them again especially now that Ryan Air are flying directly from Dublin to Marrakesh starting in April 2014
Chris a question, I'm heading down there again in May 2014 for two weeks and as my missus is coming I'm planning on renting a 4x4, does Nourdine rent out the jeep without a driver, just wondering as I can contact him beforehand anyway.
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