Morocco

Desert, coasts, Imperial Cities, Berber tribes combine to make this an exceptional journey.

Country Information

Morocco

Morocco Enrichment Series

(Countries Visited)

Morocco


(Interest Type(s))

Recommended


(Tour Length)

9 Days


Tour Highlights

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  • Take in Rabat with its long beaches, lush gardens,  Hassan Tower, Mohammed V Mausoleum and the fascinating Kasbahs of Oudayas
  • Experience the ancient Imperial City of Fes, surrounded by nine miles of ramparts, and situated in a narrow valley strategically positioned on the old caravan crossroads
  • Travel to the coastal city of Essaouira to explore the 16th-century Portuguese stronghold
  • Venture into Marrakech’s old walled city; and experience Djmaa El Fnaa Square, usually jammed with street performers – fire eaters, snake charmers, sword swallowers and more
  • Morocco is one of the last places to encounter one of the oldest civilizations of North Africa –
    the Berber tribes who ruled the earliest known Moroccan independent state, known as Berber Kingdom of Mauretania, dating back to at least 110 BC

 

 

Day 1:  Arrive Casablanca, Morocco / Rabat
Arrive in Casablanca, a gleaming white city on the north coast.*  Morocco’s international personality mixes with European influences.  Upon arrival you will be met by your driver and guide who will escort you to Rabat where you will enjoy lunch at a local restaurant.  Set like a jewel amid magnificent surroundings, Rabat is endowed with long beaches of golden sand, lush gardens and courtyards, the noble Mamora cork oak forest and the Royal Golf Dar-Es-Salam, one of the most beautiful courses in the world.  Villa Mandarine – Deluxe Room (L,D)

* Important Note:  Itinerary requires that you arrive by noon in order to reach Rabat.

Day 2:  Rabat / Meknes / Fes
This morning your overland drive via rural countryside first visits the city of Rabat.  Your sights include the Hassan Tower, Mohammed V Mausoleum and the Casbahs of Oudayas.  Continue on to Meknes for a classic Moroccan lunch en route.  Visit Bab El Mansour gate, Moulay Ismail Stables and Dar El Beida.  Later this afternoon, travel to Fes and check into your hotel.  Fes has been Morocco’s cultural and religious center for 1,200 years.  Riad Maison Bleue – Deluxe (B,L,D)

Day 3:  Fes
The exciting, 2,000-year-old Imperial City of Fes is strategically positioned on the old caravan crossroads, which once connected the one-time Saharan empires with the Atlantic and Mediterranean trading routes to Europe.  Surrounded by nine miles of ramparts, Fes was once, after Mecca and Medina, held to be one of the holiest cities in the Islamic world.  Moroccans say that Marrakech, Rabat and Casablanca live in the present, but that Fes lives in the past.  European chroniclers of the Middle Ages wrote with awe of this city that for several centuries was the most civilized Western outpost of the Semitic world.  With its two hundred mosques and holy shrines, Fes contains more places of worship than any other city in Morocco.  At its peak, early in the 13th century, Fes el-Bali alone boasted almost eight hundred mosques and mausoleums for its 125,000 inhabitants.  Your guide will take you to the bustling warren of alleyways through the fascinating medina and souks offering every possible combination of pottery, Berber carpets, Fassi brassware, Jewish-originated silverware, traditional and modern jewelry, beautiful leather goods all amidst the pungent aromas of spices, herbs and oils.  See the impressive royal palace, Dar el Makhzen, with its magnificent seven bronze gates.  From here, walk through the Mellah with its intense atmosphere and fine examples of Mauro-Hispanic architecture.  Drive to the Borj Sud to take in the panoramic views of the Medina.  For an old-world experience, stroll the labyrinth of the ancient Fes Medina.  Here, you will see the Bou Inania Mosque and Medersa and the Maimonides’ clock.  Walk by the colorful es-Sabbaghine with its Street of the Dyers and see the brass workers at es-Saffarine.  You will see the exterior of the impressive al-Quarawiyyin Mosque and University and the el-Atterine Medersa, passing the aromas of the Souq el-Atterine area of spices and food.  Continue to the el-Nejjarine Square and the restored former caravanserai, once a roadside inn, now home to the Museum of Wooden Arts and Crafts.  After a light lunch, you then go to the renowned Tanneries on the bank of the Oued Fes.  You see pottery, perfumes and beauty products at the Souq el-Henna.  Leaving the Medina from Bab Boujloud, tour the magnificent ramparts as you make your way to the 16th-century Saadien watchtower at the North Borj.  Finally, the Dar Batha Museum displays a rich collection of carpets and woodwork.  Riad Maison Bleue – Deluxe (B,L,D)

Day 4:  Fes / Atlas Mountains / Marrakech
Take in the contrasting views of Morocco as you spend the day crossing the Middle Atlas Mountains to the rose-red caravan city of Marrakech.  Pass through Middle Atlas Mountains forests of cedar and Holm-oak.  You may encounter some of the resident Barbary Apes. Travel on through pasturelands, traditional villages and mountain resorts.  Arrive in Marrakech in the early evening with its beautiful High Atlas Mountain backdrop.  Pearl Hotel  (B,L,D)

Day 5:  Marrakech
Today’s exciting program reveals the highlights and back streets of Marrakech.  Tour the ramparts, the Majorelle Gardens of the now-deceased Yves Saint Laurent and the Koutoubia Mosque in a horse-drawn carriage.  Marrakech, the old walled city, has long been a crossroads of cultures, and souks where medieval craft guilds still operate according to old traditions.  Enjoy lunch overlooking the Djmaa El Fnaa Square, usually jammed with street theater of acrobats, fire eaters, snake charmers, sword swallowers, and assorted other performers.  Later, visit the Kasbah, the Mellah (Jewish Quarter) and the palaces of El Badii and El Bahia, and the Medina with its ancient monuments and museums.  The14th-century Ben Youssef Medersa is one of the most beautiful buildings in Marrakech, and once housed the Islamic equivalent of a monastery.  The 11th-century Almoravid Dynasty Koubba and the Marrakech Museum of Contemporary Art are also here.  As you move through the labyrinth of narrow alleyways, take in the renowned colorful and aromatic Souqs of Marrakech.  Visit  Djmaa el Fnaa Square before returning to your hotel.  Pearl Hotel (B,L,D)

Day 6:  Marrakech / Essouira
Savor a relaxing morning before you set out for Essaouira, the ancient city of Mogador, and considered as one of the best anchorages of the Moroccan coast.  A UNESCO World Heritage Site, it is today a charming artists’ town with its old port and cannons overlooking the fishing fleet, and its narrow alleyways of the Medina.  Relax over fresh fish for lunch at a local restaurant.  Take some time to relax this afternoon and explore the Portuguese stronghold, famous for its woodcarving and handicrafts.  Dar Louisa – Junior Suite (B,L,D)

Day 7:  Essouira
This morning discover the port and its ramparts, the old Medina and "Scala."  If you like, you can elect to take an optional camel ride on the beach.  Take in the ambiance on this old city as you explore the ancient Portuguese streets of the Old Medina on your own.  Dar Louisa – Junior Suite (B,L,D)

Day 8:  Essouira / Safi / Casablanca
Departure for Safi, another former Portuguese fortress town.  It is especially known for its pottery.  Safi is the main fishing port for the country's sardine industry, and also exports phosphates, textiles and ceramics.  The central medina is a traditional Moroccan market.  Travel the coast and stop for lunch at a local restaurant in Oualidia with lovely views of the bay.  El Jadida, a UNESCO World Heritage Site, is a small, delightful coastal town.  Several thick bastions were destroyed in 1769 by the Portuguese when they left Morocco.  Your exploration begins at Fortress of Mazagan, which protects an ancient structure, the misnamed ‘Portuguese Cisterns.’  Built much earlier by the Romans to store grain, the Portuguese used them to keep fresh water.  From El Jadida, drive on to exotic Casablanca.  Hotel Le Doge (B,L,D)

Day 9:  Casablanca / Depart
Today you are escorted to the airport for your flight home.  (B)

Departure Dates:  Call for more information

Land price, per person, double occupancy:  Call for pricing

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