Inspiring Morocco – Journey Through the Desert
Inspiring Morocco – Journey Through the Desert
Casablanca | Rabat | Fez | Midelt | Merzouga | Skoura | Marrakech
9 days | 8 nights
June 26 – July 4, 2023
Starting at $3,519 USD per person
The Inspiring ‘Journey Through the Desert’ Morocco travel package has a perfect blend of culture and history packed on this 9-day journey. You’ll discover Morocco as this tour takes you through Casablanca, Rabat, Fez, Midelt, Merzouga, Skoura, and Marrakech. Enjoy a Zagora city tour, take a Desert camel ride, and visit the Valley of the Roses while you experience Morocco and its enchanting beauty.
- 7-nights hotel accommodation
- 9-nights hotel accommodation
- Transfers and transportation
- Entrance tickets to monuments mentioned in itinerary
- All meals included
- Camel ride in the desert
- Sahara desert tour on a 4×4 vehicle
- Local tour guide
Day 1: Hello Casablanca!
Upon arrival, meet the driver outside the airport and transfer to the hotel in Casablanca. Depending on your time of arrival, we may enjoy a short city tour by car. Afterward, you’ll have free time to independently explore the city.
Transfer to Rick’s Café for dinner, which recreates the atmosphere of Rick’s Café from the movie Casablanca.
Day 2: Casablanca – Rabat – Fet
You’ll start the morning with a tour of Hassan II’s Mosque. Its minaret, or tower for prayer, is 60 stories high and topped with a laser pointing towards Mecca. The interior is a wonderful work of different marbles, zelliges (Moroccan mosaics), stucco, and cedar wood. Then, transfer from Casablanca to Rabat. The region’s coastal climate lends itself to the cultivation of beautiful gardens among picturesque white houses. In addition, Rabat has multiple historical monuments and sites – some dating as far back as the 7th century.
You’ll visit the beautiful mausoleum of Mohamed V, which features minarets dating from the 12th century, and the Koutoubia in Marrakech. Afterward, enjoy a peaceful stroll down the narrow street of Kasbah des Oudaias.
After lunch, you’ll go directly to Fez and check into the hotel. Fez has a wonderful old palace in the middle of the Medina, the oldest portion of the city. Enjoy a great view of the city from the terrace with a refreshment. Dinner in your hotel, and the remainder of the evening is at your leisure.
Day 3: Fez
Today, you’ll be picked up at 9 am for a city tour of Fez to appreciate the monuments and souks – traditional Moroccan markets. Then, enjoy lunch at the Hotel Sahrai.
Fez was the capital of Morocco until 1912 and is still considered the country’s spiritual and cultural center. It’s full of palaces, museums, mosques, fountains, and residences over 1,200 years old.
Highlights of the city include the magnificent Bab Bou Jeloud, or “Blue Gate;” the fascinating Bou Inania Madrasa, a historic Quranic school; the imposing Mosque Karaouiyn, built by women in the 8th century; the Zaouia de Moulay Idriss, an Islamic shrine and pilgrimage site; and the Chouara Tannery. You’ll enjoy lunch in the old city and then visit the Mechouar – the entrance of the palace – and the Jewish Quarter, famous for its beautiful pottery and master artisans. Enjoy dinner at Maison Blanche, and overnight at the hotel.
Day 4: Midelt – Merzouga Desert
Early in the morning, transfer from Fez to the Merzouga Desert. You’ll have a short visit to Ifrane, a French-built ski resort in the middle of the cedar forest. Then, cross the cedar forest and have an encounter with the macaques (monkeys) of the Atlas Mountains. These mischievous animals are accustomed to visitors and aren’t afraid to beg for fruit. Then cross the Middle Atlas Mountains before stopping for lunch in Midelt.
The road will take you through fascinating desert scenery before reaching the Ziz Valley Oasis. Finally, you’ll reach Erfoud, the gateway to the sand dunes and Merzouga. You’ll switch to a 4×4 vehicle in order to reach the camp at the foot of the big dunes. Upon arrival, enjoy a ride on a camel and take in the splendor of the sunset. Dinner is served at the camp, where you can enjoy firsthand the charm and hospitality of our Berber team.
Day 5: Merzouga – Tinghir – Boumalne – Skoura
If it was too late to take a desert camel ride upon arrival, we’ll do it this morning. Then you’ll go on a 4×4 adventure, meet a Gnawa community—descendants of ancient enslaved peoples. After a two-hour car ride, you’ll arrive in Tinghir and stop to for a view of the imposing oasis. Hidden in a valley in the middle of the arid mountains, this place feels like a fairy tale. Then you’ll enter the Todgha Canyon for a short walking tour.
Arrive at Boumalne where you’ll stop for lunch at Chez Pierre. Then move on to your short visit to the Dades Valley and continue to the oasis of Kalaat M’Gouna, also known as the Valley of the Roses. Finally arrive in the oasis of Skoura and overnight in an ancient Kasbah, a fortified stronghold and signature building of Morocco. Dinner in the garden of the Kasbah and overnight at the hotel.
Day 6: Skoura – Ouarzazate – Marrakech
Today you’ll journey from Skoura to Marrakech. On the way, take a short stop in Ouarzazate and visit Aït Benhaddou. Here, you’ll also stop for lunch.
A UNESCO World Heritage Site since 1987, Aït Benhaddou was once a major stop along the caravan route between Marrakech and the Sahara. The striking visage of southern Moroccan architecture is thought to date from the 17th century and contains a mosque, two cemeteries (Jewish and Muslim), a public square, and areas for threshing grain outside of the ramparts. The Kasbah was a set for many international films and TV shows, like Game of Thrones, Laurence of Arabia, and Gladiator.
You’ll arrive at Marrakech in the late afternoon and the rest of the day is at your leisure. Later, dine out at a local restaurant and overnight at the hotel.
Day 7 : Marrakech
Marrakech sums up all of Morocco’s exotic North African charm. Meet your tour guide for a walking city tour of the most popular monuments and souks. At 9 am, the guide will drive you to the main monuments of the pink city. Within the hustle of the Medina, you’ll find the city’s main points of interest in a dizzying meld of ancient and new. You’ll start by visiting Koutoubia, the ancient mosque built in the 12th century, and then continue with the Menara Garden which used to be a reservoir for watering the olive trees. Continue with a visit to the Bahia Palace, a 19th-century palace. Enjoy lunch in Jardins de Bala.
For shoppers, this city is a hub for bargain hunting! For history-loving tourists, the many museums and monuments are some of Morocco’s must-dos. For those who want to dive into local culture, the medina offers Moroccan life in all its hectic glory. Dinner in Chez Ali with a show, and overnight at the hotel.
Day 8: Marrakech – Essaouira – Marrakech
Transfer by car from Marrakech to visit the maritime city of Essaouira. On the way, you’ll pass the argan trees, found only in this region of the world, and the goats climbing on them. Then stop at the cooperative where you’ll learn how local Moroccan women produce argan oil.
Next, journey to the beautiful city of Essaouira. This coastal city is a mix between North Africa and the Mediterranean. Surrounded by golden-stone city walls, it mixes delicious tastes, bright colors, and the smell of spices. You’ll stroll through narrow streets, observe the sea and the harbor, and have a delicious lunch at Café Taros.
After the visit, you will come back to Marrakech for dinner at Jad Mahal. Overnight at the hotel.
Day 9: Farewell Marrakech!
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