Real Morocco Uncovered

From €1160EUR

13 Days

Starts in Tangier

+212 661 469 661

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SUMMARY

Tour Overview

Carefully selected hotels, Kasbahs, Riads. Includes one night in a traditional luxury Berber camp

Qualified multi-language guide fluent in English, French, Spanish

Air-conditioned 4WD vehicle(s), mini bus or motor-coach

Tangier, Tetouan, Rif, Chefchaouen, Volubilis, Meknes, Fes, Ifrane, Erfoud, desert, Todra Canyon, Dades, Roses valley, Skoura, Ouarzazate, Ait Benhaddou, Telouet Kasbah, Atlas, Marrakech, Essaouira

INcluded in your tour

Tour Highlights

We have over 20 years of experience crafting a Moroccan experience perfectly tailored to our guests needs. These are our most common itineraries, to be used as starting points in developing yours.

Itinerary

Tour Itinerary

We are experts at creating a Moroccan experience perfectly tailored to our guests needs. These are some of our most popular itineraries, and they may be customized to the utmost extent of your imaginations.

Arrival to Tangier, evening in the Blue Streets of Chefchaouen

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Whether you're arriving by ferry or plane, we will meet you upon arrival and go on a short tour to introduce you to Tangier's old medina. From there we will drive up into the valleys of the magnificent Rif Mountains, its peaks rising as high as 2456 meters at Jbel Tidirhine. After crossing the mountains we will continue across the fertile plains of Tetouan and limestone cliffs covered in cork oaks, pines, and wild olive trees before arriving in the mountain town of Chefchaouen, set like a gem between two Rif Mountain peaks. Chefchaouen is renowned for the distinctive blue-washed facades of its houses, painted that way by Jewish refugees who lived there in the 1930s, and is an unreal and unmissable destination for any trip to Morocco. The Chefchaouen medina features a Spanish-style plaza surrounded by numerous cafes, rooftop restaurants, and crafts stores that sell items unique to the Moroccan highlands. We will explore Chefchaouen in the afternoon and settle into our hotel, from which we will be able to enjoy the relaxed environment and spectacular mountain views of this one-of-a-kind town.

Chefchaouen to the Cultural Capitol of Morocco

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After breakfast we will continue our journey to the Roman ruins of Volubilis, a UNESCO World Heritage site and the best preserved Roman ruins in North Africa. This important Roman town features detailed and gorgeous mosaics that will give you a unique perspective on Morocco's ancient history. We will also visit the nearby town of Moulay Idriss, where Moulay Idriss I, who brought Islam to Morocco, is entombed. Moulay Idriss is considered to be the holiest town in Morocco. From Moulay Idriss we will continue to Meknes, often called the "Versailles of Morocco" due to the grandeur and intricacy of its buildings and monuments. We will take some time to explore its highlights, including the massive Bab Mansour Gate, the old Medina, and Moulay Ismail's shrine. From Meknes we will continue to Fes, where we will check in at your hotel before having dinner and settling in for the night.

Fes Sightseeing with Official Local Guide

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Following breakfast at the hotel, our accredited local guide will accompany you on a walking tour of the Fes medina. Step back in time as you wander through the labyrinth of twisting alleyways - donkeys and mules pass through the narrow streets, savour the aromas from the market stalls where countless spices and perfumes are traded, and explore the leather tanneries where men treat leather using century old techniques. We’ll cap the day with dinner at one of the many local restaurants of the medina then settle in for the evening at your hotel.

Fes to the Edge of the Sahara

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We continue our journey onwards from Fes to Ifrane, through hills blanketed in forests of cork oak and giant cedar, where a few Barbary apes still call home. Passing through the Middle and High Atlas ranges, we will catch our first glimpse of Southern Morocco’s unique architectural style and stop for lunch overlooking a breathtaking view of the dramatic peaks of the High Atlas rising behind the town of Midelt. As we descend into the desert plains, the view changes from dramatic mountain peaks to an expansive oasis punctuated by countless Ksours (fortified villages), which then give way to a vast stony plain that marks the edges of the Sahara. Once among the dunes, you will be welcomed into a charming Kasbah where you will be able to relax beside the swimming pool, and enjoy the tunes of a desert blues band well into the evening.

Desert Culture + Tea with Nomads + Camel Trek

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Watching the sun rise amongst the dunes is a magical experience, and not to be missed. Your breakfast will be waiting for you upon your return, after which you will have the opportunity to visit the nomadic communities around Merzouga, stopping for tea in the souks, and enjoying the traditional Gnawa music. As the mid-day sun wanes, we will mount our camels and trek into the pink sands of the Moroccan Sahara; here, we will have ample free time for you to explore and take in the beauty and vastness of the desert dunes. Once the sun sets, a Moroccan dinner will be served alongside live music around the campfire, after which you are free to explore again - this time in the company of a million stars exploding against the pitch-black sky, and the all-encompassing silence of the Sahara at night.

A Desert Sunrise, Africa's Hollywood and Todra Gorge

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At your request, our staff will wake you at the crack of dawn to witness the spectacle of the desert sunrise, the colour of the sand contrasting beautifully with the palette of shadows on the dunes. After some light breakfast and tea we will ride the camels back across the desert to the Kasbah to freshen up before our journey back West towards the Todra Gorge, known as "Morocco's Grand Canyon". We will have lunch here and amble along the valley to take in the view. From there, we continue on to Ouarzazate, a bustling southern city often referred to as "The Hollywood of Morocco" owing to the many famous films shot on location such as Gladiator, Lawrence of Arabia, and Kingdom of Heaven, as well as several seasons of the hit show, Game of Thrones. Here, we will explore the nearby Kasbah Ait Benhaddou, the most famous kasbah inMorocco, a UNESCO World Heritage site, and the backdrop for many of the films and shows shot on location.

Lush Orchards and Fantastical Formations

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After breakfast we will have some time to relax and enjoy the views from the terrace across the valley. You may also decide to take a 1-2 hour trek through the villages in the area, passing fields cultivated by the local Berber women with the peaks of the Atlas Mountains as the backdrop. We then end our journey for the day at Ouarzazate, a bustling southern city often referred to as "The Hollywood of Morocco" owing to the many famous films shot on location such as Gladiator, Lawrence of Arabia, and Kingdom of Heaven, as well as several seasons of the hit show, Game of Thrones.

Ouarzazate to Marrakech, Fantastical Kasbahs

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Following breakfast we will explore the nearby Kasbah Ait Benhaddou, the most famous kasbah in Morocco, a UNESCO World Heritage site, and the backdrop for many of the films and shows shot on location. We then continue north across the High Atlas Mountains to Marrakech - a fantastical Arabian Nights city with myriad alleyways, souks, and market stalls. Marrakech is the second oldest imperial city, known as the "Southern Pearl" of Morocco, and has for centuries been an important stop for traders and travelers alike; this remarkable city never fails to satisfy the curiosity of adventurous travelers, and we’re sure you’ll love it too. We will arrive in Marrakech by the afternoon, giving you plenty of time to explore the vibrant streets at your leisure before settling in for the evening.

Marrakech Sightseeing with Official Local Guide

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Breakfast will be served at your Riad, after which a knowledgeable local guide will lead you through the labyrinth of Marrakech's winding alleyways, hidden gardens, and secret souks. You will continue to the Djemaa el Fna, the principal cultural space in Marrakech and a UNESCO World Heritage Site, beside which the minaret of the Koutoubia Mosque can be seen towering into the sky. In the evening this square overflows with food stalls, dancers, acrobats, fortune tellers, musicians, and henna artists. Following your tour you will have the full day to spend at your leisure, whether its pampering yourself at a local spa with massage or further exploring the souks of the medina. We will spend the night at our hotel in Marrakech.

Towards the Salty Breeze of Essaouira

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Departing Marrakech after breakfast, we make our way through lush valleys filled with orange groves, ancient olive trees, and argan oil cooperatives to the quaint seaside town of Essaouira. This windswept fishing port with its broad beaches and an ancient walled medina, has long been a popular vacation destination for Moroccans. It is also a creative hub where many of the country's wood carvers and artists have made their home, and each year, hosts the Gnaouas Music Festival in the month of June. Stroll along the ramparts and beach as you take in the relaxed vibe of its small but lively medina, or visit the port to savour the catch of the day. We will have dinner in Essaouira and spend the night in a tranquil local hotel.

Essaouira at Your Leisure

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Breakfast is served at your riad, and it’s time to explore Essaouria at your leisure. Meet local artists in their studios and browse their artwork, or head to the lively fish market for a savory lunch of fresh grilled fish caught just this morning. A short walk along the beach at low tide reveals the crumbling ruins of the fort of Borj El Barod, and a boat ride to the island of Mogador offers glimpses of the rare Eleanora's falcon. Should you fancy watersports, you may even want to try one of the many offered on the popular local beaches, including surfing, kitesurfing, windsurfing, bodyboarding, and kayaking. If you are feeling somewhat tired from your travels, Essaouria is a perfect place to recoup - simply sit in one of the many beachside cafes on Place Moulay Hassan, relax, and watch the waves roll in with a mint tea and a Moroccan pastry. We will once again spend the night in our Essaouira riad. 

Essaouria to Casablanca for One Last Dinner

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On this final day of your Moroccan adventure, we will leave Essaouria and journey back to the bustling city of Casablanca, continuing up the coastline through quiet coastal towns to El Jadida where we may pay a visit to the citadel and be able to see the underground cistern. Upon our arrival in Casablanca we will have dinner and spend the night at our hotel.

Casablanca at Your Leisure, Transfer to the Airport

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As we bid you farewell, we will help you with any departure formalities and arrange for your transfers to the airport. We hope you enjoyed your journey with us, and hope to see you again soon.

Itinerary

Tour Itinerary

We have over 20 years of experience crafting a Moroccan experience perfectly tailored to our guests needs. These are our most common itineraries, to be used as starting points in developing yours.

DAY 1: Tangier → Tetouan → Chefchaouen

Whether you're arriving by ferry or plane, we will meet you upon arrival and go on a short tour to introduce you to Tangier's old medina. From there we will drive up into the valleys of the magnificent Rif Mountains, its peaks rising as high as 2456 meters at Jbel Tidirhine. After crossing the mountains we will continue across the fertile plains of Tetouan and limestone cliffs covered in cork oaks, pines, and wild olive trees before arriving in the mountain town of Chefchaouen, set like a gem between two Rif Mountain peaks. Chefchaouen is renowned for the distinctive blue-washed facades of its houses, painted that way by Jewish refugees who lived there in the 1930s, and is an unreal and unmissable destination for any trip to Morocco. The Chefchaouen medina features a Spanish-style plaza surrounded by numerous cafes, rooftop restaurants, and crafts stores that sell items unique to the Moroccan highlands. We will explore Chefchaouen in the afternoon and settle into our hotel, from which we will be able to enjoy the relaxed environment and spectacular mountain views of this one-of-a-kind town. (BB)

DAY 2: Chefchaouen → Volubilis → Meknes → Fes

After breakfast we will continue our journey to the Roman ruins of Volubilis, a UNESCO World Heritage site and the best preserved Roman ruins in North Africa. This important Roman town features detailed and gorgeous mosaics that will give you a window into Morocco's ancient history. We will also visit the nearby town of Moulay Idriss, where Moulay Idriss I, who brought Islam to Morocco, is entombed. Moulay Idriss is considered to be the holiest town in Morocco. From Moulay Idriss we will continue to Meknes, often called the "Versailles of Morocco" due to the grandeur and intricacy of its buildings and monuments. We will take some time to explore its highlights, including the massive Bab Mansour Gate, the old Medina, and Moulay Ismail's shrine. From Meknes we will continue to Fes, where we will check in at your hotel before having dinner and settling in for the night. (BB)

DAY 3: Fes Sightseeing escorted by a local guide

After breakfast you will enjoy a guided half-day city tour of Fes, Morocco's spiritual and intellectual capital and home to the largest old medina in the world. There you will visit Jemaa El Karaouine, the first university to be established in the world. As you enter the shady souks, you will encounter aromas from the market stalls where countless spices and perfumes are traded. In stark contrast, you'll brave the stink emanating from the leather tanneries where men often stand up to their waists treating leather in noxious baths in the same way that it has been done for centuries. Despite the smell, the ethnic leather products produced by these craftsmen are world-class and are the perfect thing to take home with you. In the evening you can have dinner in one of the local restaurants and spend the night at your hotel. (BB)

DAY 4: Fes → Ifrane → Midelt → Ziz Oases → Erfoud → Merzouga

After picking you up from your hotel in Fes we will embark on a picturesque journey towards Ifrane, through hills covered in forests of cork oak and giant cedar in which a few Barbary apes still make their home. Crossing strikingly beautiful passes over both the Middle and High Atlas ranges we will catch our first glimpse of the South’s incredible architecture. After passing through a barren plain of scrub and desert on the other side of the mountains, we will stop for lunch in the town of Midelt, from which we will have a fantastic view of the dramatic peaks of the High Atlas rising behind the town. Crossing Tizi-n-Talremt (the She-Camel Pass), we will descend into a desert plain along the Ziz valley. We will then head south to Erfoud and Rissani, into a huge oasis containing over six million palm trees and edged by many ksours (fortified villages). Our route will continue through an immense palm oasis and a vast area of stony plain that marks the transition to the desert before reaching the tranquil desert town of Merzouga, where we have selected a charming kasbah hotel on the outskirts of the Erg Chebbi golden sand dunes. There you will be able to relax beside the swimming pool, and in the evening enjoy a live show by a desert blues band. (HB)

DAY 5: Merzouga Culture and Traditions → Tea with Nomads → Camel Trekking in the Sahara

After waking up to a desert sunrise and having breakfast, we will be able to relax for a couple hours before taking a 4WD off-road tour around the dunes. On the tour we will visit the oasis of Merzouga, the nomadic depository, and Khamlia Village, where we will be able to hear gnawa music from the local people who are descendants of ex-slaves that found their way to Morocco from Senegal via the Salt Route. We will continue on to meet desert nomads in their tents and discover their way of life. We will also visit the nearby Lake of Merzouga, with its diverse population of birds. Afterwards we will leave for Rissani. Once called Sijilmassa, this was the meeting place for the salt caravans coming from Timbuktu, Mali. Here you'll be able to walk through the souk, where you will be able to find spices, vegetables, and clothes. After having a pizza lunch in Rissani we will drive back to our kasbah, where we will be greeted with a glass of tea and have some time to relax.You will have a chance to leave all unnecessary luggage behind in safe rooms at a hotel before mounting your camel (or 4WD if you can't do the camels) and riding into the Moroccan Sahara, We will have time to wander around the dunes before watching the sunset. Your camel will take you to a Berber camp in the middle of the Erg Chebbi sand dunes, the highest in North Africa, with some dunes rising to 820 feet: In the evening we will dine on Moroccan cuisine and enjoy traditional live music around the campfire. You will spend the night in warm Berber tents in the silence of the desert, and you can relax outside and marvel at the crystal-clear Milky Way spreading across the pitch-black night sky. (HB)

DAY 6: Merzouga → Rissani → Todra Canyon → Dades Valley

If you would like to wake up early so that you can watch the spectacle of sunrise, when the color of the sand contrasts beautifully with the play of shadows on the dunes - after which you might want to try your hand at sand-boarding down them. After a refreshing shower and breakfast, we will ride the camels or fun 4X4 off-road drive through the dunes back to the kasbah in Merzouga town, where we will be able to freshen up before heading to the fortified village of Rissani in the Tafilalet region. Nestled at the edge of the Ziz Valley, Rissani is a traditional desert village, yet houses the impressive Mausoleum of Moulay Ali Sharif, the first ruler of the Alawite dynasty which ruled here in the 17th century. After leaving Rissani we will journey through the Todra Gorge and past the eastern slopes of the Atlas Mountains to the Tinghir Oasis, surrounded by green palm valleys and local Berber villages, before arriving in the beautiful Dades Valley, known as the "Valley of 1000 Kasbahs" due to the ruins of ancient kasbahs dotting the landscape alongside the palm trees. We will spend the night among the spectacular rock structures of the Dades Valley. (HB)

DAY 7: Dades Valley → Boutarar → Roses Valley → Skoura Oasis → Ouarzazate

After having breakfast at our hotel in the Dades Gorge we will have time to relax on the terrace and enjoy the views across the fertile Dades Valley. You may also decide to take a 1-2 hour trek through the villages of the area, passing fields cultivated by the local Berber women with the peaks of the Atlas Mountains as a backdrop. We will continue our journey towards Ouarzazate, first going off-road along the Boutarar piste to visit local Berber nomads in their caves and join them for a glass of tea. From here we will continue through the Kelaa M'gouna, the "Valley of the Roses", which is famous for its Rose Festival in May and its locally-made cosmetics, made from the valley's abundant roses, that are highly valued throughout Morocco. Further on our way we will pass the Skoura Oasis, where numerous ancient kasbahs, some now sadly in ruin, stand among the palm trees, before arriving in the bustling southern city of Ouarzazate, known as "Morocco's Hollywood" due to the many Hollywood blockbusters its film studios have produced. We will have dinner and spend the night in Ouarzazate. (HB)

DAY 8: Ouarzazate → Ait Benhaddou → Atlas Mountains → Marrakech

After breakfast we will head to the nearby Kasbah Ait Benhaddou, the most famous kasbah in Morocco, a UNESCO World Heritage site, and the backdrop for many of Ouarzazate's films including notably "Lawrence of Arabia". After enjoying the kasbah we will continue north across the High Atlas Mountains to Telouet, a village set right in the middle of the mountains which was the former seat of the last Pasha of Marrakech, El Glaoui, who used the location to control the mountain pass. We will go through this very same pass on a road which was completed by the French Foreign Legion in 1936 and winds up over the Tizi n'Tichka Pass, offering stunning views over the mountains before descending past Berber villages to the plains surrounding Marrakech. Even today, the name Marrakech conjures up imagery right out of Arabian Nights - alleyways, souks, and market stalls. This remarkable city, with the graceful architecture of the renowned 11th-century Koutoubia Minaret dominating the skyline, never fails to satisfy the curiosity of adventurous travelers. We will arrive in Marrakech by the afternoon, after which we will check into our hotel and you will be able to explore the vibrant markets of the famous Djemaa el Fna square before settling in for the night. (BB)

DAY 9: Marrakech Sightseeing escorted by a local guide

Today after breakfast you will explore Marrakech, the second oldest imperial city, known as the "Southern Pearl" of Morocco, which has for centuries been an important stop for traders and travelers alike. A guided tour will lead you through the labyrinth of Marrakech's winding streets and past hidden gardens and souks. You will continue to the Djemaa el Fna, which is one of the main cultural spaces in Marrakech and a UNESCO World Heritage Site, with the minaret of the Koutoubia Mosque towering alongside. In the evening this square is overflowing with food stalls, dancers, acrobats, fortune tellers, musicians, and henna artists. You will have a chance to relax at one of the many cafes surrounding the square to take in all the sights. You will have the afternoon to spend at leisure, pampering yourself at a local hammam or exploring the souks of the medina for yourself. We will spend the night at our hotel in Marrakech. (BB)

DAY 10: Marrakech → Essaouira

We will depart Marrakech for the seaside town of Essaouira. A relaxing drive through lush valleys filled with orange groves, ancient olive trees, and argan oil cooperatives will take you to this UNESCO World Heritage listed city. This windswept fishing port, with broad beaches and an ancient walled medina has long been a popular destination where many of the country's wood carvers and artists have made their home. Stroll along the ramparts and beach as you take in the relaxed vibe of the small but lively medina, or visit the port to see the catch of the day. Essaouira also hosts the Gnaoua Music Festival every June. We will have dinner in Essaouira and spend the night in a tranquil local hotel. (BB)

DAY 11: Essaouira sandy beach at leisure 

After breakfast at your riad you will be able to freely explore the maze of alleyways that make up this relaxed seaside port town. Here you'll be able to meet local artists in their studios and browse their artwork, or head to the lively fish market for a savory lunch of fresh grilled fish. Since it's right on the coast, Essaouira's seafood comes right from the sea, and you can expect the freshest, more sustainable, and widest variety of seafood to choose from. You can find a space on the wooden benches and tables alongside the locals and pick your own fish for the grill while enjoying a picturesque view out over the fishing port and the walled medina from the bastion of Skala du Port. You might decide to go for a walk along the beach at low tide to see the crumbling ruins of the fort of Borj El Baroud, or the ruined sultan's palace outside of Diabat, or even to take a boat to the island of Mogador, breeding ground for the rare Eleanora's falcon. If you love watersports, you might also want to try one of the many popular options offered on the local beaches, including surfing, kitesurfing, windsurfing, bodyboarding, and kayaking. Alternatively, you might prefer to simply sit in one of the many beachside cafes on Place Moulay Hassan, relax, and watch the waves roll in with a coffee or mint tea and a Moroccan pastry. We will once again spend the night in our Essaouiran riad. (BB)

DAY 12: Essaouira → Casablanca

On your last day of travel you will leave the Atlantic coast and head back to the bustling modern city of Casablanca, visiting the tiny coastal city of Oualidia on the way. We will drive along the coastline to El Jadida where we will visit the citadel and be able to see the underground cistern. From there we will make our final journey to Casablanca where we will have dinner and spend the night at our hotel. (BB)

DAY 13: Casablanca → Transfer to the Airport

We will help you with any departure formalities and you will be taken directly to Casablanca airport with plenty of time left over to catch your departure flight.

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Other Tours

We are experts at creating a Moroccan experience perfectly tailored to our guests needs. These are some of our most popular itineraries, and they may be customized to the utmost extent of your imaginations.

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