morocco - 11 days round trip
Experience an unique, authentic culture, Old Imperial Cities & Sahara Desert Safari.
Experience old imperial cities, ancient, Roman ruins, camel trekking and Sahara Desert Camping.
The famous cities of Casablanca and Marrakesh.
The unique Blue City of Chefshaouen.
Day 1: Fly Los Angeles-Casablanca
Day 2: Arrival Casablanca
Day 3: Visit Casablanca
Day 4: Casablanca-Rabat-Chefchaouen
Day 5: Full day Chefchaouen
Day 6: Chefchaouen-Meknes-Fes
Day 7: Visit Fes
Day 8: Fes-Merzouga Sahara Desert
Day 9: Merzouga-Sahara Desert
Day 10: Dades Valley
Day 11: Rose Valley-High Atlas-Marrakech
Day 12: Marrakech Tour
Day 13: Marrakesh-Casablanca
Depending on your arrival time, you may enjoy a visit to the seaside Hassan II mosque; the world's third-largest mosque and has the tallest minaret in the world (210m high). It was designed by a French architect named Michel Pinseau. The mosque accommodates 25,000 worshipers inside and 80,000 in the courtyard and the squares around it. It is one of the fewest mosques that non-Muslims are allowed to enter.
In the evening, you have the option to enjoy dinner at Rick's Cafe which was designed to recreate the bar made famous by Humphrey Bogart and Ingrid Bergman in the classic movie, Casablanca. It is one of the best restaurants in the city. Overnight in your hotel includes bed and breakfast.
Day 2: Travel to Chefchaouen through Rabat and the Riff Mountains
After breakfast in your hotel, we will leave Casablanca and travel to Rabat, the political capital of Morocco, overlooking the Atlantic ocean. Here, you will visit the 12th century Kasbah of Oudayas which occupies the oldest part of the city. It provides wonderful views over the ocean from its cliff-top perch. You will wonder through its calm alleys and whitewashed houses built by refugees from Spain. The main door of the Kasbah is elaborately decorated with a series of carved arches. Inside the Kasbah, there is Mosque al-Atiqa, the oldest mosque in Rabat, built in the 12th century and restored in the 18th century. You will also find a number of Art Galleries, Andalusian Gardens, and a national jewelry museum containing a beautiful collection of Roman and Islamic jewelry found in different regions of Morocco.
Next, you will explore the Hassan Tower, Rabat's most famous landmark. It was built by Sultan Yacoub El-Mansour who died before it was finished. He intended a 60m-tall minaret, but the tower was abandoned at 44 m. Otherwise, it would have been the second largest mosque of its time, after Samarra in Iraq. We will also visit the marble Mausoleum of Mohammed V; built in traditional Moroccan style. Its decoration gives off an air of tranquility.
After a break for lunch in a local restaurant, we will continue our journey crossing through the Riff mountains, enjoying its beautiful landscape and countryside until reaching Chefchaouen, the " Blue Pearl '' of the North. Overnight in your riad includes bed and breakfast.
Day 3: Full Day Exploring Chefchaouen
If you are familiar with Instagram or Printest, then you have seen thousands of pictures of Morocco's famous blue city, Chefchaouen, called also "the Blue Pearl of Morocco"
This beautiful city is unique from other Moroccan cities. It is located in the heart of the Riff mountains - the surrounding landscape is amazing. The city was once occupied by the Spanish Jews and Moors in the 15th century which strongly influenced its architecture; its white washed walls, blue doors and windows are only part of its allure. Load up your cameras because this quiet, relaxed and so ridiculously pretty town creates a tranquil and photographic setting...Overnight in your riad includes bed and breakfast.
Day 4: Driving toward the Medieval city of Fes via the 2000 Years Old Volubilis and the Imperial City of Meknes
After breakfast, we will head towards the ancient Roman ruins of Volubilis. You will spend the morning exploring the 2000-year-old ruins with its beautiful Mosaics dating back to 3rd century BC. Lunch will be taken in Meknes, one of Morocco’s Imperial cities.
After lunch, your guide will take you on a tour around the highlights of Meknes including the magnificent Bab Mansour gate, the grandest of all Moroccan imperial getaways. The gate is well preserved with lavish Zellij and inscriptions across the top. It was completed by Sultan Moulay Ismail (the founder of Meknes) in 1732.
You will then have time to explore the heart of Meknes Medina; Pl el-Hedim, the large square facing Bab El-mansour; Originally used for royal announcements and public executions, it's a great place to set and watch the world go by - kids playing football, hawkers selling miracle cures, and promenading families... Later on, you will leave towards Fes. Overnight in your riad includes bed and breakfast.
Today, we are going to explore Fes, the spiritual capital and the oldest city of Morocco. Our knowledgeable, local guide will show us the best that this medieval city has to offer. Most of our guided tour will be within the Medina with its narrow alleys and traditional markets (souks); our guide will ensure we discover sites with cultural and historical interest such as the famous Al Karaouine Mosque and University, one of Africa's largest mosques and possibly the oldest University in the world, this mosque is the spiritual heart of Fes and Morocco itself. It can take up to 20 000 people at prayer.
Another 14th century landmark of Fes is Medersa Bou Inania, the finest of Fes' theological colleges which was renovated a few years ago, and the results are amazing: elaborate zellij and carved plaster, beautiful lattice screens and massive brass doors.
After lunch in a local restaurant, we will visit the Tanneries; one of the city's most iconic sights and where leather is produced. We then stop at the Royal Palace gate; a stunning example of modern restoration. You will walk through the Jewish quarter “the Mellah” and visit the pottery cooperative... In the afternoon, you will have free time to enjoy medieval Fes and take in its beautiful atmosphere while interacting with the locals. Overnight in your riad includes bed and breakfast.
After breakfast, we will leave Fes and journey South of Morocco towards the majestic Sahara desert. Today, we will enjoy beautiful views of the middle Atlas mountains and its beautiful Berber villages. Our first stop will be at Ifrane town: built in the 1930s by French Colonization. It is tidy and modern, it feels more like Switzerland with its red-roofed houses, blooming flower beds and beautiful parks, all kept impeccably tidy.
We will journey deep through the middle Atlas mountains to Azrou; a Berber town with magnificent views of cedar and pine forests. Here, you will be able to see and hand-feed Barbary Macaque Monkeys living in Cedar Forest, the largest forest in Morocco. Lunch will be taken in a local restaurant in Midelt (the Apple city).
Day 7: Merzouga Dunes Tour, Camel Trekking and Sahara Desert Camping.
Today will be one of the best days of your guided tour of Morocco. We will explore the beauty of Moroccan Sahara desert with its golden sand dunes of Erg Chebbi shape-shifting over 28km from North to South and reaching heights of 160m. Your driver guide will take you around these dunes, passing by old, muddy Berber villages and stopping for panoramic views along the way. You will visit a nomad family living in a tent in the middle of the desert and enjoy a glass of mint tea with them as you listen to your guide talking about their nomadic lifestyle. After that, You will visit the Gnawa people, originally slaves, brought from Sudan and Mali, to experience their spiritual music and lifestyle. Not far away, there is the lake of Merzouga, one of the best areas in Morocco for spotting many desert birds, including Flamingos, Egyptian Nightjars and Desert Warblers.
After lunch in a Berber pizza restaurant, you will head back to your hotel to relax or enjoy a swim before you ride camels and venture into the beautiful Erg Chebbi, enjoying wonderful views of the sunset over the dunes. You will notice how the color of the dunes changes as the afternoon sun descends. Overnight in your Sahara desert camp includes dinner, Berber drums live show, bed and breakfast.
Today, your camel man will wake you up early in the morning to enjoy the beautiful sunrise. You can climb the dunes and find a great spot that will allow you to see wonderful views of the sun rising over the majestic dunes of Erg Chebbi. After breakfast in the camp and the beautiful moments you had in the Sahara desert, we will say goodbye to the dunes and move on with our adventure.
Our adventure today will take us to the Dades Valley. On the way, we will visit the charming city of Rissani, where the Alaouite dynasty was founded - the current ruling royal family in Morocco. You will visit its traditional souk located in the city center that splits into several sectors: dates, vegetables, spices, animals, cloth and craft. Then, we will continue our journey passing by green palmeries and Berber villages to the 984 feet (300 m) deep Todra Gorge. We will have time to explore the gorge and relax in the cool water of the amazing Todra River.
Followed by continuing our journey driving through remote Berber villages until we reached Ouarzazate - “the Hollywood of Africa” with its beautiful landscapes that attracted many world class movie producers. Here, you have the option to visit the Atlas Film Studio; considered to be the largest film studio in the world. Located in an exotic, red desert scenery, it hosted international movies such as the Gladiator, the Mummy and Game of Thrones...
After that, we will drive 15 miles to the UNESCO Heritage Site of Ait Ben Haddou Kasbah which was built during the beginning of the 18th Century by a Berber chieftain, T-hami El Glaoui. Today, Kasbah is a UNESCO world heritage site.
After breakfast, your local guide will meet you in your riad and take you on a private guided tour around the most interesting monuments in Marrakech including the 12th century Koutoubia Mosque. Its 225ft masterpiece minaret dominates the skyline of Marrakech and can be seen from almost every corner of the city.
Marrakech is the home of beautiful palaces such as the 19th century palace of El Bahia with its Andalusian and Moorish architecture. It has a trapezoidal garden, a huge tiled courtyard, Andalusian and Moorish architecture and many hidden antique treasures.
You will also visit the historical Saadian Tombs; built by Saadian Sultan Ahmed el Mansour in the 16th century. It has a beautiful design with soaring domed ceilings, intricate wood carvings, imported marble statuary and colorful tile mosaics.
Next, we will tour the Koranic School, Medersa Ben Youssef; the largest Medersa in North Africa. It is a theological college - once boarding approximately 900 students for religious study. It was built in the 16th century. Its Moroccan architecture, Moorish archeways, rectangular courtyard and colorful mosaics make it one of Marrakech's most picturesque buildings.
After lunch, we will visit the Djemaa El-Fna, Marrakech's main square and open air theater...Snake charmers blast oboes to calm hissing cobras, henna tattoo artists beckon to passersby, musicians play, and so much activity....You are sure to be entertained!
Overnight in your riad includes bed and breakfast.
Departure every Sunday from Los Angeles.
Airlines: Air Canada or Air France.
Guaranteed departure with minimum 2 persons booking together.
Prices based on per person i double occupancy on bed & breakfast.
Not Included in the price:
- Site Entrance Fees. (we don't include them because we like to give our clients the freedom to choose whether they want to explore a site or skip it. We believe that it is not fair to charge you for entrance fees if you do not enter. The average fee per site is $5 to $20. Total fees of all sites is around $50 - 60$ per person.
- Travel Insurance (Atlantis Tours is offering Allianz Travel Protection. We are glad to send you an offer. (Price will vary, depending on home state and age)
Hotel/Riads/Sahara Desert Camping
Daily Breakfast / 3 Dinners
Casablanca, Rabat, Chefchaouen, Fes, Volubilis, Meknes, Merzouga Sahara Desert, Dades Valley,Ouarzazate, High Atlas, Marrakech