Panorama Djebel el Kest.jpg
The Anti-Atlas (Arabic: الأطلس الصغير‎, Berber languages: Aṭlas Ameẓyan), Lesser Atlas or Little Atlas is a mountain range in Morocco, a part of the Atlas Mountains in the northwest of Africa. The Anti-Atlas extends from the Atlantic Ocean in the southwest toward the northeast, to the heights of Ouarzazate and further east to the city of Tafilalt, altogether a distance of approximately 500 km. The range borders on the Sahara to the south.

The Anti-Atlas is a desolate world of rocky outcrops and lunar landscapes where the contrasts are extreme. Most of the land is dry and barren, but water gathers and runs in some remote places, forming clear basins. Villages in the area are limited to a few small houses surrounded by palm trees.

In some contexts, the Anti-Atlas is considered separate from the Atlas mountain System, as the term "anti" implies.

The summits of the Anti-Atlas reach average heights of 2,500–2,700 m (8,200–8,900 ft), with a few peaks reaching higher. To the north lies a plateau at 1700–1800 m in height. To the south lie the Sahara highlands at approximately 700 m. On the heights of Ouarzazate, the massif is cut through by the Draa valley, opening towards the south. The range is strongly fissured, particularly in a southerly direction.

The Anti-Atlas area is a traditionally Berber region, inhabited by the Chleuh group. It is sparsely inhabited and there are no large cities in the area. The main town is Tafraoute, which has been described as "Morocco's Berber heartland". There are cave paintings in certain areas of the range.

The eastern prolongation of the Anti-Atlas is the Jbel Saghro range. The Jbel Sirwa is its northern prolongation, connecting with a section of the High Atlas range. The summit of Djebel Siroua, of volcanic origin, reaches 3304 m. The Jebel Bani is a much lower range running along the southern side of the Anti Atlas.

This page was last edited on 23 March 2018, at 23:37.
Reference: under CC BY-SA license.

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