Highlights of Morocco from Casablanca

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Learn about Moroccan culture and art on this 11-day expedition and marvel at the diverse landscapes that fill this incredible country. Visit the imperial cities of Marrakech, Casablanca, Rabat, Fesand Meknes, and contemplate the Atlas Mountains, the Sahara Desert and both the Atlantic and Mediterranean waters.
ItineraryDay 1: ARRIVAL CASABLANCAPass By: Casablanca Mohammed V International AirportOnce you have landed and collected your luggage, meet your driver/agent in the arrivals hall – he will be holding a board with your name on it. Then comes the transfer to your hotel, where you will check in before enjoying dinner and spending your first night in the city of Casablanca.Overnight in Casablanca. Meals included: • DinnerAccommodation included: Standard Hotel Category = Le Zenith or similar 4*Superior Hotel Category = Farah or similar 5*Day 2: CASABLANCAPass By: Le Zenith Hotel & Spa Casablanca MarocAfter breakfast at the hotel, go out and spend the morning exploring this fascinating city at leisure before joining the tour for an optional lunch. After lunch, discover the economic capital of Morocco with a guided panoramic tour that takes you to see the central market, the charming Habous district, the Royal Palace, Mohamed V Square, the residential area of Anfa, and the exterior of the majestic Hassan II mosque, which stands imposingly by the sea and the Corniche, Casablanca’s coastal walkway.Overnight in CasablancaMeals included: • Breakfast • DinnerAccommodation included: Standard Hotel Category = Le Zenith or similar 4*Superior Hotel Category = Farah or similar 5*Day 3: CASABLANCA – RABAT – TANGIER (340km – 3.5 hrs)Pass By: Atlas Rif & SpaTake to the road after breakfast at the hotel and follow the Atlantic coastline northwards until reaching the capital city of Rabat. Enjoy a guided panoramic tour of the city and contemplate its Royal Palace, the Mausoleum of Mohammed V and the Hassan Tower before wandering through the Casbah of the Oudayas to lose yourself in the beauty of its famous gardens. Make a stop for an optional lunch before driving along the breath-taking coastal road to Tangier. Along the way, pass by the Caves of Hercules and Cape Spartel, where legend has it that Hercules separated Africa from Europe. This is the point where the waters of the Mediterranean and the Atlantic mix and mingle. Once in Tangier, check in at the hotel before dinner.Overnight in Tangier Meals included: • Breakfast • DinnerAccommodation included: Standard Hotel Category = Atlas Rif & Spa or similar 4*Superior Hotel Category = Royal Tulip City Center or similar 5*Day 4: TANGIER – CHEFCHAOUEN – FÈS(399km – 4.5 hrs)Pass By: Zalagh Hotels Et ResortsBreakfast at the hotel is followed by an outing to the medina to discover the birthplace of Ibn Battuta, a famous 14th century traveller and writer. Then visit the old town and see the Grand and Petit Socco (squares), the Grand Mosque, the souk, the former palace of the Sultan Moulay Ismail (exterior) and the Mendoubia Gardens. Then it’s time to hop into the coach and continue to Chefchaouen. Visit the mesmerising medina and winding alleys of this charming blue and white village, reminiscent of the small Andalusian villages of southern Spain. Chefchaouen is part of the territory protected by UNESCO’s Intercontinental Biosphere Reserve of the Mediterranean, so take advantage and admire the surroundings. Continue the visit to Ras el Maa, the water source that supplies Chaouen with drinking water, and then check out the wash houses where locals hand-wash their laundry. Continue afterwards towards the hilltop Bouzaafer Mosque. End your day with a trip to Fes, where you’ll check in at your hotel for dinner.Overnight in Fes.Meals included: • Breakfast • DinnerAccommodation included: Standard Hotel Category = Zalagh or similar 4*Superior Hotel Category = Ramada or similar 5*Day 5: FES - MEKNES – VOLUBILIS – FÈS (140km – 2.5 hrs)Pass By: Zalagh Hotels Et ResortsDiscover Meknes’ imperial heritage after breakfast at the hotel in Fes. Such was the grandeur of the city erected by Moulay Ismail, that Meknes became known as the ‘city of a hundred minarets’ and is today a UNESCO-listed World Heritage Site. See the imposing city walls and the beautifully decorated gates of Bab Mansour and Bab El-Khemis; the vast El-Hedim Square, the granaries of Moulay Ismail and much more. After an optional lunch in Meknes, take to the road and drive northwards to the hilltop holy village of Moulay Idriss Zerhoun, which is named after a great-grandson of the prophet Mohammed credited with bringing Islam to Morocco. The village is also home to Morocco’s only cylindrical minaret. Continue to the ruins of the ancient city of Volubilis; originally built by the Phoenicians, the city came into its own during the Roman Empire and the well-preserved Arch of Caracalla still stands. The remnants of a temple and basilica are also still visible, as are many magnificent mosaics that hint at the wealth and opulence of Volubilis in its heyday. The final leg takes you back to Fes for check in and dinner at the hotel.Overnight in FèsMeals included: • Breakfast • DinnerAccommodation included: Standard Hotel Category = Zalagh or similar 4*Superior Hotel Category = Ramada or similar 5*Day 6: FÈSPass By: Zalagh Hotels Et ResortsBreakfast at the hotel is followed by a day exploring the fascinating city of Fes. Boasting more than 12 centuries of history, as well as a medina that is a UNESCO-listed World Heritage Site and the oldest university on the planet, Fes is a multifarious city renowned for the splendour of its faded glory. The medina, Fes el Bali, is a vast network of winding alleys hemmed in by ancient walls. Despite being car-free, the bustle, noise, shouting, and the smells of tanned leather, oriental perfumes, barbecues and sweet pastries create a sense of movement and vibrancy that draws you deep into its soul. Head to the Nejjarrine fountain and smell the cedar from the carpenters’ district. The alleys are lined with places of study or prayer such as madrasahs or the magnificent mausoleum of Moulay Idriss Zaouia, the most important saint’s shrine in Morocco. After lunch in the medina (optional), continue through the rustic narrow streets of the Mellah, the former Jewish district, and head to the outskirts to see the Royal Palace and enjoy the extraordinary panoramic view of the whole city offered by the fortifications of the north. Return to the hotel for dinner.Overnight in Fès.Meals included: • Breakfast • DinnerAccommodation included: Standard Hotel Category = Zalagh or similar 4*Superior Hotel Category = Ramada or similar 5*Day 7: FÈS – MIDELT – ERFOUD (450km – 6 hrs)Pass By: Palms Hotel Club HôtelDepart after breakfast at the hotel and climb from the 400 metres above sea level of Fes into the Middle Atlas, with altitudes of more than 2,000 metres. Admire the contrasting landscapes of imposing massifs – solid masses with unusual rock formations – and hills covered in dense cedar forests. The route passes along Ifrane, a picturesque ski resort at 1,650 metres, famed for its European-style country cottages with sloped roofs. Pause for lunch (optional) in Midelt, a former French colonial outpost, and take to the road in the afternoon, passing through the market town of Er-Rich and Tizi N'Talghomt until finally reaching Erfoud. Here you’ll check in and have dinner at the hotel or choose from a number of optional experiences to enjoy, including experiencing a special nomadic life and spending the night under a tent in the desert, or an excursion of the Merzouga Dunes, a great place from which to snap picks of the sunrise and sunset from the top of the dunes (optional tours not included).Overnight in ErfoudMeals included: • Breakfast • DinnerAccommodation included: Standard Hotel Category = Palm's Club or similar 4*Superior Hotel Category = Palais du Désert or similar 5*Day 8: ERFOUD – TINEGHIR – OUARZAZATE (340km – 5.5 hrs)Pass By: Hotel - Kenzi AzghorEnjoy breakfast at the hotel before departing from Erfoud and going on a scenic journey to Tineghir and the dramatic Todra Gorge. Alternatively, there’s an optional pre-dawn excursion to the dunes of Merzouga to experience sunrise over the first big hills of the Sahara (not included, to be paid to guide). En route, pass through the oasis of El Jorf, where a large palm grove stands in contrast to the colours of the town’s adobe homes and the sands of the desert, and the market town of Tinejdad, before arriving in Tineghir. Continue to the Todra Gorge, a 15-minute drive away from the town. A small stream still flows through this spectacular canyon, at times only 10 metres wide, and which has steep walls as high as 160 metres. There’s an optional lunch stop in Tineghir before departing for Ouarzazate via the Dade’s Valley, also known as the ‘valley of one thousand casbahs’. Stop at the fortified village of Kelaat M'Gouna, a fragrant oasis in the heart of the ‘valley of the roses’ before arriving at today’s final destination: Ouarzazate.Overnight in Ouarzazate.Meals included: • Breakfast • DinnerAccommodation included: Standard Hotel Category = Kenzi Azghor or similar 4*Superior Hotel Category = Berbére Palace or Similar 5*Day 9: OUARZAZATE – AIT BEN HADDOU – MARRAKECH (205km – 4 hrs)Pass By: بلو سي لو برينتومبAfter breakfast, visit the Taourirt kasbah, which was one of the bastions of T'hami El Glaoui, the powerful lord of the Atlas during the final decades of French colonial rule. Time permitting, also visit the Tifoultoute casbah some 10 kilometres away from the town. Head then to Ait Ben Haddou, home to one of the world’s most famous casbahs, and a site that has been used as a location for dozens of films. For centuries, this oasis on the banks of the River Oued Ounila was a key hub on the trans-Saharan trade route and that legacy is writ large on the weather-beaten walls of the casbah, which is crowned by the ruins of a fortified granary. Wander through this beguiling UNESCO-listed World Heritage Site before enjoying an optional lunch in front of the casbah – a magical experience that will linger long in the memory. Continue to Marrakech for check-in and dinner at the hotel.Overnight in Marrakech.Meals included: • Breakfast • DinnerAccommodation included: Standard Hotel Category = Le Printemps or similar 4*Superior Hotel Category = Atlas Medina & Spa or similar 5*Day 10: MARRAKECHPass By: بلو سي لو برينتومبDiscover Marrakech after a delightful breakfast at the hotel. The historical visit of the city is a journey marked by the various stages of its construction: the famous Koutoubia Mosque, everlasting proof of Hispano-Moresque art, with a 70-metre-high minaret, the Bahia Palace and its garden lined with orange trees, cypress, jasmine, splendours of cedar tree domes and the marble columns in the Saadian Tombs. Fill up on lunch at the hotel and spend the afternoon free at leisure, enjoying the beauty of Marrakech, or pick an optional excursion like Traditional Hammam: an invitation to experience the traditional ritual of the Moroccan Hammam (hydration of the skin, body scrubbing, herb masks…), relax and enjoy a mint tea and a 30-minute massage with oil. Another option is to enjoy a cooking lesson in a Riad, one of the oldest houses of Marrakech, where you’ll learn how to prepare three traditional recipes. In the evening, perhaps enjoy a typical dinner show in an old palace located in the Medina of Marrakech (optional for half-board basis).Overnight in MarrakechMeals included: • Breakfast • LunchAccommodation included: Standard Hotel Category = Le Printemps or similar 4*Superior Hotel Category = Atlas Medina & Spa or similar 5*Day 11: MARRAKECH - CASABLANCAPass By: Casablanca Mohammed V International AirportCheck out after one last breakfast at the hotel before hopping onto your transfer to Casablanca airport at whichever time suits you best to catch your scheduled flight.Breakfast included.Meals included: • BreakfastNo accommodation included on this day.

What’s included

  • 10x Breakfast
  • 9x Dinner
  • 1x Lunch
  • Accommodation included: 10 nights
  • TOUR GUIDE. Operated with Bilingual: English-French or Dutch-speaking guide during the whole tour
  • Air-conditioned bus during the tour
  • Private Transfers from airport to hotel and vice versa.
  • Admission to all museums and monuments mentioned in the itinerary:
  • - Panoramic tour of Casablanca with visit exterior of Mosquee Hassan II & the corniche of Casablanca
  • - Panoramic tour of Rabat & visit the Kasbah of the Oudayas
  • - Panoramic tour of Tanger, Caves of Hercules and Cape Spartel
  • - Panoramic tour of Meknès: visit of the granaries of Moulay Ismail, Visit of Volubilis
  • - Fes: Fès el Bali, Nejjarine Fountain, Mausoleum of Moulay Idriss Zaouia, the Mellah
  • - Fes: exterior of Royal Palace, panoramic view the fortifications of the north
  • - Ouarzazate: visit of Kasbah Taourirt, Kasbah Tifoultout (time-permitting); Ait Ben Haddou
  • - Marrakech, Jmaa el Fnaa square, visit to Moroccan herbalist, Koutoubia mosque exterior,
  • - Bahia Palace, Heritage Museum.
  • Tips in hotels and restaurant
  • Meet & Greet on day 1.

What’s not included

  • Visas and international flights, and airport taxes (clients pay directly)
  • Driver/guide tips
  • Personal travel, baggage and medical insurance
  • Telephone bill, laundry and any items of a personal nature such as drinks

Itinerary

Day 10: MARRAKECH Pass By: بلو سي لو برينتومب Discover Marrakech after a delightful breakfast at the hotel. The historical visit of the city is a journey marked by the various stages of its construction: the famous Koutoubia Mosque, everlasting proof of Hispano-Moresque art, with a 70-metre-high minaret, the Bahia Palace and its garden lined with orange trees, cypress, jasmine, splendours of cedar tree domes and the marble columns in the Saadian Tombs. Fill up on lunch at the hotel and spend the afternoon free at leisure, enjoying the beauty of Marrakech, or pick an optional excursion like Traditional Hammam: an invitation to experience the traditional ritual of the Moroccan Hammam (hydration of the skin, body scrubbing, herb masks…), relax and enjoy a mint tea and a 30-minute massage with oil. Another option is to enjoy a cooking lesson in a Riad, one of the oldest houses of Marrakech, where you’ll learn how to prepare three traditional recipes. In the evening, perhaps enjoy a typical dinner show in an old palace located in the Medina of Marrakech (optional for half-board basis). Overnight in Marrakech Meals included: • Breakfast • Lunch Accommodation included: Standard Hotel Category = Le Printemps or similar 4* Superior Hotel Category = Atlas Medina & Spa or similar 5*
Day 11: MARRAKECH - CASABLANCA Pass By: Casablanca Mohammed V International Airport Check out after one last breakfast at the hotel before hopping onto your transfer to Casablanca airport at whichever time suits you best to catch your scheduled flight. Breakfast included. Meals included: • Breakfast No accommodation included on this day.
Day 1: ARRIVAL CASABLANCA Pass By: Casablanca Mohammed V International Airport Once you have landed and collected your luggage, meet your driver/agent in the arrivals hall – he will be holding a board with your name on it. Then comes the transfer to your hotel, where you will check in before enjoying dinner and spending your first night in the city of Casablanca. Overnight in Casablanca. Meals included: • Dinner Accommodation included: Standard Hotel Category = Le Zenith or similar 4* Superior Hotel Category = Farah or similar 5*
Day 2: CASABLANCA Pass By: Le Zenith Hotel & Spa Casablanca Maroc After breakfast at the hotel, go out and spend the morning exploring this fascinating city at leisure before joining the tour for an optional lunch. After lunch, discover the economic capital of Morocco with a guided panoramic tour that takes you to see the central market, the charming Habous district, the Royal Palace, Mohamed V Square, the residential area of Anfa, and the exterior of the majestic Hassan II mosque, which stands imposingly by the sea and the Corniche, Casablanca’s coastal walkway. Overnight in Casablanca Meals included: • Breakfast • Dinner Accommodation included: Standard Hotel Category = Le Zenith or similar 4* Superior Hotel Category = Farah or similar 5*
Day 3: CASABLANCA – RABAT – TANGIER (340km – 3.5 hrs) Pass By: Atlas Rif & Spa Take to the road after breakfast at the hotel and follow the Atlantic coastline northwards until reaching the capital city of Rabat. Enjoy a guided panoramic tour of the city and contemplate its Royal Palace, the Mausoleum of Mohammed V and the Hassan Tower before wandering through the Casbah of the Oudayas to lose yourself in the beauty of its famous gardens. Make a stop for an optional lunch before driving along the breath-taking coastal road to Tangier. Along the way, pass by the Caves of Hercules and Cape Spartel, where legend has it that Hercules separated Africa from Europe. This is the point where the waters of the Mediterranean and the Atlantic mix and mingle. Once in Tangier, check in at the hotel before dinner. Overnight in Tangier Meals included: • Breakfast • Dinner Accommodation included: Standard Hotel Category = Atlas Rif & Spa or similar 4* Superior Hotel Category = Royal Tulip City Center or similar 5*
Day 4: TANGIER – CHEFCHAOUEN – FÈS(399km – 4.5 hrs) Pass By: Zalagh Hotels Et Resorts Breakfast at the hotel is followed by an outing to the medina to discover the birthplace of Ibn Battuta, a famous 14th century traveller and writer. Then visit the old town and see the Grand and Petit Socco (squares), the Grand Mosque, the souk, the former palace of the Sultan Moulay Ismail (exterior) and the Mendoubia Gardens. Then it’s time to hop into the coach and continue to Chefchaouen. Visit the mesmerising medina and winding alleys of this charming blue and white village, reminiscent of the small Andalusian villages of southern Spain. Chefchaouen is part of the territory protected by UNESCO’s Intercontinental Biosphere Reserve of the Mediterranean, so take advantage and admire the surroundings. Continue the visit to Ras el Maa, the water source that supplies Chaouen with drinking water, and then check out the wash houses where locals hand-wash their laundry. Continue afterwards towards the hilltop Bouzaafer Mosque. End your day with a trip to Fes, where you’ll check in at your hotel for dinner. Overnight in Fes. Meals included: • Breakfast • Dinner Accommodation included: Standard Hotel Category = Zalagh or similar 4* Superior Hotel Category = Ramada or similar 5*
Day 5: FES - MEKNES – VOLUBILIS – FÈS (140km – 2.5 hrs) Pass By: Zalagh Hotels Et Resorts Discover Meknes’ imperial heritage after breakfast at the hotel in Fes. Such was the grandeur of the city erected by Moulay Ismail, that Meknes became known as the ‘city of a hundred minarets’ and is today a UNESCO-listed World Heritage Site. See the imposing city walls and the beautifully decorated gates of Bab Mansour and Bab El-Khemis; the vast El-Hedim Square, the granaries of Moulay Ismail and much more. After an optional lunch in Meknes, take to the road and drive northwards to the hilltop holy village of Moulay Idriss Zerhoun, which is named after a great-grandson of the prophet Mohammed credited with bringing Islam to Morocco. The village is also home to Morocco’s only cylindrical minaret. Continue to the ruins of the ancient city of Volubilis; originally built by the Phoenicians, the city came into its own during the Roman Empire and the well-preserved Arch of Caracalla still stands. The remnants of a temple and basilica are also still visible, as are many magnificent mosaics that hint at the wealth and opulence of Volubilis in its heyday. The final leg takes you back to Fes for check in and dinner at the hotel. Overnight in Fès Meals included: • Breakfast • Dinner Accommodation included: Standard Hotel Category = Zalagh or similar 4* Superior Hotel Category = Ramada or similar 5*
Day 6: FÈS Pass By: Zalagh Hotels Et Resorts Breakfast at the hotel is followed by a day exploring the fascinating city of Fes. Boasting more than 12 centuries of history, as well as a medina that is a UNESCO-listed World Heritage Site and the oldest university on the planet, Fes is a multifarious city renowned for the splendour of its faded glory. The medina, Fes el Bali, is a vast network of winding alleys hemmed in by ancient walls. Despite being car-free, the bustle, noise, shouting, and the smells of tanned leather, oriental perfumes, barbecues and sweet pastries create a sense of movement and vibrancy that draws you deep into its soul. Head to the Nejjarrine fountain and smell the cedar from the carpenters’ district. The alleys are lined with places of study or prayer such as madrasahs or the magnificent mausoleum of Moulay Idriss Zaouia, the most important saint’s shrine in Morocco. After lunch in the medina (optional), continue through the rustic narrow streets of the Mellah, the former Jewish district, and head to the outskirts to see the Royal Palace and enjoy the extraordinary panoramic view of the whole city offered by the fortifications of the north. Return to the hotel for dinner. Overnight in Fès. Meals included: • Breakfast • Dinner Accommodation included: Standard Hotel Category = Zalagh or similar 4* Superior Hotel Category = Ramada or similar 5*
Day 7: FÈS – MIDELT – ERFOUD (450km – 6 hrs) Pass By: Palms Hotel Club Hôtel Depart after breakfast at the hotel and climb from the 400 metres above sea level of Fes into the Middle Atlas, with altitudes of more than 2,000 metres. Admire the contrasting landscapes of imposing massifs – solid masses with unusual rock formations – and hills covered in dense cedar forests. The route passes along Ifrane, a picturesque ski resort at 1,650 metres, famed for its European-style country cottages with sloped roofs. Pause for lunch (optional) in Midelt, a former French colonial outpost, and take to the road in the afternoon, passing through the market town of Er-Rich and Tizi N'Talghomt until finally reaching Erfoud. Here you’ll check in and have dinner at the hotel or choose from a number of optional experiences to enjoy, including experiencing a special nomadic life and spending the night under a tent in the desert, or an excursion of the Merzouga Dunes, a great place from which to snap picks of the sunrise and sunset from the top of the dunes (optional tours not included). Overnight in Erfoud Meals included: • Breakfast • Dinner Accommodation included: Standard Hotel Category = Palm's Club or similar 4* Superior Hotel Category = Palais du Désert or similar 5*
Day 8: ERFOUD – TINEGHIR – OUARZAZATE (340km – 5.5 hrs) Pass By: Hotel - Kenzi Azghor Enjoy breakfast at the hotel before departing from Erfoud and going on a scenic journey to Tineghir and the dramatic Todra Gorge. Alternatively, there’s an optional pre-dawn excursion to the dunes of Merzouga to experience sunrise over the first big hills of the Sahara (not included, to be paid to guide). En route, pass through the oasis of El Jorf, where a large palm grove stands in contrast to the colours of the town’s adobe homes and the sands of the desert, and the market town of Tinejdad, before arriving in Tineghir. Continue to the Todra Gorge, a 15-minute drive away from the town. A small stream still flows through this spectacular canyon, at times only 10 metres wide, and which has steep walls as high as 160 metres. There’s an optional lunch stop in Tineghir before departing for Ouarzazate via the Dade’s Valley, also known as the ‘valley of one thousand casbahs’. Stop at the fortified village of Kelaat M'Gouna, a fragrant oasis in the heart of the ‘valley of the roses’ before arriving at today’s final destination: Ouarzazate. Overnight in Ouarzazate. Meals included: • Breakfast • Dinner Accommodation included: Standard Hotel Category = Kenzi Azghor or similar 4* Superior Hotel Category = Berbére Palace or Similar 5*
Day 9: OUARZAZATE – AIT BEN HADDOU – MARRAKECH (205km – 4 hrs) Pass By: بلو سي لو برينتومب After breakfast, visit the Taourirt kasbah, which was one of the bastions of T'hami El Glaoui, the powerful lord of the Atlas during the final decades of French colonial rule. Time permitting, also visit the Tifoultoute casbah some 10 kilometres away from the town. Head then to Ait Ben Haddou, home to one of the world’s most famous casbahs, and a site that has been used as a location for dozens of films. For centuries, this oasis on the banks of the River Oued Ounila was a key hub on the trans-Saharan trade route and that legacy is writ large on the weather-beaten walls of the casbah, which is crowned by the ruins of a fortified granary. Wander through this beguiling UNESCO-listed World Heritage Site before enjoying an optional lunch in front of the casbah – a magical experience that will linger long in the memory. Continue to Marrakech for check-in and dinner at the hotel. Overnight in Marrakech. Meals included: • Breakfast • Dinner Accommodation included: Standard Hotel Category = Le Printemps or similar 4* Superior Hotel Category = Atlas Medina & Spa or similar 5*
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