15 Days from Casablanca to Marrakech
Day 1 – Casablanca
We will meet you at the airport on your arrival and take you to your local hotel. We’ll have a short orientation meeting and group dinner to get you familiar with your guide and to some of the important tips and notes about travelling in Morocco.
Day 2 – Rabat, Meknes, Moulay Idriss
After breakfast you will make a short stop in Rabat, the political capital of Morocco for a brief tour of the city.
We will then set out for Meknes, a former Imperial City, for a tour of the city highlights which include the medina and a chance to have camel burger lunch as well as the ancient granary and Royal stables.
Finally we will drive to Moulay Idriss, just outside Meknes. The picturesque town sits in a cradle of mountains just 5km from Volubilis, a well preserved site of Roman Ruins.
This is one of the country’s most important pilgrimage sites. It is named for Moulay Idriss, a great-grandson of the Prophet Mohammed, the founder of the country’s first real dynasty in the 8th century. Moulay Idriss’ holy status kept it closed to non-Muslims until the mid-20th century but it is indeed a popular tourist spot today. The town is very relaxed, without the bustle of shops and nightlife.
Dinner will be in the guesthouse, provided by your hosts. (Dinner included).
Day 3 – Moulay Idriss to Chefchaouen
Leaving the tranquil village Moulay Idriss in the morning, you will head first to the ancient Roman ruins at Volubilus, located very nearby. Led by a local expert you will be treated to ruins that date back to the 7th century in a village where it is thought that over 20,000 people once lived.
Following your tour you will get on the road heading to Chefchaouen, the Blue Pearl, a city set in a picturesque mountain setting and famous throughout the world for its blue washed buildings.
Along the way you will see rolling hills, shepherds and nomads and several traditional Berber villages as well as succulent orange groves and an increasingly mountainous terrain.
Chefchaouen will be your stop for two nights as you enjoy some time in this peaceful and beautiful little town.
There is a beautiful pool at the hotel if you would like to swim. This is a traditional mountain town and there is much to be observed in the activities of the local people. The pace in Chefchaouen is calm and relaxed.
This is a wonderful place to learn about Morocco and the culture from your guide and to hike up above the town to a local shrine for photographs.
Day 4 – Chefchaouen
Today is a day at leisure and yours to relax and enjoy this gorgeous town. You can have a day to shop the medina for handicrafts and artisanal goods. Meet some weavers making blankets or stop in a visit artists in their galleries for tea and conversation.
We will schedule some time with a local guide to look around the ancient medina – it’s a nice way to get an understanding of the area and the city.
Enjoy any of the local eateries for lunch and dinner, or relax in your hotel with a good book and watch the day drift by in this beautiful setting. Because we are a small group we can drive to the next town for dinner at a remarkable local establishment that is very well known for their culinary presentation.
Day 5 – Chefchaouen to Fes
Leaving your mountain retreat in the morning you will head towards Fes today. Following a nice lunch you will set out towards Fes, your destination for the day. Get settled in for a 2 night stay in this fascinating city of artisans and commerce.
Day 6 – Fes
Today is a busy of touring Fes. This 1200 year old city has made a huge impact on history as an important and self confident city, where new and old live in perfect harmony.
With a local guide you will be treated first to a panoramic view of the cities sprawling old medina, tucked between rolling hills and the largest urban car free zone in the world. With over 9,000 named streets you will be thankful for your guide as soon as you enter the delicious sense assaulting medina.
Walk through the narrow streets of the souks, past artisans, food stalls, lighting stores, and mosques. Visit the worlds’ oldest continuously operating university, Al Qarawiyyin, founded by a woman in 859.
Tour the cities famous tannery, a UNESCO World Heritage Site, and the Bou Inania Madrassa founded in 1351. Enjoy the sights and sounds. Witness the restorations that are happening all around you with scaffolding rising up to restore old homes and new riads.
Spend the night in Fes.
Day 7 – Fes to Midelt
Today you will leave the city of Fes and the north of Morocco and travel south to the Sahara Desert. You will notice an incredible change in landscape along the way, and by the end of the day, you can reflect on the vast difference between the north of Morocco and the south.
First you will pass Ifrane, the 3rd cleanest city in the world, home of the best university in Morocco, Al Akhawayn, and city known as “the Switzerland of Morocco”.
Through the cedar forest and a national park keep your eyes open for a chance to see Barbary apes (Macaque) and Berber horses. You will pass by beautiful pastures and nomad houses that give way to increasingly high mountain peaks and deep valleys. You will come upon Midelt and its vast collection of fossils for you to explore and enjoy.
Day 8 – Midelt to Sahara Desert
Travelling along the Ziz Valley you will see the Tafilalt Oasis which is the largest palm grove in Morocco before heading into the flatter and stonier planes leading up to the desert. After a stop for tea you will board your camels for a ride into the desert where you will enjoy the evening at a camp with dinner prepared for you by nomads.
Day 9 – Sahara Desert to Todra Gorge
Today you will leave your Sahara camp and travel along a spectacular route called “ The 1000 Kasbahs Valley” where there are literally thousands of kasbahs, some in ruins and some still in use. Heading through Erfoud towards Tinejdad, the landscape is still very dry and you will see mounds of the old irrigation system called “khettaras”.
The Todra Gorge is a trench of gigantic rock walls run through the High Atlas Mountains creating an absolutely magnificent sight. The Gorge is breathtaking and easy to hike by foot with many places to stop for photos along its well-maintained dirt road. Part of the spectacular scenery includes an opportunity to see how the local Berbers live as nomads; as they stroll through the gorges many winding roads. In recent years, the Todra Gorge has attracted a lot of attention from serious climbers. The rock formations vary between 25 to 300 m and there are over 150 routes to explore.
Day 10 – Todra Gorge to Ait Ben Haddou Kasbah
Leaving Todra Gorge after breakfast you will travel along the “Valley of 1,000 Kasbahs” to the thriving town of Ouarzazate for a lunch stop. This town is home to Atlas Film Studios, where many films have been shot over the years, including Lawrence of Arabia and Gladiator. It is also an important town in the south of Morocco and home to the new solar park recently opened in 2016.
Continue on to the fascinating and beautiful Aït Ben Haddou, one of the best example of a working kasbah. A UNESCO World Heritage site and the active home of 5 Berber families who still live in the Kasbah, you will have an opportunity to wander the streets of this ancient city, viewing the arid river bed as well as the stunning views from atop.
Day 11 – Ait Ben Haddou Kasbah to Essaouria
Today you will leave Ait Ben Haddou Kasbah behind and make your way to the coast.
Along the way you will see many authentic Berber villages, and stop into Marrakech for lunch before heading out to the Atlantic.
On the way to Essaouira you will have the opportunity to stop in to see an Argan Cooperative where women work each day to extract argan oil from the locally grown nuts and where they make argan oil products for food and beauty products. Stop at a local winery for a tasting if you like. Roaming Camels is happy to make advance arrangements if this is of interest to you.
As you travel along the road keep your eyes open for goats in trees. They will often climb up to the trees in order to eat the argan nuts!
This is a relaxing seaside port that is a popular destination for photographers. You can enjoy seafood for every meal if you like and you can take long long walks along the beach that goes for miles. There are many water sports popping up along the beach as well as being a haven for artists, musicians and wood carvers.
Great spot for live music too!
Day 12 – Essaouira
You’ll enjoy a leisurely breakfast at the hotel in Essaouira, then start your journey to explore the city. You’ll visit the Skala Fortress; see Thuya wood carved by artisans; walk through the alleys of the medina and view hundreds of handicrafts. Visit the harbour and see the fishermen as they come back in with their daily catch and if you choose you can enjoy lunch of freshly bought fish ‘cooked to order’. In the afternoon, you will have some free time to wander around, go to the beach and enjoy time on your own.
Essaouira is also referred to as The “City of the Wind” and it attracts surfers from all over the world. Essaouira has known a great deal of history, including a Portuguese occupation, which affects much of its architecture and it is even rumoured that some major rock icons of the 60’s and 70’s have spent time here. Because of its size and its characteristic blue doors and washed walls, it is also regarded as Morocco’s “Jewel of the Atlantic”.
Day 13 – Essaouira to Marrakech
Today we have a 3 hour trip back to Marrakech. We can plan together what you want to see in the city while you are here.
Tonight you will have the choice of restaurants or perhaps you will enjoy an evening in Jmaa El Fna Square with dinner in the famous food tents and a walk past the street performers, snake charmers and all sorts of other oddities that occupy the square on any given evening.
Day 14 – Marrakech
Today will enjoy your choice of activities in Marrakech. Based on your ideas and our recommendations you can choose to see any number of local museums, monuments and points of interest, or take a walking tour of the medina with some shopping and exotic street foods along the way.
We can also arrange for a hammam visit, cooking class or one of many other fun activities. The choice is yours.
This day is yours to consume this amazing city in the heart of Morocco and we are happy to help you create it.
Day 15 – Departure Day
# of days
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- airport transfers
- 14 night double accommodations
- breakfast every day
- 3 dinners
- air conditioned vehicle
- professional driver
- English speaking guide
- camel trek
- city guided tours
- mandatory travel insurance
- all lunches
- extended stays before and after the tour dates