Great Morocco Adventure 2018

Great Morocco Adventure 2018

Trip Highlights

  • Stroll through the gardens, mosques, palaces and souqs of Marrakesh
  • Explore the UNESCO-listed medieval city of Fes
  • Ride a camel and stay at a nomad camp in the Sahara
  • Visit the exotic and well preserved kasbah of Ait Benhaddou
  • Explore the lanes, streets and cafes of Essaouira and stroll along the impressive ramparts with sea views

Trip Summary

Morocco’s location on the edge of the Sahara, together with its historic trade links with European ports, has shaped its rich cultural heritage. The blend of mosques and minarets, exotic medina's filled with interesting market stalls brimming with spices and scents and great imperial cities are a constant source of intrigue. This fully escorted tour travels from Casablanca to Tangier, Moulay Idriss to Fes, to Marrakesh to explore medina's and riads, to the desert for a camel ride and a night spent at a nomad camp and finally to the whitewashed fishing port of Essaouira on the Atlantic coast.

Itinerary

Depart Sydney at 15:20 on Etihad flight arriving in Abu Dhabi at 23:55.

Meals:  Nil

Depart Abu Dhabi at 02:45 and arriving in Casablanca at 08:10. Upon arrival in Casablanca you will be met at the airport by your guide and transferred by private vehicle to the hotel. Today is a day of rest before taking dinner as a group. Accommodation: Casablanca Hotel Idou Anfa

Meals:  D

Following breakfast, we drive to Tangier. Upon arrival we check into the hotel and enjoy lunch. This afternoon we take a guided tour through the Kasbah, entering through the beautiful Bab Haha gate and wandering through the cobbled alleyways. Accommodation: Tangier Hotel Rembrandt

Meals:  B,L,D

Following breakfast, we drive through the bay of the “Corniche” of Tangier and several main streets, stopping at the big mosque for pictures and continuing to the Royal Palace. We drive on to the Cap Spartel, a promontory about 1,000 feet above sea level at the entrance to the Strait of Gibraltar, where the Atlantic and Mediterranean seas meet. We stop for picture at the 150 year old light house before driving back to the old part of the city Medina and Kasbah. The best way to explore the Kasbah is on foot, where we visit the archeological museum, the Mendoubia Gardens with 17th Century canons. Along in the Medina we visit the Berber market where vegetables and spices are sold. Accommodation: Tangier Hotel Rembrandt

Meals:  B,L,D

Today we have time to explore the ancient Roman ruins at Volubilis, the largest and best preserved in the country and originally one of the Roman Empire’s remotest outposts. We also wander around the beautiful village of Moulay Idriss, a holy site, named after Morocco’s most revered saint of the same name. Moulay Idriss was the great grandson of the Prophet Mohammed and founder of the first Moroccan dynasty. We continue to Fes, the symbolic heart of Morocco, which was founded in the late 8th Century shortly after the Arabs swept across North Africa and Spain. It has become the cultural and religious centre of the country and has retained a distinctly Arab identity despite the arrival of some Berbers from the interior over the centuries. Today Fes is made up of three sections, the modern Ville Nouvelle, with its chic cafe-lined avenues, Fes el-Jdid and Fes el-Bali. Fes el-Bali is the original Medina and is one of the largest medieval cities in the world. Dinner at famous Fes Restaurant - La Maison Bleue Accommodation: Fes Hotel Volubilis

Meals:  B,L,D

After a guided tour of the city and old Medina we drive to Borj Sud, a Christian fort built in the 17th Century, for an almost aerial view of the old city and its surrounding olive groves. From here we venture into the Medina of Fes el-Bali which dates to the 8th Century. In 1976 UNESCO declared this Medina one of the world’s cultural treasures; the palaces, mosques and fountains are among the most beautiful in Morocco. The colours and aromas of the olive and spice stores mixed in with communal bakeries and the mysterious perfume shops are just some of the delights that make this journey through the ancient alleyways, full of scurrying people and surprises, a memorable experience. We enjoy lunch at a very good Fes restaurant called Asmae. We will also visit the tannery to watch the dying of leathers and a mosaic and tile factory to see how these stunning local handicrafts are made. Accommodation: Fes Hotel Volubilis

Meals:  B,L,D

Today we need to be on the road by 7:00am. We drive in our air-conditioned minibus to Erg Chebbi, passing through the agricultural regions of north Morocco and the fertile plains irrigated by the Oued Aggai in the foothills of the Middle Atlas. Then we begin a long climb through an old cedar forest and holm oaks. Beyond Timhadite lies a completely barren plateau, reminiscent of a lunar landscape pitted as it is with small volcanic craters, the largest of which is Sidi Ali, an immense lake bordered by steep cliffs. After stopping for lunch at the breathtaking Ziz Gorges we continue past palm fringed towns to Erfoud, and to the sand dunes at Erg Chebbi. Here the deep orange-hued dunes of the vast Sahara stretch for miles. Accommodation: Nomad Camp

Meals:  B,L,D

Today we’ll rise before dawn to experience the amazing colours of a Saharan sunrise from the saddle of the traditional Berber transport - the camel. On returning to the camp we have breakfast and commence the journey to the Dades Gorge. En route we have lunch at the spectacular Todra Gorge and visit some of Morocco’s greatest antiquities, the Kasbahs of the eastern slopes of the High Atlas (i.e. the market in Rissani). We drive on to the spectacular Dadès Gorge. We take time to explore the countryside and wander for a few hours through the fertile fields and local villages soaking in rural Morocco before returning to our hotel. Accommodation: Dades Hotel Kasbah Xaluca

Meals:  B,L,D

En route to Ouarzazate (pronounced war-zar-zate), we explore the Kasbahs, oasis and Berber villages in the fertile valleys along the eastern flanks of the Atlas Mountains. We may visit the ancient Kasbahs of Skoura and depending on the day, explore the markets of El-Klaa Mgouna. The earthen town of Ouarzazate lies among the shadows of date and pomegranate trees on the banks of the Dades River. Accommodation: Ait Ben Haddou Hotel La Kasbah

Meals:  B,L,D

This morning we will visit the Kasbah of Ait Ben Haddou, the most exotic and best preserved in the entire Atlas area. We will have lunch here before continuing to Telouet and the former palace of Pasha El Glaoui, the Berber chieftain. Passing sandy coloured Kasbahs and the shy Berber women in their traditional black costumes, we leave the arid desert area and cross the High Atlas Mountains to arrive in Marrakesh late in the afternoon. Framed by the snowy heights of the Atlas Mountains and thousand-year-old palm groves, Marrakesh has a profound impact on all that visit it. Accommodation: Marrakech Riad Al Jazira

Meals:  B,L,D

Today we are led by our expert guide to discover the soul of Marrakesh. We visit gardens, mosques, palaces, and the souqs of the old Medina before reaching the humming centre of Marrakesh: the Djemaa el-Fna. The atmosphere of this square is overwhelming with its jumble of food stalls, snake charmers, fortune- and storytellers and the wide variety of people that flock to its attractions. Lunch included. A return visit at night, when the square comes alive, is a must to try the food stalls and the fresh squeezed orange juice. Accommodation: Marrakech Riad Al Jazira

Meals:  B,L,D

Following breakfast, we take the three hour drive to Essaouira. Upon arrival we enjoy lunch and then the afternoon is free to explore the beautiful and atmospheric coastal city. Accommodation: Essaouira Riad Mimouna

Meals:  B,L,D

Today you have a wonderful, relaxing day in Essaouira. With its Greek-like whitewashed walls and its mixture of Portuguese, French and Berber fortifications, Essaouira has a completely different flavour to Marrakesh, and other destinations in inland Morocco. Essaouira is a handicraft centre, particularly for artisans working with sandal, cedar and lemon wood. You can take a relaxing walk along the Atlantic coastline. Fishing is also one of the main industries of the town and the fresh catch is a specialty of the restaurants and the inexpensive harbour side fish markets are a must for lunch. The shopping is great and so is the beach with numerous water sports on offer. Accommodation: Essaouira Riad Mimouna

Meals:  B,L,D

Today, at your leisure you are free to explore Essaouira and do some last minute shopping. Accommodation: Essaouira Riad Mimouna

Meals:  B,L,D

Following breakfast, you have the morning at leisure. After lunch we drive 3 hours to Marrakesh airport. At this point your guide will farewell your group as you board the 17:55 flight that arrives in Casablanca at 18:45. Catch the hotel shuttle bus to RELAX Hotel, and have an early night in preparation for the early morning flight tomorrow. Accommodation: Relax Hotel (airport)

Meals:  B,L

After an early breakfast take the hotel shuttle bus to the airport to board the Etihad flight at 09:55 and arriving in Abu Dhabi at 20:25. At 21:50 we board the homeward bound flight to Sydney.

Meals:  B

Our flight arrives in Sydney at 17:55, where our Morocco adventure comes to an end.

Meals:  Nil

What's Included

  • 13 breakfasts, 13 lunches and 13 dinners
  • Airport transfers
  • 5 nights in traditional riads on a twin share basis ( the same standard as http://www.riad-aljazira.com )
  • 8 nights in comfortable hotels on a twin share basis ( the same standard as http://rembrandthotel.ma )
  • English speaking tour leader
  • Local guides in Tangier, Volubilis, Fes, Marrakech and Essaouira
  • All entry fees and activities as per itinerary including camel ride and camelhandlers to/from nomad camp
  • Air-conditioned private mini-bus and driver
  • Return economy international flights including airport taxes
  • Internal flight from Merrakech to Casablanca

What's Not Included

  • Items of a personal nature such as phone calls, laundry, etc.
  • Tips for porters and restaurant/hotel staff, local city guides, drivers, camel handlers or tour leader
  • Drinks at restaurants and hotels
  • VISA
  • Travel insurance

Reviews

Most memorable part: The whole adventure. It was brilliant from go to whoa!!! Too much to put into words.

R. Stokes, NSW, Australia


Most memorable part: Morocco and everything it has to offer plus our WE crew - driver, assistant driver, tour guide. Lhoucine was an outstanding leader. He got to know the group very quickly and how we liked to travel plus he was the consummate professional.

D. Outram, QLD, Australia


King’s Bruton has enjoyed an excellent partnership with World Expeditions for many years. As part of our popular Gap Year Programme we rely exclusively on WE for the management of our fund raising expeditions each year. We have experienced nothing but professionalism, dependability and commitment to our ethos. At the locations of our expeditions we have found the local ground agents to be highly reliable and well respected in their communities. World Expeditions have delivered first rate experiences for our teams in North Africa and we look forward to many more years of effective partnership.

Kings Bruton College, Bruton, UK

Upcoming Travel Dates

 

AT A GLANCE

Duration:17 Days
Countries:Morocco
Activities:Adventure Touring
Grade:Adventure Touring  Click for more information
Trip Code:SOG4747