Morocco Culture and Heritage Tour from Casablanca, Explore beautiful, historic cities, impressive mountains, the magical Sahara desert, and discover most of Morocco!
Want to experience most of what Morocco has to offer? Wander through the vibrant cities, explore historic ruins, hike through the impressive High Atlas Mountains, sleep in the overwhelming desert under the stars, and enjoy the calming sea?
This whole 15 Days itinerary in Morocco fused with Moroccan hospitality, lively colors, and scents will give you some cherished memories you won’t forget! In 15 days, we will reveal all of that and more!
Morocco Culture and Heritage Tour Highlights:
The Morocco Culture and Heritage trip will take you to the highlights of Morocco. From the impressive cities to the gorgeous High Atlas Mountains, the Sahara desert, and the relaxing ocean. You will experience it all! We will start in Casablanca, where the famous Hassan II mosque is located. Visit spiritual Fes with its immense pedestrian center and old souks, ride on a camel through the Sahara Desert. At night you can count the stars. Later on, we stop at the impressive Todra Gorge. We wander through UNESCO world heritage Ait Benhaddou (also known from the series Game of Thrones) and enjoy the relaxed coastal town Essaouira. This itinerary is completed with wandering through the old streets of Marrakech, delicious Moroccan food, and Moroccan hospitality. Cities, desert, and beach: Morocco Around will be a trip to remember!
Welcome to Morocco! Welcome to Morocco! If you fly to Casablanca we’ll arrange a transfer from the airport and arrange your stay at a comfortable hotel. Today you have free time to discover the city. We will meet with the group at 6 pm in the hotel.
After our first night in Morocco, we will go by bus to the capital of Morocco: Rabat. Rabat’s history is long and colorful, having been host to Roman settlements, pirates, and more recently, the Moroccan Parliament. First, we will spend a few hours strolling through the city’s old quarter, then walk up to Kasbah des Oudaias and enjoy views over the Atlantic Ocean. Afterward, we’ll continue to Meknes. The imperial city of Meknes was built when Sultan Moulay Ismail (a contemporary of Louis XIV) set out to create his own version of Versailles, using over 25,000 slaves to construct walls, gates, and over 50 palaces.
This morning you have free time to explore Meknes. Try a camel burger for lunch at a friendly local restaurant in the medina. After lunch, we will travel for one hour through hills and olive groves to the archaeological site of Volubilis. World Heritage-listed Volubilis was once a provincial Roman capital, a distant outpost of the empire, and the remains make an undeniably impressive sight. Upon arrival, we take a tour around the ruins with a local guide. Afterward, we embark on a two-hour drive to Fes, where we’ll spend the next two nights. Fes is the spiritual and cultural heart of Morocco; vibrant, noisy, fascinating, and overwhelming – a visual and pungent feast for the senses – with a huge, well-preserved medieval old city that’s the mother of all medinas!.
We take a guided walking tour of the old city, known locally as Fes el Bali. Step back into the Middle Ages in the labyrinth of the Medina, which is alive with craftsmen, markets, tanneries, and mosques. Look out for the Medersa Bou Inania, one of the city’s most beautiful buildings, which has recently been restored and is now open to tourists. You can visit the Belghazi Museum, Medresse el Attarine and the splendid Funduk Nejjarine, a beautifully restored 18th-century inn. You’ll also see the famous tannery and a ceramics factory where you can see the potters at work. In the evening, perhaps enjoy a delicious group dinner (at your own cost) of Moroccan specialties like Harira (chickpea soup) and chicken-stuffed pastilla with couscous.
We will leave the intensity of the city behind for the simplicity and the calmness of the Middle Atlas Mountains (approximately 4 hours by bus). The area is populated with wandering nomadic shepherds attending to their flocks. Pass through cedar forests which are home to Barbary apes, North Africa’s only monkey, and we reach Midelt. Nestled in a valley, Midelt is a market town. Stretch your legs as you explore the nearby village of Bremmem and take a closer look at local farming life. Visit Kasbah Myriam (if it is open), an embroidery workshop run by Franciscan nuns with the aim of providing sustainable employment and education to local Amazigh (Berber) women.
Today it’s a five-hour drive towards the Sahara Desert. There will be many opportunities to stop and admire views of Kasbahs and palm groves (valleys lush with date palms, fields, and orchards) along the way. The end of the road is at the small Saharan settlement of Merzouga. We will mount a camel for a one-hour sunset ride into the desert. The Erg Chebbi dunes are the most stunning in the country and an essential part of any visit to Morocco. Located at the end of a sealed road and just 20 kilometers from the Algerian border, this really feels like a frontier country. Spend the night in a hotel and enjoy the stars. Our guides will prepare a hearty feast, so all you need to do is sit back and relax.
Today return from the desert and begin the drive to Todra Gorge. On the way visit the oasis museum of El Khorbat, before continuing on to the beautiful Todra Valley (approximately 5 hours in total), which follows the foothills of the Atlas Mountains and is dotted with mud-brick villages perched on hillsides. The remarkable scenery – sprawling green valleys and rocks sculpted into stunning formations by the wind, will be your home for this night.
After some free time to explore the Todra Valley, we travel south for four hours to Ait Benhaddou. We will pause for lunch in Ouarzazate. Here movies like the Lawrence of Arabia, The Sheltering Sky, and Black Hawk Down were filmed. Time permitting, you can take a tour of the Atlas Movie Studios. Continue on to your destination of Ait Benhaddou. Centuries ago, this was an important stop for caravans carrying salt across the Sahara. Today it’s a grand kasbah, a fine example of clay architecture, and has been listed as a World Heritage site.
We will ride over the spectacular Tizi n’Tichka Pass (2,260 meters above sea level) to Telouet Kasbah, photographing snow-dappled mountains and valleys in full flower along the way. Telouet Kasbah is an abandoned fort, once the home to the Glaiou family. The head of the family was known as the Lord of the Atlas. He and his 4 wives and concubines lived here until around 1950. Imagine the history as you roam the impressive, deserted fort.
At the end of the road, store your main luggage and load a daypack onto a pack mule. We will walk into traditional mountain village life with a one-hour trek up to the peaceful village of Tigzha, far from the reach of the modern world. Perched on a rocky outcrop, the remote village of Tigzha offers stunning views across the High Atlas Mountains. Spend the night in a family-run mountain home (gite) in Tigzha. Facilities at the homestay are shared (both the bathroom and sleeping arrangements) but cozy, comfortable, and definitely a unique experience.
After a night’s sleep in the serenity of the High Atlas Mountains, today we will hike along the Tighza Valley. The astonishing beauty and the peacefulness of the valley will impress you. In the afternoon, we will have a unique opportunity to experience traditional Amazigh (Berber) culture. We will drink tea with a local Amazigh family in their home. Experience local, rural life and its calm pace for yourself.
Take a morning walk through the valleys and trails of the stunning Atlas Mountains. Afterward, head westwards for five hours towards the Atlantic Coast and the old fishing town of Essaouira, a city where the medina brushes against the Atlantic Ocean. This artists’ town was once home to sizeable British and Jewish populations, and its charm has seduced people like Orson Welles and Jimi Hendrix, who (according to local legend) spent much of his time here in the 1960s. Stay in a restored riad, or Moroccan mansion, a traditional nobleman’s house unique to Morocco that’s a calming oasis away from the buzz of the medina. Your riad is beautifully designed and decorated in traditional Moroccan style, cozy yet historical.
Today a local guide will take you for a walking tour through the old medina, Jewish Mellah, port, and Skala (sea wall). Afterward, use your free time to get a feel of the town. The narrow streets of Essaouira are ideal for casual exploration. Browse the plentiful shops and intriguing art galleries that make this little town a particularly pleasant place to unwind for a few days. It has a growing reputation for its unique art and is becoming even more famous for its burled Thuya wood, delicately formed and inlaid in tiny shops that are built into the thick walls of the Portuguese ramparts. The scent from the oils used to polish the richly colored wood permeates the air and makes walking down the streets incredibly pleasant.
If you want to relax after your shopping experience, you can walk to the beach of Essaouira and enjoy the calm of the ocean and the local people strolling along the boulevard.
We will ride to Marrakech (approximately 3 hours), which is an ancient, exotic city wrapped in European modernity. Marrakech is a feast for the senses. Be enticed by the alluring scents and brilliant colors of the spice markets, the sounds of the musicians, the rich folds of carpets, delectable foods, acrobats, and perfumed gardens. Perhaps join the thronging crowds for dinner at the famous Djemaa el Fna square. When night falls on this square, it transforms into a hive of activity. Snake-charmers, henna-painters, performers, and storytellers share the square with a street food bazaar, packed with stalls loaded with Moroccan delicacies, including snail soup!
Today is free so you can discover the city more by yourself. Explore the Medina for some last-minute shopping. Perhaps you want to visit the well-known Koutoubia Mosque and its 12th-century minaret, which was the famous prototype for the Giralda tower in Seville. Take a wander through the tropical gardens of the French painter Jacques Majorelle and the recently opened Yves Saint Laurent Museum nearby. You might like to check out the Palais Bahia, a superb example of Muslim architecture, or the ruins of the Palais Badi, reputedly one of the most beautiful palaces in the world in its time. Eating out at one of the many outdoor restaurants lining the square is a great way to finish your adventure.
Your Most of Morocco adventure ends today. Check-out time is usually around noon and you are free to leave at any time. Additional accommodation can be pre-booked if you wish to spend more time exploring here. Speak to your guide about the wealth of extra activities to do in and around Marrakech.
Marokko cultuur en ontdekkingsreis vanuit Casablanca 15 dag, De Marokko Cultuur en Erfgoed reis neemt je mee naar de hoogtepunten van Marokko. Van de indrukwekkende steden tot het prachtige Hoge Atlasgebergte, de Sahara-woestijn en de ontspannende oceaan
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