Tour of 12 Days from Casablanca

Day 1: coming to Casablanca city

Our professional driver will pick you up from the airport/ train station/ bus station at an already appointed time. After checking-in our Hotel, we will proceed our journey to discover the industrial and economic capital or Morocco. Casablanca is the biggest city in the Kingdom. Our visits include The Hassan II Mosque. Opened in 1993, the Hassan II mosque is biggest mosque in Morocco and the second after Mecca. It is a true symbol of spirituality in Morocco and its traditional artisanship. Built on the ocean, it features a mighty retractable roof to let in sunlight and the sea breeze. This is one of the few mosques in Morocco where tourists are allowed to enter. A certified tourist guide will guide our visit to the mosque. Our next stop is Downtown Casablanca. It is designed and developed during the French Protectorate. It features many historic French avant-garde buildings. We will navigate in its busy wide streets and arrive at the monumental Arab League Park, Mohamed V Square, and the United Nations Palace. Our recommended lunch place is Rick’s Café and Restaurant. We may also stop for dinner or a drink in this vibrant Café. It also encloses a bar made famous by the characters Humphrey Bogart and Ingrid Bergman in the classic film Casablanca. Our journey finishes when our professional driver drops us in our Hotel for overnight.

Day 2: From Casablanca to Rabat

Early in the morning after breakfast, we will drive to It is a sprawling modern city. Upon our arrival in Rabat, our car will be easier to drive in this city’s wide and modern streets to make the most of our time. Depending on how early we start, we can spend more time visiting certain sights than others. Our time journey will begin with a visit to the Hassan Tower and Mausoleum of Mohamed V. A veritable complex of Moroccan royalty and history. They will give us a glimpse of Morocco’s past and bright future. In 1199, the Almowahad king Jacob al-Mansour constructed the Hassan Mosque. After a massive earthquake the Hassan Tower and its 200 persist. Now a UNESCO World Heritage site, the site is a symbol of royalty and power in Morocco for over 800 years. Our next site is the ornately decorated Mausoleum of Mohamed V. He is the grandfather of the present king and the founder of modern Morocco. We will drive to the Oudaya Kasbah. This fortified neighbourhood has sat perched over the crashing waves of the Atlantic Ocean and the invading canons coming from the Iberian Peninsula since its completion in 1269. Its maze-like small streets and ancient stone houses gives an atmosphere of the Mediterranean. The picturesque doors, views over the Atlantic Ocean and the sky-blue houses entrances the Oudaya Kasbah in a Mediterranean psychedelic vibe lost in the Atlantic shore. Its UNESCO status as a world heritage is not merely merited by its rich history, but also by its calm beauty. Lunch will be in a local restaurant with a menu stuffed with varieties from all over the world. Our next stop will be in Challah. It is an ancient Roman port city and a Moorish outpost witnessing the glorious days of both Empires. Later it became a fortified necropolis enclosing corsairs from all over the world. It was a fortified centre for a strong rebel navy once invaded Iceland for two years. Challah is now a destination for all those fascinated by the history of human kind in this region. Its winding, ruins, streets, unkempt assembly of houses, and gardens makes it a strong attraction for families of white storks. We will give the Royal Palace an opportunity to fascinate us with its luxurious vibes taking us into its mesmerising corridors. Leaving the Royal Palace, we will proceed to discover Rabat’s new town where Morocco meets the modern world. Once built by French architects during the protectorate (1912-1956), Rabat’s new town features many remarkable sights. A sleek brand-new tram system connects all of them. Rabat encloses the Central Bank of Morocco, the Postal Museum, and the Saint Peter Cathedral. Rabat’s old city lays not far from these sites. It was built over centuries on top of a Roman settlement. Its streets are the straightest and most orderly of any old city in Morocco. We will enjoy exploring the vibrant markets and the stately Street of Consuls. For flexibility purposes, we have the option of uncovering the mystical vibes of these sites with a local guide or by our own. Our time travel comes to an end when we check-in our cosy hotel for an overnight and dinner.

Day 3: From Rabat to Chefchaouen

Today’s day trip will take us up north, deep into the Rif Mountains. It is the meeting point of Earth and the heavens. We will explore the enchanting sky-blue city of Chefchaouen. Our professional driver will pick you up early in the morning from your hotel in Fez at an already appointed time. Our 2.5-3 hour road trip will plunge us into the Rif Mountains towards Chefchaouen. Upon our arrival, we will enjoy a fascinating panoramic view over the city. Nestled in a green mountain valley at 600m above sea level, a local chieftain built it as a hidden outpost. Its name remained a mystery for foreign intruders as it literally means in Tamazight language (Berber) “look at the horns”. Its strategic position on the foot of two horn-like mountains, Megou and Tisouka, helped push back the increasing incursions of European powers into Morocco in the 15th and 16th centuries. After the Reconquista and fall of Islamic rule in Spain, Muslim Andalusian refugees flocked to Chefchaouen to begin new lives on the African continent. Until the middle of the 20th century as Spanish rule of northern Morocco began, Chefchaouen had held a strong reputation for being impossible for non-Muslims to enter. The clean and fresh air of Chefchaouen marks the simple walking in its blue narrow streets a healthy benefit. Its fountains are pouring some of the best quality mineral water in all of North Africa. As it is much calmer and cosier than Fez, it is an escape from the overwhelmingly busy street of Fez’ old Medina. Its most striking feature is its old city’s picturesque sky blue painted walls and streets ornamenting the two horn-like Mountains with beautiful tidy houses. Among the major sights in Chefchaouen are the Kasbah (fortress), and the Ras El Ma River Valley. For flexibility purposes, we can chose to explore the village either with or without a local guide.

Day 4: Chefchaouen to Meknes/Volubilis/Fez

Today is a time travel through the scopes of space. We will discover two UNESCO sights in one day: the eternal Roman city at Volubilis and the Imperial City of Meknes. Early in a blue-skied morning, our professional driver will pick you up from your hotel in Chefchaouen at an appointed time. Then, we will hit the road heading west as a start of our journey to uncover the mystics that surround the history of Morocco. For flexibility purposes, we will have a chance to decide, if we have any preferences, which route we take: the highway, or the scenic route. The latter is highly recommended for its panoramic views of Oulad Shaker reservoir and the surrounding rolling countryside. They are dotted with wheat fields, olive groves, fruit trees, and vineyards. Our first stop will be at the ruined Roman city of Volubilis. French archaeologists began excavating Volubilis in the early 20th century. However, half of the immense city remains beneath centuries of topsoil. We will plunge into the famous wonders of the Basilica, the Triumph Arc, and many other palaces with their exquisite mosaics. We can chose to have the tour of Volubilis either with or without a local guide. Afterward, we will make a quick stop in the adjacent small town of Moulay Idriss Zerhoun. Hovering atop a hill overlooking Volubilis, Moulay Idriss Zerhoun houses the mausoleum of Moulay Idriss I (745-791), the first Muslim king of Morocco. During our stop in Moulay Idriss Zerhoun, we will go to a panoramic viewpoint to get a glimpse on the fascinating natural scenery joint with the centuries old houses. Then, we will hit downtown for lunch. Our last stop will be in the great ancient capital of Morocco: Meknes. Smaller in comparison to the other Moroccan Imperial Cities, Meknes held the status of capital of Morocco for only 55 years during the reign of the famous Sultan Moulay Ismail (1634-1727). This sultan is recorded as one of the few who reigned over Morocco with an iron fist. His capital was the strongest walled city in his time. The walls are more than 1.5m thick to sustain the canons of the rebellious tribes and foreign powers trying to seize power in Morocco. Meknes’s old city offers a trove of sights for curious visitors: Moulay Ismail’s massive stables, the capacious granary, and the cavernous underground prison. Foreign captive corsairs built most of these sites. They were a part of the European raid attacking the sultan navy on the Mediterranean and the Atlantic during the 17th century. We will also visit Moulay Ismail’s mausoleum (one of the only mosques in Morocco open to tourists). The monumental Mansour Gate is also a part of our journey. A Portuguese architect designed it as a price for his freedom. We will also visit the covered food market, and the El Hedim Square. At the end of our drive, we will take the highway back to Fez. We will drop you off at your hotel in the late afternoon/evening.

Day 5: Tour in Fez

After a night in one of the cosy Fez Riads, we will wake up in the morning ready to start a journey in uncovering the mystics that surround this saint city. It is the spiritual and intellectual capital of Morocco. It is the pumping heart of Moroccan civilization. As the biggest urban car-free zone in the world, the UNESCO considers it a world heritage. Its Ancient medina is a massive labyrinth of dusty alleys dating back to the 8th century. The sumptuous houses and palaces that cuddle inside its surrounding walls gives an unforgettable time journey that surpasses space. The hectic markets offers a variety of shopping options that once were carried across the desert from India. The medieval urban maze of its ancient medina offers a strong proof of what humanity can achieve collectively. We will discover the recently restored leather tanneries with is century old techniques of making leather. The Foundouk Nejjarine and wood working museum and the Dar el-Magana water clock are the sites that once made fez an industrial capital during its glory times. The hilltop Merinid Tombs gives a surreal panoramic view over the whole medina. The serene Bou Inania Koranic School and the Qaraouine University, the oldest university in the world, are the major schools that make Fez an intellectual capital alongside the modern Universities in the new city. The Moulay Idriss II Mausoleum is the pumping heart of Moroccan spirituality. As the centre of the Moroccan handicraft industry, Fez is also the perfect place to do some souvenir shopping. Scarves, leather goods, carpets, spices, metal goods, pottery, etc., Fez has it all as it did for over a millennia now. Our time journey finishes when we take the highway to get you back to Meknes before dinnertime. Overnight in our cosy Riad/Hotel.

Day 6: from Fez to Midelt visiting the Middle Atlas.

Our professional driver will pick us up early in the morning from our accommodations in Fez at an already appointed time. Then, we will start our drive towards Midelt in the Middle Atlas region. Our journey will take us through the Sais plateau towards the Middle Atlas. This plateau is a bountiful agricultural field full of olive grove, wheat fields, and fruit trees feeding Fez with good quality organic food. As we continue on, we will start to see the foothills of the Middle Atlas Mountains. Our first stop will be in the provincial town of Imouzer. This town is famous for its Apple Festival in September. Many of the inhabitants of Imouzer are of Amazigh (Berber) descent and speak a language different from Arabic as their mother tongue. The area around Imouzer is dotted with lakes. They are formed during a period of intense volcanic activity in the distant past. Stopping at one of these lakes, Dayet Aoua, we will have the opportunity to go for a quick horse or donkey ride on the lakeshore. Climbing higher up and passing through oak forests, the next stop on our drive will be in the famed ‘Switzerland of Morocco’, the town of Ifrane. Thanks to its alpine climate, at 1,665m above sea level, Ifrane cannot escape getting large quantities of snow every winter. As such, the roofs of its buildings are sloped so not to be crushed under the weight of snow, earning Ifrane the cute nickname the ‘Switzerland of Morocco’. French architects designed it in the 1930s as an escape for the French settlers in Morocco from the overwhelming Medinas. During summer, the temperature rises and Moroccan’s flock to Ifrane for its tidy parks, clean air, and beautiful scenery. Ifrane is also famous for the world-renowned Al-Akhawayn University. It attracts the best and brightest students in Morocco and North Africa. We will also make a stop at the Ifrane National Park to appreciate the ancient cedar trees and try to find finding a colony of Barbary apes. Lunch will be in Ifrane in one of its good quality restaurants downtown offering a stuffed menu of local and Western dishes. Driving just a little further, our last stop of the day will be in the town of Azrou. It is the ancient capital of the Amazigh people in the Middle Atlas region. Situated at 1,250m above sea level, Azrou finds itself nestled cosily in the surrounding hills of the Middle Atlas Mountains. It is famous for its cedar forests, butterflies, and Barbary apes. The rural vibe of this village makes a perfect opportunity to connect with nature. In Azrou, we will visit the old town with the possibility of also taking a walk in the abundant nature. Our last stop will be in Midelt to spend the night in one of its cosy Hotel overlooking the magnificent Ayachi Mountain.

Day 7: Chefchaouen to Tangier

We will leave Chefchaouen early in the morning at an already appointed time. Then, we will hit the road north towards Tangier. We will have few stops to explore its surrounding sites. Cape Spartel and the Caves of Hercules will be amongst our short stops. Our drive will take us north, over the mountains for a glimpse of the meeting point of the Mediterranean Sea and Atlantic Ocean. We will also drive by the UNESCO’s protected old medina of Tetouan with the possibility of a short visit. Before our arrival in Tangier at noon, we will make a stop at the scenic Cape Spartel. This site overlooks the Mediterranean. On a blue-skied day, we can catch a glimpse of British Gibraltar and the European continent in the distance. Cape Spartel is one of the northernmost points in Africa. It is the point where Hercules separated the two continent with his massive hands. The mystery of the lost continent of Atlantis that sank into the Atlantic Ocean is not far from Cape Spartel. Going down from the Cape, we will visit the majestic Caves of Hercules. Both nature and man carved them over the past centuries. In ancient times, it was thought that Hercules slept in this cave before completing his 11 labour tasks. Our day ends by checking into our hotel in Tangier and have the rest of the day to explore Tangier’s historic old medina. Some of the famous sites we will visit in the old medina are the Kasbah fortress and the American Legation. The latter was one of the first American diplomatic posts overseas. Nowadays, it houses a cultural centre and museum. Overnight and dinner in a cosy hotel in Tangier.

Day 7: from Midelt to Merzouga visiting Rissani.

In a blue-skied morning and after breakfast in Midelt, we will head towards the Erg Chebbi Dunes. The beautiful scenery and the changing climate on the way gives a feeling of transcendence over time and place as if the kingdom is a variegated combination of countries within a country. Once over the Middle Atlas Mountains, the climate will become ever drier. Then, we will enter the picturesque arid of Ziz Valley at the tail end of the adjacent High Atlas Mountains. It serves as a vein to the heart of the Sahara Desert resurrecting palm trees as well as visible and invisible wonderers of the sand sea. We will notice the Taffilalet Oasis standing stout in the face of Sand Storms and persisting the heat of the Sahara. This stunning region is a miraculous manifestation of abundant palm groves, underground rivers, and traditional mud brick architecture. The Taffilalet Oasis was the pumping heart of vast Kingdoms stretching all the way to Libya, the Iberian Peninsula and south to Senegal. It is also the current dynasty’s origin. Our first stop will be in the Moulay Ali Sherif Mausoleum, the founder the current Alaouit dynasty. Lunch will be Rissani getting a local royal dish of Stuffed bread with meet, almonds, carrots, and other local stuffing the natives use as a welcoming dish for visitors and during ceremonies. After lunch, we will walk in its uncovered market witnessing hooded men and women bargaining and trading as they were doing for centuries ago. By late afternoon, we will arrive at our day’s destination: the Erg Chebbi Dunes. Upon our arrival to the shores of the sand sea, a blue camel-man will guide us to his camel friends’ caravan. Atop the friendly camels, we will dive deep into the sand dune to grasp the picturesque sunset in the Sahara. This natural show displays one of the most beautiful artworks of Mother Nature: a shadow of light pink and orange shadowing the blue desert sky combining the reflection of the golden sun along with all these colours. Upon our arrival to our Nomad Camp fire, we will be stunned by the meditative mythical music of the nomads. We will join our Nomad hosts in their dinner. Overnight in the cosy goat-wool tent or under the Milky Way and the Poles Stars.

Day 8: Tour in Merzouga

This morning will give us the first chance to appreciate the glowing sunrise in the Sahara Desert. After a local nomad breakfast containing Moroccan pancakes, mint tea, orange juice, olives, olive oil and other healthy breakfast food, we will be able to spend our day exploring the desert surrounding Merzouga as we like. We can also arrange multiple activities including a visit to the historical towns and palm groves around the Taffilalet Oasis (Rissani, Merzouga, and Erfoud). On the other hand, we can take a 4×4 excursion into the desert to explore black volcanic rock formations and fossils, visit a nomadic family living in a tent, ride quad-bikes around the sand dunes. For better understanding of the myths of the desert creations, we can visit Khamlia village to surrender to the meditative Gnawa music. Alternatively, we can simply relax around the desert tents. In the late afternoon, once the day’s heat has subsided, our camel man will carry us to our Nomad camp in the heart of the sand dunes away from the worries of the world. Here our Berber hosts will cook us traditional nomad meals while in a family like vibe. They will also explain some of the secrets behind the power they hold in standing stout in the face of the harsh weather of the Sahara. Overnight in the cosy goat-wool tent or under the Milky Way and the Poles Stars.

Day 9: Merzouga to Ouarzazate via Todra Gorge

A nomad myth says that Mother Nature gave birth to two twins and named them Sunrise and Sunset. Our camel-man have a better knowledge of the timing of the Sunrise. He will wake us up to not miss a mesmerising show of Nature. After breakfast, he will carry us atop his camel friends back to our hotel in Merzouga following invisible pathways in the desert. We will have time to shower and refresh ourselves in a hotel before we begin our journey towards Ouarzazate. The road will be a panoramic show of beautiful desert landscapes and traditional mud brick towns with mosque minarets supervising them in a father-like posture. We will have a break in Tinrghir, an ancient Berber (Amazigh) town built of traditional mud brick architecture. Then, we will turn off the main road to make a stop in the amazing Todra Gorges. The 300m high cliffs attracts climbers from around the world to fight gravity and fear as they scale vertically. Our journey will take us on foot to have a better sight on this fascinating area. Driving a little further on, we will arrive at the Dades Valley. It is a region famous for its sprawling palm groves growing over an underground river. Along our way, we will visit the famous little town of Kalaat M’gouna. This village is famous by its high quality rose water and a traditional Rose Festival in May where a local jury elects a beauty queen. Our last stop will be in Skoura oasis, another mud brick town in heart of 25km² of lush palm groves. We will finish this exciting day in Ouarzazate. We will have dinner and spend the night in a beautiful hotel overlooking the sand castles of the Skoura valley.

Day 10: Ouarzazate to Marrakech

After breakfast and before heading north to Marrakesh, we will start our day exploring the sights in Ouarzazate. This city is clean, quiet, and sunny. It is the administrative capital and the biggest city of a province well known for its Kasbahs. The same ones that might have inspired Jimmy Hendrix during his visit to Morocco in 1965 to write his famous song “Castel made of Sand”. The etymology of the word ‘Ouarzazate’ comes from the Berber expression meaning ‘without noise’. As part of its effort to join the human struggle against climate change, the province of Ouarzazate had settled the world largest solar power plant. In a collaboration with many other entities and organizations such as the NASA, its value is estimated at around $9 billion. These solar plants will provide 75% of the Moroccan national needs of energy. Our journey today will start in the old town of Taourirt with its large ancient Kasbah. Its noble founders have moved out, leaving its many towers to families of White storks. The next stop will be in Morocco’s largest movie studios. Over the years, thanks to their prime desert location, these studios have helped turn out classic film like Lawrence of Arabia (1962), The Mummy (1999), Gladiator (2000). Recently, certain episodes of Game of Thrones were filmed here. Leaving Ouarzazate, we will turn off the main road to visit the UNESCO world heritage site of Ait Benhaddou. An ideal model of the many sand castle villages and Kasbah’s that dot the south of Morocco. The ancient town of Ait Benhaddou enchants its thousands visitors with its curious towers. They stand stout in face of surrounding desert resisting its harsh weather forging a place in Morocco’s history. During the 20th century, this Kasbah was the stronghold of Ethami Glaoui as one of the most powerful men in Moroccan History. His fame was worldwide inviting V.I.P.s from all over the world to attend his affluent ceremonies. George Orwell paid him a visit in one of these Kasbah as well as in Marrakesh. Towns like Ouarzazate and Ait Benhaddou played an important role in Morocco’s past as key stops on the lucrative sub-Saharan trade routes. They were a safe stopover as well as a link over the vast deserts and mountain ranges for commercial caravan coming from Timbuktu to the heart of Morocco: Marrakesh. Lunch will be at one of the numerous restaurants that overlook the picturesque town. Then we will proceed our drive to Marrakesh. We will notice the atmosphere’s change as we climb higher into the High Atlas Mountains. We leave the arid desert plains and hills to forests, mountain streams, and maybe snow-capped mountains. We will follow the road to the very top of these mountains. Then, we will stop at the Tizi Ntichka pass before heading down the other side. First constructed by the French in 1936, but remodelled and modernized many times since, the Tizi Ntichka pass is a true feat of civil engineering. Once over the mountains, it will be a straight shot to the ochre mysterious city: Marrakesh. Our professional driver will drop us off at our accommodation.

Day 11: Tour of Marrakesh

Today’s tour will expose the mystics of Marrakesh. Early in the morning after breakfast, we will start our whole day exploration of the legendary red City of Marrakesh. We will visit the old Medina. Comparing to Fez, it is smaller; yet not less vibrant. This old medina is a real escape from the fancy modern hotels, clubs, and restaurants that gild its new town. It main sites are the Mullah (Jewish neighbourhood), the ornate 19th century Bahia Palace, and the crumbling 16th century Badi Palace. The Koutoubia Mosque and the world famous Jemma el-Fna are a part of our visit to this mystical city. They are UNESCO wold heritage sites. The square of Jemma el-Fna is a space where time has truly stopped for centuries ago. Its mesmerising experience take us transcendentally with its fabled snake charmers, monkey tamers, acrobats, musicians, orange juice sellers, and story tellers. Our excursion also includes The Majorelle Gardens. Marrakesh hosted three environmental summits; more than any other city in the World. Even the environment treaty is named and signed in Marrakesh. This fact made the province of Marrakesh pay more attention to the municipal gardens of the city, keeping them green and glowing. Our excursion into Marrakesh’s new town will give us a chance to visit the lush Majorelle Gardens. The French artist Jacques Majorelle designs them in the 1920s and 1930s. Now, they feature a striking array of cactus species from all over the world in Art Deco inspired grounds. Famous for its iconic blue walls, the Majorelle Gardens also house an excellent museum devoted to Berber culture and history. Our tour finishes by checking-in our Riad/Hotel for Overnight and Dinner.

Day 12: from Marrakech to your departure point (Marrakech, CasaBlanca or Marrakech)

On the last day of our exciting tour in Morocco, we will meet our professional driver at an already appointed time. He will drive you to your accommodation/ Airport anywhere in Rabat, Casablanca, or Marrakesh.

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